Monday, July 18, 2011

What if Malthus Had Been an Optimist?

From Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal:

HT: Economists Do It With Models who writes, in part:
If Our Science Is So Dismal, Why Do People Keep Making Cartoons About It?
...In fact, if the situation in the cartoon above were to have transpired, economics would likely have been labeled just another “gay science” like music and poetry. (No really, that’s what they were called. I’m now picturing a bunch of “science is so gay” t-shirts and can’t decide whether Carlyle and Malthus did economists a favor on the marketing front.) Actually, that’s not true, since the story quoted above is somewhat of an urban legend. Justin Ross was kind enough to post the actual etymology of the term on an earlier post:
Actually, Carlyle’s objection was that the economic theory undermined arguments for “lesser races.” As Levy and Peart write...