Mark Thoma: Economist's View: Ideology and Macroeconomics:
In theory, there should be economists who, as they argued for more stimulus in 2009, should at the same time have been arguing for entitlement reform or other reductions in future spending. Other things equal, the bigger debt that we have accumulated over the past five years would make a non-ideological macroeconomist want to propose tighter fiscal policy somewhere down the road. But “nonideological” and macroeconomics are nearly oxymorons…
And Mark says:
Huh? See here (from 2005, before the recession had even started):
… To use fiscal policy to stabilize the economy however, you have to spend more or tax less in the bad times (increase the deficit) and then do the hard thing which is to raise taxes or cut spending in the good times (decrease the deficit). To keep the budget in balance the good has to be matched somewhere by the bad…. The priming of the economy during the bad times must be matched by a slowdown during the good….
Or here (from 2008, a bit afer the recession started):
Short-run stabilization policy for the economy during a downturn involves either cutting taxes to stimulate consumption and investment (and sometimes net exports), or increasing government spending…. Ideally, the deficits that accumulate during bad times are paid for by raising taxes or cutting spending during the good times so that there is no net change in the budget in the long-run.
I would have doubted that there were people so obtuse as to fail to note that the argument has been: "classical fiscal policy as long as monetary policy can handle the stabilization policy mission; but expansionary fiscal policy is needed at the zero lower bound".
But Kling has proved me wrong.