Thursday, September 18, 2008

Don't let it happen again

I don't usually run ads, but the flaws inherent in the government-structured economy don't always bite back with the vengeance they're now inflicting:

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For a short summary of what governments did to turn the 1929 correction, itself a product of the Fed's credit-created bubble of the twenties, into a decade-and-a-half long slump, Lawrence Reed's 'Great Myths of the Great Depression' [sixteen-pages in PDF] is what you need to read.

What are you waiting for?  There are politicians already out there who intend to to use the current crisis to to inflict the same sort of damage.

(And, for those who know Rothbard's reputation, this is one of his books that is worth reading.)

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12 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rothbard's reputation...that all of his books are worth reading?

9/18/2008 02:05:00 pm  
Anonymous cullen said...

Rothbard was very smart and right about many things but he believed in libertarian anarchism which does not work in the real world.

9/18/2008 02:53:00 pm  
Blogger PC said...

"Rothbard's reputation...that all of his books are worth reading?"

No. Not by my estimate.

No self-confessed supporter of Soviet Russia could expect to earn an across-the-board endorsement. Not here. Not from me.

For myself, I'd recommend just two:
* The first is 'America's Great Depression,' about which historian Paul Johnson says the events described "were among the most important events of the twentieth century," yet "the failure of historians to explain either their magnitude or duration is one of the great mysteries of modern historiography... It is a dismal story, and I do not feel that any historian has satisfactorily explained it... But the writer who has come closest to providing a satisfactory analysis is Murray Rothbard in 'America's Great Depression.'"

* The second is 'What Has Government Done to Our Money,' which George Reisman (who knew Rothbard better than you or I) called "a brilliantly clear anlysis of government intervention into money, which, uncharacteristically, is not marred by any major contradictions on the author's part."

9/18/2008 02:54:00 pm  
Blogger Berend de Boer said...

Don't let it happen again?

It's happening. The government is gonna pump taxpayers money into this as mad. We haven't seen the least. But it's nice to see headlines as who's gonna bail out the government. At least some people are realising that the US just got overstretched. So we haven't seen the last.

9/18/2008 07:19:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rothbard was very smart and right about many things but he believed in libertarian anarchism which does not work in the real world.

And you know this from experience? :)

No. Not by my estimate.

But of course, you're a Randian...Randians are notorious for hating Rothbard (no doubt for showing them up)

9/18/2008 11:09:00 pm  
Anonymous LGM said...

Anonymous

Why not use a tag line for your contributions? Just choose a name you value and post under that.

Why do you think "Randian" (you're referring to Ayn Rand?) people do not like Rothbard's books? What is it they disagree about?

LGM

9/19/2008 06:34:00 am  
Blogger PC said...

"Randians are notorious for hating Rothbard (no doubt for showing them up)."

No, Objectivists don't rate Rothbard for reasons which have been well canvassed here before, some of which are given in the link supplied above.

9/19/2008 08:40:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do you think "Randian" (you're referring to Ayn Rand?) people do not like Rothbard's books? What is it they disagree about?

Yes, of course I'm referring to Ayn Rand. Rand's ideas lead directly to anarchism (as pointed out by Roy Childs in this letter to Rand), but for some reason Rand herself didn't follow those ideas to their ultimate conclusion. Rand and Rothbard had a falling out over her cultishness (she insisted that Rothbard leave his wife if he wanted to be associated with her (Rand), because his wife believed in God!) and was "excommunicated" from the Randian collective and his name became anathema to them. Also, Rothbard, unlike Rand, knew history and understood economics; Rand claimed the ideas of liberty originated with her - Rothbard showed people otherwise.

(Rothbard wrote a play, Mozart was a Red, screamingly funny for its accurate portrayal of Rand and her hangers-on!)

9/19/2008 02:33:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

some of which are given in the link supplied above

Like the laughable misrepresentation of his views that has him supporting the Soviet Union and Khmer Rouge, etc.? I'm not entirely sure whether this is deceit or misunderstanding, but I am sure it must be deliberate.

9/19/2008 02:36:00 pm  
Anonymous LGM said...

Anon

Please get a tag line.

I've got several of Rothbard's books. Impressed I was. They were well written and enjoyable works to read and think about.

I'm interested in this business of Rothbard supporting the Soviets. What was the situation there?

LGM

9/20/2008 03:34:00 pm  
Anonymous Greg said...

Please get a tag line.

Happy?

I'm interested in this business of Rothbard supporting the Soviets. What was the situation there?

Basically, he thought the fear of Communism was overblown, that it would disintegrate on its own (socialism can't calculate), and that the enormous resources expended in defense against the "Soviet threat" were a waste and an unnecessary provocation. Of course he had nothing but contempt for the Soviet system, but in the spirit of "you're either with us or against us", lack of support for US militarism is classified by some as support for the bad guy du jour (Islamic fundamentalists today, Communists then)

9/21/2008 12:34:00 am  
Anonymous LGM said...

Greg

Thanks.

Regarding Murry Rothbard.
Yes. That's what I thought. That's consistent with all I've found in the material I've read of his (also from those who knew him well enough to write with authority about him). Perhaps I'm missing something but I was not under the impression he advocated the soviet system or the soviet leadership for that matter.

He certainly was correct about what would happen to socialism, as was Von Mises.

Regarding the Cold War.
Lately I've been reading some more about the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. It is appalling to find the level of cynicism of the US president and senior members of the administration of the time. Provocation was the intention. They got the result they sought and it played well for the home audience (which was the objective). They certainly ended up with blood on their hands (and admitted as much in private). Political PR games paid for in people's lives.

Funny thing is that the US Govt ensured the soviet govt would continue to survive for decades by propping it up with intergovernmental welfare (grain, gold etc). All this during the coldest times of the cold war!

Hypocracy?

LGM

9/21/2008 08:25:00 am  

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