I remember once seeing a book on a used bookstore shelf in Washington DC (Second Story Books?) years ago entitled “Great Public Policy Disasters” or something like that. Over this year, I’ve been thinking that one could write an entire book series entitled “Great Public Policy Disasters of 2020” . With that in mind, here’s the year in review:
January: Some people continue their crusade against confidence intervals, and statistical theory in general.
February: The inimitable Judy Shelton is still on on tap for the Fed … to the amazement of all sane people…
March: I don’t know why people who can’t understand a model talk about models.
April: An Econbrowser reader (representative of many people, apparently) says the pandemic is “slightly overblown”
May: White House foregoes Mid-Session Review, retains the January forecast:
Runner up: Trump’s implicit valuation of life as of May 22 is about 1/10 of OMB’s valuation. Who knows what it is in December?
June: Even after three years of Trump in office, his racism is stunning. I predicted his racism would just escalate as the campaign neared its end — and I was right!
July: Thinking about what monetary policy has to do to target a gold price…
August: How to mangle the data, illustrated, by a Covid-19-denier
Runner Up: ALEC’s economic outlook index again…
September: The spectre of Scott Walker returns to disinform
October: As Wisconsin hospitalizations and fatalities surge, conservative legal organizations are suing to strike down public health measures
November: As record numbers of people go to food banks and measured growth decelerates, Stephen Moore lauds “Trump’s super recovery”
December: Like a perennial, fears of inflation re-appear
That’s it! And I didn’t even mention “bleach” and “sunlight” – let’s all hope for a return to sane policy analysis in 2021.