August 8, 2018

Economics, too, is pre-truth

Comment on David Ruccio on ‘Socialism or truth’

Blog-Reference and Blog-Reference

David Ruccio echoes the newest post-truth slogans: “Every day, it seems, one or another liberal ― pundit, columnist, or scholar ― issues a warning that, in the age of Donald Trump, we now live in a post-truth world. In their view, we face a fundamental choice: either return to a singular, capital-t truth or suffer the consequences of multiple sets of beliefs, facts, and truths.” This, though, is not such a big concern for David Ruccio: “Me, I’ll take socialism over truth any day.”

First of all, the idiocy of the post-truth blather consists of the tacit implication that there was a period in human history where truth prevailed. This neither holds for the near nor the remote past. “We” still do not have the historical truth about the Kennedy assassination and “we” never had the historical truth about figures like Jesus/Mohamed/Solomon and their teachings. What “we” have since 2000+ years is story-telling/literary fiction/propaganda/forgeries/False-Hero-Memorials. Roughly the same holds for profane history. Herodotus, to recall, was not only called the ‘The Father of History’ but also ‘The Father of Lies’.

The exception to perennial story-telling is, of course, science. Scientific truth is well-defined by material and formal consistency and is established by rigorous proof. Fact is, however, that the brains of about 99 percent of any population have zero scientific content which means that societies are firmly at the pre-truth stage. In this respect, nothing has changed with Mr. Trump and therefore it is plain idiocy to announce a post-truth era.

This holds in any case for economics. After 200+ years, economists still do not have the true theory. Economics is not a science but what Feynman called a cargo cult science. The four main approaches ― Walrasianism, Keynesianism, Marxianism, Austrianism ― are mutually contradictory, axiomatically false, materially/formally inconsistent, and all got profit ― the pivotal concept of the subject matter ― wrong. With the pluralism of provably false theories, economics is at the pre-truth = proto-scientific stage.

Since Adam Smith/Karl Marx, economic policy guidance NEVER had sound scientific foundations. This holds for capitalism and communism and everything in-between. The scientific truth-value of economics is zero.

The truth about economics is:
  • Economics is axiomatically false, that is, Walrasian microfoundations and Keynesian macrofoundations are materially/formally inconsistent.
  • Because the axioms are false the whole analytical superstructure is false.
  • Economists do to this day not know what profit is.
  • Economists do not understand how the economic system, i.e. the price- and profit mechanism, works.
  • Economists fail to realize that the market economy is NOT self-correcting but inherently unstable.

To this day, economists are NOT committed to scientific truth but to political agenda pushing.#1 For them, post-truth and pre-truth are a matter of indifference, they simply keep on telling the same brain-dead stories about capitalism and communism. They do not know the difference between writing a wishlist#3 and scientific research.#4 Neither orthodox nor heterodox economists know how the economy works. They are even too stupid for the elementary mathematics of National Accounting.#5 For the time being, economics and truth cannot be mentioned in the same breath.

Egmont Kakarot-Handtke

#1 There is no truth in political economics and Economics and truth and Pre-truth and post-truth in economics and Economics is not post-truth but pre-truth
#2: For details of the big picture see cross-references Political Economics
#3 “… we want to build a world where everyone has a right to food, healthcare, a good home, an enriching education, and a union job that pays well. We think this kind of economic security is necessary for people to live rich and creative lives — and to be truly free. We want to guarantee all of this while stopping climate change and building an economy that’s ecologically sustainable. We want to build a world without war, where people in other countries are free from the fear of US military intervention and economic exploitation. And we want to end mass incarceration and police brutality, gender violence, intolerance towards queer people, job and housing discrimination, deportations, and all other forms of oppression.”
#4 How the Intelligent Non-Economist Can Refute Every Economist Hands Down
#5 Wikipedia and the promotion of economists’ idiotism (II)

Related 'Links on capital-T Truth, stupidity, corruption'.