Thursday, February 4, 2016

The History of Economic Thought Part III

Richard Ebeling emails:

Dear Bob,

I participated in the February 2, 2016 “Libertarian Angle,” webinar sponsored by the Future of Freedom Foundation, with the Foundation’s president, Jacob G. Hornberger, on the topic: “The History of Economic Thought, Part III.”

In the third part in this series, the focus is on the development of mainstream microeconomics in the first half of the twentieth century, during which the standard textbook conceptions of “perfect competition” and “monopoly” were being “rigorously” formalized.

The discussion explains their assumptions, their unrealism and their misplaced use in the arena of public policy such as in anti-trust regulation.

The “mathematization” of economics is also looked at and its resulting distorted understanding and analysis of economic processes in the “real world.”

This critique will continue next week, when the focus turns to the development of the Austrian economic approach in contrast to the mainstream microeconomic one, especially as formulated in the writings of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich A. Hayek in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s.

The webinar runs for about 30 minutes.


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