Notes on “Lessons from the JMCB Archive”

October 2, 2008

Lessons from the JMCB Archive: B.D. McCullough, Kerry Anne McGeary, Teresa D. Harrison.

The Gist: Much of Economics is bunk.

I am not making this up.

The authors systematically demonstrate fundamental failures in basic scientific process (lack of replicability) across numerous respected Economics journals. Even famed and loved Freakonomics author Steven D. Levitt is guilty.

The Good: I already believed in the failure of economics as a whole due to authors like Joel Spolsky and Nassim Nicholas Taleb.

The Bad: Much of Economics is bunk.

I knew it already, but at least I believed the following argument: While Economics as a profession has a terrible track record of making economic predictions or useful theories, at least the mathematical tools they developed were useful in other domains.

My faith is shaken.

In my mind, Economics was the one bastion of reason and logic in the world of “Arts” academia. This paper suggests I was probably wrong, and not in a good way.

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