Nassim Taleb takes bat, ball; goes home

The author of The Black Swan doesn’t approve of the looming reappointment of Ben Bernanke as chairman of the US Federal Reserve.  Writing in the Huffington Post, he says:

What I am seeing and hearing on the news — the reappointment of Bernanke — is too hard for me to bear. I cannot believe that we, in the 21st century, can accept living in such a society. I am not blaming Bernanke (he doesn’t even know he doesn’t understand how things work or that the tools he uses are not empirical); it is the Senators appointing him who are totally irresponsible — as if we promoted every doctor who caused malpractice. The world has never, never been as fragile. Economics make[sic] homeopath and alternative healers look empirical and scientific.

No news, no press, no Davos, no suit-and-tie fraudsters, no fools. I need to withdraw as immediately as possible into the Platonic quiet of my library, work on my next book, find solace in science and philosophy, and mull the next step. I will also structure trades with my Universa friends to bet on the next mistake by Bernanke, Summers, and Geithner. I will only (briefly) emerge from my hiatus when the publishers force me to do so upon the publication of the paperback edition of The Black Swan.


That’s quite a god complex Taleb’s got going on there (“he doesn’t even know he doesn’t understand how things work”).

2 Responses to “Nassim Taleb takes bat, ball; goes home”

  • I found his book hard to read. He isnt alone in thinking Bernanke should be given short shrift.

    • I’m not opposed to the idea of opposing Bernanke’s reappointment (although I do think that some of the criticisms made in the post to which you pointed rely too heavily on the benefit of hindsight).

      I do suspect that Taleb has, to use a school-yard colloquialism, got a big head from getting it right once and is now getting narky because people aren’t hanging off his every word.

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