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The key here is that "pure quantitative" analysis just can't do the job. You need to sit down and make judgements about bad vs. good regulations.

I often feel that the neo-lib hallucinations in economics are rooted in an attempt to make conclusions from numbers alone.

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 11:34:14 AM EST
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What's wrong with numbers alone?
by Jérôme Guillet on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 11:59:37 AM EST
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They don't mean anything.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:00:19 PM EST
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Well, perhaps it's OK in the case of a 5...

(Now who can be the mystery user who was Number 5 signing on to ET? Numéro, hey? French?)

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:07:01 PM EST
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One wonders...

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:13:50 PM EST
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A witty comment, anyway. Let's hope Numéro 5 chimes in with more...
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:27:14 PM EST
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A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:31:14 PM EST
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By the way, Miguel, I'm working on a diary in response to the ProsperityUK website.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:42:03 PM EST
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It's really rooted in ideology -- more specifically, the desire to make the numbers fit the ideology, rather than the other way around, as it should be.  But I do agree with you that economics can't rely only on numbers, because the economy is too large and complex (and constantly changing) to rely only on numbers.  You can draw all sorts of conclusions from using just numbers.  What separates the great economists from the Neoliberal Hallucinationists is the ability to look at the numbers, combine the analysis with solid intuition, and provide some general predictions on outcomes.  (The best ones, with the possible exception of Keynes, think of great analogies to explain their ideas.  Paul Krugman is incredibly talented at this.)

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Tue Mar 7th, 2006 at 12:40:36 PM EST
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