As a political independent, I had the privilege of reading Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo’s Good Economics for Hard Times without assuming a defensive crouch. Their sometimes surprising, sometimes inconclusive attempts to measure the effects of popular policy ideas will frustrate anyone looking for a five-point plan. But for someone mistrustful of easy answers, it was a treat to see so many buzzword solutions subjected to experimental testing.
The authors, a married couple, are both economics professors at MIT. While it seems fair to conclude from their proposals that they are liberal, they cannot reasonably be called bleeding hearts. They won …
This article appears as “Putting Government Intervention to the Test” in the April 6, 2020, print edition of National Review.
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