By Dan Kervick
I take time out from our latest national celebration of curmudgeonly misery and political decadence, which features an intense bipartisan struggle over whether to cling to liberal or conservative forms of long-term economic stagnation, in order call the reader’s attention to an economist whose innovative ideas are so insightful, so well-informed and so right that they stand in terrifying contrast to almost everything that most Americans in 2013 hold dear.
The economist is Mariana Mazzucato of the University of Sussex, who recently presented several of the leading ideas from her new book, The Entrepreneurial State, to an audience at the London School of Economics. Mazzucato ties a vast number of themes together in a sparkling, rapid-fire talk followed by a stimulating round of Q&A. Among the economists who come in for discussion along the way are Polanyi, Keynes, Schumpeter, Stiglitz and Krugman. Mazzucato pulls no punches on the inadequacies of bastard Keynesianism with its limited emphasis on economic pump-priming, and on the dead-enders of neoliberal thought represented, for example, by the editorial staff of The Economist magazine. Here is the link to the presentation: