Sunday, February 12, 2012

Latest additions to the new site.

I haven't really moved anything from the old site to the new yet: almost everything is new material and organization into a new outline.
Almost a month has passed, so there's quite a bit.  You can always check the latest additions at:
NEW 2/12/2012: The Dance of the Meta-Axioms [More...]
"On the dynamic mechanism by which the inescapable theoretical failures of neoclassical economics reinforce its dominance." Yanis Varoufakis provides a plausible explanation of how three grossly unrealistic meta-axioms of microeconomics channel thought through their over-simplification. [more...]
NEW 2/01/2012: Mainstream Economics as Ideology: An Interview with Rod Hill and Tony Myatt -- Part II [More...]
Rod Hill and Tony Myatt, authors of The Economics Anti-Textbook, explain the ideology that pervades mainstream economics, an ideology that conceals the importance of power. [more...]
NEW 2/01/2012: The bogus case against the minimum wage hike [More...]
Dean Baker and John Schmidt point out that measured imp[acts of minimum wage show not job losses and that even if job losses occurred, the low-wage workers would be better off on average. [more...]
NEW 2/01/2012: Minimum Wage
Minimum wage law has no harmful effects on employment according to many real-world studies. And definitely not the harmful effects long claimed by its opponents. [more...]
NEW 2/01/2012: Fluoridation
Fluoridation is an amazingly cost-effective solution to the huge problem of dental caries. Libertarians who object to fluoridation ought not drink "guvment water" anyhow. [more...]
Mainstream Economics as Ideology: An Interview with Rod Hill and Tony Myatt -- Part I [More...]
Rod Hill and Tony Myatt, authors of The Economics Anti-Textbook, explain the ideology that pervades mainstream economics, an ideology that conceals the importance of power. [more...]
Ideological Mainstream Economics
The economics taught in introductory courses generally has a large number of concealed ideological biases. These biases coincide with many libertarian biases. [more...]
Alternatives To Current Capitalism
Pitting "free market capitalism" against "socialism" is a false dichotomy. There are numerous variants and alternatives to study and choose from. [more...]
The Visible Hand [More...]
The crisis of Western liberal capitalism has coincided with the rise of a powerful new form of state capitalism in emerging markets says Adrian Wooldridge[more...]
Noah Smith
Econmist and author of the Noahpinion blog. [more...]
How Did Economists Get It So Wrong? [More...]
Paul Krugman explains how the fresh-water economists systematically rejected Keynes and made other errors. [more...]
Yet More Free Market Double Standards [More...]
Yet another hilarious collection of examples of self-contradiction by free marketeers. [more...]
More Free Market Double Standards [More...]
Another hilarious collection of examples of self-contradiction by free marketeers. [more...]
Free Market Double Standards [More...]
Hilarious collection of examples of self-contradiction by free marketeers. [more...]
Blacklisted Economics Professor Found Dead: NC Publishes His Last Letter [More...]
A brilliant savaging of Public Choice Theory, and a beautiful explanation of why so many economists are pro-business hacks. [more...]
Federal Reserve Economics Data (FRED Database) [More...]
Vast amounts of historical and current economic data, with tools to construct your own graphs. [more...]
Amnesty International [More...]
An international organization specializing in rights of conscience, such as freedom of speech. [more...]
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) [More...]
"The ACLU is our nation's guardian of liberty, working daily in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in this country." [more...]
Of George Mason University: An Exiled Reader Offers More Reasons to Hate the Koch Brothers [More...]
"George Mason University is nothing but a farm team for the Koch bros. Starting at George Mason, the Kochs groom their little recruits as foot-soldiers ready to enter the plutocratic circle-jerk that is the U.S. government and its corporate oligarchs." [more...]
Human Rights Watch [More...]
