A Job I Could Never Do
July 15, 2011 1 Comment
One thing I don’t get about mainstream/Keynesian economists is why they’re not painfully embarrassed to focus so much on and seemingly base all their reasoning on ‘aggregates’. It’s basically an admission that they’re lazy, don’t want to think about details, can’t handle mathematics more complex than taking the average of something and then plotting it against the average of some other thing over time and similar 3th-grade-science-type operations, just don’t actually have sufficient access to the data they would rationally need in order to do the job they claim to be doing, or all of the above.
It’s an embarrassment, I really mean it. I would literally be too embarrassed to write 95% of the things I see economists write that involve ‘aggregate’ statistics, oversimplified arithmetical relations such as MV=PY, and wacky homilies in which gigantic groups of people (e.g., nation-states) are analogized down to a Manhattanite couple looking for a babysitter or something.
As far as I can tell, writing such tripe and passing it off as serious thought not only without hiding one’s head in shame but while brazenly parading yourself as some sort of genius is part of the job description of a mainstream economist. I have to hand it to them; it’s a job I simply could not do.
(Inspired by this)