“Answer me this, war hawks: when, in history, when did one State, faced with belligerent, ultra-tough ultimatums by another, when did that State ever give up and in effect surrender – before any war was fought? When?”—Murray Rothbard
“I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but is there not cause for severity? I will be as harsh as truth, and as uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, or speak, or write with moderation. No! No! Tell a man whose house is on fire, to give a moderate alarm: tell him to moderately rescue his wife from the hands of the ravisher; tell the mother to gradually extricate her babe from the fire into which it has fallen; — but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am in earnest — I will not equivocate — I will not excuse — I will not retreat a single inch — and I will be heard.”—William Lloyd Garrison, Liberator, January 1, 1831
“Anyone can measure whatever he feels like measuring, then with the help of a computer fit some curves or equations on his data material, and finally change or not change the curves or equations depending on new, incoming material and/or new hypotheses about measurement error or uncontrolled intervening variables. Empiricism is a methodology suited to the intellectually poor, hence its popularity.”—Hans-Hermann Hoppe
"The truth is inherently practical, and in recognizing an idea as true (or false), a scholar cannot but want it to be implemented (or eradicated) immediately. For this reason, in addition to pursuing his scholarly ambitions, Menger served as personal tutor to the Austrian Crown Prince Rudolf, and as an appointed life-member of the Austrian House of Lords (Herrenhaus). Similarly, Böhm-Bawerk served three times as Austrian minister of finance, and was a lifetime member of the Herrenhaus.
Likewise, Mises was the nationally prominent chief economist of the Vienna Chamber of Commerce and advisor to many prominent figures during Austria’s first Republic, and later, in the U.S., he served as advisor to the National Association of Manufacturers and numerous other organizations. Only Mises went even further. Just as he was the first economic system-builder, so was he the first to give the Austrian activism systematic expression by associating Austrian economics with radical-liberal-libertarian-political reform (as laid out in his Liberalism of 1927).
Only Rothbard, who likewise served in many advisory functions and as founder and academic director of several educational organizations, accomplished something comparable.”
“[B]ig-business groups had become, as early as the turn of the twentieth century, “corporatists” or “corporate liberals,” anxious to replace quasi-laissez-faire capitalism by a cartelized corporatist system, directed or even planned by Big Government in intimate partnership with Big Business, and creating Big Unions to participate as junior partners in this new “mixed” economy. The push for the new corporate state was generated by an alliance between corporatist big-business groups and technocratic intellectuals, eager to help run and to apologize for the new system, which promised them a far plusher niche than did a freely competitive economy.”—Murray Rothbard, The Business-Government alliance
“Permanent mass unemployment destroys the moral foundations of the social order. The young people, who, having finished their training for work, are forced to remain idle, are the ferment out of which the most radical political movements are formed. In their ranks the soldiers of the coming revolutions are recruited.”—Ludwig von Mises, Socialism
“In recognizing the narrower concept of argumentation (instead of the wider one of human nature) as the necessary starting point in deriving an ethic, and in assigning to moral reasoning the status of a priori reasoning, clearly to be distinguished from the role of reason performed in empirical research, our approach not only claims to avoid these difficulties from the outset, but claims thereby to be at once more straightforward and rigorous. … Nor do I claim that it is impossible to interpret my approach as falling in a “rightly conceived” natural rights tradition after all. What I claim, though, is that the following approach is clearly out of line with what the natural rights approach has actually come to be, and that it owes nothing to this tradition as it stands.”—Hans-Hermann Hoppe
"…The second point I found important was one that Ms. Wolf made several times: understanding what is really happening with the state can be emotionally challenging. I think this factor is key in explaining why so many people have a hard time really accepting deep insights about the nature of the state. Doing so can be emotionally unsettling. It can disrupt our basic sense of security to realize that figures who were supposed to be our childhood heroes cannot really be viewed so unambiguously. Our war heroes are revealed to have been fighting the wrong battles. Our police are enforcing unjust laws. Our judges are operating within bogus legal frameworks. Our schoolteachers are pushing state propaganda (knowingly or unknowingly) and only secondarily hopefully also teaching bits of real knowledge.
I came face to face with such an emotional challenge in a particularly difficult way a few months ago when my ongoing reading program took me through Professor Thomas J. DiLorenzo’s two Lincoln books. The sheer vision of so much suffering, death, and destruction, accomplished by so much deceit, all to pull off a gigantic mercantilist rip-off, was certainly difficult to take in. All those “universal soldiers”—they believed; they killed; they died. But how many of them knew what it was really about? Now, to top it all off, generation after generation are still taught mountains of lies about what it was for.
If one really looks straight on at the reality of such things, it takes some emotional courage to just see—to realize that these are not nightmare images, but real pictures. Denial is a powerful force in the human psyche, and it works against people recognizing the sheer horrors that the state inflicts and the startling magnitude of the accumulated lies on which it is based. It takes time and effort to work through such realizations bit by bit; to pass through the initial reaction that “no, that couldn’t be true.”
From there, though, one has to switch back to the positive—what can we do?—and push forward with a contribution.”
Working on the vague theme of ‘love' this is probably best viewed from the page, not your dash. Describing music is generally pretty hard. However, I really enjoy sharing songs I like. * Indicates a film-clip, otherwise it’s just audio. Youtube is easier to embed than soundcloud. The below songs are a mix of different genres that even I find hard to categorize; indie-dance, chillwave, house, disco-house, luvstep and who knows what other genres get made up. I hope you enjoy.
*A great film clip which matches the music pretty perfectly.
 | No Guns And Horses, Just Make Love by Ellie Goulding, Daft Punk & Monsieur Adi
"No stranger to sophisticated remix work, producer Monsieur Adi recently created a mashup between his rendition of Ellie Goulding’s "Guns And Horses" and Daft Punk’s "Make Love". As usual, Adi utilizes electrifying strings arrangements and couples them with the British songstress’s soothing voice and adds a little mellow electronica to the blend."
Click the bold for the soundcloud link. A real great smooth song, chill’d but uplifting disco house.
 | Love on a Real Train (SymbolOne remix) by Tangerine Dream
*Another fine video here. A real classic.
 | I Love U So (TROWA Remix) by Cassius
A different kind of dubstep. Luvstep.
 | Make Love Tonight (Lifelike Re-Edit) by Roman d’Amour
French house. Lifelike turns things to gold.
 | Cosmic Love (Short Club Remix) by Florence and the Machine
Mellow, but builds… beautiful. A song hard not to fall in love with, maybe a cosmic love then. Wonderful Florence and the Machine track that with this wonderful remix makes me want to love the whole cosmos.
"Economics can only tell us that a boom engendered by credit expansion will not last. It cannot tell us after what amount of credit expansion the slump will start or when this event will occur. All that economists and other people say about these quantitative and calendar problems partakes of neither economics nor any other science. What they say in the attempt to anticipate future events makes use of specific "understanding," the same method which is practiced by everybody in all dealings with his fellow man.
Specific “understanding” has the same logical character as that which characterizes all anticipation’s of future events in human affairs?anticipation’s concerning the course of Russia’s foreign policy, religious and racial conditions in India or Algeria, ladies’ fashions in 1960, the political divisions in the U.S. Senate in 1970; and even such anticipation’s as the future marital relations between Mr. X and his wife, or the success in life of a boy who has just celebrated his tenth birthday.
There are people who assert that psychology may provide some help in such prognostications. However that may be, it is not our task to examine this problem. We have merely to establish the fact that forecasts about the course of economic affairs cannot be considered scientific.”
Strategy In a Nutshell: Principles, Politics, Slavery, & Libertarianism
"…It follows, from the abolitionist’s conception of his role in society, that the goal for which he agitated was not likely to be immediately realizable. Its realization must follow conversion of an enormous number of people, and the struggle must take place in the face of the hostility that inevitably met the agitator for an unpopular cause… The abolitionists knew as well as their later scholarly critics that immediate and unconditional emancipation could not occur for a long time. But unlike those critics they were sure it would never come unless it were agitated for during the long period in which it was impracticable…
To have dropped the demand for immediate emancipation because it was unrealizable at the time would have been to alter the nature of the change for which the abolitionists were agitating. That is, even those who would have gladly accepted gradual and conditional emancipation had to agitate for immediate and unconditional abolition of slavery because that demand was required by their goal of demonstrating to white Americans that Negroes were their brothers. Once the nation had been converted on that point, conditions and plans might have been made…
Their refusal to water down their “visionary” slogan was, in their eyes, eminently practical, much more so than the course of the antislavery senators and congressmen who often wrote letters to abolitionist leaders justifying their adaptation of antislavery demands to what was attainable. The abolitionist, while criticizing such compromises, would insist that his own intransigence made favorable compromises possible. He might have stated his position thus:
If politics is the art of the possible, agitation is the art of the desirable. The practice of each must be judged by criteria appropriate to its goal. Agitation by the reformer or radical helps define one possible policy as more desirable than another, and if skillful and uncompromising, the agitation may help make the desirable possible. To criticize the agitator for not trimming his demands to the immediately realizable—that is, for not acting as a politician—is to miss the point.
The demand for a change that is not politically possible does not stamp the agitator as unrealistic. For one thing, it can be useful to the political bargainer; the more extreme demand of the agitator makes the politician’s demand seem acceptable and perhaps desirable in the sense that the adversary may prefer to give up half a loaf rather than the whole. Also, the agitator helps define the value, the principle, for which the politician bargains. The ethical values placed on various possible political courses are put there partly by agitators working on the public opinion that creates political possibilities…”
— Murray Rothbard quoting Aileen Kraditor’s brilliant study of the strategy and tactics of the Garrison wing of the abolitionist movement entitled Means and Ends in American Abolitionism, 1969; pp. 26-28).
What made Ron Paul so special? He was essentially both at the same time. As a radical he called for the abolition of the “IRS, CIA, FBI, Dept of Education, Dept of Homeland Security, Dept of Labor, the FED, and Bring the Troops Home immediately etc.” in the national mainstream debates and throughout his campaign—while avoiding the pitfalls of opportunism.
"Despite the comparatively favorable portrait presented of monarchy, I am not a monarchist and the following is not a defense of monarchy. Instead, the position taken toward monarchy is this:
If one must have a state, defined as an agency that exercises a compulsory territorial monopoly of ultimate decision-making (jurisdiction) and of taxation, then it is economically and ethically advantageous to choose monarchy over democracy. But this leaves the question open whether or not a state is necessary, i.e., if there exists an alternative to both, monarchy and democracy.
History again cannot provide an answer to this question. By definition, there can be no such thing as an “experience” of counterfactuals and alternatives; and all one finds in modern history, at least insofar as the developed Western world is concerned, is the history of states and statism. Only theory can again provide an answer, for theoretical propositions, as just illustrated, concern necessary facts and relations; and accordingly, just as they can be used to rule certain historical reports and interpretations out as false or impossible, so can they be used to rule certain other things in as constructively possible, even if such things have never been seen or tried.
In complete contrast to the orthodox opinion on the matter, then, elementary social theory shows, and will be explained as showing, that no state as just defined can be justified, be it economically or ethically. Rather,
every state, regardless of its constitution, is economically and ethically deficient. Every monopolist, including one of ultimate decision-making, is “bad” from the viewpoint of consumers. Monopoly is hereby understood in its classical meaning, as the absence of free entry into a particular line of production: only one agency, A, may produce x. Any such monopolist is “bad” for consumers because, shielded from potential new entrants into his line of production, the price for his product will be higher and the quality lower than otherwise.
Further, no one would agree to a provision that allowed a monopolist of ultimate decison-making, i.e., the final arbiter and judge in every case of interpersonal conflict, to determine unilaterally (without the consent of everyone concerned) the price that one must pay for his service. The power to tax, that is, is ethically unacceptable. Indeed, a monopolist of ultimate decision-making equipped with the power to tax does not just produce less and lower quality justice, but he will produce more and more “bads,” i.e., injustice and aggression.
Thus, the choice between monarchy and democracy concerns a choice between two defective social orders. In fact, modern history provides ample illustration of the economic and ethical shortcomings of all states, whether monarchic or democratic.”
"I am not at this level but I am aware of it and know some of its imperatives. One imperative is the awareness that the higher the objective is, the more dignified the method must be. If we aspire to such a high objective as advancing individual liberty and the free market, we can resort to no lesser method than the power of attraction, the absolute opposite of using propaganda, indoctrination, and half truths. A good way to test how well one is doing on the objective we have in mind is to observe how many are seeking his counsel. If none, then one can draw his own conclusions!
The sole force that will turn indifference into acceptance is the power of attraction. And this can be achieved only if the eye is cast away from the remaking of others and toward the improvement of self. This effort demanded of each individual is not at all a sacrifice, but rather the best investment one can make in life’s highest purpose.
Well, where can we find such individuals? I think we will find them among those who love this country. I think we will find them in this room. I think that one of them is you.”
In his monumental Human Action, the 1949 treatise that contained his final rebuttal to his Socialist critics, Mises emphasized the sterility of the mathematical approach:
"The mathematical economists…formulate equations and draw curves which are supposed to describe reality. In fact they describe only a hypothetical and unrealizable state of affairs, in no way similar to the catallactic problems in question. They substitute algebraic symbols for the determinate terms of money as used in economic calculation and believe that this procedure renders their reasoning more scientific…
In the imaginary construction of the evenly rotating economy all factors of production are employed in such a way that each of them renders the most valuable service…It is, of course, possible to describe this imaginary state of the allocation of resources in differential equations and to visualize it graphically in curves. But such devices do not assert anything about the market process. They merely mark out an imaginary situation in which the market process would cease to operate…
Both the logical and the mathematical economists assert that human action ultimately aims at the establishment of such a state of equilibrium and would reach it if all further changes in data were to cease. But the logical economist knows much more than that. He shows how the activities of enterprising men, the promoters and speculators, eager to profit from discrepancies in the price structure, tend toward eradicating such discrepancies and thereby also toward blotting out the sources of entrepreneurial profit and loss…The mathematical description of various states of equilibrium is mere play. The problem is the analysis of the market process…
The problems of process analysis, i.e., the only economic problems that matter, defy any mathematical approach.”
Even in the days before perestroika, socialism was never a monolith. Within the Communist countries, the spectrum of socialism ranged from the quasi-market, quasi-syndicalist system of Yugoslavia to the centralized totalitarianism of neighboring Albania. One time I asked Professor von Mises, the great expert on the economics of socialism, at what point on this spectrum of statism would he designate a country as “socialist” or not. At that time, I wasn’t sure that any definite criterion existed to make that sort of clear-cut judgement.
And so I was pleasantly surprised at the clarity and decisiveness of Mises’s answer. “A stock market,” he answered promptly. “A stock market is crucial to the existence of capitalism and private property. For it means that there is a functioning market in the exchange of private titles to the means of production. There can be no genuine private ownership of capital without a stock market: there can be no true socialism if such a market is allowed to exist.”
“If you wish to converse with me,” said Voltaire, “define your terms.” How many a debate would have been deflated into a paragraph if the disputants had dared to define their terms! This is the alpha and omega of logic, the heart and soul of it, that every important term in serious discourse shall be subjected to the strictest scrutiny and definition. It is difficult, and ruthlessly tests the mind; but once done it is half of any task.”—Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy (Chapter 2, Aristotle and Greek Science, Part 3, The Foundation of Logic).
"Nock knew that the great appeal of reforming movements is their promise of an instantaneous and observable improvement in conditions. People are drawn to them because they hold out the hope, however slight, of the quick and easy alleviation of social problems by modifying what Nock called the “mechanics” of society. But he knew also that the only reform worth the effort, and the only one with any chance of final and lasting success, was the difficult and painful task of each person to first reform himself:
The only thing that the psychically-human being can do to improve society is to present society with one improved unit. In a word ages of experience testify that the only way society can be improved is by the individualist method which Jesus apparently regarded as the only one whereby the kingdom of Heaven can be established as a going concern; that is, the method of each one doing his very best to improve one.
That statement sums up rather neatly the Nockian philosophy as a whole. I suppose that, in strictly academic terms, Nock would not be considered a philosopher at all. He didn’t construct any complicated system which proposed to answer all the universal questions. He would, no doubt, be thought of as too commonsensical. The strange thing about common sense, however, is its ever-increasing rarity. It is a compliment to Nock to say that he possessed common sense to a quite uncommon degree. His sharp and diamond-like prose refracted his thought to a high brilliance. In his works, one finds a great amount of heat, but no less amount of light.
One finds also a complete absence of what Mencken called the “messianic delusion.” Nock wrote only with the aim of saying what he thought, and not swaying great masses of people or bludgeoning them into believing as he did. There was a serene integrity in Nock’s character which shows through every word he wrote. Nock wrote of “the remnant,” a group of people bound together by nothing more than their desire to achieve self-reformation, and practice of independent and disinterested thought. Nock would not have sought to be the remnant’s “leader” but the title belongs to him nonetheless. For his life and work embodied the admonition that must stand as the remnant’s motto: “Know thyself.”
AEN:Was Mises better than the classical liberals on the question of the state?
HOPPE:Mises thought it was necessary to have an institution that suppresses those people who cannot behave appropriately in society, people who are a danger because they steal and murder. He calls this institution government.
But he has a unique idea of how government should work. To check its power, every group and every individual, if possible, must have the right to secede from the territory of the state. He called this the right of self determination, not of nations as the League of Nations said, but of villages, districts, and groups of any size. In Liberalism and Nation, State, and Economy, he elevates secession to a central principle of classical liberalism. If it were possible to grant this right of self-determination to every individual person, he says, it would have to be done. Thus the democratic state becomes, for Mises, a voluntary organization.
AEN:Yet you have been a strong critic of democracy.
HOPPE:Yes, as that term is usually understood. But under Mises's unique definition of democracy, the term means self rule or self government in its most literal sense. All organizations in society, including government, should be the result of voluntary interactions.
In a sense you can say that Mises was a near anarchist. If he stopped short of affirming the right of individual secession, it was only because of what he regarded as technical grounds. In modern democracy, we exalt the method of majority rule as the means of electing the rulers of a compulsory monopoly of taxation.
Mises frequently made an analogy between voting and the marketplace. But he was quite aware that voting in the marketplace means voting with your own property. The weight of your vote is in accord with your value productivity. In the political arena, you do not vote with your property; you vote concerning the property of everyone, including your own. People do not have votes according to their value productivity.
AEN:Yet Mises attacks anarchism in no uncertain terms.
HOPPE:His targets here are left-utopians. He attacks their theory that man is good enough not to need an organized defense against the enemies of civilization. But this is not what the private-property anarchist believes. Of course, murderers and thieves exist. There needs to be an institution that keeps these people at bay. Mises calls this institution government, while people who want no state at all point out that all essential defensive services can be better performed by firms in the market. We can call these firms government if we want to.
AEN:The strongest evidence against Mises as a radical anti-statist is the passage in Human Action that endorses conscription.
HOPPE:This passage is very peculiar. It, and the several paragraphs that precede it and the one that follows it, is not in the first edition. It makes its first appearance in the 1963 edition. It comes out of the blue, and has no foundation in his overall thinking. To me, this addition appears completely ad hoc.
You just have to remind yourself about his general position on government. Every group and, if it can be technically done, every individual, can secede from the government. Accordingly, conscription, in this sense, is completely illegitimate. If you read the 1949 edition of Human Action, there is nothing at all that would seem to lead to these particular funny conclusions.
AEN:Perhaps the Cold War explains it.
HOPPE:But the likelihood that he would make a statement like this is the greatest in prior editions. In 1940, he was in Switzerland, surrounded by Nazi forces. In 1949, he had just seen the old Europe smashed by war and imperialism; what better time to endorse the draft so it could be used to stop this type of thing in the future? But he did not. Why, then, does he do this in 1963? There is no major war going on. Vietnam was in its early stages. The Cold War is not at a peak, and the Soviet Union was in its post-Stalinist period. These passages cry out for explanation.
Psychology, ethics, and praxeology: The distinctions revisited
"…When borrowing insights from multiple fields, it is important to work to keep the fields distinct in terms of methods, data, validity criteria, and applicability. Yet trying to keep fields distinct is not the same as avoiding relevant insights that could emerge from any one of them. Case in point, the above psychological research can help us remove extraneous implications from past attempts to formulate universalizable praxeological descriptions of the ultimate ends of action (leaving aside whether any such characterization at all is required for the purposes of praxeology).
The distinction between praxeology and psychology should be clearly maintained. One is logical and universal in method, while the other is empirical and interpretive. The particular action recommendations of a given ethical system are likewise yet another separate matter. Psychology says, “we observe, notice, and hypothesize.” Praxeology says, “it is/must be so by definition.” Ethics says, “one should act this way rather than that way.”
In this context, it is helpful to turn to Long’s clarification of the nature of “rationality” as used in praxeology, including which claims praxeology can legitimately make. When a praxeologist claims that all action is rational, it is a claim that actors employ means to the attainment of ends, by definition. However, an ethicist’s or psychologist’s definition of “rational” must specify some narrower distinctions or be meaningless for their purposes as non-praxeologists. Those wearing psychologist or philosopher hats might well be interested in whether people deceive themselves in their judgments or make poor judgments, but such distinctions must be left behind when donning the praxeologist’s peculiar, and historically speaking brand-new, style of hat. Long writes:
In a sense, then, it is true that agents always act rationally; but the only sense of this claim to which Mises is [praxeologists are] entitled is that agents always act, not necessarily in a manner appropriate to their situation in all the ways they actually see it, or even in the most justified of the ways they actually see it, but rather in a manner appropriate to their situation in the way of actually seeing it that is constitutive of their action. (309–310).
This third praxeological formulation finally leaves no room for distinctions among various “rational” (as contrasted with “irrational”) qualities of particular actions, as judged by any narrower ethical or psychological criterion. Instead, the meaning of “rationality” for praxeologists (to the extent it is useful at all in that role), is a universal-definitional one. As such, it is most likely of no use to psychologists or ethicists who would naturally require some narrower and more qualified definitions to work with.
This third formulation helps refine the dividing lines between psychological interpretation, ethical advice and judgment (“this is rational, that is not”), and universalizable statements about the nature of action as such. Only the third formulation is undeniable for all cases of action without any need for further inquiry into specifics of motivation, thought processes, or value scales. Only the third statement is/must be so in every case as a logical implication of what the concept of action itself means. The rest is up to the other fields…”
“What distinguishes the Austrian School and will lend it everlasting fame is its doctrine of economic action, in contrast to one of economic equilibrium or nonaction. The Austrian School makes use of the ideas of rest and equilibrium, without which economic thought cannot get along. But it is always aware of the purely instrumental nature of these ideas. The Austrian School aims to account for prices actually paid in the market, and not just prices that might be paid under certain never-realizable conditions. It rejects the mathematical method, not because of ignorance or an aversion to mathematical accuracy, but because it does not place importance upon the detailed description of the condition of a hypothetical and static equilibrium. The Austrian School has never succumbed to the fatal illusion that values can be measured, and has never misunderstood that statistical data has nothing to do with economic theory, but belongs to the history of economics alone.”—Ludwig von Mises (via eltigrechico)
"As a young man, Otto Bauer had made up his mind never to be untrue to his Marxian convictions, never to make concessions to reformism or socialist revisionism, and never to become a Millerand or a Miquel. No one was to outclass him in his Marxian radicalism. He was later strengthened in his resolve by his wife Helene Gumplowicz. He remained faithful to his intentions until the winter of 1918/19.
