Thomas J. DiLorenzo



Articles by Thomas J. DiLorenzo

From Mad (Social) Scientist to Mad Zionist

“First of all, don’t target civilians.”~Murray Rothbard’s first principle of just war in his essay, “Just War”Like Hans Hoppe I have been a friend of Walter Block’s for decades. I co-authored a book and an article with him, sponsored a guest lecture by him at my university; lectured twice at his invitation at Loyola University New Orleans; wrote dozens of online articles in his defense when he was libeled by the administrators of Loyola University Maryland for giving a world-class (but non-woke) lecture on the economics of discrimination; and wrote in his defense against the New York Times smear of him.Walter has published hundreds of articles but he is probably best known to the general public for his book, Defending the Undefendable, and many related writings and speeches. He is indeed

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The Best Investment You Can Make

For more than thirty years, lecturing at Mises University has been the highlight of my academic year. Students arrive filled with excitement about this experience—a weeklong intellectual feast that for many of them will be life changing. What a delight for an economics professor like me to have the opportunity to teach free market, Austrian economics to intelligent, motivated, and wonderful young people with a genuine passion for learning. Opening night at Mises University is always overflowing with excitement and anticipation. I marvel at how the students often cheer when the faculty is introduced, as if we were rock stars! The students and faculty feed off each other’s enthusiasm, which is one reason the week is so special.Over four thousand young people from all over the world have

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How Human Action Guided My Teaching and Research Career

What is the Mises Institute?

The Mises Institute is a non-profit organization that exists to promote teaching and research in the Austrian School of economics, individual freedom, honest history, and international peace, in the tradition of Ludwig von Mises and Murray N. Rothbard. Non-political, non-partisan, and non-PC, we advocate a radical shift in the intellectual climate, away from statism and toward a private property order. We believe that our foundational ideas are of permanent value, and oppose all efforts at compromise, sellout, and amalgamation of these ideas with fashionable political, cultural, and social doctrines inimical to their spirit.

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U.S. Imperialism through the Lens of Mises’s Nation, State, and Economy

This lecture was originally delivered at the 2019 Austrian Economics Research Conference at the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama.These imperialistic doctrines are common to all peoples today. Englishmen, Frenchmen, and Americans who marched off to fight imperialism [in World War I] are no less imperialistic than the Germans.—Ludwig von Mises, Nation, State, and Economy (1983, p. 79)In Nation, State, and Economy (1983), published in 1919 a few months before John Maynard Keynes’s The Economic Consequences of the Peace (2013), Ludwig von Mises analyzed the German nationalism, militarism, and imperialism that contributed to the advent of World War I (not that Germany alone was responsible for the war). In typical Misesian fashion, he blended economics, history, political philosophy,

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Welcome and Opening Remarks

What is the Mises Institute?

The Mises Institute is a non-profit organization that exists to promote teaching and research in the Austrian School of economics, individual freedom, honest history, and international peace, in the tradition of Ludwig von Mises and Murray N. Rothbard. Non-political, non-partisan, and non-PC, we advocate a radical shift in the intellectual climate, away from statism and toward a private property order. We believe that our foundational ideas are of permanent value, and oppose all efforts at compromise, sellout, and amalgamation of these ideas with fashionable political, cultural, and social doctrines inimical to their spirit.

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Christian Worship of the False God of Politics

Millions of American “evangelical” Christians have been indoctrinated in the idea that they must be worshipful of Israeli politicians and bureaucrats. This is so because they are taught by preachers like John Hagee that the Bible says that God will bless those who bless the nation of Abraham. The absurdity of it all is that pop religionists like Hagee falsely conflate the Israel of the Bible with today’s politicians and bureaucrats of the seventy-six-year-old government of the country of Israel. The two have nothing whatsoever to do with each other. Israel’s politicians can be just as sleazy, immoral, corrupt, criminal, and murderous as any politicians anywhere. Hence the spectacle of American evangelical Christians cheerleading the killing of fellow Christians in Gaza by the Israeli

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Attention mises.org Readers! Treat the Students in Your Life to The Best Week of Their Year

The thirty-eighth annual Mises University, where I have lectured for more than thirty of those years, will be held from July 28th to August 3rd at the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama. Year after year, student attendees from all over the world tell us that it was the best week of their school year; that they learned more about the economic world in that week than in four years of college; that they would love to come back next summer; and that they will urge their friends and classmates to apply next year. Mises University is the world’s leading instructional program inAustrian economics. Staffed by some of the world’s leading Austrian School economists, all of whom are excellent speakers and teachers, students attend lectures and discussions all day long for a week where they learn all

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Can John C. Calhoun Save America?

