Category Archives: Psychology

Some Personal Reflections on Contemporary Economic and Scientific Indoctrination

I thought that the discussion in this clip from about 7.40 on was extremely interesting. Watson discusses how introductory textbooks — particularly Greg Mankiw’s — ask students to suspend their disbelief in the models that they are being taught. The … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Theory, Philosophy, Psychology | 3 Comments

Joan Robinson’s Critique of Marginal Utility Theory

In her excellent book Economic Philosophy¬†(available as a PDF here) Joan Robinson undertakes an extensive discussion of marginal utility theory. Here I will be more so interested in her technical criticisms. But before going into these it should be noted … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Theory, Philosophy, Psychology | 23 Comments

Behavioral Economics as Victorian Moralising

The other day I wrote a post that was about some awful load of nonsense that was coming from behavioural economics under the self-contradictory name of ‘libertarian paternalism’. Since then I’ve been looking into behavioural economics in some detail and … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Theory, Psychology | 1 Comment

A Short Note on a Connection Between Marginalist Economics and Folk Medicine

One peculiar aspect of modern marginalist economics is its obsession with equilibrium. I was recently re-listening to an excellent lecture given by Joan Robinson in Stanford in 1974 entitled ‘What is Wrong With Neoclassical Economics?‘. The entire lecture is about … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Theory, Psychology | 8 Comments

OMG Tapering!

Well, it seems that the Fed has finally decided to initiate the much talked about ‘taper’ of the QE program. The proposed taper will wind down asset purchases by $10bn a month. That means that they won’t actually stop or … Continue reading

Posted in Market Analysis, Media/Journalism, Psychology | 31 Comments

Capital Sins: To What End Should Economic Life Be Directed?

Victoria Chick published an interesting paper in the journal Economic Thought on the World Economic Association website entitled Economics and the Good Life: Keynes and Schumacher. In it she explores what both men thought that the end goal of economics … Continue reading

Posted in Philosophy, Politics, Psychology | 1 Comment

Is Real Communication Possible? Berkeley’s Particularism and Lacan’s Semantic Slippage

I’m currently rereading George Berkeley’s A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge as a friend of mine and I are considering writing a short book on Berkeley in the near future. In it we are hoping to discuss all … Continue reading

Posted in Philosophy, Psychology | 5 Comments

Veblen and Freud on Instincts

I recently got my hands on a paper by Bill Waller entitled Veblen and Instincts Reconsidered. In the paper Waller discusses the role of ‘instincts’ in Veblen’s work and argues that it is important that those working in the evolutionary … Continue reading

Posted in Philosophy, Psychology | 1 Comment

What Will The Conventional Wisdom in Economics Be After 2008?

I am currently rereading JK Galbraith’s The Affluent Society. It was one of the first books on economics that I ever read and I must say that it is well worth a reread, as there is much in it that … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Theory, Psychology | 1 Comment

What Do IQ Tests Really Measure?

IQ. What is it all about? In our society it is generally seen as a sort of symbol of social status. So much so that some join groups like Mensa in order to hang out with other high IQ people … Continue reading

Posted in Psychology | 1 Comment