Mission statement: "Human Rights Watch is dedicated to protecting the human rights of people around the world. We stand with victims and activists to prevent discrimination, to uphold political freedom, to protect people from inhumane conduct in wartime, and to bring offenders to justice. We investigate and expose human rights violations and hold abusers accountable. We challenge governments and those who hold power to end abusive practices and respect international human rights law. We enlist the public and the international community to support the cause of human rights for all." [more...]
Human Rights and Civil Liberties
Libertarian talk big about rights and civil liberties, but they actually do extremely little to defend rights. These organizations actually do something! [more...]
Murray Rothbard confesses to the theft of the word libertarian. [More...]
Murray Rothbard in "The Betrayal of the American Right". [more...]
150 years of Libertarian [More...]
Libertarian was a term created by nineteenth-century European anarchists, not by contemporary American right-wing proprietarians. [more...]
Makes an otherwise dry subject more palatable. [more...]
More Great Moments In Libertarian History: Ancient Sumerian Word For Libertarian Was Deadbeat [More...]
Yasha Levine points out that the Liberty Fund cuneiform claimed to be the earliest word for freedom actually meant deadbeats who go home to mooch off their mommies. Much like many modern libertarians. [more...]
Does mercantilism "work"? [More...]
Noah Smith points out that free trade versus mercantilism could be like a prisoner's dilemma. Unless you have a world government to enforce cooperation, defecting to mercantilism would be the dominant strategy. [more...]
Mercantilism And Industrial Policy Works
While free trade might be optimal, until there is a world government to enforce it there will be merchantilism. Industrial policy has a long history of being effective. Merchantilism and industrial policy work and are responsible for the huge reductions in poverty in India, China, Korea, and the rest of eastern Asia. Government support of export industry is key. [more...]
Libertarians are the True Social Parasites [More...]
George Monbiot takes Matt Ridley to task. "Unless tax-payers’ money and public services are available to repair the destruction it causes, libertarianism destroys people’s savings, wrecks their lives and trashes their environment. It is the belief system of the free-rider, who is perpetually subsidised by responsible citizens." [more...]
We are producers, you and government are parasites.
A common idea from Ayn Rand[more...]
Libertarianism is democratic.
No, it is not. Take Nozick, for example: in Anarchy, State and Utopia he does not use the word democracy, and uses the word democratic in only four places late in the book when discussing how there are market alternatives. In the Ayn Rand Lexicon, Rand is openly disdainful of democracy. David Boaz, in Libertarianism: A Primer page 14, states "Libertarians, as the name implies, believe that the most important value is liberty, not democracy." Some libertarians such as R. J. Rummel conflate libertarianism with democracy. [more...]
We are all individuals.
One of the great lines from Monty Python's "The Life Of Brian". Brian is trying to dissuade the crowd from proclaiming him the messiah, telling them not to follow him, and he says "You are all individuals." The crowd responds obediently in unison "We are all individuals." Like Christians, most libertarians are indoctrinated with the same small set of basic texts and, despite their diversity, tend not to vary very much from the same small set of beliefs. [more...]
We see clearly, but you have all been brainwashed by government, mainstream economics, liberal media, etc.
This is a common propaganda technique: accuse your opponents of your own failings. The great fallacy is that even if we HAVE been brainwashed, that doesn't make libertarian fallacies any more correct. [more...]
We understand the Constitution, they do not.
This attitude shows a profound ignorance of how the law ascribes meaning to documents such as the Constitution. First and foremost, the current meaning must take into account all subsequent legislation and court rulings. If I declared the elections of southern representatives to be invalid because they were apportioned too many seats (their black constituents should have been counted as 3/5 according to the Constitution), I would be laughed at because of my ignorance of the 14th amendment. Likewise if I ignore later judicial interpretations. Second, there must be one shared meaning, which requires social construction. If a libertarian swears that he is reading the meaning "literally", so may anybody else: you still require a social judgement of what the "literal" reading is. If you get as far as deciding that a "literal" reading is the appropriate way to understand the document. Third, general statements such as those in the Constitution have problems with precision and conflict with other statements in the same Constitution. Those problems have no clear, inerrant solution: they must be resolved by some interpretive authority. [more...]
We libertarians are rational, they are not.
People's thinking is based upon their values and premises. You cannot judge somebody else's rationality without adopting their values and premises for the judgement. There is very little evidence that libertarians do that, or judge fairly. Instead, the vulgar libertarian "logic" simply identifies that other people don't hold the same values or premises.[more...]
Extreme Right Wing
Much libertarianism is a front for very right wing people and organizations. [more...]
Waiting for the Day When We Can Say We are All Austrians: Ron Pauls Brand of Libertarianism [More...]
Ron Paul's ties to theocratic libertarianism, Christian Reconstructionism, Neo-Confederates, the Ludwig von Mises Institute, the Constitution Party, Conservative Caucus, and the John Birch Society. Anyone who thinks he is a "social liberal" needs to understand that he wants STATES to be conservative, not the federal government. [more...]
Quotations from Chairman Becker [More...]
Gary Becker's book "A Treatise on the Family" shows a profound ignorance of the actual sociology and history of families. "Becker's book seems to me to be a mess of ideology, sophistry, and special pleading, salted here and there with misrepresentations of fact." [more...]
Gary Becker on the Family [More...]
Gary Becker's book "A Treatise on the Family" ludicrously characterizes children as commodities. "If children are commodities, they're the worst commodity imaginable [...]"[more...]
Libertarianism In One Lesson (David Bergland)
First exercises in libertarian myopia. [more...]
Libertarianism is criticized strongly by all sides, including libertarians themselves, for an amazing number of reasons. [more...]
Tyler Cowen’s The Great Stagnation: Government Spending Section [More...]
Steve Roth identifies what he thinks is Tyler saying things where he knows better. Lying with statistics, in other words. [more...]
Mind over Market [More...]
Nobel laureate Michael Spence writes:"[...] most societies have important economic and social objectives that markets and competition are not designed to achieve. In today’s rapidly globalizing world, the most important of these objectives – expressed in various ways through the political and policymaking process in a wide range of countries – are stability, distributional equity, and sustainability." [more...]
Libertarians cannot see the forest for the trees. By focussing on individuals, they ignore the fact that individuals comprise, reside in and utilize institutions. Institutions such as property, law, governance, marriage, etc. Libertarians pretend that rights are "natural" when in reality they come from institutions. [more...]
Defending the Undefendable [More...]
Walter Block praises the pimp, prostitute, scab, slumlord, libeler, moneylender and other scapegoats in the rogue's gallery of American society. By cleverly ignoring the harms they commit. "[Third Parties] have neither stake nor standing in the matter, and should be ignored." [more...]
Defenders Of The Unsavory
Prostitution, blackmail, environmental crime, child labor, corruption of many sorts: defenders of these practices often find libertarian allies. [more...]
Fellow Travelers
Libertarianism overlaps the interests of many other groups, including plutocrats, gun nuts, NAMBLA, bigots and more. [more...]
How the Wall Street Journal Misleads About Federal Jobs [More...]
"The editorial board of Rupert Murdoch's Wall Street Journal has a simple game. They want to cut taxes for the rich and government services for the rest, and end regulations of banks and the environment. They support taxpayer-financed bailouts of Wall Street when needed. They will twist any facts in the service of these goals." [more...]
Wall Street, Corporatists, Neoliberals And Plutocrats
There is strong overlap of goals between big wealth and libertarians. These fellow travelers often fund libertarians and their organizations to promote overlapping goals. [more...]
Libertarian Illusions [More...]
"America has achieved it greatness not through a single-minded ideology but through pragmatism and the wisdom to embrace several important values. A vast majority of Americans today embrace liberty, civic responsibility, and compassion, and seek a government built upon all three." [more...]
There Are Important Values Besides Liberty
Compassion, justice, civic responsibility, honesty, decency, humility, respect, and even survival of the poor, weak, and vulnerable. All these trade off with liberty in important ways. [more...]

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