David Axelrod is giving back to the University of Chicago. Do the Beltway and the Midway offer synergies? I am happy to see that Austan Goolsbee will be actively involved but this doesn’t sound like my “pure” UC. At UCLA, I am delighted to have Gov. Michael Dukakis as my next door office neighbor each winter. Students can certainly learn from having more interactions with “real world” policy makers. As academic economists learn over and over again, those ideas that look good on a chalkboard (i.e carbon tax) can be hard to implement in a partisan age where side payments are hard to target. What I mean by that is the economists often point to ideas that offer the “winners” more than the losers lose but we have trouble compensating the losers for their losses as the losers are not dumb and they block the “Hicksian pareto improvement“.