Wednesday, August 17, 2022

“Economics is the Social Science of Love” — Timothy Taylor

A more appropriate title would be “Economics should be the Social Science of Love.” Liberalism is based on individualism, and individualism is based on self-interest. Conventional economics assumes "microfoundations," that is, that economic behavior is the outcome of individuals' choices based on self-interest. This assumes that societies aren aggregates constituted by their members acting independently as autonomous agents.

Love assumes relationship of individuals based on mutual appreciation and concern. Altruism defined as putting the interest of others above one's individual satisfaction is only possible for the enlightened, who are rare in human society. Most liberal nations are countries whose heritage is Christian, and it is quite evident that those living up to the gospels are rare.

Between the extreme of narrow self-interest as self-gratification as the highest priority and altruism as a characteristic belonging to the enlightened lies "enlightened self-interest." Enlightened self interest results from appreciation of relation as reciprocal. Its motto is that of the three musketeers, "All for one and one for all" instead of "It's every man for himself," which is especially the case in patriarchal cultures, where males are privileged culturally.

Enlightened self interest is based on systems-awareness and those most aware of this realize that acting in such as way as to harmonize individual interest with the interest of the whole — the common good and general welfare — maximizes individual happiness and social well-being. This is the basis for living a good life in a good society. 

Conversable Economist
“Economics is the Social Science of Love”
Timothy Taylor | Managing editor of the Journal of Economic Perspectives, based at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota


Peter Pan said...

Keep talking about love and other buzzwords, and maybe we can sneak in a job guarantee.

mike norman said...

"the field of economics is that it is still mostly people who are open to empirically grounded discussions of problems..."

Seriously? Is this guy for real? Mainstream economics, like what is taught in nearly every university and practiced by every mainstream economist, is anything BUT grounded in empirical discussions or realities.

Matt Franko said...

But Mike he goes on there:

“… in which you’ll acknowledge what the facts are and alternative approaches to modalities of making the facts different”

They don’t solve the problems they make the facts different…

Hegel: “if the facts conflict with the theory then so much worse for the facts”… they are trained to stick with the theory and change the facts,,,

It’s like right now they have monetarism theory and think that when Fed does the QT equity prices are going to collapse… just watch if equity prices instead go up they won’t adjust their monetaristvtheory they will start to talk about different facts that they will say still support their theory ….

They are trained to STICK WITH THEIR THEORY…, never adjust their theory.. change the facts…

Science academe trains to form hypothesis (under thesis, or less than thesis) and TEST… if test fails, then you have to dispose the hypothesis… the facts remain unchanged…,

The academe has TWO sides it’s bifurcated…. we have the liberal Art side based on adversarial discussion methodology of Socrates/Plato (Hebrews personified this methodology as “Satanic” which means ‘adversarial’ inHebrew) and we now have the Science side…

The liberal Art or “satanic” side operates under the methodology of adversarial dialogue … in which the original thesis has primacy and truth/facts are not part of the process..,

Peter Pan said...

Ideologues stick with their "theory" too.