In an essay entitled “A Strategy for the Right” the late economic and libertarian scholar, Professor Murray N. Rothbard, called John C. Calhoun’s Disquisition on Government “one of them most brilliant essays on political philosophy ever written.” Published in 1850, the year of his death, Calhoun’s Disquisition warned – and explained – how the American political system could evolve into tyranny, and how to stop that from happening. Americans are now living under the tyranny that Calhoun feared, proving once again the prescience and brilliance of his Disquisition. Calhoun’s 173-year-old treatise is not just a diagnosis of how we got here, but a roadmap for escaping from this tyranny and being rid of the “woke” totalitarians among us who are so hellbent on destroying America and replacing it

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How Court Historians Turn Political Villains into Heroes

What is the Mises Institute?

The Mises Institute is a non-profit organization that exists to promote teaching and research in the Austrian School of economics, individual freedom, honest history, and international peace, in the tradition of Ludwig von Mises and Murray N. Rothbard. Non-political, non-partisan, and non-PC, we advocate a radical shift in the intellectual climate, away from statism and toward a private property order. We believe that our foundational ideas are of permanent value, and oppose all efforts at compromise, sellout, and amalgamation of these ideas with fashionable political, cultural, and social doctrines inimical to their spirit.

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The Tariff of Abominations and the Era of Good Stealings

Few Americans seem aware of the fact that it was the New England Federalists who plotted to secede from the union a half century before the 1860-61 secession of the Southern states. Their efforts culminated in the Hartford secession convention of 1814 where they decided in the end to remain in the union after all, confident that they would eventually dominate national politics to their economic advantage. The leader of the New England secessionists was Massachusetts Senator Timothy Pickering who had been George Washington’s adjutant general and quartermaster general during the Revolution and served as secretary of state and secretary of war in the Washington administration, as a member of congress from Massachusetts, and as secretary of state in the John Adams administration. He was joined

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The Mises Institute: How Capitalism Can Save America Again

Power & Market offers a contrarian take on world events. We favor individual freedom, honest history, and international peace, in the tradition of Ludwig von Mises and Murray N. Rothbard. Connect to Power & Market via Twitter and RSS.Power & Market is published CC4, unless denoted otherwise.

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Grover Cleveland: The Last Good Democrat

After the War to Prevent Southern Independence and the assassination of Lincoln the federal government was said to possess a “treasury of virtue.” The Republican Party, which was the federal government, with a decades-long monopoly of power rivaled only by the Bolsheviks in Russia, made sure that the government-run schools would preach this Virtuous State Philosophy to generations of school children.And what did the Party of Virtue do with its “treasure”?

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Help Us Give Scholarships for AERC!

This month, we will host the Austrian Economics Research Conference (AERC), one of our most important programs. We’ll have thirty-one students attending, and nineteen students will deliver papers of their own. How encouraging!

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“Nonsense on Stilts”: The Rhetorical Cornerstone of the American Welfare/Warfare State

In a 1922 essay about Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address in his book Prejudices: Third Series H.L. Mencken asked, “Am I the first American to note the fundamental nonsensicality of the Gettysburg Address”? One example of the nonsense of Lincoln’s rhetoric as explained by Mencken is as follows:
“Think of the argument in it. Put it into the cold words of everyday. The doctrine is simply this: that the Union soldiers who died at Gettysburg sacrificed their lives to the cause of self-determination – that government of the people, by the people, for the people, should not perish from the earth. It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in the battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern

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The Next Austrian School Renaissance

Having recently completed forty-one years as a university economics professor I am convinced that books like Human Action in particular, and the Austrian School in general, are more needed than ever if Western civilization is to be saved from the onslaught by the current generation of “cultural” Marxist totalitarians. All socialists, Mises wrote in Socialism, are first and foremost “destructionists” who want to destroy the existing institutions of society first, then proceed to create their never-defined utopian fantasy world. They are succeeding and must be stopped. Only the power of superior ideas can stop them.
As for the role of economics, several fairly recent incidents stand out in my mind as examples of what “mainstream” economics has been teaching. One is when a senior economics

