Should-Read: Simon Wren-Lewis: Henry Farrell on economists and austerity: "As [Kevin] Drum says, it is not all gloom for economists... https://mainlymacro.blogspot.com/2017/04/henry-farrell-on-economists-and.html
If we had responded to the 2007-08 financial crisis the same way we did to the 1929-32 financial crisis, we'd still be waiting for a rerun of World War II to pull us back to normal.
I get very annoyed when people ask me what economists have done to deserve respect over the last decade. We avoided another Great Depression, that’s all. It may have been politicians top priority, but we told them what needed to be done, as Farrell makes clear.
But when Farrell suggests that austerity could have been avoided if only economists had stayed united, I think he is wrong. If you view 2016 as an experiment to see if policy can really ignore the united view of academic economists, the result is that it can. While it is important to hammer home what a mistake austerity was, and that it was never the policy recommendation of the majority of economists, the key question is why on occasion that often overwhelming majority can be so easily ignored on issues economists know more about than anyone else....