Category Archives: Economists quotes on economics

Nobel winner Paul Romer on the backwardness of economics and economists’ misleading use of math

A fresh Nobel Prize laureate in economic sciences Paul Romer published three years ago an interesting short paper “Mathiness in the Theory of Economic Growth”. His main assertion (which granted him with colleagues’ reactions such as “don’t make waves“) was that … Continue reading

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Robert Solow’s sarcastic economics

Robert Solow, one of the most honored and influential economist of the second half of the 20th century, has been involved throughout his career in a series of polemics with several neoliberal (and other) economists in academia and government. Along with substantial assertions and explanations, … Continue reading

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The Art of Central Banking (3) — No working theory of inflation and economists’ instinctual attachment to concepts

Daniel K. Tarullo, a former member of the Board of Governors of the United States Federal Reserve, draws two sharp and sound, yet unsurprising, conclusions from his eight-year (2009-2017) service:  “The substantive point is that we do not, at present, have a … Continue reading

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Economics of Simplism, or why some countries are rich and others poor

“The use of knowledge by one producer does not prevent its use by others. Thus there is no inherent reason that producers in poor countries cannot use the same knowledge as producers in rich countries. If the relevant knowledge is publicly available, poor countries … Continue reading

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Joan Robinson: Solutions offered by economists are no less delusory than those of the theologians

The brilliant Joan Robinson concludes her insightful book Economic Philosophy: “The neo-classical heritage still has a great influence, not only on the teaching of economics but in forming public opinion generally, or at least in providing public opinion with its … Continue reading

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Economics is an Imperial Science

George Stigler, a founding member of Mont Pelerin Society and a key preacher of neoliberal economics,  on what he proudly calls “economist-missionaries” (1984: 304) : “So economics is an imperial science: it has been aggressive in addressing central problems in a considerable number … Continue reading

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The Art of Central Banking

– “How does the central bank decide on interest rate? By taking all the data together and using a formula?” – “This is art, not science.” (The Governor of the Central Bank of Israel Karnit Flug reveals the secret of monetarism … Continue reading

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No Reality, Please. We’re Economists.

Professor Mark Blaug (1927–2011) was a distinguished Dutch-born British economist and historian of economics.  Besides shorter periods in public service and in international organisations (such as UNESCO, ILO, World Bank), he has held academic appointments in several prestigious universities worlwide. … Continue reading

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Horses and Economics – from the horse’s mouth

Ely Devons, an English economist, once said at a meeting, “If economists wished to study the horse, they wouldn’t go and look at horses. They’d sit in their studies and say to themselves, ‘What would I do if I were a … Continue reading

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Camels, mathematics and the history of economics

“By 1935 economics entered into a mathematical epoch. It became easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a non-mathematical genius to enter into the pantheon of original theorists.”  Paul Samuelson (1976: 25) This sharp … Continue reading

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Robert Heilbroner: “The prestige accorded to mathematics in economics has given it rigor, but, alas, also mortis”

“Economics is not a scientific discipline like the natural sciences, and that no cumulative advance describes its changeful form over the years… The chapter we call modern economics, compared with earlier chapters of our discipline, is shallow and poor rather … Continue reading

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Paul Volcker: “The ‪‎economics‬ profession is in trouble… We need to pull economics back into the real world of Political Economy.”

Paul Volcker, the former Chairman of the Federal Reserve under Presidents Carter and Reagan (1979 – 1987), has been a key figure in leading the Neoliberal-Monetarist policy shift in the US economy. Although it is never too late to repent, as he partially … Continue reading

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Gregory Mankiw: “Economic science is still a primitive body of ‪knowledge‬.”

From the horse’s mouth: Professor Gregory Mankiw (Chair of ‪Economics Department, ‪Harvard‬ University) on economics:  “The ‪‎economy‬ is complex, and economic science is still a primitive body of ‪‎knowledge‬.” From his op-ed in New York Times, March 22, 2014 *** Join the … Continue reading

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Ben Bernanke on economics and economic forecasting

In his remarks at Princeton University Baccalaureate Ceremony in June 2013, several months before he left office, the former chairman of the Federal Reserve and an eminent economist Ben Bernanke released into the world this frank insight: “Economics is a highly … Continue reading

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Joan Robinson: Economics has always been partly a vehicle for the ruling ideology

“Economics… has always been partly a vehicle for the ruling ideology of each period as well as partly a method of scientific investigation.”                                   … Continue reading

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