Open thread Sept.15, 2015 Dan Crawford | September 15, 2015 7:28 am Tags: open thread Comments (9) | Digg Facebook Twitter |
How about that Jeremy Corbyn?
How about paleoanthropogy? Economists stuck in the trap where science is more or less equal to physics, should watch this on PBS:
Paleoanthropology is a hard science.
Watch as one model–an evolutionary family tree that leads from Australopithecus to Homo Sapiens Sapiens–is found to be false. Not because it simplifies. It presents a simple picture, but it does that because the truth is/was thought to be simple. But it is rejected because it is wrong.
There are no experiments. There are no control groups. There are no counterfactuals.
There is only the collection of data.
A new model is put forward–a braided stream of evolution–this phrasing is metaphorical, but the model itself is not a metaphor. It is a description of how evolution proceeded across deep time. It has many holes, places without data, but it is no more simple than the reality it describes.
Practicing economics under the belief that physics is the only way to do science, is like practicing international relations under the belief that the United States is the only way to do democracy. An American who has never traveled has no idea how many aspects of our democracy are contingent, how many things can be done differently.
Do you really want to be the Ugly American?
To some degree you could fold this into the Eccles-Popper debate where the Nobelist Bio-Physiologist and his friend and war time Australia colleague Sir Karl Popper expressed a fundamental disagreement on what science was.
Sir Karl promoted and popularized a view of science as having a demarcation of “Falsification”, a view consonant with that of most physicists but one which Sir John pointed out made most of Biology and associate sciences not ‘Science’ at all. Because Observational.
http://icarusfilms.com/new2012/ph_pe.html (Eccles and Popper arguing a related point).
But whether you are a committed Popperian (and I am a disciple of sorts) or a devotee of Eccles you have to see Economics falling between both stools. Because it tries to be all sciency like Physics but doesn’t actually expose itself to Popperian falsification while at the same time it disdains actual exposure to observational reality.
That is modern ‘Scientific’ Economics doesn’t really resemble modern Physics or modern observational Biology as pre-modern Scholastism. That is just start from premises and axioms and build from there.
I was going to suggest instead Ptolemaic Astronomy until I realized that it was pretty damn observational. Even as it rejected falsification. But at least it made a commitment to matching data to theory. Even if that meant adding epicycles and pericycles. Economists don’t seem to even bother reconciling historical and sociological data to their theores at all.
Yes who does Jeremy Corbyn think he is? Actually trying to align the ‘Labour’ Party with the interests of the working class rather than prioritizing political victories by moving Parliamentary Labour right into the hands of Third Way Plutocratic Neo-Liberalism.
You know those office suites in Westminster and those bar bills in the dozens of bars in the House of Parliament are not going to fund themselves. “Jez we can” offend the millionaire finaciers that have elevated Tony Blair to the front row seats at Davos.
Corbyn may never be Prime Minister of Great Britain even as Bernie Sanders will not ever be President of the United States. But if their respective bids for leadership drive a stake through the hearts of U.S. DLC Third Wayism and its British Blairite equivalent that good riddance to bad rubbish.
Fuck Triangulation. Clinton and Blair might have done some pretty good stuff for the middle class but in the process locked the working class and the poor down in steerage while they allowed the New Deal Titanic to sink below the waves.
Is there a single data filled argument that shows that Third Wayism benefited the lower 50% in either the U.S. or Britain since 1992 or 1996? Or was it all “shared sacrifice” for the poor and working class and “shared gain” for the Rubinistas while the middle class were left treading water and hoping for rescue boats?
“Jez We Can” and “Feel the Bern”. And send the Neo-Libs to the wall.
It can be a double edged sword. He could also drive a stake into the heart of the left.
I’m not sure about Blair, but the success of Clinton was totally misread by pundits and political scientists as validation of the electoral might of DLC style centrism. They f–ed up again when they claimed that Gore’s loss of his home state of Tennessee said something about Gore.
In retrospect it’s obvious that Clinton’s DLC policy platform had exactly zero to do with his victories in Southern States. Far, far more important was two facts: in 1992 a few racists still clung to their inherited identity as Democrats, and b) Ross Perot caused a split in the GOP/anti-Black vote.
At the time, Perot helped obscure the fact that we were at the tail end of a re-alignment that might better be understood as a purge. The purge of racists from the Democratic Party.
Really? I thought the win was more of Bill Clinton policy to attack the economy which did come out of Fromm’s DLC. They run down the middle not embracing anything. The powerful racists were mostly gone with Johnson’s administration and they were pretty much Dixiecrats left over from Truman.
“It can be a double edged sword. He could also drive a stake into the heart of the left. ”
The left was drawn , quartered , and fed to the dogs long ago. Sanders will either lead to the left’s rebirth , or he won’t. There’s no downside possible for the left – it can’t get any worse.
We’ve purged the racists and the Blue Dogs , and replaced them with New Dems – a distinction with very little difference. A Sanders presidency would be largely impotent absent a better supporting class in Congress. We need to see an influx of Paul Wellstone clones , and 2016 would be a good time to start.
A distinction w/ very little difference. ?
How many million people need to get health insurance to be significant?
“The left is dead.”
People who say this consistently (and ironically) score a “Joe Lieberman” on the insufferably annoying scale.
It starts with slippery language. The word “left” is an accident of French seating charts combined with the fact that Voltaire wrote the most fashionable exegesis of Newton’s “Opticks”. Unfortunately for intelligent political discourse, human policy preferences in no way resemble the spectrum of visible light, matter how elegant it seemed to Enlightenment thinkers.
By “left” do you mean McGovern? Which policies of his? Obama ran on voting against war, universal health insurance, preserving social insurance, and regulating Wall Street. He followed thru on all of them.
Or by McGovern do you mean “views appealing to an embarrassingly” small percentage of voters”?
Defining in the negative is easy. No drones. But foreign policy has been consistent for a century with the exception of W. On domestic policy, what are your goals? This question usually reveals embarrassing strategic ignorance combined w/ Green Lanterism in the leftie.