Monday, April 13, 2020

The Coronavirus Must Not Be Allowed to Make the Dollar into the New Toilet Paper

Do not be surprised if, a year from now, prices are 20 percent or more higher than they are today and that tens of millions of elderly people on fixed incomes suffer greatly as a result.
The recently enacted “stimulus” legislation costing $6.2 trillion can be paid for only by the printing of new and additional money in that amount, which will represent an increase in the M1 money supply to substantially more than double its present height.
This amount of increase in the money supply is sufficient by itself to double or more than double prices and totally destroy the finances of the elderly, if not by next year, then over the next few years.
With today’s mentality of bottomless economic ignorance and reckless irresponsibility, the plight of the elderly will likely be met by still more “stimulus.”
We are in process of destroying the dollar.
The long-run solution is to deprive the government of the power to create money, which can be accomplished by restoring the gold standard and requiring that the issuance of new and additional paper money be limited by the increase in the supply of gold.
The immediate solution is to go back to work and end the seeming need for trillions of additional paper dollars, the consequences of which will be worse than any the Coronavirus could produce.
The lockdowns are in violation of The First Amendment’s prohibition of laws violating the freedoms of religion and of assembly. They are also in violation of the Ninth Amendment’s implicit recognition of the right to work.
Organizing should be started on a million-man march on Washington to demand the end of lockdowns and the government’s ability to create limitless quantities of paper money.
Let all who are at risk from the Coronavirus take precautions. But do not consider as a precaution the destruction of money and the economic system.
We must not allow trillions to become the new billions, and then the new millions, and the paper dollar to become the new toilet paper.

A video version of this post can be found on YouTube under the title "No Toilet Paper Dollar." It's at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96Z8VTiE8iw&feature=youtu.be

Thursday, April 02, 2020

Major Inflation and Great Depression at the Same Time?


Re: https://mises.org/wire/why-world-has-dollar-shortage-despite-massive-fed-action
Mises.org: Why the World Has a Dollar Shortage


Dear Bob,

I’ve  just read not only the article but also all the comments that followed it, and I thank you for calling it to my attention. I had not been aware of the extent of the dollar’s use in debt issuance abroad.

If possible, I’d like to get some more information. For example, the volume of dollar denominated debt issued outside the US relative to dollar denominated debt issued inside the US. The volume of externally issued dollar denominated debt relative to Euro, Yen, and Yuan denominated debt. The volume  of dollar denominated debt owed by foreign banks to US banks and of such debt in general owed by foreign firms and individuals to US banks and other US lenders, including corporations selling on short-term credit.

The world’s alleged dollar “shortage” is of the same character as a heroin addict’s heroin shortage. There’s an artificial need that’s created by consuming the supply, getting hooked on it, and then needing an ever growing supply. In this case, cutting back on the supply, not increasing it, would eliminate the “shortage.”

Interestingly, in the German hyperinflation of 1923, there were frequent complaints of currency shortages and the German central bank claimed that it was increasing the supply of marks in response to an increase in the demand for them. What was actually going on was that people were trying to buy goods as fast as possible, before their prices rose still further and needed more cash with which to do so.

The article is making me wonder if we could simultaneously have a world-wide depression as the result of dollars being insufficient to avoid large-scale bankruptcies abroad and their snow-balling effect, and, if not an immediate hyper-inflation, at least a very major surge in consumer prices in the US, because of the massive new and additional money creation now underway with the “bailout” programs.

I’m taking the liberty of publishing my reply to you on my blog and also adding it as a further comment on Mises.org and Dis Cus.



Best regards,

George







Tuesday, March 31, 2020

How Far Left the Democrats Actually Are


It’s clear that today’s Democratic Party is very far left. But it may come as a surprise to learn that it’s further to the left than the Chinese Communist Party! Much further. For example, China has the world’s second largest number of private billionaires and is proud of that fact!

It's still strongly influenced by the legacy of Deng Xiaoping, who reportedly said, “To get rich is glorious” and “Let some people get rich first.” If these words were said in America, the Democrats would denounce them as the “trickle down” theory.

To learn what's right with capitalism and wrong with socialism, and implicitly what's right and wrong with China, first read the book at https://amzn.to/2N44uTu and then, for deeper, more comprehensive knowledge, the book at amzn.to/2PM19ut. Especially Democrats and all other leftists should do this.

 


Monday, March 30, 2020

Coronavirus March 30, 2020



According to worldometer (https://bit.ly/3bDD6rk), the latest US death toll from the Coronavirus is 2,938, an increase of 538 from the 2,400 I reported yesterday. As a percentage, it’s a 22% increase. Relative to US population, it’s now 9.7 per million up from 8 per million.

At a compound daily rate of increase of 22%, the cumulative total of deaths would reach 71,000 by April 15 and 1.4 million by April 30. Thus, an essential element to watch for is a change (hopefully, a sharp decline) in the daily rate of increase.

The worldometer website is updated throughout the day and thus the updates can affect the percentage change. The update used above was as of 1 PM Pacific Daylight Time (GMT-7).

