Video of the Year?

I don’t think I’ve ever watched a compete 35 minute internet video.  I haven’t been to a movie for well over a decade and probably less than 10 times over the 40 years I’ve been married.  We have a TV at home, but no cable or antenna.  The kids use it to play Wii or watch videos.  I watch a video at home maybe once or twice a year these days.

Let’s just say, I’d rather read.

However, I just watched a full 35 minute video of a debate between Tyler Cowen and Eric Brynjolfsson.  Arnold Kling, another very good economist, calls the video “the video of the year,” which is why I watched it.  These are two really smart economist who are looking at the World and coming up with very different conclusions.  Here’s the video.

Tyler is the author of The Great Stagnation: How America Ate All The Low-Hanging Fruit of Modern History,Got Sick,and Will (Eventually) Feel Better, while Eric is a coauthor of Race Against The Machine: How the Digital Revolution is Accelerating Innovation, Driving Productivity, and Irreversibly Transforming Employment and the Economy.

The debate is fascinating.  The main question is if our current situation reflects stagnation or a “painful readjustment?”  Other questions pop up: Do we use median or average income?  Is technology causing unemployment, or a lack of technology causing unemployment?  Is wealth of total factor productivity the measure of progress?  What does GDP tell us about utility?

I recommend that you watch it.

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