Sunday, September 28, 2014

Review of 'Seven bad ideas'

by Peter Richrdson "Madrick quotes MIT economist and Nobel Prize winner Robert Solow on the appeal of Say’s law. “There has always been a purist streak in economics that wants everything to follow neatly from greed, rationality, and equilibrium,” Solow wrote in 2008. “The theory is neat, learnable, not terribly difficult, but just technical enough to feel like ‘science.’ Moreover, it is practically guaranteed to give laissez-faire type advice, which happens to fit nicely with the general turn to the political right that began in the 1970s.” Those three sentences encapsulate much of what is wrong with the profession today." Another quote from the review "The split between Fama and Shiller, who shared the Nobel Prize in 2013, points to Madrick’s final bad idea: the notion of economics as a science. Madrick’s poster boy for this position is University of Chicago professor and Nobel Prize winner Robert Lucas. “I came to the position that mathematical analysis is not one of many ways of doing economic theory,” Lucas once said. “It is the only way. Economic theory is mathematical analysis. Everything else is just pictures and talk.” "
There is a discussion with another review by Paul Krugman at Economist's View.
Related 'The construction of a Global Profession: The Transnationalization of Economics' by Marion Fourcade

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