The most pernicious effect of the status of economics in public life has been the hegemony of technocratic thinking. Political questions about how to run society have come to be framed as technical issues, fatally diminishing politics as the arena where society debates means and ends.
Take a crucial concept such as gross domestic product. As Ha-Joon Chang makes clear in 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism, the choices about what not to include in GDP (household work, to name one) are highly ideological. The same applies to inflation, since there is nothing neutral about the decision not to give greater weight to the explosion in housing and stock market prices when calculating inflation.
Economics is just politics in disguise – a way to push one’s ideology on to everyone dressed up in something “complicated” that looks like science but which is never accountable when the models prove to be utterly incorrect, if not deadly!
They don’t include House Prices in the inflation index? Why not?
Debt unsustainable at 90% GDP? Discovered to be an Excel error, yet still implemented to this day! This extreme example shows that it’s the ideology that governments care about, not the “science”. Even when the “evidence” is proven wrong, they still proceed with complete disregard for the facts.