Good Riddance, Christina Romer. Now How Will You Get Your Soul Back?


Christina D. Romer is quitting as chairwoman of President Obama's Council of Economic Advisers.

The ordinary function of government is to destroy talented people, but Romer's epic failure has an additional element of tragedy. As an economist, Romer did an excellent job [pdf] of establishing that New Deal stimulus failed to end or seriously mitigate the Great Depression. As an Obama team player (and poignantly, a sunny supporter of the then-senator's campaign), she made a 180-degree turn toward pro-stimulus hocus pocus. Romer will be remembered as the main advocate of the mythical "multiplier" phenomenon, in which every federal dollar spent produces more than 100 pennies worth of economic activity. This is the kind of economics you'd expect to hear from a fine arts major.

Maybe it won't matter on the lobbyist/lecture circuit, but at some point a person must say, "I told all those lies and this is all I get for it?"

UPDATE: As several commenters have noted, the "excellent job" link is to Romer's 2009 effort to walk back her 1992 work, not from the original, which I was unable to locate. Thanks to reader Dennis Nichols for rustling up the 1992 original [pdf].