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How Does It Know?

Wednesday, May 27th, 2015 by posted in Economics, Methodology.

IMF Says China’s Currency No Longer Undervalued The International Monetary Fund announced on Tuesday that for the first time in over a decade China’s currency is no longer undervalued (SCMP). U.S. policymakers have long criticized China’s artificial weakening of the renminbi,

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Don’t Forget the Reasons People Don’t Believe in Your Social Cause

Monday, April 13th, 2015 by posted in Epistemology, History, Politics.

When it comes to Austrian economist and political thinker Friedrich Hayek, conservatives and libertarians are at odds. While conservatives like Hayek’s opposition to big government, they may disagree with his views on social progress. In the same vein, libertarians agree

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The Motte and Bailey Doctrine in Mainstream Economics

Friday, March 27th, 2015 by posted in Economics, Epistemology, Uncategorized.

A “motte and bailey doctrine” is a style of argument (and informal fallacy) that’s based on a motte-and-bailey castle. The bailey is a big courtyard and where people live and work and generally want to be. The motte is a mound


Conservatism Against Rolling Back the State

Monday, March 16th, 2015 by posted in Epistemology, Philosophy, Politics.

American historian Robert Conquest is getting up there in years. The Hoover Institution fellow is just three years shy of the big 1-O-O. Despite having received the Presidential Medal of Freedom (and various other awards from different countries), few people

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The Revolt against Rationalism

Friday, December 19th, 2014 by posted in Economics, Epistemology, Philosophy.

This article is excerpted from The Clash of Group Interests, “The Clash of Group Interests,” part 4 (1945; 2011). Reprinted from Mises.org The most remarkable fact in the history of our age is the revolt against rationalism, economics, and utilitarian

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The Philosophy of the Pseudoprogressives

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014 by posted in Economics, Epistemology, History, Philosophy.

[This article originally appeared in Plain Talk, February 1950. It is included in Planning for Freedom.] 1. The Two Lines of Marxian Thought and Policies In all countries which have not openly adopted a policy of outright and all-around socialization

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Positive Methodology in Language

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014 by posted in Epistemology, Law, Philosophy.

The iconoclastic religion of scientism looks to have achieved a new victory. Reporting in The Chronicle of Higher Education, Michael Chorost informs us that neuroscientists recently uncovered how the brain reacts to language, and what it means in understanding words

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On Krugman’s Arrogance

Monday, August 4th, 2014 by posted in Economics, Epistemology.

Economist Paul Krugman’s New York Times column dropped off my reading list months ago. His conscious effort to become a kind of parody of himself, a holier-than-thou hero fighting off the scourge of ignorant free marketeers, was too much of

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Cultonomics and the Austrian School

Thursday, July 31st, 2014 by posted in Economics, Epistemology.
krugman pray

Mainstream economists have long derided the Austrian School as a “cult”. Professor Walter Block recounts stories from Nobelists Gary Becker and James Buchanan off-handedly referring to the cultish Austrians. When pressed by Professor Block, Becker said, “By a cult I

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What Academic Freedom?

Monday, March 10th, 2014 by posted in Education, Epistemology, Law.

“Academic freedom” is one of those phrases that evokes little protest and little emotion. In fact, these days it has become pretty boring. The concept is taken purely at face value. In our liberal age, the open vetting of ideas

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Noahgreement on similarities between Austrians and New Classicals

Friday, February 7th, 2014 by posted in Economics, Epistemology, Methodology.

I’ve got a confession to make: my favourite economics blog name is Noah Smith’s “Noahpinion”. It’s a really great blog name. With the niceties out of the way, let’s address Smith’s latest screed: “How the New Classicals drank the Austrians’

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Can the State Justify Welfare Spending?

Monday, February 3rd, 2014 by posted in Capitalism, Civil Liberties, Economics, Epistemology, Law.

The purpose of this brief essay is to present an argument that state spending on welfare, which necessarily rests on the state’s power to extract funds from the public, cannot be justified.  An argument in favor of state sponsored welfare

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The Ultimate Microfoundation: Human Action

Saturday, January 25th, 2014 by posted in Economics, Epistemology, Methodology.
Find the book.

Much fuss is made in macroeconomic circles over so-called “microfoundations”: microeconomic justifications for macroeconomic models, as opposed to macro models that make ad hoc assumptions about utility, preferences, and price setting. People like to bring up the “Calvo pricing model”,

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Keynesians Wrong on Sequester Just Like Stimulus

Saturday, January 4th, 2014 by posted in Economics, Methodology.

It is well known that the Christina Romer / Jared Bernstein report, issued in January 2009 when Obama first came into office, got things exactly backwards. At the time, unemployment in the U.S. was 7 percent and change. Romer, who

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Subjective Value and Objective Good

Thursday, October 17th, 2013 by posted in Economics, Epistemology, Law, Methodology.

Value is subjective. This is one of the cornerstones of modern economics. What’s known as the “marginal revolution” of the late 19th century was responsible for bringing the axiom from intellectual musing to orthodox dogma. Three economists – Leon Walras,

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The Use of Knowledge at the Bank of Canada

Friday, August 16th, 2013 by posted in Economics, Methodology, Socialism.

The Bank of Canada’s latest quarterly review suffers from the fatal conceit. Although technically the whole central banking system is a fatal conceit, one of the articles particularly highlights the complete ignorance and arrogance of Canada’s central bankers. Nii Ayi

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Poloz’s First BoC Interest Rate Statement

Friday, July 19th, 2013 by posted in Capitalism, Economics, Methodology, Regulation.

Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz said that interest rates will remain low and the economy will grow due to “accommodative financial conditions.” His logic goes: The US economy is recovering ergo Canadian exports will grow therefore solid Canadian business

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Econ 101 with Stephen Poloz

Saturday, July 13th, 2013 by posted in Economics, Education, Methodology, Philosophy.

On June 19th, Stephen Poloz gave his first major speech as Governor of the Bank of Canada. Reading through it, it’s clear that Poloz – like his predecessor – has no real understanding of economics. So I’ve decided to pick


Cannot Wipe Even Your Own A** but Will Run the Country

Friday, June 21st, 2013 by posted in Lifestyle, Methodology, Philosophy.
india-10206 teaser

For the last few days, story of one Komal Ganatra has been making headlines in India. Her dad, now retired, earned his living as a school teacher in India. Five years back, she was married off to an Indian immigrant


What’s So Special About Economics?

Monday, June 10th, 2013 by posted in Economics, Education, Epistemology, Methodology, Philosophy.
got_choice teaser

Unlike what is commonly believed, economics is not about money, or profit, or investments, or capitalism, or wages, or unemployment or stocks and bonds or about any other buzzword you may have heard or read in the media. Yes, economics does study