Yes, this is going to all be about me! :-)
So, before getting to me, me, me, let me congratulate Emi Nakamura of the UC-Berkeley economics dept for receiving the John Bates Clark Award. It seems to be well deserved for her innovative and influential work on looking at high frequency detailed micro data sets to get more accurate estimates of macro variables, including both inflation rates and fiscal multipliers. At 38 she is young enough (one must be under 40). She is also now a coeditor of the American Economic Review. I have seen some grumbling that her frequent coauthor and husband, Jon Steinnson, did not share in it or get it himself. He is now too old at 42, and while her three most cited papers are coauthored with him, many others of hers are not, and several important papers of hers are sole authored.
As for how this relates to me, the really important part of this post, :-), I have never met her. However, I know her mother, Alice Orcutt Nakamura, an economist at the University of Alberta, who just happens to be the first woman ever to publish in the American Economic Review back in 1979. She was also the first woman president of the Canadian Economics Association in 1994-95. She has done lots of work on econmetrics, labor markets, and, interestingly, in the sort of micro studies of price changes that have since become a major focus of her daughter's highly influential research.
But it does not stop there, this matter of me being so old I know the parents of currently prominent people (I have never met prez candidate Kamala Harris, but I know her dad, Don Harris, very well, a retired Post Keynesian economist out of Stanford). I also knew Emi's maternal grandfather, Alice's dad, the late Guy Orcutt, who was at the University of Wisconsin-Madison when I was. He founded the Social Science Research Institute there and was a well-known econometrician, model for his daughter, most famous for his work on Cochrane-Orcutt estimators that can be used to correct for certain time-series correlations one finds out about using Durbin-Watson statistics. Guy died in 2006, but I am sure he would have been proud of this achievement by his granddaughter.
Addendum: Alice Orcutt Nakamura's husband, Masao, is also an economist, located at the University of British Columbia, and he and Alice have also coauthored many papers.
Mad but true: 200+ years after Adam Smith economists still have no idea what profit is
Comment on Bill Mitchell on ‘Marxists getting all tied up’
Bill Mitchell derides neoclassical economists: “I was attracted to the writing of Karl Marx was because I considered his brilliant discussion of the differences between the superficial relationships we see in the market (so-called ‘exchange relations’) and the essential relationships that tie worker to the capitalist and create the conditions for surplus value production. A student studying neoclassical economics stays forever at the exchange relations level and can never appreciate the origins of profit. They think that somehow profit is created in the market via exchange of goods and services.”
Bill Mitchell claims that he knows how capitalism works: “A defining feature of capitalism is that the capitalist owns the productive means and the worker, while free to choose which capitalist to work for, has to work to survive. Survival requires the worker agree to work for, say 8 hours to get the wage which might be equivalent to 2 hours of production. This is the wage form. It was a brilliant exegesis by Marx that provides a penetrating insight into the dynamics of our systems and continues to resonate. It is why class (in Marx’s terms) has to be at the forefront of the analysis. Nothing in MMT denies that status!”
Bill Mitchell is right, neoclassical economists have no idea about the origins of profit. However, neither do Marxists nor MMTers nor Bill Mitchell himself. As the Palgrave Dictionary has it: “A satisfactory theory of profits is still elusive.” (Desai, 2008)#1, #2, #3
The present generation of economists (Walrasians, Keynesians, Marxians, Austrians, MMTers) is lost and has to be written off. The following explanation of profit serves as a starting point for a more competent new generation.#4, #5
The elementary production-consumption economy is defined with this set of macroeconomic axioms: (A0) The economy consists of the household and the business sector which, in turn, consists initially of one giant fully integrated firm. (A1) Yw=WL wage income Yw is equal to wage rate W times working hours. L, (A2) O=RL output O is equal to productivity R times working hours L, (A3) C=PX consumption expenditure C is equal to price P times quantity bought/sold X.
Under the conditions of market clearing X=O and budget balancing C=Yw in each period, the price as the dependent variable is given by P=W/R (1a). The price is determined by the wage rate W, which takes the role of the nominal numéraire, and the productivity R.
The macroeconomic Law of Supply and Demand (1a) implies W/P=R (1b), i.e. the real wage is always equal to the productivity no matter how the wage rate W is set or how long the individual or aggregate working time L is. The workers get the whole product O.
The focus is here on the nominal/monetary balances. For the time being, real balances are excluded, i.e. it holds X=O. The condition of budget balancing, i.e. C=Yw, is now skipped. The monetary saving/dissaving of the household sector is defined as S≡Yw−C. The monetary profit/loss of the business sector is defined as Q≡C−Yw. Ergo Q+S=0 or Q=−S.
The balances add up to zero. The mirror image of household sector saving S is business sector loss −Q. The mirror image of household sector dissaving (-S) is business sector profit Q. Q=−S is the elementary version of the macroeconomic Profit Law.
The Profit Law become progressively more complex#6 and summarizes the interactions between household, business, and government sector at some intermediary point as Q=(I−S)+(G−T) which reduces to Q=(G−T), i.e. Public Deficit = Private Profit.
See part 2
Conclusions: In the most elementary case of a production-consumption economy, macroeconomic profit does NOT depend on labor time or the wage rate or on exploitation or on market power or on innovation or on risk-taking but alone on the deficit-spending of the household sector. The MMT policy of government deficit-spending/money-creation pushes overall profit and benefits the Oligarchy.#7
Because Bill Mitchell and the rest of the MMT crowd does not understand what profit is the MMT approach as a whole including the personage consisting of scientifically incompetent academics, stupid social media trolls, corrupt political promoters, journalistic propagandists, Marxist fellow travelers, and open/hidden oligarchic sponsors has to be expelled from the sciences.
#1 Proﬁt for Marxists
#2 Profit and the collective failure of economists
#3 For details of the big picture see cross-references Profit
#4 True macrofoundations: the reset of economics
#5 MMT and the canonical macroeconomic model
#7 Dear idiots, it is deficit spending that creates the distribution people complain about
Lovely short essay, BR
Egmont, your postings here today are completely irrelevant to this thread, not to mention containing absolutely nothing new other than going after Bill Mitchell. He happens to be an old friend of mine, but I am not going to jump to his defense here given how incompetent and boring your attack is.
Economics: The greatest scientific hoax in modern times
Comment on Ikonoclast on ‘Mathematics and the constructions and emergent outcomes of socioeconomic phenomena’
Taking Isaac Newton and Adam Smith as roughly simultaneous reference points, no one can fail to notice that economics has in the last 200+ years not risen above the proto-scientific level.
Needless to emphasize that economists do not run out of arguments to explain their obvious scientific failure. This is the classic excuse: “Years ago I heard Mr. Cobden say at a League Meeting that ‘Political Economy was the highest study of the human mind, for that the physical sciences required by no means so hard an effort.’” (Bagehot, 1885)#1 In other words, physics and the natural sciences are kids’ stuff but economics is the real challenge. Taken this into account, economists are second to none.
Ikonoclast reiterates the old refrain of economics as “separate and inexact science” (J. S. Mill): “When we are dealing with physical phenomena, the fundamental laws of the cosmos are independent of human understanding or modelling of them. No matter what you or I or any human thinks of the Laws of Thermodynamics or even whether we are ignorant of them, the fundamental phenomena follow a course which can be well modeled by those laws when those laws are mathematicized to permit accurate descriptions and empirically verifiable predictions. However, when it comes to socioeconomic phenomena, what we think and believe enter into the constructions and emergent outcomes of socioeconomic phenomena themselves (along with fundamental law effects also entering into the constructions and outcomes). At this level, any theory of the system enters into the system as a compounding or complicating element. Thence meta-theory (theory of the impact of theories on the system) will also enter into the system.”
In short, complexity, reflexivity, and ontological uncertainty are the ultimate reasons why economists have not produced much, if anything, of scientific value.
This, of course, is plain methodological nonsense. The simple fact of the matter is that economists are scientifically incompetent. The four major approaches ― Walrasianism, Keynesianism, Marxianism, Austrianism ― are mutually contradictory, axiomatically false, materially/formally inconsistent and all got the foundational concept of the subject matter ― profit ― wrong. Economics is the mutual acceptance and stubborn repetition of provably false theories.#2, #3, #4 Economic policy guidance NEVER had sound scientific foundations. Fidgetting with false theories in the public space, economists are a menace to their fellow citizens.
Let us just pick macroeconomics as pertinent example.#5 Keynes stated the formal foundations in the General Theory as follows: “Income = value of output = consumption + investment. Saving = income − consumption. Therefore saving = investment.” (p. 63)
This mathematically simple two-liner (Y=C+I, S=Y−C) is conceptually and logically defective because Keynes did not come to grips with profit.
“His Collected Writings show that he wrestled to solve the Profit Puzzle up till the semi-final versions of his GT but in the end he gave up and discarded the draft chapter dealing with it.” (Tómasson et al.)
Let this sink in: the economist Keynes NEVER understood the foundational concepts of his subject matter, i.e. profit and income.#6, #7
But it is worse: neither Keynesians nor Post-Keynesians nor New Keynesians nor Anti-Keynesians nor orthodox economists nor heterodox economists spotted Keynes’ blunder to this day.#8 Economists are simply too stupid for the elementary mathematics that underlies macroeconomics. Because the foundations are false the whole analytical superstructure of economics is proto-scientific garbage.
See part 2
What economists do not understand to this day is that economics is NOT a social science and that they have to change the definition of their subject matter:
• Old definition, subjective-behavioral: Economics is the science which studies human behavior as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses.
• New definition, objective-systemic: Economics is the science which studies how the monetary economy works.
Since the founding fathers, economics claims to be a science. It is NOT, it is what Feynman called a cargo cult science.#9 Economists are NOT scientists but merely useful political idiots.#10 Fact is that there is NO greater hoax in the history of modern science than economics.
#1 Failed economics: The losers’ long list of lame excuses
#2 How the representative economist gets it wrong big time
#3 Economic recommendations out of the swamp between true and false
#4 There is no soft science only soft brains
#5 Macroeconomics: Economists are too stupid for science
#6 The correct relationship reads in the elementary case Qm=I−Sm with Qm as monetary profit.
#7 Except Allais see How Keynes got macro wrong and Allais got it right
#8 Marshall and the Cambridge School of plain economic gibberish
#9 The economics Cargo Cult Prize
#10 Throw them out! Orthodox and heterodox economists are unfit for science
I carefully read through the work and all that makes sense is the anger. At least try to be simple enough to be understandable apart from the anger.
You were wrong. It seems this post wasn't about you after all. It was all about EGMONT, EGMONT, EGMONT. But then again, when isn't it?
He does not comment on all my posts. Indeed, we have not seen him for awhile to the point that I had been thinking maybe he was going to leave us alone. But, well....
You ask me to make myself understandable: “I carefully read through the work and all that makes sense is the anger. At least try to be simple enough to be understandable apart from the anger.”
Here we go:
(i) Economics, i.e. Walrasianism, Keynesianism, Marxianism, Austrianism, is refuted on all counts.
(ii) Economists either do not realize the material/formal inconsistency of their approaches. In this case, they are stupid.
(iii) Or, economists know quite well that their approaches are scientifically worthless but promote them nonetheless for ulterior reasons. In this case, they are corrupt.
(iv) In either case, the claim that economics is a science and that economists are doing science is provably false.
(v) By consequence, the Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel or the John Bates Clark Award does not reward genuine scientific achievements but attempts to deceive the general public about the dismal state of economics.
(vi) Barkley Rosser either has not realized the dismal state of economics or he is part of the false-hero-memorial scam.
(vii) Your attempt to nudge the point at issue from the scientific sphere of consistency/proof/test to the psychological sphere of emotion/resentment proves that you are an incompetent scientist or, in simple psychological terms, an imbecile asshole.
(viii) You obviously do not know the difference between anger and militancy. “Truth on these subjects is militant, and can only establish itself by means of conflict.” (John Stuart Mill, A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive, Kindle, Pos 71)
Right, I am surely too foolish and ignorant to understand your writing, other than the uncontrollable anger, so I will never bother to try again. (You are scary.)
Again your post was lovely and I have reread selected work by Nakamura, such as:
The Elusive Costs of Inflation: Price Dispersion during the U.S. Great Inflation
By Emi Nakamura, Jón Steinsson, Patrick Sun and Daniel Villar
I did not mean to inflame Kakarot-Handtke but rather to calm him and find if he could write clearly. Sorry, I was foolish to try.
Do you know what Kakarot-Handtke is saying here? Perhaps I really am foolish. Do you understand?
Thanks agains for the nice note and glad you were inspired to look at Nakamura's work, which really is an innovation, getting at macro by digging into detailed micro data. I saw rumor that Bob Hall had a beer at lunch to celebrate as this is the first JBC award to go to a macroeconomist in 19 years, the last one for Andrei Shleifer.
I am sorry, but I am not gong to bother "intepreting" Egmont. He does seem to have lost it calling you an "asshole." He is not usually that offensive. If you have not seen his stuff before, well, it is very repetitive. He sometimes adds a bit more, but I am not going to encourage him as he has done all this many times here, same old same old, with only minor variations such as this time cursing at you. Out of all this mess he has managed to publish only one paper in an economics journal, a very obscure one, with this representing an awful conspiracy of all of us awful flunkies of the evil economics establishment that includes everybody from Austrians to Maexists and pretty much everybody in between, although he does occasionally selectively quote a handful of economists, none of whom I suspect would agree with his broader argument.
I now realize that what probably set him off to show up here yet again repeating his vacuous arguments was that my post mentioned the John Bates Clark award. Obviously he is especially resentful of these official awards, including also the Sveriges Riksbank Award for Economic Science in Memory of Alfred Nobel, to give its correct title, given that he will be watching closely on that matter.
Sorry that he was so intemperate to you. He has usually not been that unpleasant to people here, even as he regularly and vigorously presents his arguments, obviously. I am used to his slams at me, which roll off my back like water off a duck's back, so used to them and vacuous they are.
Alice Orcutt Nakamura, an economist at the University of Alberta, who just happens to be the first woman ever to publish in the American Economic Review
Maybe she had some first, but not that one. My first random guess, Eveline Burns was much earlier - I had a 1943 paper there already on my hard drive. I would be surprised if there were no predecessors.
You are correct that she was not the first. I have been told since I put that up that she was the first female undergrad to do so, which may be correct. There was a woman named Jane Comans who had a paper in the AER even earlier than Burns, sometime in the 1920s, I believe.
You say: “I am sorry, but I am not gong to bother "intepreting" Egmont. He does seem to have lost it calling you an "asshole." He is not usually that offensive.”
Yes, but you are:
Maybe you did not get it. If you start using a name, even if it is one that is made up, I shall stop "using profance language" in regard to you. As it is, I have already made it clear that I have nothing but utter contempt for people who lecture me on anything while identifying themselves as "Anonymous." Get it, asshole?
Oh, and few of my atudents come here, but those that do will probably accept how I am treating you. I do not speak this way in classes, where I do not deal with people lecturing me while hiding behind a veil of anonymity.
So now you can go and repeately fuck yourself until your bottom falls off. Have a nice day!
October 7, 2018 at 5:42 PM
You say: “Right, I am surely too foolish and ignorant to understand your writing, other than the uncontrollable anger, so I will never bother to try again. (You are scary.) Bye, bye.”
What do you not understand?
(i) Barkley Rosser is a stupid/corrupt academic economist.
(ii) Barkley Rosser is not some unique lone nut exception but as representative economist part of a tight-knit institutional network of political economics (= agenda pushing) that has overgrown and stifled theoretical economics (= science).
