It's been a busy month for Merle Hazard, Nashville's answer to the question "Why hasn't the country music industry produced more hat acts with a bent for neo-classical microeconomics and the marginal rate of substitution?" Merle kicked off January with a rare live appearance at the annual convention of the American Economics Association in Atlanta, where he shared the bill with a Ph.D. named Bauman who tours as the world's only Stand Up Economist.
Now comes word that one of Merle's tunes is featured in a story slated to run on tonight's PBS NewsHour (airs locally at 6 on WNPT). The characteristically uber-modest Merle figures the segment, produced late last year, was being held for a very slow news day, but we're not so sure. After all, today is actually a rather active news day, what with tonight's State of the Union Address and all. Our theory is that PBS wants to run this on a busy news day as a way to ensure that all of official Washington gets a swallow of Merle's homespun approach to monetary policy and elasticity of demand. Or maybe they just like the hat.
In the meantime, here's some video of Merle live at the AEA convention doing "Old Time Recession."
Update: Merle gets props on NewsHour economics correspondent Paul Solman's Business Desk blog. The segment that PBS aired Wednesday evening is here.