Now, Do You Understand Economists?

Harvey Mansfield writes on the Larry Summers affair.

The reason why economists are blunt is that words of honey seem to them mere diversion from reason and self-interest, which are the only sure guides in life.

You see, we’re not jerks; we just have a low tolerance for bullshit.

Thanks, to Marginal Revolution for the pointer.

3 Responses “Now, Do You Understand Economists?”

  1. Anonymous says:

    As an aspiring economist, I must say that economists (including myself) are not as logical as they like to think. In fact, the so-called low-tolerance for bullshit that we have runs counter to rational behavior. If by being “suave” we could reduce conflict, we should do it. If we have information that says some types of people will cause more grief than it’s worth if not sweet-talked, we should take act on that information. We might have zero tolerance for bullshit in actions that do not require interaction with other people. However, our tolerance for bullshit in dealing with others should depend on what we have to gain or lose by tolerating various levels of bullshit. What do you think?

  2. Anonymous says:

    I think that’s a load of bullshit

    (couldn’t resist :)

  3. Anonymous says:

    No offense to you guys, but I work with economists. I agree that they have a low tolerance for what they consider bullshit, but their idea of what is bullshit covers a pretty wide spectrum of human endeavor; ie, anything that implies that any human behavior is motivated by anything other than pure rational self-interest. But I luv you guys!