(iii) All this is common knowledge: “Veblen’s first job was at the University of Chicago, the university bought and paid for by John D. Rockefeller the classic robber baron, and leader of the leisure class. Rockefeller called the university ‘the best investment’ he ever made, since he intended to use it to advance the interests of his class and suppress opposition.”#1
(iv) What holds for Chicago can be with some degree of confidence generalized for the majority of Faculties of Business and Economics and the institutional superstructure from the ASSA Annual Meetings to the publishing houses.
(v) Accordingly, the purpose of economic journals and the peer review process is not the promotion and dissemination of scientific knowledge as it is in the genuine sciences but attention management, gatekeeping, and selection/promotion/positioning of future opinion leaders.
(vi) Prizes like the economics Nobel or the John Bates Clark Award are part and parcel of establishing scientific reputation and authority. These are tried and tested instruments of public relations/propaganda and have no scientific significance whatsoever.
(vii) Economics is a fake science beginning with economic textbooks#2 and ending with the faux Nobel.#3
(viii) Academic economics ― orthodox and heterodox, that is ― is beyond repair or reform or hope or rejuvenation, it can only be burnt to the ground like a termite-infested shack.
(ix) Needless to emphasize that (viii) is a metaphor for perplexed and clueless non-economists who have no chance of figuring out the actual state of economics and what the methodological term Paradigm Shift means in practice.
(x) Needless to emphasize that the current inhabitants of the rotten shack with the pretty scientific facade ― the retarded heirs of Adam Smith/Karl Marx ― are retired with all academic honors.
There is nothing to fear for Barkley Rosser and trolls like you except perhaps that you will eventually be buried at the Flat-Earth-Cemetery in the section for political clowns.
#1 Veblen’s insights come back to haunt us
#2 To this day, economists have produced NOT ONE textbook that satisfies scientific standards
#3 The real problem with the economics Nobel
Thank to whoever reposted my slam at an earlier Anonymous. I am not going to revisit that, but the recipient of my slam fully deserves wha they got. In this case involving Egmont, this Anonymous questioned what he posted here (completely irrelevant to the thread and repeating what he has posted many many times previously) and only mildly criticized him personally. He then engaged in insulting this person, both their intelligence and with harsh language that I have used on occasion.
Given that I suspect it is Egmont who reposted, get it straight, Egmont, you are the one behaving in a way that deserves the label, although I think I have refrained from using it. This Anonymous's remarks were completely appropriate and correct. Yours have not. You should be ashamed of yourself.
Does this worsening of your conduct mean that you are getting into professional trouble at the institute that has been employing you because of your abysmal failure to publish anything other than one paper quite some years ago. If so, well, I am sorry, but please do not take your frustrations out unreasonably on our posters here.
Regarding Thorstein Veblen, he was the major professor of the major professor of the major professor of the major professor of my major professor, and I am proud to be in that line of intellectual descent. As it was, he was no upholder of orthodoxy or of corporations, although, of course, Egmont considers all heterodox economics to be as bad as orthodox economics, except for his weird and vacuous version of it.
Just answer the simple scientific question which of the two macroeconomic sectoral balances equations is true, i.e. materially/formally consistent?
Depends on how you define and measure the variables, Egmont, obviously. And these variables have been defined and measured differently at different times by different entrities. So, they can both be true or not true depending.
Your favorite is true only because you insist on your own particular definition, which is not universally accepted. Of course, your response to that is to say that those who do not accept your definitions are unscientific no good Austrian-Walrasian-Keynesian-Marxists, if not just outright assholes. Right?
Pathetic as usual.
Good luck getting a job if your institute fires you, but do not expect a letter of recommendation from me.
You answer: “Depends on how you define and measure the variables, Egmont, obviously. And these variables have been defined and measured differently at different times by different entrities. So, they can both be true or not true depending.”
