Niall Ferguson, the historian at Harvard, has managed to stir up something of a rumpus over the past couple of days. We might even upgrade that to a row actually. His claim was that because John Maynard Keynes was both gay and childless, therefore he didn’t really care about the long term: that long term only being of interest to those who have children who are going to see it.
This is wrong on so many different levels that it’s complicated to point them all out. It should be said that Ferguson has withdrawn the remarks and apologised for making them. But it’s still worth pointing out at least some of those levels of wrongness.