A reason why more people should learn some economics

A Philadelphia Inquirer profile (free registration required, or see here) of economist Sophia Koropeckyj makes an important point:

Koropeckyj’s work stands for a psychologically reassuring idea in a world that seems all too chaotic. . . .

In other words, life is orderly and the future predictable as long as the proper patterns are discerned, then applied.

“Every facet of human life can be explained in economic terms,” Koropeckyj, 47, of Jenkintown, said.

The late Paul Heyne put it this way: “In a democratic society, ignorance of economics is fertile breeding ground for perverse government policies. Ignorance of economics also interferes with human flourishing, because it leaves people anxious and uncertain about powerful but mysterious relationships whose intimidating character could be dispelled through understanding of the kind that economic theory can provide.” The Economic Way of Thinking, Ninth Edition (Prentice Hall, 2000), p. ix.

(Andrew Chamberlain at The Idea Shop, one of Prof. Heyne’s students, wrote a fine tribute to him here.)


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