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Title: Economics is philosophy, economics is not science

Authors: Rupert Read

Addresses: Philosophy Department, University of East Anglia, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, UK

Abstract: An environmentalist|s outlook is typically claimed to be based on or even constituted by sound science. It would be natural then for a version of economics based on such insights to claim to be |even more| scientific than traditional economics. I argue for a conclusion radically opposed to this. I suggest that a genuinely green economics will/should eschew any claims to scientificity. I aim to liberate economics from the albatross of scientific ambition. I urge greens not to try to legitimate their aspirations for the world and for society principally by means of science, but rather to embrace green economics as a point of view that has at its heart an endless love of and faith in life. I submit that economics is not science, but rather philosophy, and that a Green political philosophy of life will suffer, and not profit, from pretending otherwise.

Keywords: Friedman; green economics; political economy; Mirowski; physics; utility; political philosophy.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGE.2007.013062

International Journal of Green Economics, 2007 Vol.1 No.3/4, pp.307 - 325

Published online: 06 Apr 2007 *

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