Paul Krugman complains that nobody understands liquidity traps.
It's a good post, but he leaves out one potential avenue where printing money helps, and that's with the exchange rate and net exports. Potential J-curvature aside, printing money will reduce the value of the dollar and help exporters and import-competing firms, which should help unemployment and engender inflation simultaneously. Higher inflation makes loans and debt easier to repay for consumers and businesses...
A smaller added benefit of printing money is that it reduces the debt, as the Fed just returns all interest payments it receives to the Treasury. And, yes, this feature has a surprising free-lunch quality to it. (Most of it would likely to be reversed later on, but not all...)
Bottom line, Krugman is waaay too pessimistic about the potential benefits of QE.
In Defense of the Conventional Wisdom
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