Saturday, February 09, 2008

Are David Warsh's Remarks on Greg Mankiw Accurate?

Here is the latest from David Warsh:

And, unlike Feldstein, who taught Harvard’s principles course for twenty years before him, Mankiw’s posture as a leader in his field has come at the cost of a certain amount of obfuscation. It is not clear that his students (or even many of his colleagues) understand how completely left behind he has been by the events of the past twenty years. (Gary's emphasis) For example, he is still describing the lighthouse as a public good, even though the various mechanisms governing the potential excludability of its warning have turned out to be the key to this most familiar of all examples of a nonrival good.

And his most famous paper, “A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth” of 1992, with David Romer, of the University of California at Berkeley, and David Weil, of Brown University, is generally considered to have failed in its defense of the “augmented Solow model,” meaning one in which human capital as well as capital and labor are sufficient to explain variations in growth.

What's going on here? Why Warsh's is so harsh on Greg, simply because of his denial of considering a job at NBER?

No comments: