Why On Earth Does Anyone Pay Economists for Their Work?

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Saturday, 13 July 2013 15:21

That is what readers of this interview by Binyamin Appelbaum with Stephen King must be wondering. King's main point is that growth is grinding to a halt and we are facing an era of prolonged stagnation. Okay, how does this fit with the story that we will see mass unemployment because robots will do all the work?

The answer is that it doesn't fit at all. The weather person on channel 5 told just told us that it will 95 degrees and sunny, while the weather person on channel 9 told us to expect blizzards and sub-zero weather.

This is the state of economic debate in the United States. If either of these views are right, then the people arguing the other one are out of their gourds. Yet in this great country, both views are exposed side by side in elite circles, probably even by the same people.

This says everything anyone needs to know about the quality of economic debate. It is complete nonsense. Policy is designed of, by, and for the powerful, end of story. If we can't do anything about policy, why don't we just save a few bucks and fire all the damn economists. Let's shut down the econ departments in universities, the Fed's research department, the I.M.F., the OECD. Let's get real, no one cares about economics, they are just going to pursue the policies they want to follow.

(Yes, I'm happy to go too. If we get rid of the rest of the bastards, I would gladly spend the rest of my days shoveling poop in dog shelters.)