Chris Blattman points to a new book on econometrics titled – Mostly Harmless Econometrics. The title of the book just took me by surprise as it is teasingly similar to the name of this blog- Mostly Economics.
In his post Blattman also points to a review of the book by Andrew Gelman who says:
It can be debated whether Mostly Harmless Econometrics is indeed mostly harmless
This is a pretty interesting comment. Seeing this crisis, the comment applies to economics in general. What were preached as harmless economics ideas and theories have turned into quite (ouch) harmful ones. At least that is what is a feeling we get from reading comments from leading economists on this crisis (see this, this and this, more to follow….)
It might not be a bad idea to dub economic ideas/theories into harmless, mostly harmless and mostly harmful from now on (though again the issue of classifying into these categories would be a tough call…it will keep changing with times)
All this is also tempting me to change the title of this blog to Mostly Harmless Economics after all pointing a few papers and research ideas should not harm anyone…… but it would just be too long and changing the URL would be another problem….