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What do people find depressing or disheartening about behavioral economics?


There is much that is depressing about it.

It predicts nothing.

It explains nothing.

It has ‘proved’ its central tenet (that people are economically irrational) only by considering tendentious and artificial situations (e.g. how accurately people multiply long strings of numbers).

And yet people believe that it is ‘torn the lid off of’ the psychology of economic conduct.

Which is depressing.

And it is also used to justify invasive policies.

Which is depressing.

So yes—there is much that is depressing about ‘behavioral economics’—-with the qualification that it is not economic behavior that is depressing but the invidious way that ‘behavioral economics’ misdescribes it.

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