How Many Times Must We Bury Behaviorism?
By Bryan Caplan
I noticed continued resistance to survey evidence in the comments. Frankly, it’s hard to believe there’s anyone left in social science who doesn’t take surveys seriously. Friedman’s original arguments against survey evidence were half-baked, and no one’s come up with any better objections since.
Yes, there are problems with surveys, but there are problems with all empirical evidence. And most of the data that economists use “instead of” surveys are themselves collected using… surveys! Where do you think unemployment numbers come from – hiring private eyes to follow people around all day? For goodness sakes, even if we did hire P.I.s, the data would reflect what the P.I.s said people did. It would be a second-hand survey, but a survey nonetheless.