A letter to The Guardian:
The Women’s Budget Group tells us that economics needs to recognise “the economic importance of unpaid work in families and communities” (Letters, 20 December). The analysis here was done by the Sarkozy commission, which included such luminaries as Amartya Sen and Joe Stiglitz. To call for what economics should do might be fair enough, but it would help if people were aware of what economics has already done when doing so. The answer, by the way, was that such “household labour” in the jargon should be valued at the undifferentiated labour rate, something that normally means minimum wage.
Senior fellow, Adam Smith Institute
Clearly the world is absurd today as I agree with all the other letters – in The Guardian – on that page more than I agree with my own.
Except that last one.
However, do we really have to look as far back as the Reformation for inspiration? Surely we need look no further than 1973, and the publication of the book Small is Beautiful.
For the last chapter of that book (no, really, go check it) is a paean of praise for coal mining and the National Coal Board. That it was written by the chief economist of the NCB at the time is of course entirely a coincidence.