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fegeldolfy Posted: Fri, Nov 30 2012 12:11 PM

A fan, asking for help in a debate, posted this on the Mises Institute Facebook page:



Debate rebuttal assistance please: I'm new to Mises and was presented with this during a debate: 
And as far as von Mises's hair-brained psuedo-economics go, they tried that in Chile under Pinochet, we saw how that worked out. Economic freedom for a lucky few at the expense of everyone else imposed at the barrel of a gun. According to various reports and investigations 1,200–3,200 people were killed, up to 80,000 were interned, and up to 30,000 were tortured by his regime including women and children. Some freedom there. 

It's not coincidental that von Mises praised Fascism as the salvation of Europe (his only criticism being that it didn't go far enough), that Murray Rothbard and Lew Rockwell supported the discredited idea of so-called scientific racism and supported the political campaigns of neo-Nazi and Klansman David Duke, that von Hayek advised the Pinochet regime and advocated to Margaret Thatcher that she follow his model (she wisely rejected the idea) or that José Piñera, Pinochet's minister of mining and labor is a senior fellow at the Koch brother owned Cato Institute. American Libertarianism and Anarcho-capitalism are nothing more than the same ideology repackaged in a thin wrapper of liberty and freedom rhetoric to be marketed the tragically naive.

 

I posted my response:


Has this person ever read Mises? Could he tell you about his regression theorem? Praxeology? Economic calculation? He doesn't provide any criticisms of Mises's "hair-brained pseudo-economics" at all. First off, they did not try Misesian economics in Chile under Pinochet, it was mostly Friedmanite (Chicago school) economics. Any Austrian influence came from Hayek. Secondly, he doesn't even criticize Friedmanite economics! His whole argument is that the economics are wrong because Pinochet was a dictator. That's like me saying socialism is wrong because Stalin was a dictator. No, socialism is wrong because it can't calculate, the labor theory of value is invalid, etc. Obviously when you have a dictator there's going to be murder by the state;that's the point,it's a dictator! 
 
Next, Mises did not praise fascism. That quote has been taken way out of context. In the previous paragraphs he was criticizing fascism, and in the next sentence he basically said it was stupid and people shouldn't get too excited about it. I haven't heard anything about the Rothbard-Rockwell stuff, though I doubt it's true. As far as I can tell, he is correct on the Hayek stuff, although Hayek's strength was in economics, not in ethics or political science; he was probably the only Austrian who could be considered a "neoliberal". I also don't know anything about Jose Pinera, but I think I should point out that most Misesians/Rothbardians want nothing to do with the beltway Kochs and Cato Institute.
 
I'm sure I got some stuff wrong.
 
Anyways, I'm sure you've all heard these criticisms before, but I still thought it would be interesting for discussion and to hear your responses.

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Mises was a Jew who was persecuted under fascism. Yeah, I'll bet he loved it alright.

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fegeldolfy replied on Fri, Nov 30 2012 12:22 PM

I know,right? And Rothbard, also a Jew, was an evil neo-nazi who praised Hitler.

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Sphairon replied on Fri, Nov 30 2012 12:26 PM

It is pretty obvious that this person is trying their hardest to associate Mises et al with any bad word they can find.

Your response was pretty good and similar to what I would've written, but the people running the Facebook page should simply delete such troll comments. Not because they should be afraid of "the truth", but because the buzzword-slinger will always get more attention than the reasonable guy, and LvMI shouldn't lend its Facebook page to such purposes.


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idol replied on Fri, Nov 30 2012 12:27 PM

This is nothing more than an exercise in propaganda. Next this person will say Mises worshipped Hitler and Rothbard dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

 

Also, the Koch brothers have done a lot of good for the liberty movement. It was Charles Koch who paid Rothbard an entire year's salary to do nothing else but write the Ethics of Liberty. 

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fegeldolfy replied on Fri, Nov 30 2012 12:35 PM

That is true, the Kochs are a lot better than leftists will admit; however, they aren't perfect or consistent.

Sort of like Rockefeller. Standard Oil was pretty great, but he was involved (or his heirs were) in the Fed, the progressive era, etc.

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I find it interesting that dumb liberals and dumb neoconservatives called Ron Paul an anti-semite for not worshipping Israel when all of his ideas are based off of ideas that came from Jews, i.e. Rothbard, Mises, Rand, Kirzner, Block, Machlup, etc.

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It's pretty sad that when you google "Lew Rockwell" the second suggestion is "Lew Rockwell Racist". 

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All you have to do is shout "racist" in response to any argument and that argument is automatically shut down.

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Funny thing is that the progressive movement was born in racism. Woodrow Wilson, widely considered to be the big progressive, found The Birth of a Nation to be his favorite movie ever. This is opposed to a small-government libertarian conservative like Calvin Coolidge who was the first President to have black people in positions of power.

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idol replied on Fri, Nov 30 2012 6:56 PM

Source on the Calvin Coolidge claim? That's a fun fact.

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Examiner replied on Fri, Nov 30 2012 8:43 PM

 

fegeldolfy:
I know,right? And Rothbard, also a Jew, was an evil neo-nazi who praised Hitler.
 
Yeah, they're obviously hurling falsities at Austrians, but they're currently just making stuff up. How easy do you think it would be for them to build a convincing, though still false, case based on actual evidence?
 
Some prominent Mises people (Robert Murphy, Stephan Kinsella, and Jeffrey Tucker) along with lots of other people who are out there advocating Austrian ideas currently associate with and highly praise the thinking of a man who wrote the following without retracting it:
But so what? What’s the problem with shaking things up? Why is it so difficult for people to break out of unhealthy or unproductive relationships?
 
The answer is, in my view, because mental health has always been defined in social terms – a combination of sustained relationships and productive work. In other words, a popular Auschwitz guard with a long marriage is the very definition of mental health. Moral considerations do not form the basis of mental heath – a compliant Nazi is considered more ‘healthy’ than an outcast one. This form of ‘social ethics’ is largely due to the Jewish influence over psychology. It would be hard for a Jew to say that individual morality is more important than social acceptance, since to be ‘Jewish’ is to automatically place the authority of the group over the conscience of the individual – just as Christians, socialists, Muslims and soldiers do.
The idea, you see, is that Christians and so on might be collectivistic and everything, but it took the Jews (you know, the people with the catchphrase "the only good Nazi is a compliant Nazi!") to ruin a profession millions of people turn to for help.
 
You too can help the cause of individualism by talking in terms of group stereotypes with full seriousness! In case you think he's just speaking in general themes rather than about every individual in a collective, he also said:
[Rothbard] was almost certainly circumcised as an infant, and so questioning the right of parents to aggress against their children would probably have been emotionally very, very painful.
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Who wrote that?

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Was it Lew Rockwell?

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I got those quotes from a discussion entitled "Rothbard on Children (not for the squeamish)" and from the blog post "Are People Just Stupid?", which is worth reading as a whole for all the additional wonders therein, including the comment left.

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I remember saying things when I was younger that I would not have said today. I once said that I would vote for Bill Clinton if I was able to and I have never retracted that statement. However, my mind has changed. Perhaps I should go on Facebook and announce that fact.

 

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
Rabbi Lapin: "Let's make bricks!"
Stephan Kinsella: "Say you and I both want to make a German chocolate cake."

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Walden replied on Sat, Dec 1 2012 7:19 PM

Why is Molyneux's "stereotype" incorrect?

The major psychologists at the turn of the 19th century were almost exclusively Jews. To this day 'dissension and disobedience to authority' are considered disorders in the DSM. Let's not belabor this though. Consider that the treatment of Israeli dissentors on the issue of Palestine. (Just google 'israel dissent.') Maybe they'll send the police your house while you get castigated by your local Rabbi or whatever. Why is it this colassal irony is playing out today? Open your eyes, goyim.

Your attitude is designed to shut down discussion of the issue- it does not make into a clear thinker or a moral person, it just means you were well trained in school to react negatively to any criticism directed toward non-whites. In other words, a perfectly healthy specimine.

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Daniel Muffinburg:

I remember saying things when I was younger that I would not have said today. I once said that I would vote for Bill Clinton if I was able to and I have never retracted that statement. However, my mind has changed. Perhaps I should go on Facebook and announce that fact.

I'd propose that the question is whether the correction will avoid significant problems. Mr. Molyneux has quite a collection of statements that cause trouble for people. It wouldn't be much of a stretch for this to cause trouble if nonlibertarians hear of him, which is something he tries to make happen, and decided to dig a bit into the interesting-sounding philosophy of the man.

Walden:

Why is Molyneux's "stereotype" incorrect?

The major psychologists at the turn of the 19th century were almost exclusively Jews. To this day 'dissension and disobedience to authority' are considered disorders in the DSM. Let's not belabor this though. Consider that the treatment of Israeli dissentors on the issue of Palestine. (Just google 'israel dissent.') Maybe they'll send the police your house while you get castigated by your local Rabbi or whatever. Why is it this colassal irony is playing out today? Open your eyes, goyim.

Your attitude is designed to shut down discussion of the issue- it does not make into a clear thinker or a moral person, it just means you were well trained in school to react negatively to any criticism directed toward non-whites. In other words, a perfectly healthy specimine.

You may be totally correct, but I can't see it yet from your argument for a few reasons.

The primary thing is that that mindset is hardly limited to the Jews. This may be a valid stereotype but of humans in general, which would make singling out the Jews misleading. It's possible that the reason that dissent was so readily equated with mental illness was because the vast majority, independent of whether Jewish, already thought that ahead of time. The fact that so many of the early psychologists were Jewish might be a mere accident, and it also stands to reason that you might have gotten the same sort of theories from anyone.

The other big issue is that you're pointing to Israelis, who live in a relatively dangerous country, rather than Jews in general. It may be that that is another example of danger inspiring people to attack those who don't adhere to the group. It may be something else. Saying that it's because they're Jews and that this applies, throughout the world, to Jews more than other collectives are two things you've not yet established.

A smaller issue about Mr. Molyneux's argument is that it focuses on psychology when the claim is about their attitudes in general. Similarly, yours focuses on the current DSM, which came far later than the opening of last century, and on dissenters on one particular issue in one country. If the clear evidence ends up to consist only of what happened in a few rather small areas, it would indicate that it is a fluke rather than a general trend. In such a situation, a focus on the few areas where the trend looks best will be convincing and misleading.

To be clear about it, these are all merely hypotheticals that are possible. I don't necessarily hold to any of them. They just show that your argument doesn't address a lot of very possible situations, and so it's not yet a conclusive argument.

As far as my attitude, I don't think that I have that attitude.

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Walden replied on Sat, Dec 1 2012 11:19 PM

I don't think that I have that attitude.

You only have a few posts here and you've zeroed in and put a lot of effort analyzing an offhand comment about Jews Molyneux made in a blog in 2005. On what criterion do you believe this to be so important?

It's very easy for me to infer that this is because of the very high sensitivity toward criticism of the designated 'minority groups,' as is now so fashionable.

The primary thing is that that mindset is hardly limited to the Jews.

Nowhere does he say it is, in the next sentence he lists other groups where collectivist thinking also exists. I think his overarching theory is that psychoanalysis did not challenge it (although to the extent that collectivism can damage the health of an individual should be of great concern) because collectivism is a normal part of their religion.

Whether this is a result of their Jewish upbringing or outlook is open for debate. I do know that many Jews the world over are educated for an in-group centric view, and this is accepted today, as are all minority displays of pride and in-group behavior.

The other big issue is that you're pointing to Israelis, who live in a relatively dangerous country, rather than Jews in general.

Israel was intentionally set up as a religious/ethnic state to begin with. Zionism is inextricably connected with Judaism. Israel is like their promised land or something.

My cursory knowledge of psychology, especially as it applies to religious beliefs like the afterlife, leads me to believe that being part of a 'chosen people' and other religious myths have a powerful effect on one's psychology and behavior. The wars, migrations and political events through history tells us that religion is very powerful. That religion would not play a part seems to be a much more implausible idea.

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