THE ECONOMICS OF “TEMPESTUOUS SEASONS.” One famous phrase from John Maynard Keynes is “In the long run we are all dead.” A letter from Paul Rayment in the Financial Times (January 4) pointed out that Keynes’s next sentence is important:

“Economists set themselves too easy, too useless a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only tell us that when the storm is over the ocean is flat again.”

Keynes was not rejecting the value of an economic analysis of the long run. He was rather pointing out the value of economic models that tried to answer questions about short run crises and that answers about what would happen in the long run were not helpful in addressing those questions.

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