“I guess we should nationalize the banks after all”,  said Greenspan. “Recent events have been very interesting and unexpected. They’ve certainly surprised me, but of course, if you know what the answers are going to be, you don’t need to do the experiment.”

“I’m reminded of a story about Thomas Edison’s early attempts to come up with the lightbulb”, he went on. “Edison had tried a thousand different elements, and all had failed. A colleague asked him if he felt his time had been wasted, since he had discovered nothing. ‘Hardly,’ Edison answered. ‘I have discovered a thousand things that don’t work.’ ”

“So Jeffrey Sachs does one experiment in Russia and finds one thing that doesn’t work, and Domingo Cavallo does another experiment in Argentina and finds another thing that doesn’t work, and the Mont Pelerin Society does another experiment in Iceland and finds yet another thing that doesn’t work, and it’s all good! We’re all contributing to the same  research program. It’s just part of the march of science.”

“If we’re allowed to continue our work, without interference from Luddites and know-nothings, sooner or later we’ll certainly find something that works.  There’s never been a better time to be an economist than right now!”