Sunday, April 27, 2008

Keynes on the Koran and Das Kapital

Keynes wrote this in a letter from 1934:
My feelings about Das Kapital are the same as my feelings about the Koran. I know it is historically important and I know that many people, not all of whom are idiots, find it a sort of Rock of Ages and continuing inspiration. Yet, when I look into it, it is inexplicable that it can have this effect. I am sure that its contemporary economic value (apart from occasional but inconstructive and discontinuous flashes of insight) is nil.
Bizarrely prescient of him, given the way that radical Islam has replaced Communism as our official national bogey-man.

(Quoted in Maynard Keynes: An Economist's Biography by D.E. Moggridge.)



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am proud to know that I read someone's blog who has the stones to read books on economics.

I can't hack it, myself, so I'll trust you to tell me right. I just go on gut feelings of what is right, which is why I have so many disagreements with guys like Kirkendall, who is infatuated with economic giants like Skilling and Fastow, and was devastated by the loss of Lay.


10:12 AM  
Blogger  Robert Boyd said...

It took me a moment to realize you were talking about Houston's Clear Thinker there. Well, the question of Enron is more financial than economic (obviously the two are related). I like his blog, except for all the Enron stuff! It looks to me that he thinks their sentences were unfair and that there was prosecutorial misconduct. Fair enough, maybe so. But I think he goes way overboard in suggesting that Fastow and Skilling and Lay did nothing wrong, perhaps to make their prosecution seem all the more unjust.

I think Fastow committed fraud, Skilling enabled it, and Lay (and Arthur Anderson) looked the other way...

But that said, I am hardly an expert on economics. I have a purely amateur interest in the subject.

11:11 AM  

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