It's time to hold economists more accountable for their predictions. Stock analysts are occasionally held to account for their forecasts, with embarrassing results. But it is rarer to revisit the projections of big-think economists. In recent decades, economists at both ends of the spectrum, as well as those in the middle, have had one thing in common: Most have been profoundly wrong about the economy.
Take the supply-siders, on the right. They told a very coherent story: The economy was constrained by a lack of savings, investment, and growth. Insufficient capital formation, in turn, reflected excessive taxes. In the Reagan era, taxes were indeed cut, but growth in the 1980s remained well below the long-term trend.