Newsweek brought in an interesting graph of economists from the left and right. I’ll just repeat it below. From the top, it starts from left to right:
Karl Marx (1818-1883): Believed in total government control of the economy rather than a free-market system.
John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946): Argued for regulated finance and government spending to bring economies out of recession.
Joseph Stiglitz (b. 1943): Thinks markets often need governmental support. Critical of Obama for doing to little to reform Wall Street.
Paul Krugman (b. 1953): Believes stimulus is too small, regulations too Wall-Street friendly. Thinks worst banks should be nationalized.
Peter Orzag (b. 1968): Obama budget guru, ex-Stiglitz protégé. Wants governments to play a key role in private industries like health care.
Christina Romer (b. 1958): Chair of Obama’s Coucil of Economic Advisers, has had to rethink her anti-Keynesian theories on deficit spending.
Paul Volcker (b. 1927): Former Fed chair slayed ’70’s “inflation dragon,” now wants to ban government-backed banks from risky bets.
Larry Summers (b. 1954): Formerly backed deregulation (with caveats), now wants new regulatory regime. Critics say it doesn’t go far enough.
Ben Bernanke (b. 1953): Pre-crisis, Fed chair was seen as conservative Friedmanite; $2 trillion in loans later, he’s been cast as a neo-Keynesian.
Adam Smith (1723-1790): Founder of free-trade economics, held that self-interested creates prosperity for all as if by an “invisible hand.”
Alan Greenspan (b. 1926): Maestro of the ’90’s boom but also a libertarian, now seen as major culprit for consistently vetoing regulation.
Milton Friedman (1912-2006): Laissez-faire leader of Chicago School, said government’s only task was to oversee money supply. The anti-Keynesian.