A Two-fold Critique on Milton Friedman’s Instrumentalist Methodology



Milton Friedman’s seminal article, “Methodology of Positive Economics”, is one of the most important and contentious works ever been discussed within the realm of economic methodology. In this article, on the basis of an instrumentalist approach to the nature of theorizing, Friedman declares the tenets of positive economics, and in this vein, he professes his disputable doctrine about “unrealistic assumptions” as the core of his view. In this article, we try to discuss over some logical and theoretical defects in Friedman’s article which essentially weakens his supportive arguments about his views (internal critique); furthermore, in the light of Lakatos’ epistemological framework, we take into consideration the epistemological status of Friedman’s predectivist instrumentalism (external critique) and we reach this conclusion that his approach is degenerating in Lakatosian term.
JEL Classification: JEL: B41، B49