Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Greg Mankiw Still A Fool

Greg Mankiw presents a non-argument from authority to the readers of The New York Times.

Is what a majority of members of the American Association of Economists believe of any interest? How abut a majority of the Association For Evolutionary Economics (AFEE), the International Association For Feminist Economics (IAFFE), or the Union for Radical Political Economics (URPE)?

I care about the beliefs of the majority of AEA members as data for the sociology of economics. (I deliberately don't write here of the sociology of knowledge.) As guidance for deciding on public policy - not so much.

Insofar as Mankiw claims to believe in the distinction between positive and normative economics, he should even agree.

Better public intellectuals, please.


Gabriel said...

The aim of the article is, as far as I see, to familiarize readers with what Mankiw sees as the consensus among professional economists. He doesn't really expect the candidates or anyone else to actually follow these policies.

This is interesting because, contrary to what some may think, economists are in possession of interesting knowledge about the world and are masterful users of a tight analytical toolkit.

On the other hand, those who disagree with my assessment of the economic profession might be interested nevertheless, so as to know the enemy, as it were.

Why doesn't he write about the AFEE, IAFFE and URPE? Why don't you write about the AEA? Did anyone comment on your posts about how you don't include criticism of the models you present?

alexmthomas said...


"Economists like free markets"

:D I didnt know that one could make such a claim.

Robert Vienneau said...

The aim of this article, as far as I see, is to advocate for certain policies, whether or not Mankiw expects anyone to agree.

I do write about the AEA.

Likewise, I do not recall posts about me failing to include criticism. For example, Section 2, "Contending Interpretations of Classical Political Economy", of my last post is all about criticism of views I endorse.

Not that I can see how what some blogger has to say is on the same level as the lies and nonsense Mankiw chooses to write for The New York Times.