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Showing posts from April, 2017

Reading for Sanity: Naked Economics

Economists agree on more than they disagree. This might seem like an exaggeration, since the debates on policy are so heated. But policy debates are not about the resolved math or well-established theories within economics. Instead, policy debates are driven by value judgments. What economists and their colleagues in behavioral science, data science, psychology, linguistics, rhetoric (my little niche) and elsewhere can agree on are some rather basic tested notions. What we disagree on is what makes for a "good and righteous" society — and even if we want a values-based government at all.

Charles Wheelan's Naked Economics: Undressing the Dismal Science is 15 years old. Yet, the book reminds me that until recently there was generally more agreement than disagreement within the field of economics and its associated disciplines.

I'm rereading Naked Economics because the hyperbolic rhetoric from the left and right, which are not even that extreme in the United States, h…