Economist Dean Baker writes:
"Economists tend not to be very good at economics. We know this because almost none of them were able to see the $8 trillion housing bubble that was driving the economy from 2002 to 2007. This was an oversight of astonishing importance, sort of like a physicist not noticing gravity."
There is nothing wrong with trying to understand capitalism, as long as the intent is to get rid of it. If you want to study the economy to try and make it work, you might as well read tea-leaves, or – better still perhaps – the scattered intestines of sacrificed investment bankers.
Over the next few years of promised increased austerity – as hospitals close, schools fall apart and houses get repossessed – let us not forget that these hucksters, chancers and charlatans are the people who claim to be in charge of capitalism. But the market failed long before it crashed. Leave decision-making to others, we are told. Leave it to the bankers and the “bright minds”. Leave it to the economists and the politicians. Leave it to the capitalists. They all still expect you to let them make the decisions. Fortunately, year by year, fewer of us remain quite so willing.
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