The Apology of a Dying Giant

The very first draft for the paper “The Apology of a Dying Giant” can be read here in Hungarian. In this draft a strong defence is exerted in favour of neoclassical maintream economics on methological grounds. Any comments are warmly welcome.

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Duke Chronicle #3

No matter how strange it is, the latest chapter of my Duke Chronicle has been written in Chicago. In this stage of preparation I must get ready for the trip, so yesterday I started to look into the structure of the Lucas fragments via the homepage of Rubenstein Library. This is a manuscript collection, so there may be special arrangements as to the work with such fragments. I wrote a short e-mail to the librarians in order to ask whether I am free to use my digital camera to make personal copies of the Lucas Papers. They said it is not a problem, but called my attention to the fact that the access to the Lucas fragments is strictly prohibited. I had to ask permission from Prof. Lucas. Yes, from Robert E. Lucas personally, Nobel laureate of 1995. I sent him a short letter in which I introduced myself and even dared to devote a few words to my ongoing research… and shortly after having pushed the “send” button I got a message from him. Now I have his permission. Admittedly, I know I am an extraordinarily talented researcher (relax, it is fun), but I do not even receive e-mails from Nobel laureates. Yes, I know it was almost an automatic reply… But still… I am happy and proud somehow.

A few hours later I got an alert from my Academia.edu account that someone from Chicago had visited my profile. It must have been Lucas… or at least his assistant, Ms. Virginia Bova.

Politics, Elegance and the Euro Champs

This morning I ran into this letter shared by Hillary Clinton on Facebook a couple of hours ago. The letter is by George H. W. Bush for president Bill Clinton. He left these rows on the table in the Oval Office in order that Clinton could read them at the beginning of his first day as a president. It is moving. And uplifting. Elegance. It was the first word that came to my mind when reading this message.

Yesterday did the Hungarian team have its first match at the Euro Champs. We defeated Austria by two goals. Everybody is happy now. People were walking in the streets singing and smiling. One of my closest friends was talking about a possible rise in birth statistics due to this victory. She is glad, and I am happy for her. Otherwise I am sad. I know well that I am completely alone with this opinion of mine, but this seems to be a tragedy for the nation. Hungarian football has been on state funding. Lots of stadiums have been built. Billions of forints have been pumped into football, while state health care or education suffer from serious shortage of funding. And the productivity of state investments… is a joke. We should have built pyramids instead. This victory, however, will justify all the mistakes the government made and, this is obvious, people will forgive all the dubious political decisions. This victory was the most expensive victory of all times, in political terms as well. No. Especially in political terms.

And this letter… Now I see that it is not football or the Olympic Games that our nation lacks. It is elegance. And respect.

 

A Day in Budapest

I had a nice day today. The day before my next exams on Friday I had some free time, so travelling on Metro Line 4 (I really love that!) I could visit Budapest Corvinus University Library to get some papers to read the next few days. The next station was Central European University where I had a coffee with a sweet friend of mine, having a chat about commonsensibles. Then I left for the Hungarian Academy of Sciences where Savaria University Press presented some of its latest books and I could take a selfie with an old friend (Endre Nagy, who is a university professor by profession), who was one of the celebrated authors for his “12 poems“. Here are some pictures…

 

Top 5 Films on University Professors

It is weekend finally, so it is about time we watched a good movie. Together it would be better of course, but it is not an option, unfortunately. So, the idea occurred to me what if I drew up a list on my favourite films about university professors. Yes, it seems as if I was watching myself and, to be honest, I can always laugh at myself. Let’s see the list.

#1 The Rewrite

It is Hugh Grant, so it is not necessary for me to say anything else. He is my chief love-affair advisor. Following him I am really good at stammering and saying “uhmmm” in the end. Or “ahmmm”. In this movie of his, Hugh manifests the best practice of university teaching. He starts with Facebook-checking the candidates to his seminar and selects only the prettiest girls (this is the one thing I always wanted to do) and, finally, he falls in love with one of them. Should I say again that this is the best practice…?

#2 Smart People

Actually it was very difficult to decide whether The Rewrite or Smart People is the number one. Please, feel free to mix up the top two. Smart People is about a clumsy professor of English literature. He hardly feels sympathy for his students, which makes him even more loveable. But the reason why this film is my personal favourite is a legendary conversation between Dr. Hartigan (Dennis Quaid) and his boss at the department:

– When was the last time you attended a department meeting?

– When was the last time there was anything on the agenda worth discussing?

Yes, this is exactly my attitude. Department meetings are extremely boring. And Ellen Page looked really pretty.

#3 Dead Poets Society

It is not a comedy but definitely worth watching. Robin Williams’ outstanding appearance, love, rebellion, youth and poetry. This is the essence of this tragic masterpiece which should be taken as an ideal for anyone who is privileged to teach talented young people. Maybe I should also jump up on my desk to catch my students’ attention.

#4 A Beautiful Mind

This is about my profession, economics. This movie is always presented at my seminars in order to show my students how science works and what a Nobel prize means. I hope they love it. And last but not least, Jennifer Connelly is even more beautiful than in Rocketeer.

#5 Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

To be honest, Indy is the no.1. role model for me, apart from Hugh Grant. He is surrounded by adorable students, who are always falling in love with him – which is a fact of his life, however, he do not even realize it. Indy defeats all his enemies as well as the enemies of the civilised Western world: I think this is the same. This traditional masterpiece is a must for everyone on Saturday evenings.

That’s all for today. Have a nice time! And do not hesitate to let me know your choice, please.