In our last post we noted how Lord Lawson of Blaby used our arguments in Why Nations Fail to bolster his claim that Britain should not be committing itself to spend 0.7% of GDP on development aid. In his speech he noted:
A useful analysis, which I commend to the House, is to be found in a penetrating new study, Why Nations Fail, by a couple of economists, Acemoglu and Robinson…A couple of economists? Actually, James Robinson likes to refer to himself as a “recovering economist”…
Why? Because to paraphrase Bill Clinton’s famous adage: “It’s the politics, stupid” — at least when it comes to understanding economic development.I wouldn't limit it to just economic development. I would argue that the same applies to almost every sub-branch of social life. This is why decided to pursue post-graduate study in political science rather than economics, which was my undergraduate major. Fine, whatever, that's what I did and why I did it. No one cares. But Acemoglu is one of the most prominent young(ish) economists in the game, winner of the 2005 John Bates Clark Medal. And he's saying that the academic discipline of economics isn't up to snuff.
That ain't nothing.
The quote above and more can be found here.