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Writing a term paper- need source(s) suggestions.

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gilaltom3 posted on Fri, Oct 26 2012 1:14 PM

I'm writing a term paper for my "Politics of the American Working Class" course and the class is basically filled with keynsian propaganda and general private sector disdain. The professor says that the class is basically over the growing gap betweent the rich and the poor. So, I've decided to write my term paper over the role of government (central economic planning, tax policies, etc) in increasing the disparity between the upper and lower classes. I've decided one of my sources will definitely be "Meltdown" by Tom Woods, but from there I'm a little stumped on what else to add. 

I have to have at least 2 books, 4 scholarly journal articles, and a policy or research paper "from a reputable source" (which is vague as hell and entirely subjective as far as I'm concerned". 

So, I've come to the brilliant minds of the Mises Community for help. I don't post or read here as often as I should (see: post count), but I'm trying to further my understanding of economics and, more specifically, the Austrian school. I know you guys can come up with some great sources and I'd like to thank you immensely beforehand. 

So, what do you think?

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Economic Facts and Fallacies by Thomas Sowell would probably be a good book for this class.

There are tons of great articles on this site.

For policy papers, the Cato Institute publishes them often.

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gilaltom3:
So, I've decided to write my term paper over the role of government (central economic planning, tax policies, etc) in increasing the disparity between the upper and lower classes.

Depends on how radical you want to be in this paper, do you want to be a Walter "Moderate" Block?  Abolish Child Labor laws? Abolish Welfare? Abolish Government Education?

Or you can be slightly less radical and discuss abolishing Rent Control, Minimum Wage, or Price Gouging laws.

I have not read Meltdown, so I do not know specifically what sectors Tom Woods discusses in the book, but what areas would you be interested in writing about?  I assume one would be abolishing the Federal Reserve because of the "inflation tax"?

You can take this in so many different directions, but it should be in areas that YOU are interested in, not necessarily what the people on the forums are interested in. You are the one who will ultimately be writing the paper.

gilaltom3:
I don't post or read here as often as I should (see: post count), but I'm trying to further my understanding of economics and, more specifically, the Austrian school.

Post count doesn't mean much.  There are people here who have thousands of posts who are... let us say... "lacking" in the economics department. :)

As long as you are interested in learning more, there is always more and more to read and absorb.

My long term project to get every PDF into EPUB: Mises Books

EPUB requests/News: (Semi-)Official Mises.org EPUB Release Topic

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Suggested by Malachi

I have to have at least 2 books, 4 scholarly journal articles, and a policy or research paper "from a reputable source" (which is vague as hell and entirely subjective as far as I'm concerned".

A reputable policy think tank or a University manuscript (like a PhD thesis or something) is what I read out of that.  Brookings Institute, RAND Corporation, the Council on Foreign Relations, etc.

I'd stay away from Tom Woods.  Some professor's aren't above forcing their politics down student's throats.  And if your topic is on the wealth gap (divisive issues like that or " why democracy is/promotes x" raise flags for me)...Just a warning.  Use legitimate academic publications (even I would classify Woods as political propaganda and I like him - Use his sources if possible).

You can use Buchanan's works, Rothbard (as long as it is not an overtly political essay or something - I'd use Power and Market.  It is easy to read and will have everything you are looking for; it got me through micro and macro economics and I didn't even buy the class books!), Hayek, Mises, internal assesments from the Bank for International Settlements (they track worldwide debt well), the IMF (they track economic statistics well even if they ignore logical conclusions from them), the FED websites, the Peterson Institute for International Economics (left wing stuff, but still useful because they admit things the mainstream won't like the ESF is structured so that they don't have to follow any laws), any of the classical economists...

Also, if you are enrolled at a University then you can use about anything from the JSTOR - 100's of academic journals and every issue in their history.  Just search for phrases you want it works well and has been uber useful for me. 

Personally, I'd make the case that bank credit expansion (inflation) is the prime cause and use Rothbard's History of Money and Banking to demonstrate that the private sector banking interests use State authority (I'd use Max Weber's definition of the State) through the central bank in order to secure capital for the biggest banks, states, and corporations in the world.  You could also show that the Central Bank is the entity which combines the State and the private banking cartel.

 

"The Fed does not make predictions. It makes forecasts..." - Mustang19
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Do a Google search for "Boobus Americanus" - a veritible treasure trove of sources awaits! surprise

An idealist is one who, on noticing that roses smell better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup. -H.L. Mencken
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Meltdown by Tom Woods isn't realy filled with anything useful.  Just look up the subjects you intend on writing about. Alot of the Federal Reserve Banks  have good papers on govt intervention although they will have some math in there, but you can avoid the math and still get content or just read the math.

Or you could email an economists.

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I'll give you sources for your term paper if you give me sources for mine! Know any good sources for the history of American naval treaties? -_-

Just kidding. What time period does your paper cover?

 

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I suggest you write a satirical essay expounding the positive effects of socialism in a country.

Source: USSR, NK, CUBA, East Germany.

 

“Since people are concerned that ‘X’ will not be provided, ‘X’ will naturally be provided by those who are concerned by its absence."
"The sweetest of minds can harbor the harshest of men.”

http://voluntaryistreader.wordpress.org

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You could start with http://www.cato.org/research/articles/cpr28n4-1.html

Then, look up the original work by Yandle on B&B

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Thanks for all the suggestions guys!

I like the idea of doing something over bank credit expansion, but I'd like to try another way the government hurts the economy as well. 

 

I'd like to use something from the CATO institute, but he has repeatedly hated on it throughout the semester so I'd like to shy away from it to protect my grade lol. 

I've got to write a paper this weekend so I'm going to dive into all these suggestions next week. You guys rock as usual!!

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Wheylous replied on Sat, Oct 27 2012 10:50 AM

Hey, if you want something more "respected", you can play to your teacher's biases by citing the Brookings Institution. They have a guy named Clifford Winston who appears to have a pro-market slant. He has works such as

Last Exit: Privatization and Deregulation of the U.S. Transportation Industry

First Thing We Do, Let’s Deregulate All the Lawyers

He summarizes some of his views here:

http://www.brookings.edu/~/media/research/files/testimony/2007/3/23useconomics%20winston/20070323winston

Here is his book:

http://www.brookings.edu/views/papers/winston/20061003.pdf

I'm reading parts of it and it is a pretty amazing book. The section on the reality of antitrust regulations (with empricial studies) blows my mind. Turn out that after trusts are broken up, prices tend to rise and consumer welfare is not increased.

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Here's an article that could help show you the ropes of the Austrian business cycle theory. It's called Credit Expansion, Economic Inequality, and Stagnant Wages. http://mises.org/daily/2847

For a book, try Thomas Sowell's Economic Facts and Fallacies. Specifically chapter 5, which is called "Income Facts and Fallacies."

Those should do you some good.

 

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