News & Analysis
Mr. Goldberg Apologizes for His Mises/Phone Booth Crack?
NYT on the Austrian School ... "It was 'The Road to Serfdom' by Friedrich Hayek that became the ur-text of Mr. Paul's emerging ideology, introducing him to Austrian economics and its Manichaean choice between laissez-faire capitalism and a government-run economy destined for disaster. (Mainstream economists have long dismissed the Austrian school, but it retains a devoted following among libertarians and some conservatives.)" ... I guess it depends what you mean by "mainstream" and "Austrian school," given those Nobel prizes for Friedrich Hayek, James Buchanan, and Milton Friedman. I'm not saying that the Austrian school is dominant or anything like that, and there are many –sometimes conflicting — views that one might identify as Austrian, but this strikes me as awfully glib, no? – Jonah Goldberg / National Review blog
Dominant Social Theme: Well, the Austrians have gotten a little bigger and a bit more noticed. OK.
Free-Market Analysis: Many years ago, leading conservative pundit Jonah Goldberg lost his temper and wrote that Lew Rockwell (of LewRockwell.com and Mises.org) and his libertarian colleagues could fit into a "phone booth."
Not so fast. Today, those who have a lively interest in Austrian free-market economics or who are outright supporters of the magnificent ideas inherent in "human action" and free-market money are a forceful factor throughout the blogosphere.
Goldberg, in this blogsite squib, belatedly seems to acknowledge this (see excerpt above). Of course, in our humble view he still gets it wrong, conflating Friedman with Hayek, which is a little bit like lumping Judas in with the rest of the Disciples.
Friedman, as time goes on, is seen more and more as an apologist for central banking; and the Chicago Freshwater School itself may be seen as laissez-faire lite – sort of a "CATO" by the Great Lakes.
It is fine to rave about government interference in the marketplace as Friedman often did. But his "serious" writing constantly advocates for fiat-monopoly money within the context of a "steady state." By this he meant that central bankers should inject enough money into the economy but not too much.
He even had a number picked out. Say what? Well ... Friedman believed for the longest time that one could approach something called the "economy" using the "science" of central banking. Like so many other apologists for state power, he believed central bankers could fix prices but that they simply weren't doing it properly.
As Friedman's star continues to decline, we see evidence that Austrian economic guru Ludwig von Mises' continues to rise. History is funny that way, often rewarding in the long term those who best present reality, whether or not that reality is recognized in their lifetimes.
Do an Internet search for Mises and you'll come up with maybe three million direct cites. Keynes has only a few hundred thousand more. But a decade ago, you'd have been hard pressed to come up with more than a few dozen cites for Mises – probably all of them generated by the two founders of the Mises foundation, Lew Rockwell and Murray Rothbard.
The growth of the Austrian school has been nothing short of phenomenal. It is EVERYWHERE on the Internet where people interested in ideas gather to exchange views. Even those who are pro-statist and anti-freedom need to deal with the Austrians now. They need to deal with the concepts of Human Action and the acute analysis that modern economies are run into the ground on a regular basis by the central banking-fueled business cycle.
These two concepts, human action and the modern business cycle, are demolishing conventional wisdom about the economy. They are unstoppable truths that undermine the foundations of elite Keynesian economics the way water undermines the foundation of even the most impressive edifice.
It is the Anglosphere power elite that has painstakingly built up modern economics – and what a meretricious construct it is. At its heart lies the enormous lie that good, gray central bankers can fix the price of money on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis.
Of course, every price fix is a marketplace distortion, transferring wealth from those who earned it to those who didn't and are less well equipped to utilize it productively. Over time, this wealth transfer creates market bubbles and then ruinous depressions. We're living through one now.
Austrian economics is part of an economic conversation that goes back 500 years or more (in its modern evolution anyway). It was an Austrian that conceptualized marginal utility, the idea that prices are fungible at the "margin" and only the Invisible Hand can determine them.
