I'm curious what internal debates/divisions/sects/etc there are in Austrian economics.
Off the top of my head I would guess/have heard of:
-"the Hayekians and the Miseans about microeconomic theory"
-differing versions of praxeology
-whethor not say's law is true and/or the correct interpretation of [the true] say's law
-whether it makes sense to graph a lot of stuff mainstreamers do like diagrammatic models (roger garrison seems to think so, but I've heard of many Austrians not liking his work on this)
-whether there is such a thing as "Austrian macroeconomics" and/or if it can be expressed in terms of microeconomic foundations
-free banking vs. other and/or 100% reserves vs less than 100%, etc
There isn't a huge deal of difference between Hayek and Mises on the economic front.
I'd say the primary ones are:
-Theory of time preference as the main explanation of interest rates (Hulsmann, Murphy and Reisman)
-Theory of entrepreneurship
-Methodology - almost all are committed to an a priori framework but they tend to back it via different theories and often try and reconcile it with differing philosophers (e.g. Wittgenstein, Popper etc.) The main rift here is Aristotle vs Kant, really.
Very few Austrians disagree on Say's Law. The divide between the Hayekian and Misesian-Rothbardian branches is not very big, it tends to be on specific points of argument, e.g. entrepreneurship. Reisman, on the other hand, is very influenced by the classical economists and he does a lot to weave their theory in with Austrian economics, so his approach is often different, even if he agrees on the fundamentals. Then you have Lachmann and the radical subjectivists. The stuff re graphs etc. are mostly not major sources of contention.
Where you will find a lot of debate is libertarian political theory. Austrian econ has internal debates but they're quite focused and tend to concern questions of applying theory more than anything else.
Freedom of markets is positively correlated with the degree of evolution in any society...
Okay, so you're saying the main internal disputes are:
1) Debate over whether or not time preference is the *primary* explanation of interest rates. Are these three guys listed on different sides?
2) Role of entrepreneurship
3) free banking vs. other
5) a priori vs non a priori
6) Lachmann's radical subjectivism vs. other (more common)
Also, I'm curious, what do you mean "inflationists" and "deflationists"?
Re 1), yes they offer differing arguments on the matter. Reisman does it in accounting for profits more than anything else, and Hulsmann in re-formulating the ABCT; I think Murphy has a paper explicitly addressed to the topic. For 2) it's more about the nature of entrepreneurship than its role.
I don't know of any Austrians who deny the existence of a priori knowledge. I wouldn't take them seriously if they did. Rather, the internal debates tend to concern which brand of apriorism best accounts for the validity of a priori concepts and the process of discovering them. I mean there's Hayek who had more "empiricist" undertones but we're not talking about a huge gap between him and Mises.
Inflationists/deflationists refers to the debate going on as to whether the money supply is actually expanding or contracting (via debts being paid off etc), and so whether we can expect hyper-inflation round the corner. The two sides are in agreement over the fact that at some point the system will suffer a hyper-inflationary collapse as far as I am aware. It's a very technical debate concerning the workings of fractional reserve banking.
The main modern debate IMO is between the Mises Institute and the Goerge Mason Univeristy brand of Austrianism. The debate really comes down to the philosophical method of how we perceive reality, rationalism or empiricism.
The LvMI are mainly rationalists, who truly reject empirical knowledge in the realm of the social sciences. The GMU are all very open to empirical observation, and thus they prefer Hayek, and are into such things as the public choice school, game theory and hermeneutics, which true Misesians regard as nonsense.
Its no suprise that the GMU Austrians hate pure rationalists and logical deducers such as Hans Hoppe, and most of them are very open to Milton Friedmans empirical neoclassical methods, often admiting they are half Austrian half Neo-Classical economists.
I wouldn't phrase it as such. As David Gordon's recent article on Leland Yeager demonstrated, the Austrians have little issue with empirical methods per se. It is the usage of the hypothetico-deductive methodology positivists advocate, that they find troublesome and useless in economics. I don't think it's correct to say the Austrians reject empirical methods, so much as they reject the notion of "testing" and model building, i.e. specific forms of empiricism.
I also dislike phrasing it in terms of a GMU/LVMI dichotomy, because some of the GMU types like Boettke are very solid on methodology and Austrian econ in general. Public choice theory comports nicely with the Austrian method and the school's overall approach. And it was an Austrian who pioneered game theory, after all. It's just a theoretical device, though I agree with you on hermeneutics by and large.
The debate between rationalism and empiricism is largely dead. Most consistent, solid forms of empiricism have rationalism at their base. Nonsense like positivism is dying out amongst non-economists. Some economists choose to keep hold of their physics envy and still think science proceeds in the way they perceive that physics does. I'm undecided on where Hayek stood on epistemology, but I am of the view that a lot of his later work is confused. I'd need to read more of it before drawing any conclusions though. From what I could tell, he and Mises were largely talking past each other, without a huge deal of genuine disagreement between them. This is a point Roderick Long made in his book on Wittgenstein and Mises as far as I recall.
I agree with what you say here Jon, but be aware I am painting this 'split' with a broad brush.
Another important difference between these schools...not only do the LvMI and GMU split differ regarding Austrianism, but they vastly split regarding ethics and rights. LvMI is (mostly) Rothbard and Hoppe style natural rights / anarcho capitalism. GMU is almost all empiricists and utilitarians regarding ethics and rights. These split in these two branches of ethics and rights is the end result of differing logical structure, how the mind percieves reality, rationalism vs empiricism.
Why is this important for economics? IMO - even if you claim to be a praxeologist and use the deductive method in the social sciences, but your view on ethics and rights are empirical and utilitarian, you are still going to end up with a penchant for the state, social engineering and soft interventionism. This is where Hayek and Milton Friedman ended up, and its no suprise to me the GMU crowd as well.
what austrian pioneered game theory?
^ oskar morgenstern with john von neumann.
Ambition is a dream with a V8 engine - Elvis Presley