After the financial apocalypse, neoliberalism rose from the dead—stronger than ever At the onset of the Great Recession, as house prices sank and joblessness soared, many commentators concluded that the economic convictions behind the disaster would now be consigned to history. And yet, in the harsh light of a new day, we’ve awoken to a second nightmare more ghastly than the first: a political class still blaming government intervention, a global drive for austerity, stagflation, and an international sovereign debt crisis. Philip Mirowski finds an apt comparison to this situation in classic studies of cognitive dissonance. He concludes that neoliberal thought has become so pervasive that any countervailing evidence serves only to further convince disciples of its ultimate truth. Once neoliberalism became a Theory of Everything, providing a revolutionary account of self, knowledge, information, markets, and government, it could no longer be falsified by anything as trifling as data from the “real” economy. In this sharp, witty and deeply informed account, Mirowski—taking no prisoners in his pursuit of “zombie” economists—surveys the wreckage of what passes for economic thought, finally providing the basis for an anti-neoliberal assessment of the current crisis and our future prospects.
We are confronted by the fact that Greek tragedy arises in the Greek Axial interval, flowers in spectacular fashion and in perfect correlation, then begins to wane promptly at the conclusion of the transitional interval. In terms of our evolution formalism the correspondence is eerily exact, in terms of macro and micro, System Action and Free Action. We are left to wonder about earlier stages of human evolution if we see such spectacular kibitzing at the level of art.
Source: 5.1.3 Art, Evolution and The Tragic Genre
Phishing for Phools: The Economics of Manipulation and Deception by George A. Akerlof and Robert J. Shiller Princeton University Press, 272 pp
Source: Why Free Markets Make Fools of Us by Cass R. Sunstein | The New York Review of Books
Dealing with legacy marxists is discouraging. My attempt to innovate in Last and First Men was apparently a waste of time…
These articles at Redline miss the point that Marx’s Capital, whatever its mystique, doesn’t have a viable theory at this point. It should be used as historical documentation, not as a theoretical baseline document. The book has been taken to pieces so many times it is a sign of living in a hole in the ground to cite it this way..
A few suggestions:
Drop the term ‘marxism’: it is part of the cult of personality of Marx, whose brilliance was considerable but whose mistakes were more considerable. Move on to a new formulation, e.g. neo-communism. The personality of Marx is irrelevant now.
Karl Korsch’s views are almost a century old. They are hardly testimony to any enduring impact.
Marx’s critique of classical economics is hardly relevant now. It recycles endless useless debates over issues that are played out. The left needs to focus on neo-classical economics.
From the vaults? Almost all of Marx’s theories are obsessions on the left, but most of them are toast at this point. They sort of vaguely work, but aren’t taken seriously anymore…
I wish the Redline people could at least take a look at Last and First Men. It offers a way out of the current impasse.
Says Smithsonian mag: Most higher education institutions offer a wide range of topics, from engineering and science to literature, history and sociology have
Source: Japanese universities shedding liberal arts departments | Uncommon Descent
A team of researchers at Wayne State University have discovered that mothers with high levels of lead in their blood not only affect the fetal cells of their unborn children, but also their grandchildren. Their study, Multigenerational epigenetic inheritance in humans: DNA methylation changes associated with maternal exposure to lead can be transmitted to the grandchildren, was published online this week in Scientific Reports.
Source: Lead exposure in mothers can affect future generations — ScienceDaily
Shelley Brannon, 62, can sum up the Obama presidency with three words. Well, three words and an exclamation. “He screwed us,” said Brannon, a coal miner from Wise County, Va., as he sat outside a rally for the United Mine Workers of America. “Man, he screwed us.” He shook his head under a camouflage hat that matched his camouflage UMWA T-shirt, and he described his fantasy of dumping nuclear waste in the yards of environmentalists, “if they think coal’s so bad.” He mulled over the mistake he says the UMWA made in 2008, when it endorsed Barack Obama over Hillary Rodham Clinton. Then he explained why he would probably be voting for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the next Democratic primary. full: http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/in-rural-america-a-startling-prospect-voters-obama-lost-look-to-sanders/2015/10/04/5465ce22-6883-11e5-8325-a42b5a459b1e_story.html _________________________________________________________
Source: [Marxism] Fwd: In rural America, a startling prospect: Voters Obama lost look to Sanders – The Washington Post
Ayn Rand’s “classic” Objectivist novel is full of terrible pointers about how the world works.
Source: 10 Things I Discovered About Ayn Rand’s Addled Brain After Reading ‘Atlas Shrugged’ | Alternet
LONDON—Spring is arriving ever earlier as greenhouse gas levels rise and global temperatures warm, and the northern hemisphere growing season is now two weeks longer than it was in 1900. But, paradoxically, new research shows that forest giants that once responded to the early spring are beginning to slow down—because they miss the chill.
Source: Warmer Winters Slow the Growth of Forest Giants | Common Dreams | Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community
In a way models of social situations based on calculus are wrong and should probably be scrapped. The model in WHEE shows what happens when we do that and begin to look at the structure that is really there for history.
We can find the most obvious generalization of classic models, but their character is entirely different even given a generalized resemblance.