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Thoughts from the Frontline Archive, July 2014

Time to Put a New Economic Tool in the Box
  • July 26, 2014

Time to Put a New Economic Tool in the Box

[E]conomists are at this moment called upon to say how to extricate the free world from the serious threat of accelerating inflation which, it must be admitted, has been brought about by policies which the majority of economists recommended and even urged governments to pursue. We have indeed at the moment little cause for pride: as a profession we have made a mess of things.

It seems to me that this failure of the economists to guide policy more successfully is closely connected with their...

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GDP: A Brief But Affectionate History
  • July 20, 2014

GDP: A Brief But Affectionate History

“Measurement theory shows that strong assumptions are required for certain statistics to provide meaningful information about reality. Measurement theory encourages people to think about the meaning of their data. It encourages critical assessment of the assumptions behind the analysis.

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Central Bank Smackdown
  • July 5, 2014

Central Bank Smackdown

Smackdown: smack·down, ˈsmakˌdoun/, noun, US informal
1.  a bitter contest or confrontation.
"the age-old man versus Nature smackdown"
2.  a decisive or humiliating defeat or setback.

The term “smackdown” was first used by professional wrestler Dwayne Johnson (AKA The Rock) in 1997. Ten years later its use had become so ubiquitous that Merriam-Webster felt compelled to add it to their lexicon. It may be Dwayne Johnson’s enduring contribution to Western civilization, notwithstanding and...

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