Economists Do It With Models

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On The Unintended Consequences Of Animal Spirits, Literally…

October 24th, 2015 · No Comments

So George Akerlof and Robert Shiller have a new book out:

Bob Shiller: So should I make this out to Jodi?
Me: No, actually, could you make it out to Raja?
Shiller: Sure…who’s Raja?
Me: She’s my cat.
Shiller: Ok…wait, what?
Me: Well, you talked about tasting your cat’s food in your book, and it’s spurred a number of discussions in my household regarding Raja’s revealed preferences. Also, that whole Animal Spirits thing of yours, you know?
Shiller: You realize I won a Nobel Prize, right?
— just kidding, that didn’t happen, though it probably should have —
Shiller: *looks marginally resigned, signs book*

This counts as a book review, right? You’re all so demanding- fine…the book is entertaining but light on economics. That said, the topic is appropriate at least for Akerlof since the “manipulation” issues described are often a function of asymmetric information- i.e. the lemons problem that won Akerlof his Nobel Prize. Happy now?

The most hilariously awkward part of this exchange is that Shiller had literally just signed a book for an actual human person named Raja (a nickname, technically, but still). Also, I posted this to my friends on Facebook and none of them even questioned the situation- I can only infer that this is well within the normal level of cat entitlement. (Some have even pointed out that even the subtitle is pretty cat appropriate.)

Tags: Books

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