Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Bill Whittle and Charles N. Steele
I am not an experienced TV interviewee (I believe the last time I was interviewed on television was with CNN at Ben Bernanke's address at the 2009 AEA/ASSA Conference, and before that my 1999 interview in Beijing by China National Television) but I am very happy with my presentation. I could be a bit more polished, I suppose, but given that I'm averaging 8 years between appearances, I'm pretty darned polished. To me, the oddest thing about my performance is that only five days before I had had eye surgery, and my right eye was completely dilated, unfocused and blood red (usually not apparent) and the (non-PJTV) camera operator told me to look straight into what I understood to be the camera, but instead I was looking at a slight angle; the whole visual gave me what I think is a rather deranged look. (OTOH, maybe I simply do have a deranged look.)
Anyway, I am pleased with the interview and think it's worthwhile. For that matter, I think all of Whittle's guests on all three videos were on target, save for Marion Smith in the second video, who seems to argue that China is an unreformed unrepentant Marxist system. That's wrong. If it were true, China's "economic miracle" would be a literal miracle -- for it really has been the greatest lifting of people out of abject poverty to a reasonably decent, or at least adequate, living standard, in history. Today average incomes in China are more than 30 times greater than they were at the beginning of transformation in 1978, and that's happened for more than one billion people. No, that miracle was accomplished by substituting the market for Marxist central planning.