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Did Economics “Go Wrong?”

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Posted in Contemporary economics, History of economics Tagged with: , , , ,

A couple of recent books by well-regarded journalists – Binyamin Appelbaum and Nicholas Lemann, have blamed economists for the current state of the world. Reviewing these in Foreign Affairs last week, the peripatetic New York University economist Paul Romer embraced the authors’ judgments and added his own. Having lost track of the distinction between positive and normative economics (is vs. ought), the profession has come to think of itself and be thought of by others as a tribe of philosopher-kings, Romer wrote. Citing the OxyContin epidemic and the 2008 financial crisis, he summed up in “The Dismal Kingdom” Simply put,