Hoover fellows Robert Hall, Douglas Rivers, Russ Roberts, and John Taylor were the featured speakers at a Media Colloquium hosted by the Hoover Institution. The U.S. economy and the economic stimulus programs were the focus of discussion at the event.
John Taylor, the Bowen H. and Janice Arthur McCoy Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and an economics professor at Stanford University, in comparing studies and other information from a number of sources, questioned whether the Keynesian fiscal stimulus programs are working.
Russ Roberts,a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and an economics professor at George Mason University, asked whether economics is a progressive discipline, with its body of knowledge being built on by successive generations of scholars. Roberts argued that at least in the area of business cycles and forecasting the path of the economy, economics and economists are not making any progress. “While we have learned what not to do, which is helpful, we still have little consensus on what causes severe economic crises and how to recover from them,” said Roberts.
Robert Hall, the Robert and Carole McNeil Senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and an economics professor at Stanford University, and Douglas Rivers, a senior fellow at the Institution and a professor of political science at Stanford University, discussed the state of the economy from different perspectives.
Hall, who also serves as director of the research program on economic fluctuations and growth at the National Bureau of Economic Research, reviewed statistics showing that although real per capita income is stable, real durable purchases per capita are down significantly. Rivers, president and CEO of YouGov/Polimetrix, discussed findings derived from surveys done by his organization.
The colloquium was held on February 1.