In summation, I guess what bugs me most about Chris Edwards is that I was mentored by liberals and Keynesians that stressed ad nauseum how critical the long-term budget imbalance was. First and foremost there was Bob Reischauer, but also Ned Gramlich and a few other budget guys at hte Urban Institute (Len Burman in our Tax Policy Center too). Then there are all the Keynesians in the blogosphere who have always focused on balancing short-term and long-term needs.
But particularly because of my personal experiences, I have a hard time drawing any other conclusions than that Chris Edwards is making things up to smear other people. To what end? I don't know.
The flip side of this is that it makes me mad because there are a lot of economists in Washington that take these things seriously, that do serious analysis of these questions, and that are often ignored by politicians or distorted by people like Edwards. So here's an idea I had for my blogging that I wanted to run by you guys.
Facts and other stubborn things goes over personal interests of mine, but the material is somewhat esoteric and not focused what I'll be doing as a career. That's a nice release - that's why a lot of us blog. But one idea I had was to phase out this blog over time and start up a blog dedicated to commentary on the economic policy analysis that goes on in D.C.. This is not just a city of politicians. It's a city of think tanks full of brilliant economists too. To highlight that dialogue I was thinking about a blog that would
(1.) Provide links and announcements about all the think tank panel discussions going on in D.C., so that you could access that information (video, agendas, papers) even if you don't live here,
(2.) Short, digestable commentary from me on any that I attend, and
(3.) Solicited/guest commentary from other attendees.
It would be like a one-stop-shop for the Washington research community. It would hopefully raise the profile of this research community for the public and policymakers alike. How does that sound? As a long term plan it seems like a better use of my time than talking about history of thought and arguing with libertarians (fun as that may be).