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A Message from Tom DiLorenzo: Help Us in Our Fight to Save Freedom in America

Please help us in our fight to save freedom in America—and indeed the rest of the world—by making as generous a donation as you can.
I became a student of Austrian economics and libertarian philosophy by accident. In my first semester in college in 1972, I signed up for Principles of Microeconomics. In the classroom was a bookshelf that happened to have all the back issues of The Freeman published by the Foundation for Economic Education. I started reading some of the articles—by Ludwig von Mises, F.A. Hayek, Murray Rothbard, Henry Hazlitt, Gary North, Israel Kirzner, William Hutt, and other free-market writers—and I was hooked! I decided then that I wanted to be like these brave, highly educated, and articulate men who were so devoted to the cause of a free society.

Those were the old

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Help the Institute Fight Censorship and Expose Government Tyranny

Dear Friend,
In the chapter of The Road to Serfdom entitled “The End of Truth,” F.A. Hayek wrote that in a totalitarian society “truth” is not determined by scholarship, research, discussion, and debate but by pronouncements by the government “authorities.” Anthony Fauci’s notorious “I am science” declaration is a perfect example of such totalitarian thinking, as is Al Gore’s “settled science” declaration regarding global-warming research. Of course, no real scientist would say that scientific questions are ever “settled” forevermore. It was once “settled science” that Earth is flat, after all, and that government can make us all rich thanks to the “multiplier effect” of government spending.
But that’s just one arm of the totalitarian scissors. The other arm is that all dissenting opinions

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False Virtue: The Life and Death of “American Exceptionalism”

The impending decline of the dollar is apparently imposing a real Halloween scare on the American foreign policy establishment. An August 22, 2023, article on the Council on Foreign Relations website entitled “The Future of Dollar Hegemony” explained that 
the dollar’s global hegemony gives the U.S. government power to impose crippling sanctions and wage other forms of financial welfare against adversaries. . . . In 2022, more than twelve thousand entities were under sanction by the Treasury Department, a more than twelve-fold increase since the turn of the century. U.S. sanctions . . . do ensure that targeted adversaries pay a significant price for continuing to engage in actions the United States opposes (emphasis added).
This reminds yours truly of a very memorable bumper sticker that

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The Life and Death of American Exceptionalism

Recorded at the Mises Institute Supporters Summit in Auburn, Alabama, 12-14 October 2023.
Sponsored by Jule and Lynne Herbert.

The Life and Death of American Exceptionalism | Thomas DiLorenzo

Video of The Life and Death of American Exceptionalism | Thomas DiLorenzo

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Property Rights, Civilization, and Their Enemies

[This article is adapted from a lecture delivered at the Reno Mises Circle in Reno, Nevada. on May 20, 2023.]
It is not an exaggeration to say that property rights are a prerequisite for civilization. As Ludwig von Mises wrote in The Free and Prosperous Commonwealth:
Private property creates for the individual a sphere in which he is free of the state. It sets limits to the operation of the authoritarian will. It allows other forces to arise side by side with and in opposition to political power. It thus becomes the basis of all those activities that are free from violent interference on the part of the state. It is the soil in which the seeds of freedom are nurtured and in which the autonomy of the individual and ultimately all intellectual and material progress is rooted (emphasis

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Property Rights, Civilization, and Their Enemies

Every day, more and more Americans are awakening to the reality that the institutions in control of this nation are failing them. From violence in the streets, inflation in our stores, increasing tyranny and censorship, and absolute buffoonery on public display in halls of political power. The ruling class is getting richer while most of us suffer, and new generations are becoming increasingly warped by the dangerous ideologies of the left.
Recorded at The Depot Craft Brewery & Distillery in Reno, Nevada on May 20th, 2023.

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Why Everyone Should Read These Two Essays by Ludwig von Mises

Like virtually all of the work of Ludwig von Mises, these two essays, his 1958 Liberty and Property and his 1950 Middle-of-the-Road Policy Leads to Socialism are timeless. They are as important now as they have ever been and will increase in relevance as the growth of government continues almost unabated.

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