O mundo parece ter se virado de ponta a cabeça. Eu pensei em escrever algo comentando o artigo dos professores Oreiro e de Paula em que estes oferecem uma interpretação peculiar do debate macroeconômico atual, mas deixa para lá, depois das atrocidades que foram publicadas no Blomberg, tenho até vontade de jogar a toalha... Imagina só, e eu tenho cara de quem toma martini?!
A Silver Lining from the Crisis: Here Comes Heterodox Economics!
April 1 (Blomberg) – After the ripples and aftershocks of the deepest economic crisis since the Great Depression, there emerges from the rubble of the economic orthodoxy a new generation of thinkers with fresh ideas, sharp insights and the willpower to change the world, or at least the dismal science.
You would never guess where the new thinking is coming from. When Economics was revitalized in the 1930s in the aftermath of a catastrophic crisis, Lord Keynes used the vast power of his rhetoric to poke fun on an older colleague from the University of Cambridge, a scholar of representative of the mummified pre-1930 economics establishment, Professor Arthur Pigou.
But now the debate went global. Italian philosopher of science Aprile Uno, a catedratic of La Scuola Nuova de Torino, describes it bluntly: “The cheap access to communications created a new class of scholars that is globally connected, savvy, trend-setting, establishment-busting and with a hands-on approach. They are also globally rooted. In the old times, one could find all the top scholars in a handful of places in the Old First World: the two Cambridges, San Francisco, Princeton, Paris. Nowadays concept-changers may teach in Uberlândia in Brazil or Isfahan in Iran!”
But what a fall from grace for economists of the so-called mainstream! Professor Ken Rogoroff of Havard University is now concerned with unfair competition: “I spent several years compiling data about economic crisis in the last 3,000 years and now – I do not complain about my book sales – some economist in the third world, I mean an emerging country, may come with the same conclusions without bothering with looking at the facts. Intuition is essentially unfair.”
Indeed many of the leaders of the revival of Economics are in emerging countries. And among emerging countries, Brazil stands out. There is not a problem faced by policymakers in the United States or the European Union that was not mastered by some obscure Brazilian economist forty years ago.
“Mortgage crisis? We do not have any of it in Brazil. Finance is a sham and will destroy capitalism, we can do without it,” says proudly a young turk called Josias Rubião, a master student at the federal university of Rio de Janeiro. It sounds like chest thumping, but it is earned. When Olivier Blanchard of the IMF wrote a provocative piece steering central banks to choose higher targets for inflation, he was likely following on the footsteps of the so-called heterodox Brazilian economists who have understood the functionality of inflation since at least the early 1960s, through the teachings of the obscure Ignácio Rangel, perhaps as great an economist as any other twentieth century economist.
Economist Bruno Boratti of the New York based Carnegie Endowed for Peace explains: “Some policymakers spend half their lives in policy institutions or academia studying quote-and-quote serious subjects, they lose touch with reality. Others write books about sex and power. Can you guess who ends up on top?”
Naysayers are few and far between. Blogs are their meeting point. One anonymous blogger composes his irate posts in a martini bar in São Paulo and reminisces about the time when students would invert 5-by-5 matrices just to get the intuition behind matrix algebra and econometrics. His speech is blurred and I catch only tidbits of a rant about some fellow who ‘may have eaten children in public bathrooms’. With that it is clear who won the debate – certainly not the old guard losing face and brandishing that old blood libel used against communists!