Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Greg Mankiw's Economics Platform

He tries to list the things for which there is a consensus among economists. It is actually quite good.

I have two problems with the list. First, raising the retirement age for people like me (i.e., those who have cushy jobs) makes a lot of sense. But I think we need to treat truck drivers, miners, linemen, etc. differently. They are often physically incapable of continuing work until an old age. And to ask a 60 year old to retrain is, I think, naive.

Second, I would like to see something about fiscal responsibility. Deficit spending during recessions is fine. But it would be nice to go back to the good old days of the late '90s and run surpluses when the economy is surging.


Kevin said...

I would also argue against free trade, at least his interpretation of it. He only mentions regional trade aggrements, which can be trade distorting. And especially the bilateral ones he mentions seem more political than economics related. if politicians were serious on free trade, they would support the WTO rulings and end farm subsidies (a big one on Mankie's list)

Uncle Billy, Heathen said...

Mankiw writes:

"Maybe you would regard more funding for economic research as not very different from the billions thrown every year at farmers.

If you are that cynical, I won’t try to dissuade you."

Until I see a study of nsf grants not -- sponsored by nsf -- and the type of research it produces, I will remain very cynical.

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