Ludwig Von Mises

Escaping the Current Depression – Causes and Cures

November 29th, 2009 9:02 am  |  by  |  Published in Big Government, Economics, Jake Towne, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Socialism, Thomas Dilorenzo  |  7 Responses

Originally published November 28, 2009 at

Why should you care?  Why, for that matter, am I spending time during Thanksgiving weekend writing this and running for U.S. Congress to serve the public as an independent private citizen, when that institution is so corrupted that it would be akin to working in a disease-ridden sewer for someone like me?   In the words of Ludwig von Mises in his critique Socialism in 1922:

“Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders; no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way out for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore, everyone, in his own interests, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle. None can stand aside with unconcern; the interests of everyone hang on the result. Whether he chooses or not, every man is drawn into the great historical struggle, the decisive battle into which our epoch has plunged us.”

On November 14, 2009, the Mises Circle met in Newport Beach, California, and gave several lectures relevant to the current depression and how to solve it entitled “The Economic Downturn – Cause and Cure.” Below you will find the videos that will shed a lot of light on what is occurring. All of the speakers are from the Austrian school of economics, otherwise known as REALITY economics, which is completely unlike the half-witted analysis of most “respected” Keynesian economists, such as Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz. Two of the speakers, Thomas DiLorenzo and Robert Murphy were my professors this summer at Mises University. If you like these talks, I highly recommend ordering (for free) a mailing of the Mises Institute’s Free Market newsletter.  Below are a couple slides (46-47)  I created highlighting key differences between Keynesian and Austrian economics.   Read More »

Barack Obama, Elinor Ostrum, and the Nobel Prize (PART 2/2)

October 13th, 2009 12:52 pm  |  by  |  Published in Big Government, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Obama, Politics  |  Comments Off

Originally published October 13, 2009 at

Dr. Elinor Ostrum, 76, based her work around the idea that there are human interactions beyond the statistics of market prices surrounding the “commons” such as fish stocks, pastures, woods, lakes, and groundwater basins are managed as common property. Although this idea itself is not new  – Ludvig von Mises covered this in gory detail inHuman Action from 1949, Jared Diamond provided both historical and modern examples in his 2005 book Collapse, and Walter Block and Hans Hermann-Hoppe of the Mises Institute have reviewed many aspects of the commons already – it IS probably new to the Nobel committee.  However, the details of her work itself are very novel.

Nobel’s 5-page informational hand-out reads:   Read More »

Austrian Recommendations for President Obama

February 11th, 2009 2:03 pm  |  by  |  Published in Bailouts, Banking, Big Government, congress, Debt, Economics, Federal Reserve, Foreign Policy, Free Market, gold standard, government spending, inflation, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Market Regulation, Money, national debt, Obama, Politics, Social Security, Taxes  |  Comments Off

In another great article from Robert P. Murphy at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, entitled “Do You Austrians Have a Better Idea?”, ten steps are laid out as an alternative to the Keyensian-style “stimulation” plan set forth by Obama, Geithner, Bernanke, and the rest of the gang.  Mostly, the plan includes eliminating various taxes, greatly reducing expenditures (including major reductions in military expenses), and eliminating federal agencies such as the SEC, DEA, and the Department of Education.

Naturally such are ideas aren’t politically feasible given the current batch of morons elected to Congress, but nevertheless they are badly needed.

Read the article:

A lot of people get annoyed with Austrian economists because they tend to be so dogmatic (we prefer the term consistent) and because they cloak their strictly economic claims with self-righteousness (we prefer the term morality). After a good Austrian bashing of the latest call to steal taxpayer money and waste it on something that will make a given problem worse, the stumped critics will often shout, “Oh yeah? Well do you guys have a better idea?” [Continue]

Must Hear Interview: Glenn Beck interviews Tom Woods on radio show

February 9th, 2009 10:42 pm  |  by  |  Published in Big Government, Commentary, Economics, Federal Reserve, Free Market, government spending, History, inflation, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Market Regulation, Maven Commentary, Money, Philosophy, Ron Paul, Socialism  |  Comments Off

Glenn Beck has found a new favorite guest. Tom Woods was on his TV show tonight for a short segment, but this morning Beck interviewed Woods for over 15 minutes. It was a great discussion.

They started by referencing a topic near and dear to me: Doing nothing to help the economy.

They also discuss Woods’ new book “Meltdown“.

I find it amusing that Beck is the first to bring up Ron Paul, but again mentions that he doesn’t agree with him on everything, but on the economy he is “so right”.

