Bête noir to established economists Steve Keen tells the Mint why Brexit ended a stupid policy but the government line on trade agreements is nonsense and an economic zombie apocalypse awaits some major nations.
For an author whose first book was greeted by the economics establishment with, in his own words, “rabid” and “abusive” reactions Professor Steve Keen’s second foray into questioning mainstream economics fundamentals demonstrates commendable resilience. And reveals perhaps a degree of mutuality in his view of his peers.
His ambition in Debunking Economics was clear from its title. His personal favourite part of that publication, he tells The Mint, was where he explains how Neoclassical economists showed that one of the key ideas in Neoclassical microeconomics, the downward-sloping demand curve, was actually illogical illogical. He explains:
Clearly in the real world it’s fairly obvious if price rises demand will fall, but when the neoclassical theory tries to prove this, it fails to do so unless it makes patently absurd assumptions, including that changing the distribution of income doesn’t alter consumption.
“So they’re stuck in this weird quandary now where they teach something, which is mathematically false, because if they taught what was mathematically true, they wouldn’t have a superficially logically watertight argument.”