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The Affluent Society Essay | Critical Essay #6

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Critical Essay #6

Economists are fond of examining the role that self-interest plays in economic decisions. Most recently, some economists identified with the publicchoice school have won acclaim for examining the self-interest of politicians. But conspicuously absent from the spotlight exposing self-interest are economists themselves. If ever they succumb to a moment of self-examination, they become inclined to view themselves as participants in the honorable pursuit of knowledge, objectively applying the scientific method to questions of great social importance. The suggestion that their work might be slanted in some perverse fashion in order to favor the powerful in society - those in positions to provide jobs, contracts, or grants - is regarded as a profound insult.

Galbraith has ensured himself a reputation as a heretic by applying the same assumption of self-interest to the economist that the economist applies to others. For example, Galbraith has argued that "mainstream economics has, for...

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This section contains 326 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Affluent Society Study Guide
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The Affluent Society from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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