The Plausibility Plague — the problem of pundits assuring readers that some outcome is impossible — is the topic of my column this week:
Anyone who has ever suggested a bold policy adjustment, whether it is a change in monetary policy or the elimination of a cabinet department, is familiar with this phenomenon. Instead of addressing the actual merits of an idea, people prefer to just dismiss it as implausible, as if that ends the discussion. The result is an artificially constrained public policy debate biased toward the status quo.
But if there's anything that history teaches, it is that what seems implausible in prospect often seems inevitable in retrospect.