They’re very confused at the London Evening Standard

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The Evening Standard's City Spy column has dutifully relayed the 10 Downing St press office coordinated response to the letter 52 economists sent to the Observer at the weekend asking for a Plan B.

They have said:

Much excitement that "52 economists" have written to The Observer saying that the Government debt reduction strategy is too severe. But the Adam Smith Institute claims that "only 15 of the 52 are actually practising mainstream economists".

The remainder have an axe to grind (for instance Andrew Watt "senior researcher, European Trade Union Institute" and Richard Murphy "anti-poverty campaigner") or work for Left-wing groups like the New Economics Foundation, or are retired, or working overseas, or don't teach economics but other subjects such as "organisational studies", "gender studies" or "social policy". Most damningly, the Adam Smith Institute adds, of Mark Fisher, Stewart Lansley and Olivier Ratle that they "hardly register on Google at all".

So, economists can only work for banks, and not trade unions.

And economists can promote profit but not fight poverty.

And economists cease to be when they retire.

Or never are if they're left wing.

And fall off the edge at Dover.

Whilst Google is now the determinant of eligibility.

All very odd, especially as the Standard have been in contact with me this morning asking for a comment, as they often do, on an economic issue.

Strange that.

Or just, maybe, the Adam Smith Institute got it wrong? I think that the most likely explanation.

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