At that time I was successful in convincing the Bauers that the collapse of a Bolshevist experiment in Austria would be inevitable in a very short time, perhaps within days. The supply of food in Austria was dependent on imports made possible only by the relief assistance of former enemies. Vienna’s food supply would not have lasted more than eight or ten days on any given day during the nine months following the armistice. The Allies could have forced a surrender of a Bolshevist regime in Vienna without lifting a finger. There were few who recognized the state of affairs clearly. People were so convinced of the inevitability of Bolshevism that their main concern was securing a favorable place for themselves in the new order. The Catholic Church and its followers, the Christian Social Party, were prepared to befriend the Bolshevists with the same eagerness with which the bishops and archbishops would embrace National Socialism 20 years later. Bank directors and industrialists hoped to make good livings as managers under the Bolshevists. A certain Mr. Guenther, an industrial consultant to the Bodenkreditanstalt, assured Otto Bauer, in my presence, that he would prefer serving the people to serving a group of stockholders. The effect of this kind of declaration can be appreciated when one understands that this man was considered, although mistakenly, the best industrial manager in Austria.
I knew what was at stake. Bolshevism would lead Vienna to starvation and terror within a few days. Plundering hordes would take to the streets and a second blood bath would destroy what was left of Viennese culture. After discussing these problems with the Bauers over the course of many evenings, I was finally able to persuade them of my view. Bauer’s resulting moderation was a determining factor in Vienna’s fate.
Bauer was too intelligent not to realize that I had been right, but he never forgave me for having turned him into a Millerand. The attacks of his fellow Bolshevists hit close to home. But he directed his animosity toward me instead of toward his opponents. A powerful loather, he opted for ignoble means to destroy me. He tried to cause the nationalistic students and professors at the University of Vienna to turn against me. The attempt failed. I have not spoken with the Bauers since. I had always held Bauer’s character in an unwarranted high esteem, by the way. When, during the civil unrest of February 1934, Secretary Fay announced on the radio that Otto Bauer had deserted the fighting workers and fled abroad with party funds, I considered the statement slanderous. I would have not believed Bauer capable of such cowardice.”
"Interestingly, Hayek himself sought to de-homogenize his work from that of free-market thinkers with whom he disagreed methodologically. In an interview in the 1980s [Hayek] described Milton Friedman as a "logical positivist," who "believe[s] economic phenomena can be explained as macrophenomena, that you can ascertain cause and effects from aggregates and averages. … [Friedman] is on most things, general market problems, sound. I want him on my side. You know, one of the things I often have publicly said is that one of the things I most regret is not having returned to a criticism of Keynes’s treatise, but it is as much true of not having criticized Milton’s [Essays in] Positive Economics, which in a way is quite as dangerous a book.”
MNR:It ended up totally different from the way it started. After Mises had written Human Action, the Volcker Fund—which promoted classical liberal and libertarian scholarship—was looking for a college textbook that would boil it down and spell it out. Mises hardly knew me at the time since I had just started attending his seminar. I wrote a sample chapter, "Money; Free and Unfree." They showed it to Mises and he gave his endorsement. I then received a many-year grant to work on it. I thought it was going to be a textbook. But it grew and grew. New material kept coming in. As I kept going, I found ideas Mises had left out, or steps that were implicit in Mises that needed to be spelled out.
I gave periodic reports to the Volcker Fund. Finally they asked me; "Look, is this going to be a textbook or a treatise?" When I delivered a 1,900-page manuscript, they knew the answer. Power and Market was the final chapter called "The Economics of Violent Intervention." They asked me to cut out it out because it was too radical. It was published separately years later by the Institute for Humane Studies.
AEN:Did you write the book in sequence?
MNR:Yes. I started with page one with methodology and it wrote itself.
AEN:Did anything get left out of the final book?
MNR:I took Chapter 5 out of Man, Economy, and State, which included the usual cost-curve analysis. I wrote the whole chapter before I realized that the approach I was taking was nonsense. So I started over.
AEN:Is there any doubt that Mises was your primary influence?
MNR:I didn't think so, but Joseph Salerno once gave a talk in which he said Man, Economy, and State is more Boehm-Bawerk-oriented than Mises's Human Action. I never thought of it that way, but it may be true. When I was spelling out capital theory, I used Boehm-Bawerk primarily. I didn't think about it since I thought Mises was a Boehm-Bawerkian and didn't see any contradiction. I would like to see Professor Salerno explore this. It's an example of the way a historian of economic thought can show something about a person's work that he himself didn't realize.
AEN:How many years were involved from the time you started working on Man, Economy, and State to the time it was published?
MNR:This is complicated. I received the grant in 1952, but shortly afterwards I had to finish my doctoral thesis under Arthur Burns. From 1953 to 1956 I was working partly on both. I finally finished Man, Economy, and State in 1960 and it was published in 1962.
“Even in the finest works of economics, including Human Action, the concept of property had attracted little attention before Rothbard burst onto the intellectual scene with Man, Economy, and State. Yet, as Rothbard pointed out, such common economic terms as direct and indirect exchange, markets and market prices, as well as aggression, invasion, crime, and fraud, cannot be defined or understood without a prior theory of property. Nor is it possible to establish the familiar economic theorems relating to these phenomena without an implied notion of property and property rights. A definition and theory of property must precede the definition and establishment of all other economic terms and theorems.”—Hans-Hermann Hoppe
Daily Bell:What do you think of Ragnar Redbeard's Might Is Right?
