An Open Letter to Ms. Drew Gilpin Faust, President of Harvard University

Dear Ms. Drew Gilpin Faust, President of Harvard University,

Please take a stance and action on Reinhart and Rogoff’s multipally-debunked austerity paper. The paper written by Ms. Carmen Reinhart and Mr. Ken Rogoff, “Growth In A Time Of Debt,” has been used by certain politicians and political groups in the US to undermine the efficacy of sound economic policy, namely stimulus spending during times of recession. Stimulus spending has been proven effective over eight decades of experience and used by every presidential administration during this

eight-decade time-frame.

“Treason” is defined by Merriam-Webster (here) as “the betrayal of a trust.” Actions by those in elected political office to discredit previously well-proven economic policy that ensures some form of livelihood for millions is quite clearly betrayal of a trust. “Growth in a Time of Debt” has been instrumental in this betrayal of trust as has the name of the great institution of Harvard University.

It is unknown at this time if the work of Ms. Reinhart and Mr. Rogoff was intended to mislead or merely shoddy work.

What is not unclear are the consequences of ineffective policy that the “findings” of the paper by Ms. Reinhart and Mr. Rogoff have been used to support; over 11 million officially unemployed for years, disproportionate impoverishment of children, minorities, women, youth and the elderly, trillions of dollars in lost and forever unrecoverable GDP, deterioration in health, broken families, and, yes indeed, loss of life from suicide and other related causes.

Along with the lost GDP are associated lost tax revenue from said lost GDP. Ironically, these are revenues that could have reduced debt that the failed policies are purported to be concerned with.

The consequences I speak of have been for millions around the world, in a word, horrific.

But you can do something to help correct this tragedy.

I urge you in the strongest terms possible to take actions to restore the reputation of the revered and respected Harvard University that are commensurate, to the degree feasible, with the damage caused by the work of your Ms. Reinhart and Mr. Rogoff.



Tracy E. Crawford



If you would like to copy and forward this letter, in part or in portion, to the President of Harvard, contact information for the Office of the President of Harvard University is publicly posted on the Harvard University website here:

Anyone may copy and or modify this letter and use as you see fit. As a courtesy please include the reference to the original.

“Growth in a Time of Debt” is here as pdf from Harvard University:

The paper by Thomas Herndon, Michael Ash, Robert Pollin, “Does High Public Debt Consistently Stifle Economic Growth? A Critique of Reinhart and Rogo ff,” the paper discrediting “Growth in a Time of Debt,” is here as pdf: