Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What's new at the new site.

As I've mentioned in the past, I'm working on producing a new, wiki-based site that is easier to maintain and develop than my old site.  In the next year, I plan to update it with the resources from the old site, fixing the linkrot as I go.  Only 500+ links and a few hundred quotations and a hundred or so references.

The new site has a large number of improvements: not least, you will be able to search all the externally linked articles as well as those in the wiki itself.  It is re-indexed, with a nice top-level index that should make it easy to locate whatever you are looking for.  I plan to write a number of additional FAQs.  Lots of work to do!

Another nice feature is that I can cut and paste from the What's new page to here for discussions.  Take a look, and have at it!

NEW 12/27/2011: The Many Non-Governmental Limitations Of Liberty
Libertarians like to claim only government limits liberty. But that's not what people experience. [more...]
NEW 12/27/2011: The liberty of local bullies [More...]
Noah Smith points out how libertarians are oblivious to commonplace coercion that isn't from government. Which makes it a favorite of local bullies who wish blessings upon their bullying. [more...]
NEW 12/17/2011: Keynes v. Hayek: Enough Already [More...]
David Glasner points out that Keynes and Hayek are "two charismatic personalities who have become figureheads or totems for ideological movements that they might not have endorsed at all". Glasner identifies Ralph Hawtrey and Gustav Cassel as accurate predictors of the great depression. [more...]
NEW 12/17/2011: Uncertainty And The Welfare Economics Of Medical Care [More...]
Kenneth Arrow's classic 1963 article that details the differences between the medical care industry and competitive market models. This is why privatizing health care does not work well. [more...]
NEW 12/16/2011: Murray Rothbards many errors about Keynes and probability [More...]
An examination of Murray Rothbard's comments on Keynes's logical approach to probability reveals that Rothbard was either a master of deceit and deception or an ignorant fool.Either case is good grounds for eliminating M Rothbard from serious consideration as an economist or philospher. [more...]
NEW 12/16/2011: Daniel Kuehn: Maynard, Fred, Gus and Ralph on the History of Macroeconomics [More...]
Brad DeLong endorses Daniel Kuehn's criticism of the Keynes versus Hayek videos. [more...]
NEW 12/16/2011: G.O.P. Monetary Madness [More...]
Paul Krugman points out how incredibly wrong the predictions of Ron Paul and Austrian Economics have been about the tripling of the monetary base. [more...]
NEW 12/16/2011: Ron Paul
A libertarian congressman (and perennial long-shot presidential candidate) renowned for kooky racist, isolationist, goldbug and Austrian beliefs. Not to mention conservative civil and reproductive rights ideas 50 years out of date. Father of senator Rand Paul[more...]
NEW 12/15/2011: Inequality
Libertarians have three dismissals for inequality: it is market-based just dessert, it is the fault of government, and it is unimportant. All three are wrong. [more...]
NEW 12/15/2011: Lord Keynes (pseudonym)
Blogs "Social Democracy For The 21st Century: A Post Keynesian Perspective". Very well versed in Austrian Economics[more...]
NEW 12/14/2011: Austrians Predicted the Housing Bubble? – But so did Post Keynesians and Marxists [More...]
Austrians claims to "predict" the housing bubble are given a thorough examination and a sound drubbing. Their claims just aren't credible.[more...]
NEW 12/14/2011: Libertarianism and the Leap of Faith – The Origins of a Political Cult
Philip Pilkington traces the evolution of the libertarian cult belief in the entrepreneur-hero from obscure 19th century debates over the source of value: very similar to the contemporaneous Communist cult beliefs. [more...]
NEW 12/14/2011: The Austrian Disease – Poor Scholarship, a Priori Bias
Philip Pilkington says "Praxeology is to the libertarians as diamat was to the Marxist-Leninists; an a priori pseudo-philosophy that allows them to ignore unwelcome evidence and insulate themselves from criticism" [more...]
NEW 12/14/2011: Americans For Nonsmokers Rights -- The Cato Institute [More...]
The intertwining of the Cato Institute and Big Tobacco for the promotion of smoking and the discrediting of science about smoking. [more...]
NEW 12/14/2011: Law Enforcement Against Prohibition -- Partner Organizations [More...]
LEAP lists 40 partner organizations, most of them mainstream and not libertarian, that ally with it in the goal of legalization and regulation of drugs. [more...]
NEW 12/14/2011: Journey into a Libertarian Future: Response to Reader Comments [More...]
Wrapup and responses to commenters on Andrew Dittmer's 6 part interview series. [more...]

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Education as signalling

I've been reading a lot of conservative criticisms of the expense of college, including our libertarian friends at Koch George Mason University.  Often they complain that students don't actually learn anything useful in college and that degrees from universities are mostly about signaling who is preselected.

It is strange that conservatives and libertarians, fans of markets, would make such accusations.  Because they immediately fail the test of markets.  If it was true that no value was added by colleges and that employers think that selection process is valuable, then wouldn't employers be recruiting freshmen at colleges?  Why would employers wait and pay a premium for a degree from a university when they can snag those same students earlier?  And wouldn't students bite at the opportunity to avoid spending about $100,000 and earn perhaps $150,000 instead?  Coming out ahead by $250,000 is a good way to start a life.

It's in the interests of plutocracy to place as much of the burden of educational costs in the private sector: that will maximally burden the middle class.  Other wise the upper classes might have to pay taxes.  The middle class is there to be exploited, in their viewpoint.  They may attempt to hide their interests behind banners of "liberty, and hire GMU propagandists to wave them, but we don't have to sit still for it.