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Theoretical and Applied Economics
No. 8 / 2010 (549)

The Turbulence of the Solutions

„Subjectivity is objectified into the invisible hand which becomes the supra-rational authority for certifying economic truth.”

The turbulences at a decision making level in matters of economic crisis are now obvious. The causes, though, deserve scrutiny from at least a couple of perspectives: firstly, because the ideological blockage of standard economic theory is already visible and, secondly, because the ideological resilience produces examples of defiance of the human aspect with regard to the consequences of the crisis.

In the spectrum of causal outcomes takes shape a problem whose solution has always been avoided: the problem of the objectifying of economic knowledge, as an ambition of scientificity, has removed from the equation the only determinant of economic phenomena which makes the certifying of truth through experiment impossible: subjectivity. Somewhat contrary to the rules of rational knowledge, economic knowledge cannot have access to certitudes but through an approximately rational formula (in essence, barely rational!), in the sense that it operates in the fluid space of intuition in order to - often deceptively - identify sources of deduction.

Economic knowledge, respecting its object, haunts the paths of intuition and hopes to reach the solid steps of deduction. The drama of economic knowledge is the fact that it remains suspended between intuition (though while hooked to it) and deduction (but without reaching it, in an experimental formula). When it announces truth, economic knowledge rather believes that intuition has been fixed in a reason-able field.

More finely put, economic growth calls on conjectural operators whom it finds on the artificial island of rationality, inhabited by subjectivity, declaring the logical probability as a possible fact, identifiable and provable through experiment. However, a forgery of maximal magnitude takes place here, as economic knowledge does not apply to facts or objects, but to economic phenomena emanated in inter-subjective contexts and having sense only in those contexts. Through their nature, the inter-subjective contexts are under-stretched, in indefinite proportions, by both rational and irrational determinants. The demarcation line between the determinants is oscillating in a very particular object-oriented framework of a reflexive, sensitive and chaotic nature; human nature, in other words.

The excess of reason in the knowledge of human nature means its reduction to the human condition, and can never be treated as itself without being transformed in that which it essentially is not: an object, a fact for experimental knowledge to be applied on. Economic knowledge has no chance of reaching regularities, except in a reductionist way, focusing on the human condition as a world of economic facts, of economic objectives; what come out of the knowledge process are notions of economic physics, of the mechanics of de-subjectified gestures. Apart from the danger of escaping in the absurd imaginarium, knowledge such as this is itself a product of the imagination of something which cannot in essence be imagined.

But the contents fixed by economic knowledge throughout history are in part arisen from imagination. The markings are represented by metaphors, by nebulous concepts, confused and diffused in equal measure - like the invisible hand - which attribute the market with extra-subjective capacities eminently imagined in order to fill-in the objectified area of certification through experiment. In a metaphysical way, subjectivity is "objectified" into the invisible hand which pretends to be the authority which certifies the truth. It's just that the truth-function of the market has sense in an inadequate, extra-logical and supra-rational way. The error is immense; the truth thus certified not being an extra-subjective, implacable, omniscient and omnipotent object.

The economic truth is an uncertain result of a inter-subjective transaction which is tied to a precise value originating in the determinants of the human nature. But these determinants are not exactly rational, they're even eminently imprecisely rational, even in the sense of being - most often - obviously irrational.

The decisional turbulence revealed by the present economic crisis is amplified by the non-rational intermediary between science (even in an approximate sense) and faith, meaning ideologies. These don't do anything but exacerbate the limitations of knowledge to favored approximations from the cognitive universe of Economics. Which translates as a sort of reduction of the second degree (a reduction to the reduction), constructing theories on this cognitive parsimony.

There is no chance for the crisis not to deepen as long as ideological visions are being used, visions which maim even further the already crippled product of economic knowledge. Ideologies seem potent in matters of the economy because they either objectify the faith of predetermination (a sort of fata morgana of expectations), or subjectivize the faith of salvation (a sort of utopia of the means). Meaning, the ideologies invariably reduce the multiverse of human nature to a minuscule dimension. That is why they are not apt to operate on the reason-able and on rationality, where the solutions to the crisis might be found.

The crisis lingers because ideologies search for rationality in other places than the human nature.


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The Turbulence of the Solutions
Marin Dinu

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The Economicity. The Epistemic Landscape, Marin Dinu, 2016

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