So, the new political economy network. It\’s got Duncan Weldon in it. A retired accountant from Wandsworth. The Guardian\’s economics leader writer. Such luminaries: and such luminaries, their words should be taken very seriously indeed.
In their introduction to their report about all this difficult sums stuff, what we should do with the economy, they say:
Labour made the mistake of buying the snake oil of neo-classical
economics. It must now discard it,…
Hmm, well, if you say so boys. Dropping neo-classical economics means dropping:
Alfred Mashall (without whom there is no marginalism), Arthur Pigou (without whom we cannot have green taxation), John Hicks (who created the ISLM model), George Stigler, Carl Menger, Jvons and even John Bates Clarke. Even Walras….oh, and Robinson, Samuelson and possibly even Sraffa.
And, of course, it also means that JM Keynes is right out. Verboeten. For some flavour of Keynesian macroeconomics is the neo-classical othodoxy.
What they mean of course is that Labour went overboard for neo-liberalism (at which point all liberals, neo or not, howl with laughter) the Hayek/Friedman stuff.
But let\’s be serious about this shall we? If these people are just too fucking thick to even know the name of what they\’re against, why on earth should we pay any attention to what they\’re for?
If someone said they\’re against classical music and gave as an example Deep Purple, a mainstay of classic rock, you\’d think they were too stupid to live let alone think their typed drivel worth reading. So it is with those who would confuse neo-classical economics with neo-liberal.
And no, it\’s not just an isolated typo. Larry Elliott in the foreword:
Strategically, those who had fought a
long guerrilla war against neo-classical economics and conservative
politics went into the crisis in a weak position.
I normally think better of him than that.
Unlike the neo-classical
movement, which in the 1970s had a coherent alternative to
Keynesianism to offer – after writing, thinking and arguing their
case during the three decades since 1945 – the left’s intellectual
wellspring was in danger of drying up.
And yes, they do keep making this same gross error.
There are other problems with this pamphlet but we\’ll only point to one gross stupidity at a time shall we?