Dr. Hans-Hermann Hoppe:You can give two very different interpretations to this statement. I see no difficulty with the first one. It is: I know the difference between "might" and "right" and, as a matter of empirical fact, might is in fact frequently right. Most if not all of "public law," for instance, is might masquerading as right.
The second interpretation is:I don't know the difference between "might" and "right," because there is no difference. Might is right and right is might. This interpretation is self-contradictory. Because if you wanted to defend this statement as a true statement in an argument with someone else you are in fact recognizing your opponent's property right in his own body. You do not aggress against him in order to bring him to the correct insight. You allow him to come to the correct insight on his own. That is, you admit, at least implicitly, that you do know the difference between right and wrong. Otherwise there would be no purpose in arguing. The same, incidentally, is true for Hobbes' famous dictum that one man is another man's wolf. In claiming this statement to be true, you actually prove it to be false.
“This is not to say, of course, that there are no similarities among historical events. There are many similarities, but no homogeneity. Thus, there were many similarities between the presidential election of 1968 and that of 1972, but they were scarcely homogeneous events, since they were marked by important and inescapable differences. Nor will the next election be a repeatable event to place in a homogeneous class of “elections.” Hence no scientific, and certainly no quantitative, laws can be derived from these events.”—Murray Rothbard
The Guestlist was a weekly music podcast presented by Benjamin Berry of the electronic band Fear of Tigers. You’ll be hard pressed to find them anywhere online now but they were an incredible intro into some fantastic music. The above is an excerpt of a song I requested being played. To quote Electronic Rumours:
"Even by the time it hit the internet mid-last year it was already a year old, now over twelve months later it’s out, and sounding fresher than ever. Cordova is the meeting of U-Tern (Vaughn Oliver, making massive waves this year as one half of Oliver themed double act Oliver) and his buddy AJK, with Roxy on vocals, and Paradigm is so good it made it into the top five in our twenty best songs… It’s a massive slice of Dreamwave boogie with husky vocals and Sci-Fi vocoding. Nearly two years after it’s creation it hold up and kicks it’s contemporaries arses!”
"To return to the incitement example—to determine whether the inciter is responsible, we ask whether the inciter used the mob as his means to attain the violent acts committed by the rioting mob. For the inciter’s action to be considered aggression, he would have to intend the prohibited result; and he would have to have chosen means that resulted in the rioting. We do not maintain that the inciter is necessarily responsible; the question turns on many specific facts and the context. What we maintain is that the inciter is not off the hook just because the rioters had free will. The question to be answered is: was the mob the means of the inciter? Was the inciter a cause of the mob rioting, or of their ensuing havoc?
The same question is asked in a variety of situations: did the general kill people, using his troops as means to this end? Did the manager use his employee as a means to attain some end? Did the wife kill her husband by using her lover (or a hired hit-man) as the means to attain this goal? If someone votes in favor of socialism (or speaks out in favor of it), are they a cause of the ensuing acts of aggression by state agents? If a witness lies on the witness stand, resulting in the defendant wrongly being imprisoned, has he caused harm to the defendant, through means of jurors, jailers, and the judicial system? In other words, was the first party a cause of the result that was actually committed by an intermediate person?
Although there will be easy cases, we do not suggest that merely formulating the issue in this manner makes the correct answer easy to find in every situation. Such questions must take into account relevant facts and the context, and depend on the sense of justice of the judge or jury. Looking at actions from the praxeological point of view, however, helps us look in the right place and ask the right questions. No doubt, in cases where the intermediate actor is threatened, or paid, by the first party, it is easier to see that the first party is the cause of the threatened or remunerated action. But it is simply arbitrary to restrict cause to cases where the intermediate actor is threatened, or paid cash.” — Stephan Kinsella & Patrick Tinsley, Causation & Aggression
“In a dazzling breakthrough for political philosophy in general and for libertarianism in particular, he [Hoppe] has managed to transcend the famous is/ought, fact/value dichotomy that has plagued philosophy since the days of the scholastics, and that had brought modern libertarianism into a tiresome deadlock. Not only that: Hans Hoppe has managed to establish the case for anarcho-capitalist-lockean rights in an unprecedentedly hard-core manner, one that makes my own natural law/natural rights position seem almost wimpy in comparison.”—Murray Rothbard
"The establishment of tyranny, La Boétie points out, is most difficult at the outset, when it is first imposed. For generally, if given a free choice, people will vote to be free rather than to be slaves: “There can be no doubt that they would much prefer to be guided by reason itself than to be ordered about by the whims of a single man.”
