Category Archive: 6b) Austrian Economics

Eugen von Böhm Bawerk
“Value does not come out of the workshop, but out of the wants that goods satisfy” The quote by Mr Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk is as true today as it was more than 100 years ago, even though modern pundits often ignore the simple fact. This blog is not an attempt to revive Mr Böhm-Bawerks thoughts, life and deeds, but from a sober view of the world comment on and analyze ongoing events. We aim to take the analysis a step further. We question accepted truths and always strive to answer the simple question “why?” We are opinionated.

The Social Consequences of Zero Interest Rates

Anyone who has ever been to Japan knows: Japan is special. The country has many strange habits. The Japanese culture is simply different and many peculiarities are hardly understood in the West. But it's not only the old established traditions that are foreign to us Westerners.

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Will the Police Crack Down on Lockdown Violators the Second Time Around?

It will be very interesting if the police—who did nothing to disperse protests that were obviously in violation of bans on mass gatherings—turn around and arrest business owners and other "violators" of a second round of stay-at-home orders.

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The Disastrous Legacy of Woodrow Wilson

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Princeton University has made it official: Woodrow Wilson’s name no longer will have any place on campus. The former president, or at least his memory, now is part of cancel culture, which is sweeping the nation. The Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs will replace the former president’s name with “Princeton,” and Wilson College now will be called First College.

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How Historians Changed the Meaning of “Liberalism”

Understandably enough, the current disfavor into which socialism has fallen has spurred what Raimondo Cubeddu (1997: 138) refers to as “the frenzy to proclaim oneself a liberal.” Many writers today have recourse to the stratagem of “inventing for oneself a ‘liberalism’ according to one’s own tastes” and passing it off as an “evolution” from past ideas.

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A Review of Stephanie Kelton’s The Deficit Myth

The good news is that Stephanie Kelton has written a book on MMT that is very readable and will strike many readers as persuasive and clever. The bad news is that Stephanie Kelton has written a book on MMT that is very readable and will strike many readers as persuasive and clever. Narrated by the author.  Original Article: "A Review of Stephanie Kelton’s The Deficit Myth".

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The COVID Crisis Supercharged the War on Cash

The corona crisis has already taken a very high toll and caused deep damage in our societies and our economies, the extent of which is yet to become apparent. We have seen its impact on productivity, on unemployment, on social cohesion and on political division. However, there is another very worrying trend that has been accelerated under the veil of fear and confusion that the pandemic has spread.

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An Excellent Seasonal Buying Opportunity in Silver Lies Directly Ahead

Today I want to put a popular precious metal under the magnifying glass for you: silver. Silver, often referred to as the “little brother” of gold, has a particularly interesting seasonal pattern I would like to share with you.

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As the Fed Pumps, the Stock Market Is Increasingly the Only Game in Town

While the economic storm caused by COVID-19 has seemed to wane (temporarily?), the stock market can’t seem to go but one direction—up. Graham and Dodd’s meaty 700-page Security Analysis has soared to number 7695 on the Amazon best-seller list. According to Warren Buffett, the book is A road map for investing that I have now been following for 57 years.

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Why Central Banks Are a Threat to Our Savings

The US personal savings rate jumped to 33 percent in April from 12.7 percent in March and 8 percent in April last year. An increase in savings is regarded by popular economics as less expenditure on consumption. Since consumption expenditure is considered as the main driving force of the economy, obviously a rebound in savings, which implies less consumption, cannot be good for economic activity, so it is held. Saving and wealth—what is the...

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The Deficit Myth: Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People’s Economy

I’ve got good news and bad news. The good news is that Stephanie Kelton—economics professor at Stony Brook and advisor to the 2016 Bernie Sanders campaign—has written a book on modern monetary theory (MMT) that is very readable and will strike many readers as persuasive and clever.

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“The illusions of Keynesianism create a morally corrupt society” – Part II

Claudio Grass (CG): Overall, apart from the obvious economic consequences of the crisis, do you also see geopolitical and social ones, on a wider scale? Given all these “moving parts”, from the upcoming US election and internal frictions in the EU to the Hong Kong tensions and the rising public discontent in Latin America, where do expect the chips to fall once this is over? 

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Why the Central Bank “Bailout of Everything” Will Be a Disaster

Despite massive government and central bank stimuli, the global economy is seeing a concerning rise in defaults and delinquencies. The main central banks’ balance sheets (those of the Federal Reserve, Bank of Japan, European Central Bank, Bank of England, and People’s Bank Of China) have soared to a combined $20 trillion, while the fiscal easing announcements in the major economies exceed 7 percent of the world’s GDP according to Fitch...

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The Forgotten Greatness of Rothbard’s Preface to Theory and History

Anyone who advocates the ideas of the Austrian school of economics, whether broadly and publicly or even in the context of private discussions with friends and acquaintances, will almost immediately find themselves grappling with the tricky question of how to distill the core essence of what Austrian economics actually is, and how to convey those truly definitive characteristics as briefly and simply as possible.

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The Decline of the Third World

A Failure to Integrate Values. The only region in the world that has proactively tried to incorporate western culture in its societies is East Asia — Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan. China, which was a grotesquely oppressed, poor, Third World country not too far in the past, notwithstanding its many struggles today, has furiously tried to copy the West.

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Central Bankers Will Bring Us Economic Stagnation

“Our country continues to face a difficult and challenging time….People have lost loved ones. Many millions have lost their jobs. There is great uncertainty about the future. At the Federal Reserve, we are strongly committed to using our tools to do whatever we can, for as long as it takes…to ensure that the recovery will be as strong as possible, and to limit lasting damage to the economy” –Jerome Powell, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, June 10,...

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Some Conservatives Want Americans to Abandon Classical Liberalism. Don’t Listen to Them.

Donald Trump's economic populism, and his break with the established post-war conservative movement, has created an opening for new types of conservatism. Among these is the anti-market wing of the movement characterized by a renewed enthusiasm for trade controls, more spending on welfare programs, and more government regulation in the everyday lives of ordinary Americans.

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Does the Free Market Corrupt People?

The political theorist Michael J. Sandel is a popular teacher at Harvard, and his lectures circulate widely on YouTube and elsewhere. He attracted attention as a serious political theorist with his critical work on John Rawls, Liberalism and the Limits of Justice (1982). As most readers will know, I’m no fan of Rawls, and it’s easy to find poor arguments in his A Theory of Justice. But Sandel totally misunderstands him, and his attack on Rawls...

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The War On Cash – COVID Edition Part II

The digital “toll” It doesn’t require too dark an imagination to realize the gravity of the concerns over the digital yuan. China is a true pioneer when it comes surveillance, censorship and political oppression and the digital age has given an incredibly efficient and effective arsenal to the state. Adding money to that toolkit was a move that was planned for many years and it is abundantly clear how useful a tool it can be for any totalitarian...

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Why the European Recovery Plan Will Likely Fail

The €750 billion stimulus plan announced by the European Commission has been greeted by many macroeconomic analysts and investment banks with euphoria. However, we must be cautious. Why? Many would argue that a swift and decisive response to the crisis with an injection of liquidity that avoids a financial collapse and a strong fiscal impulse that cements the recovery are overwhelmingly positive measures.

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Why the New Economics Just Boils Down to Printing More Money

The essential fallacy of John Maynard Keynes and his early disciples was to cultivate the monetary equivalent of alchemy. They believed that paper money was a suitable means to alleviate the fundamental economic problem of scarcity. The printing press was, at any rate, under certain plausible conditions of duress, a substitute for hard work, savings, and cutting prices (Hazlitt 1959, 1960).

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