About Rationally Speaking

Rationally Speaking is a blog maintained by Prof. Massimo Pigliucci, a philosopher at the City University of New York. The blog reflects the Enlightenment figure Marquis de Condorcet's idea of what a public intellectual (yes, we know, that's such a bad word) ought to be: someone who devotes himself to "the tracking down of prejudices in the hiding places where priests, the schools, the government, and all long-established institutions had gathered and protected them." You're welcome. Please notice that the contents of this blog can be reprinted under the standard Creative Commons license.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New Rationally Speaking podcast: Joseph Heath on Economics Without Illusions

Guest Joseph Heath, author of “Economics Without Illusions: Debunking the Myths of Modern Capitalism,” joins us as we turn our skeptical eyes toward the treacherous dual terrain of economics and politics. We discuss the ways in which, with his book, he attempts to raise our economic literacy and empower us with new ideas. In it, he draws on everyday examples to skewer the six favorite economic fallacies of the right, followed by impaling the six favorite fallacies of the left. Heath leaves no sacred cows untipped as he breaks down complex arguments and shows how the world really works.

Joseph Heath is the Director of the Centre for Ethics and Professor of Philosophy and Public Policy at the University of Toronto. In addition to his academic publications, he is the author of other popular books, among them, "The Rebel Sell : Why the Culture Can't Be Jammed" and "Efficient Society: Why Canada is as Close to Utopia as It Gets"


  1. Hope you're enjoying your break. I worked my way through the podcast archive (listening to probably 2/3 of them). I must say you two do a very good job. Do you do any editing? Looking forward to listening to this.

  2. Mark,

    thanks, the break is over, a brand new post is already scheduled for tomorrow...

    Yes, the podcast is edited by Benny Pollak, who does all the work behind the scenes, including maintaining the podcast's web site.

  3. Interesting and illuminating, but his attacks on Marxists economics was pretty much a "they didn't study economics" even though if you read Harvey's books, just to point out, it's pretty clear Harvey has. Particularly in his "Enigma of Capital" and a "Brief History of Neo-liberalism," furthermore two of the Marxists who came out of the woodwork after the crisis were economists, Richard Wolf and Andrew Kliman.

    Now there are legitimate critiques to be made of Marxist economics, and even more to be made of Marxist politics, but that was actually rather lazy for a person who basically wants to say "Everything is fine about capitalism."

    Furthermore, while mentioning Hayek, he ignores the critique of Keynes rooted in the 1970s, which would be the last time Keynesian economics was driving European and North American policy as a whole, was a period of stagflation where people were advocating for other systems because of inflation.

    Still, overall, I find Heath enjoyable to listen to, and while sometimes flippant (his Rebel Sell particularly so), I am glad you had him on. I wish you guys were a little tougher on him, but alas, it's not to here someone whose not a libertarian on an Skeptic's podcast talking about economics.

  4. Pass on my regards to Benny, because you can barely tell it was edited at all. And the website is great, too. I was looking around for other podcasts and found the SGU website to be g-d awful. Almost unusable from smart phones.


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