By Benjamin Ward (auth.)

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And there were in the wings not only unconventional theories but unconventional political groupings with even more drastic remedies to propose. It was not just a case of misbehaving atoms that could be studied at one's leisure. What was needed politically was a theory that explained what was wrong, explained what to do about it, and whose policy prescriptions were politically feasible for the existing political parties. Keynes was admirably equipped for both the political and the scientific job.

Nomic science continues to remain uneasily silent, fearing to transcend on the one hand the positivist norm of avoiding value-judgments, and unable on the other to think of anything interesting of a "positive" nature to say. As one runs through the list of anomalies in contemporary economic science, the thought occurs inescapably 49 Neoclassical Economics 50 that these are not emerging problems: most of them have been around for decades, though the relative importance of each has been variable.

A Science in Crisis? Every physicist engaged in such work would be beset by the nagging fear that he was working on a topic that was about to become of merely antiquarian interest. More effort would be devoted to the fuzzier but now important task of seeking out a new set of underlying factors which might help return the study of physical phenomena to a more normal course, at least for a while. This is a matter of at best casual interest to a physicist. But for economists things are different, for we are all well aware that economists do live in a Velikovskyan world, that our laws are subject to frequent and even sudden change, that nature is constantly taking back some portion of the information we have won from her over the years about the economy.

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