In the fall of 2007, when the U.S. economy first seemed in peril, I began answering reader queries here on the Business Desk. I still do so occasionally, but this page has expanded to include posts from eminent economists, "far-flung correspondents," and a variety of voices that have intriguing and/or useful things to say about economics, broadly defined. Please feel encouraged to respond to any and all of them.
Paul Solman: Harry Truman may have longed for a one-handed economist, but it's probably good that he didn't get one. Economies, like weather systems, are simply too chaotic to make prediction -- much less prescription -- unambiguous. It should come as no surprise, therefore, that at last month's economists' convention in Atlanta, while many attendees forecast a jobless recovery, a few were more optimistic. One was Northwestern's Robert Gordon, an expert on, among so many other things, long-term trends and productivity. He had a take on the labor market devoutly to be wished.
More typical of the mood in Atlanta, if not the policy prescriptions was Duke's William Darity. He finds current -- and as-far-as-the-eye-can-see future -- employment levels unacceptable. His contribution to today's debate therefore is a proposal. (Our earlier web exclusive with Darity on 'colorism' in the labor market can be seen here.)