This commentary is by Fred Jagels, who operates Evergreen Economic Research in Cabot, Vt., specializing in those parts of the economy that economists ignore.

Like so many other knotty problems we face today, economists are on one planet while the planet we all actually occupy has evolved away from what economists learned in grad school.

And when the experts don’t get it right, the rest of us are also in the dark.

Economists are primarily trained to deal with the half of our economy involving production and sales. The other half — postindustrial and postmarket activities such as health care, higher education, government contracting, etc. — is well under their radar. Growth policy, the postwar revision of economics concerned with the growth of GDP, has put a veil over these activities, preventing clear-eyed reform.

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