Thursday, August 07, 2008

Too Good To Be True

Amidst an intense discussion on growth theories, a friend of mine exclaimed,
"I think I know the Solow model better than Solow himself."
Yeah, right.


  1. Hey Rizal,

    Sorry to divert the topic. I was very impressed by your comment on Mao and Suharto last night. I shared the opinion with you. I think the proper way to understand a historical figure,no matter how cruel he is, is to treat him like human being. But a lot of people seem to have forgotten this simple starting point. They don't think those cruel leaders are human beings! I was convinced by an expert of the study on Stalin that Stalin did suffer from his own conducts occasionally, albeit not usually.

    By the way, thanks for hosting the party last night.


  2. Helen, it's a simple argument really: a total monster would not survive, let alone rule, as long as those despots.

  3. Here is the quote from Abhijit Banerjee's article which can verify what we are discussing:

    A good example is Indonesia in the late 1960s and 1970s. The government of General Suharto was brutal, perhaps genocidal and certainly deeply corrupt: Nonetheless its desire to consolidate its power made it very responsive to the advice that it was getting from the Harvard Institute of International Development and the World Bank about investing in physical and social infrastructure and raising productivity in agriculture, and this might be one reason why, forty years down the road, it is usually not thought of as a weak state.