— Thomas Byrne (@ByrneToff) December 10, 2013
Thomas is referring to this interview segment in The Spectator:
Why Nations Fail
Does he have any book recommendations? He singles out Beautiful Ruins, a novel by Jess Walter (‘a brilliant book about Richard Burton’). “Samantha reads lot of novels. Every now and again she says: right, this one is a real cracker. But in fact she didn’t recommend Beautiful Ruins.
But he says he is ‘obsessed’ with Why Nations Fail, by two American academics who argue that a nation’s fate is determined not by the quality of its politicians but on the strength of its institutions — courts, schools, banks, government. ‘Someone said to me: you only like this book because it’s two academics who have written a very complicated book that confirms all your prejudices. I said, well, what’s wrong with that?’
So both David Cameron and I have the same prejudices. Which believe you me, comes as much of a shock to me as anyone. Haven’t got anything to add to this apart from you can use one framework in very different ways. Andy Newman is a marxist. Chris Dillow is a marxist. I like New Institutional Economics. David Cameron likes New Institutional Economics. No big deal, right? No big deal!?