“Cheerynomics vs. Gloomynomics,” Folbre elaborates in Economix Blog

Nancy Folbre, UMass Economics Professor
Nancy Folbre, UMass Economics Professor

In her New York Times Economix Blog earlier this month, UMass Economics Professor Nancy Folbre light-heartedly proposes “a new taxonomy of economic approaches based on temperament.”


Is this Gloomynomics?

Maybe our view of the world is too dismal even for the dismal science. It is a bit discouraging to believe that markets don’t work very well on their own and that government often makes their problems worse rather than better.

It is also a bit discouraging to believe that we are getting deeper and deeper into a terrible mess — not just a global recession, but a form of ecologically and socially unsustainable economic growth. 

On the other hand, this perspective generates a pretty urgent research agenda. And there’s some evidence that negative moods promote more careful thinking than “what, me worry?” optimism.

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