By Basil John Moore (auth.)
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Extra info for Shaking the Invisible Hand: Complexity, Endogenous Money and Exogenous Interest Rates
There is nothing in economic life so willfully misunderstood as the great speculative episode … When will come the next great speculative episode, and in what venue will it recur – real estate, securities markets, art, antique automobiles? To these [questions] there are no answers; no one knows. Anyone who presumes to answer does not know he doesn’t know. But one thing is certain: there will be another of these episodes and yet more beyond. Fools, it has long been said are separated, soon or eventually, from their money.
Extended empirical research by proponents of both schools totally failed to resolve their differences. This failure was essentially due to the inherent noisiness of the data. Many factors obviously impinging on outcomes such as “animal spirits” were nonquantifiable, and so had to be left out of the model. Controlling for such influences involve more or less arbitrary decisions on which rival researchers were completely unable to agree. The stagflation of the 1970s was characterized by both high and rising inflation and high and rising unemployment.
If so this means the economist is able to provide beforehand a correct and indubitably complete analysis of the significant factors. The method is one neither of discovery nor of criticism. 18 If the relationships are in fact nonlinear and if outcomes are heavily influenced by unobservable factors whose size we cannot measure, or whose impact we cannot pin down, how else should we proceed? Since we must judge between competing models of how the economy works, surely it is best simply to let the data decide?