They also discuss Austrian Economics with special mentions of Ludwig Von Mises and Hayek, among others. Beck, obviously doesn’t know who Mises is nor the Mises Institute, but it sounds like he’s about to get an education.

Beck ends the interview saying he wants Woods to come on his show “a few more times this week” and write an article for his newsletter. This is yet another baby step towards educating the masses about the “other way” out of our economic mess. Kudos to Beck for having Woods on his show.

Listen to the audio here:

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or download the mp3 here (right click, save as).

Delusions of Paul Krugman

January 1st, 2009 9:44 pm  |  by  |  Published in Banking, Big Government, Debt, Economics, Federal Reserve, Free Market, gold standard, government spending, inflation, Investing, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Money, national debt, Politics, Taxes  |  Comments Off

At the Ludwig von Mises Institute, William L. Anderson has written a fantastic article describing the causes of our bubble economy mostly by doing a number on Paul Krugman, recent Nobel Prize winner who doesn’t seem to have a clue about reality.  It’s a great read:

As a long-time critic of the part-time economist and full-time political partisan Paul Krugman, I would be remiss if I did not give him at least some credit for being able to point out the obvious: Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme really is a prototype for the modern US economy. Yes, Krugman is right, but, alas, I am also required to add that a broken clock is still more consistent at telling time than Krugman is at explaining economic phenomena.

Indeed, the US economy has gone through two destructive financial bubbles in the past decade, although the government’s response to the last bubble has been to spread the damage throughout the economy to where the damage can no longer be relatively contained. The Madoff revelations are simply another blow to the reeling financial industry that not long ago was “creating” multimillionaires who had not yet made it to their fifth reunions at Harvard or Duke.

Continue the article here.

Ron Paul Suggests Ludwig von Mises for Time Magazine’s Person of the Year

December 18th, 2008 10:42 pm  |  by  |  Published in Banking, Economics, Education, Federal Reserve, gold standard, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Money, Politics, Ron Paul  |  1

In Time Magazine Ron Paul makes his nomination for Person of the Year:

Amid a horrific financial crisis, all we hear are calls for more of the money-printing, spending and subsidies that created this mess. So I choose my great teacher, Ludwig von Mises, champion of the Austrian School of economics, who taught us how a central bank like the Fed causes booms and busts and how to build prosperity through sound money and economic freedom.

The Hubris of Modern-Day Politicians

November 10th, 2008 12:04 pm  |  by  |  Published in Bailouts, Big Government, Constitution, Debt, Election, Free Market, government spending, History, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Obama, Politics, Socialism  |  Comments Off

Following up on my previous post discussing the The Naiveté of Obama Supporters is another fantastic article by Sheldon Richman who wrote a commentary for the Foundation for Economic Freedom.  Richman comments on the fact that economic law trumps grandiose promises politicians make.  In the late 18th century, the great Ludwig von Mises taught us economic reality in the political arena:

When men realized that the phenomena of the market conform to laws, they began to develop catallactics and the theory of exchange, which constitutes the heart of economics. After the theory of the division of labor was elaborated, Ricardo’s law of association enabled men to grasp its nature and significance, and thereby the nature and significance of the formation of society. The development of economics and rationalistic sociology from Cantillon and Hume to Bentham and Ricardo did more to transform human thinking than any other scientific theory before or since. Up to that time it had been believed that no bounds other than those drawn by the laws of nature circumscribed the path of acting man. It was not known that there is still something more that sets a limit to political power beyond which it cannot go. Now it was learned that in the social realm too there is something operative which power and force are unable to alter and to which they must adjust themselves if they hope to achieve success, in precisely the same way as they must take into account the laws of nature. This realization had enormous significance for men’s action. It led to the program and policies of liberalism and thus unleashed human powers that, under capitalism, have transformed the world.

But today’s politicians ignore this reality and, either through hubris or deceit, make promises they simply cannot keep.  Richman writes:

Read More »

Markets Need Time, Not More Poison

November 6th, 2008 11:37 am  |  by  |  Published in Banking, Big Government, Debt, Economics, Federal Reserve, Free Market, government spending, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Money, national debt, Politics, Taxes  |  Comments Off

A nice little piece from Robert P. Murphy at the Ludwig von Mises Institute critiques (actually tears apart) a recent article from the Wall Street Journal which illustrates a clear misunderstanding of the true nature of our current economic situation, and the “medicine” being offered by the Federal Reserve in the form of additional rate cuts.

