Links for January 24, 2011: Planet Money Compares Socialism and Libertarianism; When Is a Mural not a Mural?; SCOTUS Revisits “Knock and Announce”; others….

January 23, 2011

Thomas E. Woods, Jr.

  • Tom Woods | People Who Deserve to Be Better Known

    I knew one only one of the five on this list. I’m sure you will be reading more from them all here in no time. Thanks to Tom Woods for sharing, and I’m glad to pass it along!

  • http://public.npr.org/anon.npr-mp3/npr/blog/2010/09/20100917_blog_pmoney.mp3?_kip_ipx=1874937601-1295886944

    Nice talk with socialist economic professor Richard Wolff. If anyone out there could possibly convince me that socialism is the way to go, it would be a professor of economics who believes it. I don’t believe he makes his case here in this segment, but I’m sure it would be impossible to do so in such a small window time.

    Wolff seems to think that part of the problem with capitalism is that there is a conflict of interest between business leaders and laborers. Of course there is such a conflict, but in a world of scarce resources, there will always be conflicts of interest between producers and consumers. Everybody has an interest in producing less and consuming more, and that interest conflicts with everyone else’s interest to do the same. Abolishing capitalism will not alter this reality.

    Wolff advocates a more democratic workplace. He evidently wants rules of some kind that would limit the types of businesses that people are allowed to create. Only those businesses that allow workers the prescribed amount of say in the goings on of the business are to be permitted. Wolff does not say here whether he expects everyone to adhere to these rules voluntarily or if he has in mind some sort of enforcement apparatus. But here in our capitalist society, people are perfectly free to create democratic workplaces. The usually do not, because they want a certain amount of control over their own creations and they want to ensure adequate returns for themselves. If all these other rules are placed upon the act of starting a business, I’m sure you will see far fewer people willing to take the risk.

    Not that I’m entitled to the increased productivity the a capitalist societies, but why not freedom? Nobody forces one particular person to work for another particular person, and nobody should force business models that they find appealing on the entrepreneurs who are producing, innovating, and making things happen.

  • http://public.npr.org/anon.npr-mp3/npr/blog/2010/09/20100921_blog_pmpod.mp3?_kip_ipx=1614643902-1295887909

    Adam Davidson: I’m just trying to think how my life would be different [in a libertarian society].

    David Boaz: You would be much richer, you would be happier, you would be better looking, you would be taller.

    Adam Davidson: Would I be stronger?

    DB: Absolutely.

    AD: Could I eat fattening foods but somehow maintain a slim physique?

    DB: Yes, probably. … With faster economic growth, we’d have better technology. And we probably would have all these miracle fats that don’t put any weight on you.

    This is the promised Libertarian follow-up to the above discussion with a socialist. The exchange above, I’m sure, is a tongue-in-cheek jab at those who describe libertarians as utopian. Do not take it all literally, but we surely would at least have faster economic growth. It’s a shame that I feel like I have to explain this.  Read the rest of this entry »


  • Links for September 27, 2010: Much Ado about the Tea Party, Unequal Justice Before the Law, others…

    September 26, 2010

    Anyone for Tea? (photo: miya)

    1. One sign of the tea party movement’s success is that the term “tea party” is becoming an all-purpose smear term for any more-or-less right-wing person or activity that the writer doesn’t like. In fact, I think “Tea Party” is replacing “neocon” as an all-purpose word for “the people I hate.”

    2. I’m glad we got that out of the way. Maybe after tea-partiers learn to “eye” people correctly, we can graduate to talking about the real issues.

    3. No longer content with bellowing accusations of racism, I see we’ve graduated to accusations of terrorism. Is Jen Phillips seems more interested in having the whole of the Tea Party movement added to the list of terror threats than she is in having Climate Ground Zero removed—for little more than supporting and defending the Second Amendment. Read the rest of this entry »