Good Op-Ed Piece
Today’s LA Times, The Rah-Rah Boys. Definitely worth a read. Here’s just a little bit of it:
The prominence of these people [media commentators] and others like them were, to a great degree, unrelated to their skills as economic prognosticators. Their trade was politics, and at it they were wildly successful. Americans were indeed persuaded to roll back the regulatory state in the 1990s, to give the corporations whatever they wanted, to slash welfare, to smash the labor unions and even to (sort of) elect the most pro-corporate administration since Herbert Hoover’s, headed by a man who promised to privatize Social Security.
Today, though, the picture has changed. And for most of last year’s gurus, the battle has simply shifted. Now it is a matter of blame and they are on the defensive, fighting to rescue their beloved free market with even more zeal than when they were talking up the Nasdaq back in ’98. The crash has brought the consequences that crashes always bring: a return of the regulatory state, demands for the end of excessive CEO pay, public anger at businessmen rather than liberal college professors and–who knows?–maybe the revival of labor unions and the estate tax. For the business class the stakes are huge, and the job that confronts their army of economic commentators is weightier than ever.