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Man's Inhumanity To Mankiw

Yesterday morning, Matthew Yglesias had a fairly devastating critique of former Bush Council of Economic Advisors chairman, and current Harvard economics professor, Greg Mankiw:

Based on what his ideal policy would be, it seems to me that Mankiw probably, like me, prefers the Democratic bills to doing nothing and prefers nothing to the DeMint plan. But Mankiw hasn’t come out and said that. Instead, he’s blogged about his ideal bill and linked-without-comment to lots and lots of stimulus opponents. And I haven’t seen him offer any commentary or links on the main Republican alternative. One interpretation is that this is Mankiw being loyal to the abstract purity of the economics discipline. But it’s unlikely that anyone so committed to the abstract purity of the discipline that he wouldn’t offer an opinion on legislative options would have served as Chairman of the CEA. More plausibly, as a former CEA Chair who hopes to work again in Republican Party politics, Mankiw is hesitant to offer an honest opinion of the congressional GOP’s legislation or the relative merits of their ideas and the congressional Democrats’ ideas.

It seems to me that if you're an academic who hopes to be taken seriously, and a popular blog has persuasively depicted you as a political operative in the guise of an intellectual, then you would have a strong incentive to respond if you had any case to make in your own defense. And yet, a day later, I see several new posts on Mankiw's blog but no reply. If and when he responds I'll post it.

--Jonathan Chait