Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Email from Baghdad

In my inbox this morning:

Hello Professor Mankiw,

I am a CPT in the US Army and currently stationed in Baghdad Iraq with the 82nd Airborne Division conducting this 'Surge' mission. I am an Internal Medicine physician by training though acting as a battalion surgeon out here.

My father is an Economics professor and I didn't really do that well in Econ in the mid 90s in college. Econ was too gray of a field for someone who was spoiled by the black and white thinking of hard sciences. My father has quite persistently held his grudge against me for the aforementioned bad grade, so now that I'm stuck in a building here in downtown Baghdad with some down time I ordered your intro level Econ textbook.

The above introductory information aside, I just wanted to thank you for writing such a clearly thought out and effectively written textbook. At the conclusion of each of your chapters I feel that I understand the governing principles behind economic phenomena which is exactly what I was looking for.

I don't expect a reply sir, but do look forward to reading some of your advanced level textbooks. I'm actually finding this stuff fascinating!

With respect,
[name withheld]