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>The only test of any analysis is its truth

>I am currently reading America’s Great Depression by Murray N. Rothbard. He makes an interesting comment concerning critiques of Austrian economic theory. If it was included in the first edition, this comment was made in 1963:

Hayek believes that Mises’s theory is somehow deficient because it is exogenous—because it holds that the generation of business cycles stems from interventionary acts rather than from acts of the market itself. This argument is difficult to fathom. Processes are either analyzed correctly or incorrectly; the only test of any analysis is its truth, not whether it is exogenous or endogenous. If the process is really exogenous, then the analysis should reveal this fact; the same holds true for endogenous processes. No particular virtue attaches to a theory because it is one or the other.

I found this reminiscent of the intelligent design debate. My substitutions bolded.

Evolutionists believe that intelligent design theory is somehow deficient because it is non-naturalistic—because it holds that the generation of genetic information stems from interventionary acts rather than from acts of the organism itself. This argument is difficult to fathom. Processes are either analyzed correctly or incorrectly; the only test of any analysis is its truth, not whether it is naturalistic or non-naturalistic. If the process is really non-naturalistic, then the analysis should reveal this fact; the same holds true for naturalistic processes. No particular virtue attaches to a theory because it is one or the other.

  1. 2008 November 10 at 02:47

    I don’t remember when, but I recall once making the statement that the truth of the matter is determined by the truth of the matter. It is really the same idea. The purpose of critique in the modern era, as well as the present era, seems to be self-propagation. The creation of a critique seems to be the important thing: we critique to give others something to either critique themselves, or to inspire their own critiques.
    The result is that they critique like rabbits, but produce degenerate offspring. The point of analizing and critiquing is the search for truth, something which has often been forgotten. Truth is not something which inspires us. That’s ideology. Truth is that which actually coorolates with reality, and any form of thinking which fails to keep that as its foundation for truth ultimately corrodes reason, accountability, and practically any other virtue.

  2. 2008 November 10 at 15:33

    bethyada, your substitution is beautifully ironic.

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