A Harvard Economist’s Advice for the President-Elect

Greg Mankiw, a professor of economics at Harvard University, offers up some good advice for the new President-elect in the form of a post at his personal blog.  For the most part, the post is a call for realism.  One of my favorite chunks:

You promised that you would cut taxes for 95 percent of Americans, that you would vastly expand health insurance coverage, and that you would never cut Social Security benefits or raise the retirement age. You will almost surely have to renege on some of these promises. As your economic team will often remind you, even if the laws of arithmetic are ignored during campaigns, they provide a real constraint when making actual policy.

Sage advice.  Mankiw also urges Obama to listen to his campaign’s director of economic policy, noting that:

Jason Furman, is a smart, sensible, and well-trained policy economist. I know: He is a former student of mine.

For more, check out Professor Mankiw’s blog.