Friday, April 25, 2008

Cat fight!

Mreowr! The women economists are getting feisty! Here's to hoping that in the fray they rip each other's shirts off or kiss!

First, Megan says something stupid. which is how these things usually start.

Then, kathy g points out that Megan said something stupid. A fair, if naive move.

Of course, we all know what comes next. Megan gets sanctimonious while mischaracterizing her opponents views, claiming her opponent misunderstood her and calling her opponent stupid. It's a Megan trifecta!

Let's examine step three, shall we?

Kathy G is worried

Hmm, worried. I somehow doubt that this is an accurate representation of kathy's internal state, but perhaps we should let her weigh in.
Kathy G. is further confused by the concept of "preference maximization". Often when I speak to non-economists, I try to explain things in the terms that they are most likely to understand, rather than the terms that appeared in my Micro textbook

Kathy got confused by a term Megan admits to completely making the fuck up? wow that must mean that:
Indeed, so far as I can tell, Kathy G. is an army of one in this respect. But confess I have not done a comprehensive research survey; I am relying entirely on the absence of confused emails, comments, or blog posts from anyone besides Kathy G.

Why, of course, kathy didn't read Megan's mind because she's singularly stupid. Duh!
Kathy G additionally says I should have specified that Coasean bargaining is impractical in the absent of clear property rights. I thought that went without saying, since the discussion revolved around who had a clear property right. I regret the error.

So in other words, you were arguing about property rights so you invoked a theorem which requires property rights to be completely settled. Yes, you're the one being misunderstood, Megan. Counter position, Megan doesn't understand Coasean bargaining.
Kathy G. avers that the Coase Theorem does not "dictate" anything. Please white out the word "the Coase Theorem dictates" on your screen and replace with "the Coase Theorem would seem to indicate". I regret the infelicitous choice of words.

Wow, she admits to being overly assertive about what was a matter of opinion. This is shocking. Man, our standards for her are low.
Finally, Kathy G. says that I should not have tried to apply the Coase theory willy nilly to the real world. This is a very important point. Unless you are a trained economist, like Kathy G., the safest thing to do is only apply it to imaginary worlds.

What did one untrained economist say to the other? "You can't say that. You're not a trained economist"
Well, let's ask a trained economist on the subject, then. Fortunately for us, one of these two sparkling women knows how to use a direct reference to back up their claims. Guess which one? If you guess Megan, go hang yourself.
"[W]hile consideration[s] of what would happen in a world of zero transaction costs can give us valuable insights, these insights are, in my view, without value except as steps on the way to the analysis of the real world of positive transaction costs. We do not do well to devote ourselves to a detailed study of the world of zero transaction costs, like augers divining the future by the minute inspection of the entrails of a goose. "

But of course, the economist kathy mentioned is totally biased. You see, his name is Coase and he INVENTED THE VERY FUCKING THING YOU'RE ARGUING ABOUT!

And the judges ruling? Point kathy by unanimous decision.
The judges further ruled that Megan should also go and hang herself.


M. Bouffant said...

"I regret the infelicitous choice of words."

Yet not in reference to her use of "absent" when she meant abscence. (Blockquote above.) How odd. How can one believe anything typed when the typist can't proofread a shopping list?

NutellaonToast said...

You think she gets confused when she reads her shopping lists?

"I don't get it. I wrote that I wanted slat, so I must want slat, but I can't find it anywhere! This store must be wrong!"

Clever Pseudonym said...

"Often when I speak to non-economists..."

You mean...people like you, Megan? STOP calling yourself an economist. You are an MBA. That's like someone who's taken violin lessons for a year describing themselves as a virtuoso.

M. Bouffant said...

I could use some slat right now myself.

Susan of Texas said...

Snide, snide, snide Miss Megan. I love the way ignorant people are so often vehement in their stupidity. It make the frustration more fun.

I'm jealous, though. Megan won't debate *me*. I guess it's because I'm not an economist either.

Susan of Texas said...

Ah, Kathy G responds.

She's absolutely right. Arguing on the merits of a discussion is the way the world should be, but ignoring arguments on the merits and using emotion is how the conservatives came to power. How do we fight back? Argue the merits even more?

(Not to mention that I'd really miss coming to the internet for poop jokes, snark, and low blows.)

Clever Pseudonym said...

I think she over-reacted to Nutella's "cat fight" remarks. I'm pretty sure all of the "we hate wimmin" stuff here is meant to be tongue-in-cheek as a response to Megan's constant claims that the only reason she is ever criticized is because of her gender.

Ordinarily, I'd be with you on the merits bit, too. The thing is, Megan routinely calls other people stupid or questions their intelligence in a really condescending manner, but thinks she's staying classy because she doesn't use the "f-word" while doing it. I'd prefer someone who comes out and says "dumb fuck" to somebody who flings a turd wrapped around a bunch of pretty words.

Susan of Texas said...

Althouse does the same thing. If someone wants to say they are smarter than I am, they had better be able to prove it.