The concept of marginal utility is the dividing line between the static "old school" of classical economics (think Malthus and Marx) and the dynamic "new" economics of the neo-classical school.
Interestingly, almost all reputable economists claim to be neo-classical now. But it's simply a rhetorical statement. The Germans and British reclaimed the stubborn, old classical economics with their reliance on econometrics.
Econometrics is the idea that one can predict human behavior if one applies properly complex equations to an adequate amount of data. Econometrics is applied throughout the world by governments large and small to justify new laws and regulations.
But common sense tells us that econometrics cannot work any better than any other kind of forecasting device. As soon as people experience the regulatory fiat, they will react and change their behavior. In fact, they will often change their behavior even BEFORE the laws and regulations are written.
It was the Germans who, when confronted with Austrian, free-market analysis, lost their collective temper and labeled the laissez faire school "Austrian" in contempt. But the original Austrians themselves adopted the name proudly as a badge of honor.
The reason that Austrian economics has swept the blogosphere is because it is the only school that tells the truth about the world. Most people in this world are apparently damaged in childhood and grow up wanting to control other people. Going into politics and writing laws is a good way to do this.
Austrian economics confronts these damaged people – who compensate for the lacunae in their own souls by attempting to control others – with the truth about their behavior. It is hard to tolerate exposure and powerbrokers often react petulantly to economic truths by attacking the messenger. This is why Austrian economics, as it grows ever more popular, is increasingly being attacked by low-level supporters of Anglosphere elite policies.
The Anglosphere itself – the top central banking families – are obviously involved in a campaign against Austrian economics as well. They are using sub-dominant social themes – fear-based promotions – to try to cast aspersions on the school.
Conclusion: Whether or not Goldberg has actually apologized for his initial statement, what cannot be denied is that Austrian, free-market economics is "sweeping the board." It is not doing so because it is somehow a backhanded elitist plot (a part of a larger dialectic) but because it provides people with something very rare in this world: The truth.
Posted by richard lamb on 02/16/12 11:02 AM
My most valuable course in Medical School was--human physiology. It is impossible to know the vast interconnections and interactions of the body. The real World is no different. Austrian Economics seeks a system allowing humanity to live in concert with it's environment. This contrasts with power seekers who wish to control the World.
The evidence is clear who is correct. The controllers (Keynesians) are grasping bleatedly, and will soon succumb to "Mother Nature".
Posted by Agent Weebley on 02/13/12 10:45 AM
But later, as I'm workin', workin' workin' my business during the day, though.
Click to view link
Posted by Anthony Migchels on 02/13/12 10:03 AM
Agent Weebley, I don't understand even one word of what you have said, but DARPA away at Click to view link! You are most welcome!
Posted by Agent Weebley on 02/13/12 08:36 AM
Why do I wonder why your English is oddly, suddenly and strangely very good? Quite the Spinvis you put on our AstroNuttiness. Did you get that? Probably not. None of you seem to have a humourous bone, so I will elbow in with a little focused tap.
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You said: "Considering your debating techniques, which are quite advanced and reminiscent of delphi . . ."
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Wasn't Delphi a more recent "Cold War" divide and conquer invention, which seems to me to be a reflection of a much used Attachment Disorder technique to steer the situation in a direction that is comfortable for the antagonist, which is well within the comfort zone of those that got raised by nannies, as they never really got any Mother's Love?
I prefer Zeno Of Elea, as he was/is the Master Of "reductio ad absurdum" and Aristotle's pick as the inventor of the dialectic.
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Listen. Say hello to Plastiki for me, will you? Tell him we're getting closer.
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Mind if I come back to your site and do some more DARPA?
Posted by Abu Aardvark on 02/13/12 07:45 AM
"Meme hunter has proven without a doubt that Libertarianism and Austrianism is sponsered and was sponsored from day one by the same people you claim to resist."
"Memehunter" aka "Black Night" (aka "Memecreator") has done no such thing. He keeps CLAIMING to have done so. Big difference.
