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27 August 2007


Jean Camp

According to economists, economic research is the only thing immune to the forces of economics. For example, imagine there is an immense store of capital which would like research on theories that capital gains should not be taxed, trade is good for everyone, and the minimum wage is a very bad thing. Just for fun, let's call this demand. Imagine there is no capital demanding research on the value of the minimum wage. What research will be produced?

Economics is an infant science, and one that is ironically misshapen by the forces of economics. Like many children, its reach exceeds its grasp.

As with other sciences, at its best it serves humanity and at worst it serves the basest human instincts. Hopefully the dismal science can mature before too much more human damage in done. But I am less than hopeful on this point. If the free-market no-government response to Katrina does not modify the free market advocates of the world, what will?


Bill --
The idea that certain fields attract certain personalities is an interesting one. But there is a chicken and egg question -- I suspect, for example, that legal education and the practice of law have an on personality, although some might argue that the effect is only on behavior. Empirically testable, I wonder?

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