Dr. Brod writes via electronic mail:
The saddest thing about this is the unnecessary economic pain that's still being felt by the British public, but the second-saddest is this graf:
"The G.D.P. numbers caused bewilderment among some economists, including Andrew Goodwin of Ernst & Young's economic forecasting unit, the ITEM Club. 'Our reaction to these figures is one of disbelief,' Mr. Goodwin said. 'I would be very surprised if these figures were not revised upwards.'"
Bewilderment and disbelief? Really? I could see such a reaction if there were no economic model that predicted these results, i.e. if these data had come completely out of the blue, theory-wise.
But there is such a model, the simple IS-LM model (the mathematized version of Keynes' theory) that most economists learned in senior-level undergraduate economics. And there's been a public debate about the very issue of whether austerity is expansionary. Adam Posen, the chief economist (I think that's his title) of the Bank of England, has been arguing for sensible policies. That must have been in the papers.
I don't expect someone to reject his model at the drop of a hat, but bewilderment and disbelief strikes me as a doctrinaire reaction based on a belief system that starts with the axiom that a Keynesian model can't be valid.
Related: "Credibility, after all, comes after results."