Of all fields of expertise and excluding the bogus ones (sociologists, chiropractors etc) none match economists for talking nonsense when it comes to forecasting. If that sounds extreme, bear in mind the fact that economic forecasting is invariably wrong is now a specialist field of study at Harvard.
How much of this is due to sheer stupidity? (that’s a brave question to put in print. I might be arrested for being unkind.)
Australian economist, described in the report as “eminent,” Dr Ross Garnaut, surely takes the winner’s medal on this count. Last week he told an on-line university audience that there is “no chance of Australia avoiding a deep recession.”
Get that; no chance. Having said that he followed up saying, “we can work to ensure its as shallow as possible.”
Given there’s “no chance” of avoiding it, an assertion incidentally a stop-go sign holder could have told us, how is it possible to “work” to make it shallower?
In fairness and notwithstanding the stupidity of those utterly contradicting assertions, he went on to talk sense in speaking up for global free trade.
Currently it’s fashionable to talk of an end to free trade, something which along with education has brought more people out of poverty than any other action in human history.
On the other side of the ledger, the ill-judged imitative over-reaction by politicians to the coronavirus outbreak is about to put more people into the poverty than any other action in human history.