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View Diary: Right-Wing Propaganda Masquerades as a High School Economics Curriculum (160 comments)

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  •  "Fairness" isn't economics (8+ / 0-)

    "Fairness" is a political concept, not an economic one.

    (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
    Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

    by Sparhawk on Thu Dec 06, 2012 at 12:29:03 PM PST

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    •  Exactly (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Paul Rogers, coffeetalk

      Yeah that was the point I was trying to make but didn't write my comment very well. If you don't have that kind of political coloring right there with your economic concepts, many people think it is "right wing". One has to separate between theoretical economic concepts and then practical political discussion. Often economic textbooks and blogs etc. (even the stuff discussed in the diary) include the caveats regarding the economic theory in many places but one cannot simply do that in every paragraph.

      I didn't see anything on the website that was questionable in terms of substance (they were very basic economic concepts). Maybe the actual material sent to teachers was framed in an unfair way but the website at least is very uncontroversial. But I feel that because it discusses issues such as deficits and taxation without bringing in every political argument (both from left and the right), it is labeled as "right-wing propaganda".

      •  I don't know if the curriculum mentions this... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JFactor, ORDem

        One thing it could mention is that social spending programs can diminish the impact of economic recessions.  That way it just isn't about basic information that would please republican deficit-worriers.

        Since economic cycles of boom and bust are a feature of capitalism, fairness actually doesn't need to be mentioned at all in order to justify things like social security and unemployment.  It's just how our 'side' most commonly approaches the issue.  I think that's a mistake.

        The main concern I would think most have is that 'fiscal responsibility' is often Republican code for getting rid of all those 'freeloading' people out there.  Hearing things that sound like they might be code words can raise an alarm, but they could also just be words.

        But there is a real desire to base economic science on a-priori assumptions about economics.  Just like how people want to teach biology science according to a-priori assumptions.

        •  yeah (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Paul Rogers, coffeetalk

          I agree that many view concepts such as deficit reduction always through that lens. I understand it (we all know how Republicans are not actually fiscally responsible etc.) but I also think sometimes it goes too far. Debts and deficits are real and these economic concepts used to discuss them are very useful. Sometimes I'm frustrated that we tend to see things through a slightly warped view (all debt and deficit talk is garbage etc.) and unfairly treat pieces of analysis that are actually not all that partisan at all.

          •  Education is our friend. (2+ / 0-)
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            happymisanthropy, ORDem

            We just need an effort to combat economics nonsense by teaching economics, the same way we defeat biology nonsense by teaching biology.

            Just the former is a little more difficult to parse, in general, since it's based on reams of evidence that are highly analytical, partially implemented in many cases and not easily notable things like, "Huh, that's funny, that bird looks like that other bird."

            Libertarian economic thinking is stupid.  If people can learn to think, they will understand that.

        •  The boom and bust cycle is not an inherent (0+ / 0-)

          feature of capitalism, just of insufficiently-regulated capitalism. As when you trash Glass-Steagal.

          America—We built that!

          by Mokurai on Fri Dec 07, 2012 at 09:46:46 AM PST

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