Covid-19 and the Socialist Calculation Problem

One hundred years ago Ludwig von Mises wrote the definitive exposure of the impossibility of socialism: “Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth.” In a recent Mises Wire essay—”Socialist Robert Heilbroner’s Confession in 1990: ‘Mises Was Right.’”—Gary North sums up the socialist problem succinctly (his emphasis). But Heilbroner failed to present the central argument that Mises had offered. Mises was not talking about the technical difficulty of setting prices. He was making a far more fundamental point. He argued that no central planning bureau could know the economic value of any scarce resource. Why not? Because there is no price system…

Read More

Surviving Tech Purges: What We’re Doing at the Mises Institute

The Mises Institute was born of the “build your own platform” ethos. In the early 1980s few outlets existed for anyone interested in the Austrian school of economics or robust libertarian scholarship. Few universities taught Hayek, much less Mises or Rothbard. Libraries and bookstores carried little of interest for serious economists and thinkers in the old liberal tradition. Lew Rockwell and others set out to build an institutional home for the Austrian school, and to resuscitate Mises as the most important and most comprehensive leader of that school. In those…

Read More

How the State Preserves Itself—and What the State Fears

Once a State has been established, the problem of the ruling group or “caste” is how to maintain their rule. While force is their modus operandi, their basic and long-run problem is ideological. For in order to continue in office, any government (not simply a “democratic” government) must have the support of the majority of its subjects. This support, it must be noted, need not be active enthusiasm; it may well be passive resignation as if to an inevitable law of nature. But support in the sense of acceptance of some…

Read More

There Is No Such Thing as Treason

“Treason” is quickly becoming a favorite word among Washington politicos and their media allies. One need not look hard to find countless examples. For example, a late-night talk show host called the January 6 Capitol riot the “treason finale” of the Trump era. A Washington Post columnist concludes “the founders” would have “denounced it as treason.” The Mayor of New York says Trump is guilty of “treason” for his supposed role in the riot. What is perhaps surprising about the use of the word this time around is that it’s…

Read More

Airlines beef up DC security

A person walks at Reagan National Airport ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday in Arlington, U.S. November 25, 2020. Hannah McKay | Reuters Airlines and airports are stepping up security ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration next week. The measures come in the wake of last week’s violent pro-Trump riot at the U.S. Capitol, an FBI warning about the possibility of armed protests and a series of politically motivated disturbances on flights and at airports. “Reagan National and Dulles International, are operating normally, and passengers can expect to see an increased…

Read More

What Does “Freedom” Mean? There Are Many Different Answers.

Freedom: An Unruly Historyby Annelien de DijnHarvard University Press, 2020426 pages Those of us who follow Mises and Rothbard think that freedom means “freedom from.” In Rothbard’s view, rights are negative. People aren’t at liberty to use force or threats of force against you or your property; but there are no positive enforceable rights to come to your assistance. Annelien de Dijn, a Dutch historian who specializes in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century French political thought, argues that this conception of freedom, and others like it, is a modern innovation. (By “modern,”…

Read More

Corporatism: Influential Farmers in India Oppose Profreedom Agricultural Reforms

The silent majority is the one that benefits from recent agricultural reforms, but mounting pressure from the vocal minority has prompted the government to once again increase government meddling. Original Article: “Corporatism: Influential Farmers in India Oppose Profreedom Agricultural Reforms” This Audio Mises Wire is generously sponsored by Christopher Condon. Narrated by Michael Stack.   Source link

Read More

The “War On Terror” Comes Home

It is partly an attempt to erase the Trump movement from the pages of history, but it is also an attempt to silence criticism of the emerging political consensus in the coming Biden era that may come from progressive or antiwar circles. Original Article: “The “War On Terror” Comes Home” Narrated by George Pickering.   Source link

Read More