Fitting Attitude Theory in Economics: Menger and Keynes

Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics 20:61-83 (2017)
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Abstract

Despite the substantial difference in their monetary theories, Menger and Keynes agree in terms of stigmatizing the love of money. This paper attempts to demonstrate that the shared ethical judgment is defensible for both on the grounds of the same metaethical assumptions—the value theory of Franz Brentano. The paper will be structured in two main parts: I. Ethics. The first part justifies the common rejection of the love of money, at the ethical level. This classical position, as a matter of fact, is considered controversial: in the case of Menger, his criticism towards egoism seems not coherent with his alleged utilitarianism; in the case of Keynes, his disparaging remarks on the love of money as a disgusting morbidity seem in direct contradiction with his endorsement of capitalism. II. Metaethics. In the second part, the focus will be the Fitting Attitude Theory of value, namely with reference to Brentano. The objective will be to identify and discuss the Brentanian arguments by which Menger and Keynes defend their ethical rejection of the love of money.

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Paolo Gomarasca
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

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