by Simon Black: The
all of us little people just need to sit down and keep quiet…
so sayeth Kartik Athreya, senior economist for the Federal Reserve
Bank of Richmond.
recent paper entitled “Economics is Hard. Don’t Let
Bloggers Tell You Otherwise,” Mr. Athreya chastised the world
of bloggers, talking heads, and anyone else who isn’t named
Kartik Athreya for speaking their minds about economic policy. Clearly,
everyone else is too stupid to have an opinion.
who have not taken a year of PhD coursework in a decent economics
department (and passed their PhD qualifying exams), cannot meaningfully
advance the discussion on economic policy,” wrote Athreya.
“[I]t is exceedingly unlikely that these authors have anything
interesting to say about economic policy.”
Yeah, OK, there
are a lot of dimwits out there… but this sort of “shut
up and do as you’re told” mentality is precisely what
is so flawed about the system to begin with.
be honest, though, this isn’t indigenous just to the United
States. The powers that be have been doing this for centuries. Even
the Greeks, arguably among the more enlightened of early civilizations,
sentenced Socrates to death for asking too many annoying questions.
Over the years,
intellectual discourse has been squashed through fear and coercion,
giving rise to such illustrious events as the Dark Ages and Inquisition.
These days, if anyone gets out of hand, they send the cops out in
their blackest, most intimidating paramilitary gear… just to
send a message.