Monday, June 11, 2007

Why the work of Daniel Klein is so important

Science looks so proper and objective, but beneath it lie the passions and interests of real human beings. What's the point of abstract disputations over economic method? The real issue is to know the man (woman) who produced the work, and to have some insight into his motives. The real economic method is determined by human psychology, no matter what method we might pretend to practice.

(This, by the way, is why it is so nice to see Mankiw, Rodrik, and Borjas blog; we receive insight into how they really think, and of course we see that each of the three is quite different from the other two.)

No one understands this better than Dan Klein, and he has now spent years compiling data about the biases and peculiarities of academic economists. Some of what goes on is simply a joke. Why aren't there at least two thousand of us studying ourselves? There aren't. Two hundred? No way. Twenty? not quite. And what does that mean?

Dan is still a lone voice in the wilderness. Please support what he is doing.

5 comments:

SCM said...

If we didn't already know who you were, it would become increasingly apparent from your discussions.

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