I am around 40 and majored in economics as an undergraduate; and I have seen the transformation of academic economics.
Believe or not kids, economics used to reward bright people who had great economic intuition. People who really understood economic tradeoffs and economic systems.
The world has changed a lot: Now, you don't need to have ANY economic intuition to be a "star" economist. You can be a "star" simply by collecting data and showing the results of your analysis. Some fields like finance are notoriously bad on this dimension, but I think the transformation has occurred across the board.
Let me be clear. This is NOT an issue about theory (deep or applied) vs. empirical economics; and I am not calling for a return to a world without good identification. If a person has no economic intuition, then he/she does not know the interesting tests to conduct when given new data. For example, the person will literally lift a test from another paper in the hopes that the authors become reviewers.
The reason for this post is that we now have some "stars" in economics who don't know that economic intution exists. It is quite scary.