But now, Ferguson has gone up a notch in my estimation, penning a lengthy tirade against Paul Krugman for, well, basically being a know-it-all jerk. And he's 100% right on Krugman, a man who was respectable in the 1990s and did some excellent work on trade and economic geography and development (who can forget his work bringing Alwyn Young to the masses in Foreign Policy, where they challenged the myth of East Asia's rise?). Once George W. Bush won the White House, though, and Krugman was accepted into the liberal glitterati with a recurring column in the New York Times, he went off the deep end. Indeed, he was no longer an economist (or even someone with a passing knowledge of economics), but a full on ranter with a serious case of Bush Derangement Syndrome. And, while I have no knowledge of if he was a jerk before this (based on my own experience with both high-powered academics and people from Princeton, it could go either way but wouldn't surprise me if he were a jerk), he certainly was afterwards.
Now, of course, that's not the point of Ferguson's article - the point is that Krugman was a jerk even when he himself was wrong, that he was accusing people of doing what he actually was doing all along, and that his jerkiness covers the fact that he doesn't do analysis any more, that he just rants and screams from his elfin, spittle-flecked mouth (much like in this clip from Scrubs). Ferguson goes into pretty good detail on where Krugrman's analysis has gone off the rails (and, to be fair, I agree with Krugman on the prospect for the euro and myself thought it couldn't survive in present form), but it's a better analysis of what drives someone to be, you know, a jerk.
Now we just need a similar article on Joe Stiglitz, and all gloves are off!