You may recall from earlier that I went down to New Jersey a couple of weekends ago to attend the taping of the second installment of the Keynes/Hayek rap video. (You can see some background and commentary on the first video here.) You probably don’t recall that I had a bit of a Twitter spat with John Papola, the director of the series of videos:
me: John Papola: “This is not an unbiased production. When Hayek speaks, you’re like ‘yes.’ When Keynes speaks, you’re like ‘no.'” Sigh.
John: I’m proud to be honest about my position instead of put forward some pretense of “objectivity” that is clearly impossible.
John: reserve judgment on the treatment of Keynes until you see the final video. On-set direction is not the same thing as editing.
Fair enough, and John’s not wrong. Most of the words are, in fact, accurate- the only thing that really caught my attention was the statement that Keynes didn’t care where government spending goes. I would like to think that reasonable Keynesians would agree that it’s strictly better to spend on useful things than on stupid things. That said, I am not sure what Keynes himself had to say on the matter. I also think it’s appropriate that I watched this immediately after going to a talk by Greg Mankiw about how there is a “case for humility” in macroeconomics, since there is still a lot that we don’t know about trying to regulate business cycles. He likened the economist/economy relationship to a doctor/patient relationship in which the doctor hasn’t seen enough patients like the current one in order to do a proper clinical trial. If the medicine that the doctor gives initially doesn’t work, is it because the doctor prescribed the wrong medicine or is it because the patient was sicker than the doctor realized and the dose wasn’t high enough? It’s a difficult problem, and it kind of makes me want to see Dr. House as an economist.
Anyway, without further ado, here’s the new video:
Yep, that’s my name in the credits. Did you see me? Yeah, me neither. 🙂 I’ll give you a hint- I’m in the crowd in the boxing scene, and I’m wearing the same dress as in the picture on my Facebook page. I had asked if I could be one of the congresspeople and was told that I could be an intern or a girlfriend. I guess that’s a compliment in a weird way, but I would like to reiterate that I am in fact old enough to be a member of congress.
I would also like to point out that, especially given that I saw what John had to work with in terms of number of extras and such, the video is very, very well done. The main actors (Billy and Adam) are super nice, and apparently they make the rap thing a habit. I think the best part was watching the boxing coach teaching Billy and Adam how to fake box, since, despite not being “real”, it looked completely exhausting. Oh, and I got to give out stickers:
I’m not sure how I feel about that combination of stickers, but I guess I’ll take it.