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The protesters who are trying to upend the ‘fantasy world’ of economics

January 12, 2015 • Daily Email Recap

The protesters who are trying to upend the ‘fantasy world’ of economics

At a gathering of America’s top economists, a small group of students is battling for the soul of economics.

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There were leaflets, a manifesto, and this warning: “On campus after campus, we will chase you old goats out of power. Then, in the months and years that follow, we will begin the work of reprogramming the doomsday machine.”

On Friday, on the eve of the annual meeting of The American Economic Association in Boston, attended by many of the top economists in the United States, the agents of the heterodoxy had come to declare war on the profession. The small group threw their messages onto the side of the Sheraton Boston in glowing, six-foot tall letters: “BEFORE ECONOMICS CAN PROGRESS, IT MUST ABANDON ITS SUICIDAL FORMALISM.

“The projection’s looking great,” said Keith Harrington, bearded, bespectacled, and bundled-up, as the sun set in the subzero weather.

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