But I only heard it once, on the radio a few weeks ago, so I’ll have to paraphrase:
“Up until 50 years ago, it was axiomatic that an economy existed to support a society. Since then our expectations of the relationship between the two have been turned upside down.”
It was on a Radio National morning program, and I was on the station run, so about 7:35am. Did anyone else hear it? I had to go back inside and get the kids off to catch their bus, so I didn’t hear the rest of the program, but does the observation provoke disturbing thoughts in anyone else?
Categories: culture wars, economics, ethics & philosophy, history
Time to re-write: “It’s the economy, stupid.” to “It’s stupid, the economy.”
Not so much disturbing as “Yup.” I find it utterly bizarre that economics is studied as a found thing, rather than as a product of our creation, which should be modified to our will.
“I find it utterly bizarre that economics is studied as a found thing, rather than as a product of our creation, which should be modified to our will.”
It isn’t currently modified to our will; it’s modified to the economic ruling class’s will. If anyone talked about how the economy is modified to someone’s will, there would be more objections to said will and more resistance to serving the ruling class’s purposes. Economists and economic pundits are strictly instructed to avoid talking about ethics or about who makes decisions, and present everything as the passive result of natural laws. Seriously, my economics professor told us that talking about anything “normative” (meaning using an ethical or humane frame of reference) will get you jeered at and ostracized.
Just the essence of Neoliberalism (or economic rationalism.)
Hopefully we reached Peak Neoliberalism just around the time JWH was defeated!
@kathmandu, I really wish that surprised me. *sigh*
Was just reading book about Tudor politics (bear with me, it’s relevant, I swear) that pointed out that just as in Tudor times theological discourse and politics were inseparable, because political discourse was conducted in theological terms, in contemporary politics, the political is inseparable from economics, because politics is conducted almost entirely in economic terms.
Even when we’re talking about non-economic political issues, we talk about “social capital” and “value” and “return on investment”. Ugh.