Countering neoliberalism: A new life for Labor?

[A variation of The Lost Left, published today at Independent Australia.]

The way forward for progressives is to argue against the self-serving neoliberal ideology of the fatcat and for prudent and sensible management of the markets, writes Dr Geoff Davies.

Opposition leader Bill Shorten saysLabor needs new policies.

He’s not wrong there.

For three decades, while Labor has focussed on being merely a slightly paler imitation of the Coalition, its membership has plummeted, inequality has risen, it has repeatedly capitulated to wealthy bullies and, it seems, there is no policy too degrading for it to adopt as it races the Coalition into the depths of fear and negativity.

… read more

A Science of Economics?

[A longish post on my blog addresses confusion among economists as to what comprises science.  This is a more technical post, addressed to those interested in re-making the field of economics into something relevant, informed and capable of self-improvement.]

Debates about whether economics is or can ever be a science appear frequently on the Real World Economics blog, such as making economics a relevant science.  Perhaps more in the subsequent comments than in the articles themselves, there are some recurring confusions and misconceptions, such as whether mathematics should be involved, about what the role of mathematics might be, about “prediction” as a necessary part of a science, about the role of assumptions and approximations, about whether any study involving people can ever be a science and, fundamentally, about what science really is.

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“Sack the Economists” on Real World Economic Review blog

A post on Real World Economic Review blog:

Non-mainstream economists are all-too aware of the failure of mainstream economists to anticipate, let alone avoid, the Global Financial Crisis and the ensuing Great Recession.  The mainstream profession is also failing to fix the problem, and is actually making it worse.

It is hard to get alternative views heard, and the mainstream carries on almost totally unperturbed, despite being centrally responsible for a global disaster.  This is of course extremely frustrating.

After reading yet another cri de coeur from yet another frustrated economist, I thought perhaps we need to spell out the message in all bluntness

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Sack the Economists on Steve Keen’s Debtwatch

Steve Keen has generously allowed me a guest post on his popular Debwatch website.

Read­ers of this blog will have encoun­tered the idea that near-equilibrium neo­clas­si­cal eco­nomic the­ory is irrel­e­vant to dynamic, far-from-equilibrium, real mod­ern economies, and that the body of the­ory built around the neo­clas­si­cal assump­tions is full of incon­sis­ten­cies. You will also be famil­iar with the idea that money and debt play cen­tral, dynamic roles in mod­ern economies.
Yet it can be argued there are other equally fun­da­men­tal flaws in the broader stream of the­ory and prac­tice that might be called main­stream eco­nom­ics.
– See more at: Debtwatch

Sack the Economists now available

The ebook Sack the Economists and Disband their Departments is now available.

Mainstream economists completely failed to anticipate the financial market crash of 2007-8.  They then called it an unforeseeable event.  This is a clear admission that they don’t understand how economies work.  Yet many non-mainstream, marginalised economists gave clear warning of the approaching crash.  This book shows how mainstream economics has not one but many fundamental flaws.  It is not a science, it is pseudo-science.  It lacks scholarly rigour and integrity.  Once you understand this, it is not a mystery why the mainstreamers missed the approaching crash, nor why wealth is so unequally distributed, why we are so materialistic and unfulfilled, and why the planet is being destroyed.  But modern knowledge and systems ideas reveal market economies to be self-organising systems, and they can be managed to support dignified livelihoods in equitable societies that can survive into the indefinite future, with nature thriving along with them.

See more at the book’s web site, including how to purchase your copy.

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