September 2009 - Posts

25 September 2009
Society Versus State in Seven Epochs
I perceive political history as Murray Rothbard and Albert Jay Nock perceived it: as a struggle between free society and the state. 1 I do not pretend to be an impartial observer of that struggle. As an amateur historian I aim to be what Lord Acton called a "hanging judge", freely condemning... Read More...
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18 September 2009
On Socialism
Socialism inevitably leads to destitution and famine in direct proportion to the thoroughness with which it is applied. This has been shown to be true historically, with or without Marxist ideology or 20th century totalitarianism. It has starved 17th century colonists in Virginia and Plymouth just as... Read More...
13 September 2009
Character as Inverse Time Preference
It is useful to divide "virtuous behavior" into two categories: 1) actions which are motivated by conscience and 2) actions considered virtuous, but which are not motivated by conscience. The first category concerns man's morality . The second concerns man's character . While moral... Read More...
13 September 2009
The Watchmen: Moral Philosophy Face-Off
Note: This is a post a wrote a while ago on another site. Stories featuring super-heroes, like the ancient myths featuring gods, can be an excellent medium for exploring broad issues through allegory. The super-human characters can personify competing ideologies and forces. The movie Watchmen , as well... Read More...
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05 September 2009
On Refinement and Self-Restraint
There's a monkey in the jungle Watching a vapour trail Caught up in the conflict Between his brain and his tail -Gorillaz A most common conceit among philosophers is the idea that their motivations are fundamentally different from those of the common man. They draw a sharp distinction between the... Read More...
03 September 2009
On State Propagandists
One sub-set of the mandarin is the state propagandist. The earliest surviving instance of state propaganda also happens to be the earliest well-documented piece of history: the inscribed cylinders which document the border struggles between the rival Sumerian city-states Lagash and Umma between ca. 2450... Read More...
02 September 2009
The Throne/Altar Principle
The Throne/Altar Principle is a sub-set of the Magistrate/Mandarin Principle. The latter principle states: The state is a maleficent symbiosis of enslaving brigands (magistrates) and corrupt intellectuals (mandarins). Throughout history magistrates have used mandarins to manufacture consent (through... Read More...
01 September 2009
The 19th-Century Bernanke: Featured on Mises.org
My article The 19th-Century Bernanke (originally posted here ) is featured today on the Ludwig von Mises Institute web site. Here are the links for... the article comments MP3 audio file (read by Floy Lilley) I hope you will enjoy reading or listening to it. Here's an excerpt Like Ben Bernanke today... Read More...