Slowly Becoming an "Expert"
In Freakonomics we poke fun at “experts” — folks who go around speaking with great authority about topics they don’t actually know that much about.
I can be criticized for a lot of things since Freakonomics came out, but one thing that I have been pretty good at is not masquerading as an expert on topics I know little about. For instance, although I have views on the financial crisis, I’ve more or less kept them to myself, instead using the Freakonomics blog as a vehicle for publicizing the views of people who know more than I do about the issues, even if I don’t necessarily agree with everything they are saying.
Every once in a while, though, I let someone get me going on topics I have no business talking about.
A recent interview with Steve Paulson on NPR is a good example. Somehow he got me talking about the housing bubble and the stimulus package. I wouldn’t actually encourage you to listen to it, but if you want to be a witness to my descent into expertdom, it is available online. My segment starts about 30 minutes into the show. Other guests on the show include Paul Krugman, who has a very different view of stimulus than I have.