A triple whammy for Austrian economics

by Sandy Ikeda

An article appeared in the Arts section of last Thursday’s New York Times called, “Ivory tower unswayed by crashing economy.” I found three things in particular that were dismaying about it.

The reporter argues that academic economists have been slow to change their minds about the virtues of the free market, in spite of recent events, when she says,

Free market theory, mathematical models and hostility to government regulation still reign in most economics departments at colleges and universities around the country.

So, first, is the common bromide that the free market is primarily responsible for the economic mess we’re in. But what I find almost as disturbing is the way she tacitly equates free-market economics (leave aside for a moment the appropriateness of the term) with mathematical economics and in particular neoclassical mathematical economics.  This is something I’ve encountered a lot lately. Continue reading