I realize the WSJ is in the business of selling newspapers, and that calling injections of Fed funny money “medicine” is a catchy opening. But if our present crisis it the result of prior injections of artificial credit, then the medicine is in fact arsenic. What is especially ironic is that this very article later on alludes to the possibility that the housing boom was fueled by Greenspan’s low rates. In any event, the most recent Fed cut was largely symbolic, since the actual fed funds rate (as opposed to the official “target” set by the Fed) had already been below 1 percent for some time…

Murphy dissects the WJP piece almost line-by-line, and as usual, does a great job of bringing clarity to the situation at hand.  Read it all here.

The Corrupt Origins of Central Banking in America

November 5th, 2008 11:37 am  |  by  |  Published in Banking, Big Government, Constitution, Debt, Economics, Federal Reserve, Free Market, government spending, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Money, national debt, Politics, Taxes, Thomas Dilorenzo  |  Comments Off

Many of the early settlers of his nation had fled Great Britain to escape the tyranny and mercantilist economic system they had endured, and ultimately ended up in a bloody Revolutionary War to assert their independence.  But still there were those, such as Alexander Hamilton and Robert Morris who pushed hard to adopt Great Britain’s central banking system, modeled after the Bank of England.  Thomas DiLorenzo, author of Hamilton’s Curse has written an article on this subject for the Ludwig von Mises Institute:

Central banking has been a corrupt, mercantilist scheme and an engine of corporate welfare from its very beginning in the late 18th century. The first central bank, the Bank of North America, was “driven through the Continental Congress by [congressman and financier] Robert Morris in the Spring of 1781,” wrote Murray Rothbard in The Mystery of Banking (p. 191). The Philadelphia businessman Morris had been a defense contractor during the Revolutionary War who “siphoned off millions from the public treasury into contracts to his own … firm and to those of his associates.” He was also “leader of the powerful Nationalist forces” in the new country.

The main objective of the Nationalists, who were also known as Federalists, was essentially to establish an American version of the British mercantilist system, the very system that the Revolution had been fought against. Indeed, it was this system that the ancestors of the Revolutionaries had fled from when they came to America.

Continue reading the article at the Ludwig von Mises Institute.

Mock the Vote

November 3rd, 2008 11:57 am  |  by  |  Published in Bailouts, ballot access, Banking, Big Government, Civil Liberties, congress, Constitution, Debt, Economics, Election, Federal Reserve, Free Market, Liberty, Ludwig Von Mises, Money, national debt, Politics, Taxes  |  2 Responses

Today’s article at the Ludwig von Mises Institute describes the farce that is our political system these days, building on quotes from Jesse Ventura, Walter E. Williams, Hans-Hermann Hoppe, Philip Jackson, Murray Rothbard, and James Bovard:

Jesse Ventura, when he’s not talking about 9-11, makes a lot of sense. Describing the two party system to Larry King, he said,

[W]hat you have today is like walking into the grocery store and you go to the soft drink department, and there is only Pepsi and Coke. Those are the two you get to choose from. There is no Mountain Dew, no Root Beer, no Orange. They’re both Colas; one is slightly sweeter than the other, depending on which side of the aisle you are on.

In an interview with Newsmax, he described politicians in the two party system as pro wrestlers.

In pro wrestling, out in front of the people, we make it look like we all hate each other and want to beat the crap out of each other, and that’s how we get your money, [and get you to] come down and buy tickets. They’re the same thing. Out in front of the public and the cameras, they hate each other, are going to beat the crap out of each other, but behind the scenes they’re all going to dinner, cutting deals. And [they're] doing what we did, too — laughing all the way to the bank. And that to me is what you have today, in today’s political world, with these two parties.

Jesse’s right. Our political system is a farce. This year, we have running for president a warmonger who’s a reluctant socialist versus a socialist who’s a reluctant warmonger. We have two parties that claim they’re different, but when the Establishment, the Complex, our shadowy overlords, whatever you want to call them, really want something, they get it. When the Establishment wanted the Bailout in the face of almost universal grassroots opposition, they got it. When the Complex wanted immunity to the telecoms who knowingly spied on Americans, they got it. When our shadowy overlords wanted stormtroopers to brutally stifle protesters during the party conventions, they got it.

But even if voters had a real choice — and even if the politicians followed the majority will on issues that matter — the system would still most likely be a farce. As Augustine observed, without justice, a government is nothing but a band of thieves. Augustine was writing about kingdoms, but his insight applies to democracies as well. Without justice, the ability of the subjects of a government to vote on the laws and rulers that govern them doesn’t make a government any more legitimate than an unjust monarchy. And the founders of this country did not believe democracies were likely to be just.

Continue reading here.