Saturday, September 18, 2010

An Austrian Perspective on the History of Economic Thought

An Austrian Perspective on the History of Economic Thought

Tony Endres' scathing review of Rothbard's magnum opus. "Rothbard has produced two volumes which are highly jaundiced and purblind." From History of Economics Review.

This is in three indexes: reviews, revisionism, and austrianism.

Endres honestly recognizes some strengths in Rothbard's work, but explains the major failing to be Quentin Skinner's described "mythology of doctrines": finding hints or glimmers of the true doctrine throughout history and damning those without them.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Channelling political energy.

In the gilded era, worker unrest was channeled by management into ethnic and racial competition (until unionism broke that game and allowed workers to unite.)  Management divided work into black jobs and Irish jobs, for example, so that the groups could fight over what work they were entitled to instead of uniting to demand better working conditions and higher wages.

Many other passions are channelled in our society: lust for competition is channelled into business competition and sports.

Can we do the same for conservative populism?  Can we divide the factions and pit them against each other in a more effective manner?

Have we been doing it all along?

Has Koch money broken the traditional divisions, allowing conservative populists to unite in the Tea Party?  Koch money has been indoctrinating shock troops for almost 40 years, readying them to take control of populist movements with a unified antigovernment ideology.  Students are targeted with tiny little grants to inflate the importance of the indoctrination.  Endless founts of think-tank propaganda are created, all funded for the same goals by the same money, to drive conservatives into the arms of these Koch-spawned leaders.

We've seen inevitable-looking surges of right-wing influence before: one was called the Reagan Era.  Sooner or later they founder on the practical experience of their idiocy and harms: they produce their own opposition.

The question is, how do we hasten that opposition along and then keep them divided again?