The common practice has become to separate the various fields of study from each other, making economics seem like some sort of lofty abstract mathematical study or history appear to be an arcane and esoteric field. The reality is that history and economics…
The point which was not so much missed as rolled over by a tank forged of narcissism is that some of us believe economics ought not be as empirical a beast as hordes of accountants would have us believe. The very idea of claiming that the “universal goal” of economics is something as cut-and-dry as “everyone makes as much money as possible” is like saying “My God is the only God and all nonbelievers are inferior heathens not even worth consideration”—oh snap, did I just go there?
It can be argued that numbers are only real on paper. The things the numbers count are the reality and if the numbers relate to the things being counted then there must not be a complete separation between the two topics. Morality, ethics, and philosophy are not separate concepts from economics, science, and politics—THEY ARE THE FOUNDATIONS OF.
Your metaphor is apt, but I don’t see how it interferes with what I am saying. Ultimately, someone is right about god and everyone else is wrong. Perhaps it is the atheists, perhaps the correct god hasn’t yet been thought up by humans, but ultimately there is a single truth. Economics is a question of optimization. Science relies upon the axiom that inductive reasoning is valid, but once you get past that it is cut and dry as well.
Yes, philosophy forms the foundations of these fields, but it is so much of an umbrella term that using it to describe these things is almost invalid. It buries the lead.
To say that economics aught not to empirical, is as to say that a tomato aught not to be a fruit. Yes, as the architects of language, we get to decide what makes something a fruit, but an insignificant minority cannot change what it is. Maximizing wealth of the average citizen is the only politically valid way to approach economic policy in a democratic society. It doesn’t matter how much people feel that this shouldn’t be the case.
(Source: mechanistdreams, via )