The expression of economic views is a political right

Dan Hamermesh was interviewed in a very nice, new, short video series of the Institute for the Study of Labor, published in the (also new) IZA newsroom. Dan simply and clearly explains what he thinks about minimum wage, austerity, debt etc but the one thing I find most refreshing is the way he starts responding to the question “From a US perspective, what should Europe do to fix its debt problem?”. He starts by saying: “First of all I am always very loath to suggest anything outside the US, since I am not a citizen I feel no right to do it.” When a solid economist like Dan expresses an elegant reluctance like that, it does not so much mean that you shouldn’t be expressing views on countries you are not a citizen of but it rather means that citizens (in the sense of affected stakeholder) have the right to express their views on all things socio-economic because in the end those are political issues.