Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Noah Smith issue made me think of this Keynes quote

"The day is not far off when the economic problem will take the back seat where it belongs, and the arena of the heart and the head will be occupied or reoccupied, by our real problems — the problems of life and of human relations, of creation and behaviour and religion."

He was talking to an arts group, I believe - it obviously harkens back to Economic Possibilities for Our Grandchildren. The sort of issues that come up in human social behavior when we face scarcity are not all there is to life, and we need to remember that - and we can't approach the rest of life as if that is all there is to life.

Where it is important to talk about economics, though, we have to remember what Paul Krugman points out - that "economics is not a morality play". You're going to have to accept ideas you may not always like. If that's a problem, you should go do something else. But what economics says about the way world is should never be mistaken for a judgement on the way the world ought to be or the way we as people ought to be.

1 comment:

  1. Don't you think Minsky tries to make economics into a morality play as much as Austrian economists do?


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