Sunday, October 28, 2007

Paul Davidson, Overoptimistic

"The best way to evaluate any economic theory is to consider the theorist as a magician. Theorists rarely make logical errors in moving from axioms to conclusions, any more than professional prestidigitators drop the deck of cards while performing a card trick. Today's economic theorists are proficient at creating the illusion of pulling policy conclusion rabbits out of their black hat mathematical model of the economy. The more surprising the policy rabbits pulled from the hat, the greater the audience enjoyment of the economist's performance, and the greater the applause and rewards." -- Paul Davidson (2007). John Maynard Keynes, Palgrave Macmillan, p. 26.
This book should be added to your reading list if you are interested in Keynes' General Theory and are not informed of Davidson's views on Keynes. I wish Davidson had chosen a title that distinguishes his book from Hyman Minsky's of the same name.

5 comments:

Mike Beggs said...

Hey, check out the 'reader review' at Amazon and the discussion underneath it - pretty funny.

YouNotSneaky! said...

"Hey, check out the 'reader review' at Amazon"

Oh, it's THAT GUY. He was a topic of of discussion over at Crooked Timber awhile ago:
http://crookedtimber.org/2006/11/09/keynes-amazon-bulldog/

Robert Vienneau said...

I agree, Mike, those comments are amusing. I guess Davidson doesn't feel like a response to an Amazon review is the place to put a lengthy argument.

Anonymous said...

it is impossible to have a rational discussion with Brady on Amazon.com.  The mere fact that, as someone noted on crooked timber,t by 2006 Brady had written over 300 (mostly devesatingly bad ) reviews of books on amazon.com indicates that Brady has nothing better to do with his time than engage in foolish arguments as the only way of promoting his views-- which no one else accepts.I should have known better than to even attempt a discussion with Brady about my latest book, JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES, as I have been previously warned by Geoff Harcourt of Cambrisge Univ. as to the exasperating difficulty of trying to engage Brady in a reasonable dialogue.

Robert Vienneau said...

Thanks for the comment, Paul.

I am of the opinion that Paul Davidson's views - for example, in his recent book - are worth paying more than attention to than Michael Brady's views are. I find Bray's behavior on Amazon odd, but not unique.