I would also like to note that MH/BK resorts to false citations, association fallacies, straw men arguments and outright lies on a regular basis. One wonders why he feels the need to make use of such "techniques", when he asserts to be searching for truth at the same time.
I will not again go into the details here. Anyone interested may follow recent threads and judge for him/herself.
However, since you claim MH/BK has "proven" his allegations I will ask you the same question I proposed to him:
If this "Austrian/Keynesian dialectic" existed - as a means of the elite that is - how come they never came up with a "solution/synthesis"? How come, then, that they promote, live and breath ONLY ONE of the alleged "sides" of the asserted "dialectic" FOR CENTURIES?
You may also want take a look at these recent articles and try to disprove them. Good luck!
"Austrian economics is not just economics. It is a theory of human action itself. And this is why the Austrian School continues to grow, despite all the attempts to smear it, put it down, make it go away, and otherwise marginalize its thinkers and writers. Consider that this has been going on for well more than a century, beginning with the phrase Austrian School itself, which was coined by the German Historical School with the implication that Austrians were inferior in every respect to Germans.
The attempt hasn't worked over the long run. It does and can work in one, lifetime however, and individual Austrians have often paid a high price for refusing to think as they are told. In the case of Mises, it was not a parlor game. He put his very life on the line in his decision to speak the truth. But extend the analysis over several generations, and you see a different picture of trailblazing a new mainstream of thought.
A few years ago, an image came out on the web that was supposed to depict a line of economists. They were all staring at a graph. When the line went, up the economists would smile a bit. When it went down, they would frown. That was the whole depiction.
Economics is very different in the hands of the Austrian tradition. It is something with powerful explanatory power that deals with the rise and fall of whole civilizations. It deals with gigantic issues and the smallest possible personal issues. It provides a window for looking at the world with intelligence and realism. And though science itself is value free, its practitioners never are. They bring the values of peace, prosperity, and freedom to the mix, and provide us with a beautiful vision of life itself.
It is for this reason that Mises ends his masterpiece with these words, which-like Walter Block--we must never forget: "Economics must not be relegated to classrooms and statistical offices and must not be left to esoteric circles. It is the philosophy of human life and action and concerns everybody and everything. It is the pith of civilization and of man's human existence."
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"Mises in 1934 moved to Switzerland to take a teaching position. It was his first paid teaching position that he had been offered since 1906. That was seemingly late in his career. As it turned out, it wasn't. He remained in the classroom until 1969: another 35 years. But he did not remain in Switzerland.
In 1940, he and his wife made a run for it. They had to get to Portugal in order to get to the United States. They had to go across France. The Nazis were invading. There was not much time. They might be caught. They barely made it, due to the creative driving of a bus driver.
Why did he risk it? Because he was not confident that the Swiss government would let him remain in Switzerland. As it turned out, the government would have. But Mises could not be sure. So, he got out while the getting was good - just barely.
Here was his thinking. To guess wrong on staying seemed riskierthan betting wrong on leaving. But it was nip and tuck. He could have made the wrong decision. But he was focused. This decision was life-changing, but he could not have known this at the time. He saw it as life-preserving.
In the United States, he never had a paid position again. Donors paid his salary at New York University from 1945 to 1969. The university limited its largess to offering him a title, "visiting professor," and the right to teach graduate students in a weekly seminar. Among the auditors was Murray Rothbard, who became a major intellectual figure, though not in academia. Ron Paul would not be running for President if it were not for Rothbard and Mises. I would not be writing this report."
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Posted by amanfromMars on 02/13/12 07:12 AM
"As you have nothing constructive to say, you are welcome to post somewhere else. We would be relieved. This is nothing but nonsense." ... .. Reply from The Daily Bell
That was a tad harsh, DB, whenever for a few in the hundreds of millions who haven't a clue about what is going on and how it is delivered to be the Present, is it anything but nonsense ... ... . although it may very well be the case of it being only well understood by those few enabled and able-bodied and into the generation and distribution of secure control memes.
