I recently knocked Greg Mankiw thusly:
Basically, Greg Mankiw is just about the least interesting economics blogger out there. I always know where heâ€™s going to come down on an issue, and I never learn anything from his explanations of why he winds up at that position. He seems to care more about getting it Republican than getting it right, which makes for lousy econoblogging.
Another way of saying this is that as somebody looking to fire up the true believers, he does just fine. As someone seeking to write a thought-provoking and interesting blog, he fails miserably. Here’s today’s example: read Mankiw on the CBO’s MedPAC decision. Pretty much what you’d expect from Mankiw, and not at all informative. Now read Ezra on the same subject. Pretty much what you’d expect from Ezra, but interesting and informative.
And I suppose it’s possible that Mankiw understands the question being debated, is right on the merits, and can back his view with a compelling argument. But lord, you’d never know any of that from reading his blog.