The New Yorker profiles Paul Krugman

The article is here.  We learn that Krugman and his wife like St. Croix, they have cats named Doris Lessing and Albert Einstein, and there is an interesting discussion of how his wife edits his work.  Excerpt:

Last August, Krugman decided that before he and Wells departed for a bicycle tour of Scotland he would take a couple of days to speak at the sixty-seventh world science-fiction convention, to be held in Montreal. (Krugman has been a science-fiction fan since he was a boy.) At the convention, there was a lot of extremely long hair, a lot of blue hair, and a lot of capes. There was a woman dressed as a cat, there was a woman with a green brain attached to her head with wire, there was a person in a green face mask, there was a young woman spinning wool. There was a Jedi and a Storm Trooper. Those participants who were not dressed as cats were wearing T-shirts with something written on them: “I don’t understand–and I’m a rocket scientist,” “I see dead pixels,” “Math is delicious.” Krugman has always had a nerdy obsession with puns. (He is very proud of a line in one of his textbooks: “Efforts to negotiate a resolution to Europe’s banana split had proved fruitless.”) He also likes costumes. Once, he and Wells gave a Halloween party where the theme was economics topics–two guests came as Asian tigers, several came as hedge funds, one woman came as capital, dressed as a column. Sitting up onstage at the science-fiction convention, Krugman looked happy to be there. It seemed that these were, in some worrying sense, his people.

And this:

Krugman is not a keen traveller. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, many of his contemporaries set off for Eastern Europe–every economist wanted his own personal country to transition. Jeffrey Sachs, in particular, was all over the place, but Krugman was never tempted. “I know what Jeff does and I couldn’t do it,” he says. “Taking transport planes, living on yak meat for days–no. But I do write faster than anybody. You’ve got to figure out what you should be doing.”

Overall I thought this profile had a lot of substance in it.


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