Kenneth Boulding on what is fundamental to all analysis, including economic analysis

Image

Kenneth Boulding on the literary vagueness of classical economics

Image

Kenneth Boulding on measurement without theory

Theories without facts may be barren, but facts without theories are meaningless.  - Kenneth Boulding

Image

Coase, Boulding and Marshall on mathematical economics

Can anyone think of a mathematical economics proposition that was accepted that was not consistent with what Kenneth Boulding called the literary vagueness of classical economics and economic sociology:

Conventions of generality and mathematical elegance may be just as much barriers to the attainment and diffusion of knowledge as may contentment with particularity and literary vagueness…

It may well be that the slovenly and literary borderland between economics and sociology will be the most fruitful building ground during the years to come and that mathematical economics will remain too flawless in its perfection to be very fruitful.

If mathematical economics came up with a result that was not reproducible through economic intuition, did the result become popular or were they ignored? Until this barrier is passed, mathematics will be a shorthand language rather than an engine of enquiry, as Alfred Marshall argued long ago:

[I had] a growing feeling in the later years of my work at the subject that a good mathematical theorem dealing with economic hypotheses was very unlikely to be good economics: and I went more and more on the rules –

(1) Use mathematics as a shorthand language, rather than an engine of inquiry.

(2) Keep to them till you have done.

(3) Translate into English.

(4) Then illustrate by examples that are important in real life.

(5) Burn the mathematics.

(6) If you can’t succeed in (4), burn (3). This last I did often.

Marshall also

saw that excessive reliance on this instrument [mathematics] might lead us astray in pursuit of intellectual toys, imaginary problems not conforming to the conditions of real life.

West Hunter

Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

Movie Nation

Informed film criticism, against the grain --since 1984.

Mind Hacks

Neuroscience and psychology news and views.

Gender Abolitionist

Examining Gender Identity ideology and its impact on Women's Sex based protections. Exploring how this has taken such firm root in Western societies (Cognitive & Regulatory Capture).

Helen Joyce

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

200-Proof Liberals

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

Darwinian Business

A blog exploring business from an evolutionary perspective, by Max Beilby

Spin, strangeness, and charm

Politics, media bias, science, and psychology

Family Inequality

by Philip N. Cohen

What Paul Gregory is Writing About

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

TVHE

The Visible Hand in Economics

Kids Prefer Cheese

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

George Mason Economics Society

Provoking discussion by publishing economic writing

Offsetting Behaviour

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

JONATHAN TURLEY

Res ipsa loquitur - The thing itself speaks

single sex spaces

Single sex spaces are a question of consent

Adventures of a Tudor Nerd

Tudor History from the Wars of the Roses to the Death of Elizabeth I

Weapons and Warfare

History and Hardware of Warfare

No Punches Pulled

Laughter – the best medicine

TannerOnPolicy

Politics and Policy with a Libertarian Twist

Notes On Liberty

Spontaneous thoughts on a humble creed

Map Dragons

Written by map lovers for map lovers

New Historical Express

(Formerly Hatful of History)

CONVERSABLE ECONOMIST

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

Barrie Saunders

Thoughts on public policy and the media

The Victorian Commons

Researching the House of Commons, 1832-1868

Coyote Blog

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

American Enterprise Institute – AEI

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

The History of Parliament

Blogging on parliament, politics and people, from the History of Parliament

Catallaxy Files

Australia's leading libertarian and centre-right blog

Books & Boots

reflections on books and art

Legal History Miscellany

Posts on the History of Law, Crime, and Justice

Sex, Drugs and Economics

Celebrating humanity's flourishing through the spread of capitalism and the rule of law

The Long Run

the EHS blog

%d bloggers like this: