Jeremy Freese notes:
In a case in which the other shoe took a very long time to drop, Marc Hauser, the Harvard psychology professor renowned for his work on moral judgment, apparently has resigned after a protracted dispute regarding “scientific misconduct” that included retraction or post-publication-revision of three papers because of data problems.
Q: Is any schadenfreude sweeter for the mainstream sociologist than evolutionary psychology schadenfreude? (A: Economist schadenfreude. But just barely.)
Well Jeremy, check out Andrew Gelman’s hard questions for pop-economics:
I think I’m starting to resolve a puzzle that’s been bugging me for awhile.
Pop economists (or, at least, pop micro-economists) are often making one of two arguments:
1. People are rational and respond to incentives. Behavior that looks irrational is actually completely rational once you think like an economist.
2. People are irrational and they need economists, with their open minds, to show them how to be rational and efficient.
I understand why Gelman finds these types of arguments somewhat contradictory, but its possible they can each be true in different cases. After noting the tension between the two, what needs to be done is to identify a representative sample of such cases and see in what share of the cases the analysis is correct. Admittedly this isn’t an easy task, but it doesn’t seem to me much of substance has been shown based on Gelman’s observations (interesting though they may be).