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Truth, Errors, and LiesPolitics and Economics in a Volatile World$
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Grzegorz Kolodko

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780231150699

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231150699.001.0001

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The World, Words, and Meaning

The World, Words, and Meaning

Where Truth, Errors, and Lies in Economics and Politics Come from and What to Do to Make Truth Come First

Chapter:
(p.1) Chapter One The World, Words, and Meaning
Source:
Truth, Errors, and Lies
Author(s):

Grzegorz W. Kolodko

, William R. Brand
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231150699.003.0001

This introductory chapter discusses economists' responsibility to describe and inform people of worldly affairs; the best ones know what is going on and can persuade people. Problems begin to arise when economists know, but cannot convince; do not know but try to convince anyway; and are aware that things are different from what they are trying to convince people of. It is easy to avoid the truth in economics, and the tolerance for fabrication is much greater in economics than in other branches of knowledge. Nevertheless, the chapter views economics as a science that not only explains the mechanisms of and social interactions within economic processes, but that also serves as a basis for the formulation of effective strategies for long-term development. Good economics is both a descriptive science that depicts things as they are and a normative science that issues pointers about the way things should be.

Keywords:   economic processes, descriptive science, normative science, social interactions

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