Quotation of the Day…

by Don Boudreaux on April 17, 2021

in Adam Smith, Curious Task, Hubris and humility, Man of System, Seen and Unseen

is from page 104 of University of Notre Dame philosopher James Otteson’s superb, hot-off-the-Cambridge-University-Press book, Seven Deadly Economic Sins (2021):

The problem … is not that there is no such thing as expert knowledge, but rather that the knowledge experts have is general, not particular. It is about averages, aggregations, composites, and macro-level predictions, not about specific individuals and their peculiar situations. That means that their general prescriptions can be fruitfully applied to individual situations only once the particularities of those situations are known – and therein lies the rub.


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