Dusty Bookshelves and Long‐Dead Writers
29 October 2010
New York Times reporter Kate Zernike generated a lot of spit‐takes in the blogosphere when she wrote on October 2 about how Tea Party activists are reading “once‐obscure texts by dead writers”: So that’s, you know, “long‐dormant ideas” like those of F. A. Hayek, the winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, who met with President Reagan at the White House, whose book The Constitution of Liberty was declared by Margaret Thatcher “This is what we believe,” who was described by Milton Friedman as “the most important social thinker of the 20th century” and by White House economic adviser Lawrence H. Summers as the author of “the single most important thing to learn from an economics course today,” who is the hero of The Commanding Heights , the book and PBS series by Daniel Yergin and Joseph Stanislaw, and whose book The Road to Serfdom has never gone out of print and has sold 100,000 copies this year. So that’s Kate Zernike’s idea of an obscure, long‐dormant thinker. Meanwhile, over the next few weeks after that article ran, the following headlines appeared in the New York Times :
- Cuts in Britain Ignore Views of Keynes
- What Would Keynes Say Today?
- Democrats Are at Odds on Relevance of Keynes
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