This is the Humpty Dumpty Fallacy,#1 the Pavlovian reflex of all swampies.#2 Popper called it immunizing stratagem.#3
Science is binary true/false with NOTHING in between. Non-science is the swamp between true and false where ‘nothing is clear and everything is possible’ (Keynes).#4 The swamp is the habitat of what Feynman called cargo cult scientists.#5
The correct answer to the question which of the two macroeconomic sectoral balances equations, i.e. (a) (I−S)+(G−T)+(X−M)=0 or (b) (I−S)+(G−T)+(X−M)−(Q−Yd)=0, is true is unequivocal and demonstrably (b). All variables in (a) and (b) are identical except for Q = macroeconomic profit and Yd = distributed profit. Eq. (a) lacks these two variables altogether and because of this, it is FALSE. This means, in turn, that both orthodox and heterodox macroeconomics is FALSE. So, economics is refuted on all counts.
As a professional economist at the age limit you have never known and still do not know the scientifically correct answer. It is pretty obvious that you have always been a fake scientist. This, though, was not a disadvantage, rather the opposite, because economics has always been a fake science.#6
Because economics is a fake science the Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel is a fraud. Same for the John Bates Clark Award. Time to drain the swamp.#7
#1 Humpty Dumpty is back again
#2 And the answer is NCND ― economics after 200+ years of Glomarization
#3 Opinion, conversation, interpretation, blather: the economist’s major immunizing stratagems
#4 Lousy scientists
#5 What is so great about cargo cult science? or, How economists learned to stop worrying about failure
#6 Economics: The greatest scientific hoax in modern times
#7 Enough! Economists, retire now!
Yes, Egmont, we have seen you previously declare that taking account of retained earnings, what your petty equation does, is the most supremely important thing in economics. It is not remotely. It is an utterly trivial item that gets taken account of in current accounting practices. As I have noted many times, the only thing it is important for is including it as one of several important variables I equations modeling capital investment, which appropriate modelers have been doing already for decades. This is just a total nothing.
BTW, you like to quote Lord Meghnad Desai on how existing models of profit are unsatisfactory. have you ever attempted to communicate with him (he is alive and well last time I checked; I have even met him, although it was a long time ago, before he became "Lord") to see if he thinks your profit theory is the great solution that would lead him to say, "Now, finally, the problem of profit has been solved!" A little bird tells me that you are not going to get that answer from him if you inquire, if you can get any answer from him for your silly garbage. But, please, go ahead and continue to quote him on how inadequate existing theories are.
You say: “Yes, Egmont, we have seen you previously declare that taking account of retained earnings, what your petty equation does, is the most supremely important thing in economics. It is not remotely. It is an utterly trivial item that gets taken account of in current accounting practices.”
Yes, Barkley Rosser, distributed profits appear in National Accounting.#1 This, though, is NOT the point. So let us take distributed profits Yd out of the picture for a moment, i.e. Yd=0. Then, the all-decisive question reduces to:
Which of the two macroeconomic sectoral balances equations is true, i.e. materially/formally consistent?
Let us go one step further and simplify by taking government and foreign trade out of the picture, i.e. G, T, X, M = 0.
Then we have
(a) (I−S)=0 or I=S,
(b) (I−S)−Q=0 or I−S=Q.
I=S is provably false since Keynes. So, all I=S/IS-LM models are false from Hicks onward to Krugman and beyond.#2, #3, #4
Economists have not realized this to this day. Neither the Nobel laureate Paul Krugman, nor the John Bates Clark Award winner Emi Nakamura, nor Lord Meghnad Desai, nor Professor Barkley Rosser, nor the rest of fake heroes.
Economics is proto-scientific garbage to this day because economists are too stupid for the elementary mathematics that underlies macroeconomics.
Time to give these scientifically incompetent folks a dishonorable discharge and to make economics, after 200+ years of capture by stupid/corrupt agenda pushers a.k.a. useful political idiots, a science worthy of the title.
#1 The Common Error of Common Sense: An Essential Rectification of the Accounting Approach
#2 Mr. Keynes, Prof. Krugman, IS-LM, and the End of Economics as We Know It
#3 Wikipedia and the promotion of economists’ idiotism (II)
#4 Rectification of MMT macro accounting
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