A policy based evidence maker

I was asked in the last couple of days what a political economist is and why they are different from economists. This is a good question to which, I suspect, there is no definitive answer. I did however, offer an opinion.

An economist, I said, looks at the use of the world’s resources by asking what data there is and what use they might make of that data.

A political economist, on the other hand, asks why that is the available data and what that implies about the relationships of power that determine the allocation of the world’s resources.

That interpretation satisfied my enquirer and had the virtue of relative brevity. It also fitted very well into the context of the conversation we were having.

I suspect not everyone would agree with my suggestion though.

See headline.

10 comments on “A policy based evidence maker

  1. Once again the putative political economist displays a woeful lack of self-knowledge.

    A more accurate description would be that he manipulates some barely understood data to make a political argument that could lead to preferment, money and vermine. Rasp, rasp goes the tuberous tongue.

  2. Following on from my remarks on the previous thread about our friend Thruppence halfpenny, this guy is a pompous tribute to nothingness.

    I do not understand how anyone can pontificate on something he knows so little about.

    The lack of self-awareness is staggering.

    He is a perfect example of ‘progressive’ vacuity enabled by a rich decadent society which is able to carry so much deadweight.

    Am I having fun today? Any other candidates for having a new one ripped?

  3. Apart from economists-playing-politics (such as Paul Krugman waiting for that Trump stock market crash from which we will never recover), doesn’t a political economist apply the measurement methods of economics to a sub-sphere in which re-election is unanimously the highest value, and no resources have costs nor are limited except by the eventual threat to re-election?

  4. why that is the available data and what that implies about the relationships of power that determine the allocation of the world’s resources.
    I sometimes wonder why debt/GDP is presented as a good datum. The implication is that GDP represents the tax base, so it’s a measure of what the govt can call in if required. It implies the power relationship is the government over the value-added of the people.
    But the GDP doesn’t belong to the govt, and in America they’d pretty soon find out if they started behaving as if it did.
    If liabilities/income or similar was the most commonly presented way of scoring if a country was heading to the schitter, then it would imply a different power relationship.
    So Snippa has a point, it just it works against him because it implies govt has the power, and all his wibble is about govt being insufficiently powerful.

  5. “I was asked the other day what I wanted to write in my blog and here’s what I said…..”

    (C) another made up conversation by spud.

  6. @TG
    Fucking shite, here in the far south. Beach was covered in snow, last week. They’ve even had 6″, over the way in the sahara.
    Global Warming, innit?

  7. That interpretation satisfied my enquirer and had the virtue of relative brevity

    Given the unlikelihood of even one of those things happening I’d like to see some proof.

  8. 90 year old rain records have been beaten over the last month and a half.

    Managed a good walk with the dog yesterday morning but everything is so water-logged I have puddles on the lawn. First time since moving in in 1990.

    I also put it down to global warming, obviously. Can I have a Nobel prize too?

  9. BB

    He is a perfect example of ‘progressive’ vacuity enabled by a rich decadent society which is able to carry so much deadweight.

    Says it all.

Leave a Reply

Name and email are required. Your email address will not be published.