Little Alex in Wonderland | Honest Statism Beats a Fake ‘Free Market’ Every Time
“The point, Welch said, is not that a socialized system is better than a private system. The point is that their honestly socialized system is better than our socialized corporate system masquerading as a ‘private’ one.” —- An idea I played with a while ago, after having watched Michael Moore’s SiCKO during the summer of 2008 (“SiCKO has opened me to the possibility that a [sic] socialized health care may even be better for us than the congressional-industrial complex that apparently controls health care in this country today.”). It’s good to see Matt Welch at Reason.com on the same page. Boy, this commentating stuff is easy! I still don’t buy the claim, made later in the article, that the public option would be self-financing, but perhaps there is something to be said for the “competition” it would create.
- The Christian Science Monitor | Greenspan the libertarian
Good to see the Christian Science Monitor cross-posting from the Mises Institute blog! The post endeavors to set the record straight on “Greenspan the libertarian”, but it is very poorly titled, and was so in the original post.
- Lost Liberty Café | SEPTA… and a Gun
I was wondering myself why SEPTA has no competition. Other busses are apparenlty legally allowed in Philadelphia, but may be thwarted by regulations and union activities. See Section 9-403 of Philadelphia’s municipal code for more on Philadelphia’s bussing regulations. Read the rest of this entry »
- World Socialist Party (US) | Labor Theory of Value
Looking for a simple, concise explanation of the theory, I find instead this litany of apologetics. Written almost entirely on the defensive, the article explains nothing about the Labor Theory of Value except why Marx scoffed at requests to explain it: — “if one wanted to ‘explain’ from the outset all phenomena that apparently contradict the law, one would have to provide the science before the science” (Collected Works vol. 43, p. 68). I don’t know if that explanation satisfies you, but I find it wanting. I think, ultimately, Marx uses the word “VALUE” as a term of art that means simply that part of an item’s existence attributable to the labor required to produce it. So, if I spent 50 man-hours making 50,000 turd sandwiches, Marx would “VALUE” those turd sandwiches at the going rate for 50 man-hours of labor. Sure, the labor theory of value makes sense in THAT context, but what about real life, in which we don’t always have the luxury of defining words as we please?
Update: It has come to my attention after listening to a lecture on the opening chapter of Marx’s Capital that Marx believed that useless items had no value. He actually employed three terms of art, and what he saw as the relationships between them, to describe what a layman would call “value”. The terms are: use value, exchange value, and value. An explanation of this in the linked article would have been helpful.
- reason.tv | Don’t Get Hurt
Fear of addiction and other harms resulting from prescription pain-killers is overblown, argues Ted Balaker at Reason. Read the rest of this entry »