Post by Peter
Whenever I hear 'independent economist', I ask 'independent of what,
and why does it matter?'
It does matter, I think. Economists' views are very influenced by their
political views and may well be affiliated to a political party, say, or
an organisation which has a political axe to grind. I would not expect
an economist employed by the TUC, for example, to agree on strategy with
one employed by the CBI and if one of them were interviewed it would be
important to know about their affiliation.
Whether an "independent" economist is truly independent of all influence
may well be a matter for doubt, but if they aren't affiliated to any
specific political body the term does have some meaning, IMO.
I take your point, but I would sooner be told what an economist works
for when it matters. What are they, these independent economists?
Economist Fred works for the TUC (by which I mean he is a salaried
member of its staff). Economist Daisy works for the University of
Tonbridge (by which I mean she is a salaried member of its staff). Will
Daisy be described as an independent economist, and Fred not? It is
quite possible that Daisy, too, works for the TUC (in a broader sense of
(It's been many a long year since I tucked into tucs. I recall them as
being too salty. Needle nardle noo!)