Saturday, September 04, 2010

Retroactive elasticity

The following paragraph, taken from a book about economics I am currently reading, illustrates one of the major fallacies replete within economic thinking; selective behavior bias of homo econimus.

"One of Margaret Thatcher's most popular remarks may have been when she intervened in a Yes, Minister television programme to say that all government economists should, without exception, be sacked. Tempting though it would be to agree, generalized attacks on the economics profession amount almost to a category mistake. For if all economists were painfully put to sleep, human curiosity about such matters...would remain and the profession would re-emerge."

First off, why impute the condition of curiosity without a corresponding trait of self preservation? Second, professional risk and risk of death should not be conflated as is done here. Another example of how economists put forth logical arguments without examining how arbitrary their assumptions really are.

No comments: