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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    Back before the TV i'd say that because reading was the more popular pastime, even the poor were of the late 1800's and early 1900's were probably more cultured.

    Today of course people watch Big Brother on the TV learning about x's bowel movement at 8.52 rather than reading the classics.
    I didn't dispute the culture part.

    What I dispute is that the normal 'man on the street' ever had an in-depth knowledge of economic theory and social philosophy.


    (Original post by MKultra101)
    The bourgeoisie used to be much more informed. Nowadays they tend to be like people like Joanna Lumley and their scope expands to fashionable ideas and shopping.


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    The bourgeoisie are by definition not the average voter/citizen/subject, which is the group of people I was talking about.
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    (Original post by Cornelius)
    What do you mean? the methodology which has won the Austrians over is not the one used by mainstream economics.

    So for instance, if you want to assess the statement "raising the minimum wage causes unemployment", what do you do? how do you know whether that statement is true or false?

    Mainstream economics answer: go out and do studies, measure the effect of the minimum wage on employment.

    Austrian economics answer: we know the minimum wage will cause unemployment because we know that setting a price above its market clearing price will cause lower demand for the product (than it would have been if the minimum wage didnt exist). The product in this case being labour. The employers therefore will demand less labour which means higher unemployment ofc.

    But you can't know whether the answer to this question is true by going out and observing what happens. If your observations are that a minimum wage does not affect employment or even that it raises employment then it's your observations that are wrong not the economic theory (which again is necessarily true on account of true premises and correct deduction from the premises to the conclusions)

    Is that better? I am not gonna go into more detail about praxeology 'cos it's boring and somewhat inane but the main thing I was responding to was that somehow Hayek is ignored 'cos he's an Austrian economist and Austrian economics are unpopular. My response was that Austrian economics are unpopular because of their methodology which Hayek did not accept at all so that can't be the reason why he has been marginalised.
    Ah ok. So on a nutshell you're saying that Austrian School Economics is an untested theory.




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    (Original post by MKultra101)
    Ah ok. So on a nutshell you're saying that Austrian School Economics is an untested theory.




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    No, not untested. Not being able to be tested empirically at all. Ever. Untested might mean that you haven't tested it yet but that it is potentially testable. Austrians think that you simply can't test empirically whether some theory in economics is true or not (although you can demonstrate empirically what an economic theory suggests).

    The test must be pure logic - like in certain fields of mathematics. You don't have to go out and measure anything or do any study to do pure mathematics. You sit down with some axioms (at least in elementary mathematics) which are "obviously" true. Through deduction you move step by step and establish a logical conclusion which follows necessarily and you cant' deny that the conclusion is true by any empirical study.
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    (Original post by MKultra101)
    F A Hayek was a serious opponent to John Maynard Keynes many years ago yet most people have never heard of him because Keynes' ideas won out and his ideas are in opposition to the modem Western state so schools and colleges do not teach his ideas.
    Ultimately Hayek's reputation in the battle of ideas is as a political philosopher not as an economist.

    Keynes spent much of his career advising governments on dealing with actual economic problems and produced solutions that, at least in short term, produced better results than anyone else was offering at the time. He was also a very successful stock market investor for himself and institutions with which he was connected which added to his reputation.

    Hayek never acted as an all-purpose economic guru. His famous works are about the role of the state. He shaped how politicians of the political right thought about their role.

    That they clashed about the theory underlying their viewpoints is ultimately irrelevant. Their fame doesn't rest on their equations.
 
 
 
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