A possible exception was the voluntary choice by the Israelites to imitate other nations in choosing a king (Saul). Apart from that, tyranny can only be initially imposed by conquest or by deception. The conquest may be either by foreign armies or by an internal factional coup. The deception occurs in cases where the people, during wartime emergencies, select certain persons as dictators, thus providing the occasion for these individuals to fasten their power permanently upon the public. Once begun, however, the maintenance of tyranny is permitted and bolstered by the insidious throes of habit, which quickly accustom the people to enslavement.
It is true that in the beginning men submit under constraint and by force; but those who come after them obey without regret and perform willingly what their predecessors had done because they had to. This is why men born under the yoke and then nourished and reared in slavery are content, without further effort, to live in their native circumstance, unaware of any other state or right, and considering as quite natural the condition into which they are born … the powerful influence of custom is in no respect more compelling than in this, namely, habituation to subjection.
Thus, humanity’s natural drive for liberty is finally overpowered by the force of custom, "for the reason that native endowment, no matter how good, is dissipated unless encouraged, whereas environment always shapes us in its own way, whatever that might be in spite of nature’s gifts.” Therefore, those who are born enslaved should be pitied and forgiven, “since they have not seen even the shadow of liberty, and being quite unaware of it, cannot perceive the evil endured through their own slavery…” While, in short, “it is truly the nature of man to be free and to wish to be so,” yet a person’s character “instinctively follows the tendencies that his training gives him… La Boétie concludes that “custom becomes the first reason for voluntary servitude.”
“The simplest questions are the most profound. Where were you born? Where is your home? Where are you going? What are you doing? Think about these once in a while and watch your answers change.”—Richard Bach
"Government can either deliberately subsidize by giving a service away free, or it may genuinely try to find the true market price, i.e., to "operate on a business basis." This is often the cry raised by conservatives — that government enterprise be placed on a "business footing," that deficits be ended, etc. Almost always this means raising the price. Is this a solution, however? It is often stated that a single government enterprise, operating within the sphere of a private market, buying from it, etc., can price its services and allocate its resources efficiently. This, however, is incorrect. There is a fatal flaw that permeates every conceivable scheme of government enterprise and ineluctably prevents it from rational pricing and efficient allocation of resources. Because of this flaw, government enterprise can never be operated on a “business” basis, no matter what the government’s intentions.
What is this fatal flaw? It is the fact that government can obtain virtually unlimited resources by means of its coercive tax power. Private businesses must obtain their funds from investors. It is this allocation of funds by investors on the basis of time preference and foresight that rations funds and resources to the most profitable and therefore the most serviceable uses. Private firms can get funds only from consumers and investors; they can get funds, in other words, only from people who value and buy their services and from investors who are willing to risk investment of their saved funds in anticipation of profit. In short, payment and service are, once again, indissolubly linked on the market.
Government, on the other hand, can get as much money as it likes. The free market provides a “mechanism” for allocating funds for future and present consumption, for directing resources to their most value-productive uses for all the people. It thereby provides a means for businessmen to allocate resources and to price services to insure such optimum use. Government, however, has no checkrein on itself, i.e., no requirement for meeting a profit-and-loss test of valued service to consumers, to enable it to obtain funds. Private enterprise can get funds only from satisfied, valuing customers and from investors guided by profits and losses. Government can get funds literally at its own whim.”
"Libertarianism, as I see it, is an extremely limited philosophy. It’s a political philosophy, not a philosophy of life. As a political philosophy, it states that people have the right to use physical violence only in response to those who break the libertarian code and initiate violence. It’s not a philosophy of life stating how one can live the good life, setting out in fine detail how one may act in every conceivable situation.
Practically the sole concern of libertarianism is that everyone keep his mitts off everyone else, unless, of course, he has that person’s permission. The beauty of this version of libertarianism is that it allows for an amazing diversity.
Only libertarianism gathers together all who believe in this limited philosophy. We’ve all seen businessmen with suits, ties, and vests mingling with flower children. We’ve all seen teetotallers and alcohol drinkers at libertarian functions. We’ve all seen pot smokers, acid heads, drug freaks - together with Murray Rothbard, the straightest of them all.
We’ve seen priests, monogamists, family men, as the fellow libertarians of the gays, the sado-masochists, the leather freaks, and those into what they call “rational bestiality.” As Ralph Raico stated in his keynote address to the FLP state convention, only libertarianism could gather together the homosexual motorcycle gang, the acid dropper fascinated by the price of silver, and the Puerto Rican nationalist immersed in the Austrian School of economics.”
“Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”—Unknown
“But even if Lord Keynes’ assumption were correct, no good could come from such a deception. Great conflicts of ideas must be solved by straight and frank methods; they cannot be solved by artifices and make-shifts. What is needed is not to throw dust into the eyes of the workers, but to convince them. They themselves must realize that the traditional union methods do not serve their interests. They them-selves must abandon of their own accord policies that harm both them and all other people.”—Ludwig von Mises