Am I mistaken in thinking that RR is a very recent visitor and poster here, with no real history of Great GBIrish to evidence submissions as being objectively confirmed and worthily subjectively classified as nothing but nonsense?
There is a lot more going on out there in the space/place which provides this tiny planet with its intelligence and ITs IntelAIgents, than will ever be made generally known, DB, by virtue of the undeniable fact that so few will ever able to comprehend the true virtual nature of reality and the simple binary means of its complex digital control. And thus is it always perfectly safe to selflessly share it.
And thus do the few grow and become many and overwhelmingly powerful in conditions of absolute control of billions and trillions.
Posted by Abu Aardvark on 02/13/12 05:50 AM
DB: "Boy, you're scary. We noticed that, too, and though we didn't think of DB in particular, the phrase popped out at us. He knows what he's doing, he knows who he is addressing and why ... "
Ha, don't be shy! I DID think "of DB in particular" and I hold to my initial appreciation.
When you think I'm scary, by the way, I have to say you had it coming ...
Posted by Anthony Migchels on 02/13/12 04:11 AM
"So Greenspan is actually an Austrian free-market economist and ran the Federal Reserve within libertarian parameters? You base this on what, an article he wrote for Ayn Rand in his 20s?
And Schiff and Celente are actually part of a conspiracy to validate Austrian economics by explaining "what could go wrong" after receiving information from the Rothschilds themselves on when the crash would occur with "mathematical certaInty?"
Well, I'm not sure about Peter Schiff: he had to explain his grandfather is not the same Jacob Schiff, after all.
Here's Alan Greenspan saying the same thing just after he quit office:
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The proverbial lightbulb does not switch on when our arch enemy promotes a Gold Standard?
oh, I forgot: he became honest since he's no longer in charge of the Fed. He no longer needs to lie, right? He can be straight now and say it was all a mistake. We need Gold, Alan says so. He should know, he was so wrong when in office.
Meme hunter has proven without a doubt that Libertarianism and Austrianism is sponsered and was sponsored from day one by the same people you claim to resist.
Austrianism wants deflation, which is a disaster on all counts as I have made very clear.
Austrianism ignores interest, a 5 to 10- trillion wealth transfer from the poorest 80% to the richest 10%.
Austrianism ignores that 'free markets' are quickly done in by Monopoly Capitalism.
Austrianism calls for a gold standard while knowing Gold is completely controlled. So even in a 'free market' environment, the Money Supply is clearly not free.
Austrianism blames the state for everything, ignoring the top of the pyramid and falsely claiming Govt is at the top.
So I think I'm fully prepared to stick with my statement that your economics suck.
What is clear, is that you won't budge even in the face of FACTS.
You are, however, clever debaters. Subtly misrepresenting, always looking for little details in formulations to point all your attention there. Manipulating the discourse by willfully downplaying valid points.
Never wondering, never saying: we'll be back, we have to look into this or that.
No my friends. You've been had.
Or you're trying to have us.
Considering your debating techniques, which are quite advanced and reminiscent of delphi techniques and the like, the obvious amount of money that is needed to operate the daily bell (where does that come from? How do four people get payed from one little website? Which banks does Wile work for and what does he do there?)
Reply from The Daily Bell
This thread contains ample information regarding all the conceptual points you're making. Regarding Memehunter, our issues go beyond his perspectives to his propensity to "clog" a thread by repeating the same issues over and over. He also tends to repeat factual errors and ignores any corrections.
You ask questions about DB itself? Your assertions are not correct, especially about the size of DB. (Wile doesn't work for banks and has no day-to-day role at DB, which is a very small organization compared to Rense, Alex Jones, etc.) We don't inquire how, say, Makow (someone we respect in many ways) funds his publishing.
We respect the privacy of the alternative media, given the terrible nature of what's going on in the West. We try to stick the issues. Some (Memehunter comes to mind) have in the past requested we keep certain personal information private that might cause them harm, and we have respected their wishes, no matter how heated the debate.
