Economism: Bad Economics and the Rise of Inequality

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Kwak, James. 2017. Economism: Bad Economics and the Rise of Inequality. Pantheon.

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Description

"This conviction that the world must behave the way it does on the blackboard is what I call economism. This style of thinking is influential because it is clear and logical, reducing complex issues to simple, pseudo-mathematical axioms. But it is not simply an innocent mistake made by inattentive undergraduates. Economism is Economics 101 transformed into an ideology—an ideology that is particularly persuasive because it poses as a neutral means of understanding the world."

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Economics 101, Economism, and Our New Gilded Age
"This conviction that the world must behave the way it does on the blackboard is what I call economism. This style of thinking is influential because it is clear and logical, reducing complex issues to simple, pseudo-mathematical axioms. But it is not simply an innocent mistake made by inattentive undergraduates. Economism is Economics 101 transformed into an ideology—an ideology that is particularly persuasive because it poses as a neutral means of understanding the world."
Economism and Arbitration Clauses [More...]
"It’s unlikely that anyone actually believes that consumers understand arbitration clauses and take them into account when making buying choices. These arguments aren’t meant to be taken seriously. They are air cover for banking executives who like taking advantage of customers and politicians who want to do favors for the financial lobby. That’s the purpose of economism, and why it continues to be so influential." They are just parts of adhesion contracts.
The Fallacy of the Free Market [More...]
"It makes little sense to ask whether a market is free or regulated. The important questions are who governs a market, how, and for what ends; and the key public policy question is how the government (which is, at least theoretically, an instrument of the people) should act to modify the resulting market in pursuit of the public interest."

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