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Theoretical and Applied Economics
No. 4 / 2007 (509)

The feelings' invisible hand

„The science plays its own role; it is incapable to legitimate the other language games... First and foremost, it is incapable to legitimate itself.”
Jean-Francois Lyotard

The economic theory is, after a long time, at a deadlock. It seems to be a crisis of grounds. The clear sign is that the call to generic regularities is done ever infrequently. Practically, the economic theory has been managementized. It treats the random. The functional fragmentation upon macro and micro levels has opened a methodological gap: the conjunctural and detail solutions have made indispensable the assembly vision. The efficiency performance, supported within Ford type organizational contexts, has proposed the way of a second fragmentation: between the nominal and the real. Thus, all the macroeconomic has been made manageable as pieces. The ontological discontinuation has justified the methodological discontinuation.

The instrumentation generated by the efficiency side has succeeded, paradoxically, in the symbolic economy. The mechanical successful outcomes have been rediscovered in the balances projection, the balances technique proving to be infallible. The money economy, focused in an exclusive manner on monetarism, has introduced assumptions promoted at the rank of institutional rule. The autonomy of the central banks has show plainly the triumph of the symbolic economy. The speculative frenzy has eliminated any doubt about the absolute efficiency function of the monetary economy. The step towards the offshore formula was, naturally, in conformity with the casino economy. The society has exchange values only; the value as such has a sense only if it is treated as exchange value.

In this manner it has been made the most significant disjoining: that between the economy and the society. The former has bestowed itself with the market ideology, the latter being doomed to come back, possibly, to the natural economy. The money economy became rapidly sufficient to itself. It has consolidated the own nature, artificial one. The human society is for the money economy a useless expenditure, an efficiency props. The trend is inexorable: the knowledge becomes exchange value. The information imitates exclusively the money function in society. The high level of the informatics society exhibits irrevocably the temptation of a social control. The relativization of the truth is legitimated by the market's arbitrary. The derailment is connected with the consistency of the modernism of the enlightenment. The construction of the economic theory on mechanical principles (the obsession for efficiency), determinist rules (with the market as absolute cause), adversative methods (the competition that eliminates), rational instruments (organizing the use of time) or anthropophagous institutions (the man's transformation into workforce), power structures (the quantification of the human nature) appears to be a model of the ultimate limits and limitations. It becomes a construction that needs to overstep its perfection in order to have a sense. The crisis is one of renovation as far as the ingredients of the theoretical construction must have another consistency. What could this mean? The efficiency shouldn't be material one, the market would be replaced by an inclusive competition, the time will not be rationalized anymore, the work comes near the man's essence as a thinking and creative creature, the man being valuated as an ineffable universe of spirit for the spirit and feelings. Such economy does not have as goal the nature destruction thorough the depravation of the human nature. The economy wouldn't be anymore a mechanics of the unnatural needs. At its core is placed the man, and the restrictive and constructive sense of the rationalization will be replaced by the progressive and liberating sense of the humanization. The economy that aimed the achievement of a market society withdraws in the ended history of the enlightenment. The economy of the second modernity, where the world depends exclusively on its thinking, waiving, at the same time, to the invasion of the exchange values, becomes what it must be: a human science.

The transcending of the model of enlightenment is a question of exit from the captivity of many paradigms. Among other, also from the imitative formula of an economy built around the functional relationship between labor and capital with the structural relationship between consumption and scene. The dissolution of the economy matrix values as form of specialization and expressing the all human gestures as money is equivalent with an escape from habits, from the habit with the progressive rationalization paradigm also. Otherwise, the ideology of the market keeps further the man's captivity in the ideatic cage of the materialism. The conclusion? The economic theory as product of the enlightenment didn't call yet in question its precepts. The delay is serious. The entrance in the post-modernism is schizophrenic one. The exit from this can not be described even as an Utopia.


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The feelings' invisible hand
Marin Dinu

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