At the end of an economic or scientific experiment all that remains is the conclusion. At the completion of an experiment a scientist writes a conclusion, objectively assessing the meaning of the results and reflecting on their implications for contemporary theories. However, the luxury of being able to write one's own conclusion is not one enjoyed by economic experimenters. The experiments are too public, the impacts too widespread, and the results too controversial to be ignored by political pundits, Wall Street gurus, editorial writers, syndicated columnists, and politicians. The deluge of opinions gushing from these sources are seldom coherent, objective, or even well informed. If there is any educational value associated with the sound bites of these self-appointed commentators, it occurs more by chance than design. When opinions are gauged by their simplicity and mass market appeal, the public's desire for wisdom and insight is easily shortchanged.
Columnists and editorial writers for the Wall Streetjournal, for example, offered their own opinions about the supply-side experiment. They were among the few that looked failure straight in the face and shamelessly pronounced it a success. Through endless tracts--often written by the experimenters themselves-the Journal sought to salvage whatever credibility it could for supply-side economics. While the paper's editors were clearly enamored with