Improvisation Blog: Excuses, Explanations and Social Ontology in E-learning and Economics
“Thinking about it, and following another discussion that occurred among friends a bit earlier in the evening, I have been thinking about the relationship between an explanation and an excuse. Much of Lawson’s argument against formalism in modern economics is that it brings inappropriate tools (mathematical models) to a reality which it doesn’t understand, has no ambition to critique, and yet seeks to explain it through the use of these tools. Its explanatory power is dreadful and we all live with the consequences. There is basically an intellectual laziness to engage with reality born out of reliance on tools and maintaining the professional identity of individual economists. To what extent is this laziness the result of using tools to make excuses for the status quo? To what extent is the excuse-making habitual?”
Thinking out of the box or thinking the other way around it’s good advice. The full text is worth reading.