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economics



  • God Save Us From the Economists

    by Timothy Noah

    Actress Jayne Mansfield was killed in a 1967 traffic accident; a truck trailer safety regulation review prompted in part by her highly public demise was finally implemented in 1996, after nearly 9,000 people were killed in similar crashes. Why? Blame a bipartisan faith in economists as policymakers. 



  • Economism as a Red Scare Legacy

    by Landon Storrs

    An economic historian traces the rise of neoliberal political economy to the post-WWII Red Scare, when Keynesians were driven out of government service under suspicion of disloyalty. 



  • Virtue and Vice: Looking for the Real Adam Smith

    by Glory Liu

    Smith's work on political economy has long been seen in tension with his investigation of empathy and other moral sentiments. Paul Sagar's new book argues that scholars have mistaken Smith's intentions in order to falsely reconcile the market and morality. 



  • We're Talking about Climate Change with Outdated Colonial Language

    by Priya Satia

    The dominant climate activist theme of sacrificing in the present to protect the future is rooted in the intellectual history of economics which has driven the profligate consumption and gross inequality that threatens the planet. 



  • Bad Economics

    by Simon Torracinta

    A historian of science reviews three books on the history of economic thought, which support the conclusion that the ideas animating the mainstream of the discipline and enabling it to dominate discussions of policy are badly in need of reexamination. 



  • How Academia Laid the Groundwork for Redlining

    by Todd Michney and LaDale Winling

    Richard T. Ely and his student Ernest McKinley Fisher pushed the National Association of Real Estate Boards to adopt "the unsupported hypothesis that Black people's very presence inexorably lowered property values," tying the private real estate industry to racial segregation. 



  • Why Are Moderate Dems Trying to Blow Up Biden's Economic Plan?

    by Zachary D. Carter

    Centrists' efforts to chisel away at the Build Back Better bill threaten its passage, its effectiveness, and the prospects of Democrats to hold power in the future. A biographer of John Maynard Keynes wonders why they're doing it. 



  • In Praise of Possibility

    by Michele Alacevich

    Albert O. Hirschman's approach to development economics stressed the need to understand "hidden rationalities" of developing societies and use them to create change.



  • The Gatekeeper

    by Adam Tooze

    Paul Krugman's career as a politically influential economist has reflected the political dead end of the Clinton-era ideal of technocratic governing. His new book suggests that the intellectual authority of the economics profession may no longer prevent active government or deficit spending. 



  • The Coronavirus Killed the Gospel of Small Government

    by Zachary D. Carter

    Revisiting the work of Keynes highlights the fact that struggles to deal with the pandemic are not only public health failures but economic failures — an inability to marshal resources to solve a problem.