Attacking people's reputations and background directly is not a good way of furthering discussion (heated or not). We don't think Memehunter has proven that the Austrian School is a power-elite sham and we are sad that great concepts like the business cycle and human action are being pulled into a larger debate. We came to know about them maybe 25 years ago and are still amazed by them today. They are a step forward for freedom, not a step back and should be "above the fray."
As far as your currency goes, we've requested you clarify how it works several times. You haven't been especially discourteous, and ordinarily seem to want to debate ideas based on their merits, so you're welcome to write an article that we'd consider for posting here. Up to you ....
PS: Just to re-emphasize: We are for competing currencies in a private market and believe gold and silver would emerge as one solution based on historical precedent. But we have stated in the past that even Ellen Brown's solutions (what we understand of them) would be better than what we have now, to begin with, anyway.
Posted by Agent Weebley on 02/12/12 11:28 PM
Ah, so Peace Full around here without the Avatar Chameleon.
Care for a re-cap as a night-cap?
Click to view link
I can't wait till we do it again!
Posted by Thomas Molitor on 02/12/12 06:27 PM
"It was an Austrian that conceptualized marginal utility, the idea that prices are fungible at the "margin" and only the Invisible Hand can determine them."
Let us not forget the many dimensions of "human action," one of which stuck with me: preferences are ordinal not cardinal.
People already rank what is important to them. It's ludicrous for the government to do the ranking for them.
Posted by RR on 02/12/12 02:45 PM
DB: It is perfectly possible to jump to conclusions about people based on surface perceptions of relationships. Totally agree. Maybe I should have phrased it better , or you misread.
Posted by RR on 02/12/12 12:25 PM
The Austro-Hungarian Empire (1867 to 1918) was dissolved by the victors at the end of World War I and broken into separate new states. The same threat to a fraction of elites is still on today. Do these elites support the Austrian school as they find themselves in the same situation as the masses? It is true it is impossible in this world to survive in a bubble as DB has mentioned. The smearing by association is a non starter.
Reply from The Daily Bell
"The smearing by association is a non-starter."
Actually, your statement is a logical fallacy. It is perfectly possible to jump to conclusions about people based on surface perceptions of relationships.
Posted by Bluebird on 02/12/12 10:46 AM
I notice you do not like to be called a troll. From Urban Dictionary, Troll: one who posts deliberately provocative message... with the intention of causing maximmum disruption and argument. Also, since you like to quote Wikipedia, it also says for the purpose of causing emotional responses. Bingo. This is evidenced in your seeming to enjoy and wear as a badge any emotional responses. Hence your switching to the Black Knight avatar even though the video caused the rest of us to roar with laughter. You go unfazed. You continue in your assult even though you have been proven wrong.
You appear as a nice guy, but I would say you are a very dangerous person. You take these discussion elsewhere and continue what I feel amounts to slander of the Daily Bell. Yet they painstakingly continue to take apart your arguments. It means nothing to you exept to make you feel yuo are the one being wronged.
Most of the readers here follow the Daily Bell because we agree with their ideas. For some of us, what is discussed here is the ONLY human hope for this world. Yet you want to tear that hope down. It makes one think that you would even dispute the Lord God. Oh wait... you have already done that repeatedly. I will close by asking one question-- who are your followers? How many? Take your time, I am sure you can count them on one hand.
Posted by dave jr on 02/12/12 10:25 AM
"Of course, I have said these things several times, but it does not prevent you or the DB for continually mis-representing my positions. I wonder why you feel the need to consistently do so (at this point, I don't need to ask this question in the case of the DB, of course... )."
The DB doesn't have to misrepresent your positions because you do a very good job of it youeself.
I apprieciate the ideas you bring forth, but when shown to be contradictory you do not address them.
Here is another one:
You say the means of exchange should not be the same as the means for savings. Which I don't think is important enough to argue about. But then you say the means of exchange should be interest free which is the best way to promote it for being a means of savings. For example, if a person has an interest free mortgage, why pay it off even if he has enough savings to do so? Saving the means of exchange is encouraged.
