David Warsh, William H. Janeway

Economic growth over the past 250 years is best understood as the product of a “three-player game.” In this game, the market economy and the state compete to direct the allocation of resources to new technologies—to canals and waterpower in one century, to steam and electricity in the next, and to computers after that. Financial capitalism, the third player, which includes bankers of every sort, … [ Read more ]

Knowledge and the Wealth of Nations

n this shrewd piece of intellectual history, former Boston Globe columnist Warsh shows how two contradictory concepts of Adam Smith-the invisible hand and the division of labor (famously, at a pin factory)-took on lives of their own after their 1776 publication in The Wealth of Nations, and then finally converged in the work of late 20th century economist Paul Romer. In the first half of … [ Read more ]