This Thursday …he makes his first speech on the environment as Prime Minister since that brief address at the Department of Energy and Climate Change. The occasion has been planned for some time, to restore the Government’s fading green reputation; this is perhaps Mr Cameron’s last chance to ensure his two-year-old promise is realised….
He also needs to show who is in charge, since the main resistance comes not from the newly accident-prone Chancellor but a small group of Treasury officials [The Treasury Taliban], who have set out to frustrate the PM’s vision, enabled to do so by Mr Osborne’s part-time presence.
If Mr Cameron misses the opportunity, his own reputation for integrity will suffer, for the country recalls how he rescued his party by branding it green. Paul Goodman, the former Tory MP, said in these pages this week that he presumed that was “a bucket of preposterous greenwash which would swiftly be junked in government”. Such a perception of cynicism, however inaccurate, could not but damage any prime minister.
It would also cause him trouble with his Coalition partners, for Mr Clegg – after a slow start – has finally realised that the environment is the primary issue on which his supporters want to see “differentiation” from the Tories. Rather than let this happen, Mr Cameron should actively support the Lib Dem Mr Davey against the Treasury.
I have finally got around to writing a more serious piece with references etc. It is on SSRN here Not being an economist be profession it’s a little scary. On the one hand you risk being humiliated, on the other hand you can be less indoctrinated in the fallacie of neo-classical economies and can offer insights from other fields, which is what I’ve tried to do here. Its an early draft but I wanted to contribute to this very live debate about the ‘core’ fallacies of neo-classical economicis of which DGSE has become the grand core.
Abstract: DGSE models have come under increased criticism, but have not yet been displaced as the dominant core of current economic thinking. This paper asks why they became so popular? Popular because they were seen as a potential ‘theory of everything’ uniting micro and macroeconomics through the ‘microfoundations’ programme. The paper examines the validity of this claim and finds the claimed advantages to be non-existent. The paper argues this is because of an excessively narrow conception of the economic agent, and familiar concepts such as ‘reflexivity’ but from the perspective both of wider social theory, modern decision theory and of systems/control theory. A wider view of economic agency – with fallible individuals acting against uncertainty and creating systemic homeostasis effects is found able to explain major aspects of economics which the ‘microfounded’ strong methodological individuals with perfect rational expectations is not. Examples included failed entrepreneurial decision, the madness of crowds and the excessive build up of debt.
Keywords: DGSE, Structure, Agency, Reflexivity, Decision Theory, Realism, Economic Modelling, Stock Flow Consistent Economics, Radical Uncertainty, Control Theory, Robustness, Financial Stability