Posted by bionic mosquito on 02/12/12 09:58 AM
You have spent tens of thousands of words making clear what you mean by "support".
I explain that the elites understand and utilize the knowledge of Austrian economics. This is plainly and obviously not the same as your rants about "support". This would be obvious to any third grade school child reading your screeds.
It seems that an additional appendage has been amputated from the Black Night - the one connected by the neck.
Posted by rossbcan on 02/12/12 09:51 AM
welcome to MY world:)
... but, short term compromise with falsity (criminals) EQUALS (integrates to) long term doom, the point we are now at. Push is rapidly becoming shove, as it must.
Posted by rossbcan on 02/12/12 09:10 AM
"Care to indicate more specifically"
your INTERPRETATION that past elite support of Austrian Economics MEANS that Austrian economics is a falsity. Your FALSE ad-hominum "argument" that, association TAINTS, forever the "truth" and those who accurately prove / represent it. Not to mention your false assumption that "what was, is", static (statist) POV that completely ignores that fact that among the self-volitional (intelligent), the only constant is change and tit for tat adaptation.
You have not demonstrated the ability and, apparent will to discern the fact that truth "needs no spokeperson". Truth just IS, independent of supporters, faux "expert" spokespersons or acknowlegement by forceful "blessors of truth". Truth will exist and remain constant long after there exists anyone to "debate" "what is truth":
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I agreed fully with DB, you have proven yourself to be not a "seeker of truth", but a purveyor of lies and self-delusion. I also agree that confronting trolls such as yourself is truly "neccessary", to help everyone to "know their enemy" and to understand complex "arguments" such as yours as the hot air (nothing) and logical fallicies of which they are constructed.
Reply from The Daily Bell
We have noticed that the nonsense Memehunter/Black Knight purveys here then shows up elsewhere as fact. So it is important to confront the lies "for the record." However, there comes a point where it becomes painfully repetitious.
Posted by Black_Knight on 02/12/12 08:39 AM
Look, DB, I have to make one thing clear.
You wrote, on this very website, a few days ago:
"The Anglosphere power elite REALLY dislikes Austrian economics for three reasons."
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As I said, my mission was to show that this statement was false. Period. I refer your readers to my post at 02/12/12 07:03 AM for ample evidence of this.
I also note that most complaints should be taken up with Wikipedia, since I acted mostly as an "aggregator" in this case, so it is mostly futile to try to attack me, my personality, my opinions, or my "agenda". It will not change the facts.
Finally, the rest of your rant is almost totally irrelevant to this conversation. In any case, I trust that honest readers will be able to separate between facts and baseless smearing (from either side).
Reply from The Daily Bell
This is a rhetorical trick of yours. You cite numerous imbecilic facts and then when challenged, you blame any inaccuracies on your sources!
You haven't proven that the (modern) power elite is enamored of Austrian economics, and obviously we were referring to today's elite when we made that statement. All you were able to come up with is that Mises was personally funded by Rockefeller (obviously a lie) and that Rothbard was a lifelong supporter of CATO (a canard if there ever was one).
You are free to go elsewhere to claim that modern (Rothbardian) Austrian economics is part of a planned power-elite dialectic (as indeed it appears you do). But if you are going to dissemble and be factually inaccurate as you have been throughout this thread, you are doing no one any service.
Posted by Black_Knight on 02/12/12 08:22 AM
Care to indicate more specifically where you disagree with the evidence I provided? You'll likely have to take that up with Wikipedia, by the way, not with me.
Otherwise, your point is irrelevant.
Posted by rossbcan on 02/12/12 08:02 AM
you've failed. Both arms and legs are gone. The "arguments" you spew indicate decapitation also.
time for re-assignment to another site. You are now on my, and I suspect, many others "ignore list" due to your "noise" detraction in the signal to noise ratio of truthseeking.