Reisman has numerous works available on Amazon. See http://amazon.com/author/george-reisman

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Actual and Projected Death Rates of the Coronavirus


As of 3/29/20, the death toll in the US is 2,400; globally, it’s 34,000. As a proportion of population (300 million in US and 7 billion globally), that’s 8 per million in the US and less than 5 per million globally.

Some prominent politicians have said roughly half the population will catch the virus. If the death rate in this group were 1%, the implication would be 1.5 million US deaths. The sharply lower death rate of .1% would result in 150k US deaths.

The actual death rate and its acceleration or deceleration can easily be calculated every day and can serve as a guide to judging the worsening or tapering off of the disease. To do this, all that’s needed is the cumulative daily death tolls, which are widely reported.

For Reisman’s works available on Amazon, see http://amazon.com/author/george-reisman

Monday, March 23, 2020

A Soviet-Style Economy in America?


America may be headed toward a Soviet-style economy, with permanent pervasive shortages and waiting lines.

This is because Congress and the media believe that massive money creation can offset the massive reductions in production and supply caused by government prohibitions on working.

(The government’s alleged relief and bailout programs all boil down to just one thing: create new and additional money and dump it into the economic system. Even send it to people directly in the mail, in the form of government checks.)

The truth is that increases in money and spending combined with reductions in supply are a double-barreled blast that works to drive prices up. But the rise in prices is already prohibited by anti-“gouging” laws, to which overt, comprehensive price controls may well be added.

The combination of price controls, more demand, and less supply means shortages everywhere that spending strives to increase in the face of less production and supply. In the best-case outcome, i.e., if price controls are removed, or not imposed, it means a surge in prices.

A surge in prices, of course, would mean yet a further decline in the value of accumulated savings on top of the plunge in the stock market and which may be further worsened by a plunge in the bond market.

When one takes account of the consequences of the government’s efforts to combat the Coronavirus, it looks increasingly like the government’s action has served to make a bad situation even worse.


Visit Reisman’s Amazon.com’s author’s page at http://amazon.com/author/george-reisman


Thursday, March 19, 2020

China’s Alleged Overcoming of the Coronavirus

According to the NYT (https://nyti.ms/3bgDFHH), there are no new Coronavirus cases in China except for those brought in from the outside. This is a claim not just about Wuhan but the whole country.

This claim implies that it took no significant time whatever for the disease to spread from Wuhan throughout the rest of China and that now all of China can be assumed to be essentially free of the disease. (There isn’t enough salt to take this with.)

A hypothesis worth considering is that China is desperate for foreign exchange earnings and is getting ready to order its population back to work at risk of being infected or not.

A second hypothesis worth considering is that the Chinese have found that, outside of particular identifiable segments of the population, the death rate from the Coronavirus is much lower than initially believed, perhaps comparable to that of the flu.


P. S. If you don’t like the empty store shelves, wait ‘til you try socialism. Under socialism, empty shelves are so common that it’s such an event when a store has something worth buying that a line immediately begins to form without people even knowing what it is that’s available.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Anti-“Price-Gouging” and the Preference for Suffering Over Profit


The New York Times reports that many hospitals are now rationing hand sanitizer and “crucial respirator masks” while at the same time large quantities of these very items are in the hands of speculators who are prohibited from selling them. (https://nyti.ms/2QwyD1R)

“He has 17,700 Bottles of Hand Sanitizer and Nowhere to Sell Them,” reads the Times’ headline. Thus, people are in desperate need and those who could alleviate their needs are prohibited from doing so.

They are prohibited by a combination of anti-"price gouging” laws, ignorance of economics, and, it appears, a preference for the suffering of the innocent over the profit of those who could supply them.

There is no reason for a shortage of anything if its price is allowed to rise to the point of reducing the quantity demanded to the supply available.

There is no shortage even of gold or diamonds. That is because their price is high enough to limit the quantity of them demanded to the supplies available.

There is certainly no good reason for a shortage of hand sanitizer, respirator masks, bottled water, toilet paper, or anything else. A sufficient rise in price would counter the effect of the sudden increase in the need for these items created by the fear of the Coronavirus.

The rise in price would also serve to increase production, and do so the more rapidly, the greater the rise. For example, a sufficient rise would provide an incentive for round-the-clock production and cover whatever increase in cost of production might take place.

The threat of the Coronavirus has created an urgent new and additional need for such things as hand sanitizer and respirator masks, particularly on the part of the elderly, who are at the greatest risk.

The elderly need to be able to outbid younger people, whose need is less urgent. In a free market, the greater urgency of their need would enable them to outbid younger people even of considerably greater wealth and income, but with a much less urgent need.

This outbidding would not be confined to such things as respirator masks directly, but rather extend to alternative products of the same factors of production as required to make respirator masks.

Thus, the elderly would gain respirator masks, and to make that possible, younger people would somewhat reduce their consumption of other goods that required the same factors of production as required to make respirator masks.

Prices are a reflection of the changing relationships between needs and wants and external facts. When these change, prices must be allowed to change so that the buying and selling decisions of people can change accordingly.

Price controls of any kind prevent people from adjusting their behavior to the changes confronting them. They paralyze people and leave them standing helpless in the face of change.

They are the kind of response one would expect from someone who has made himself deaf, dumb, and blind, utterly oblivious to the changes going on around him.

There is one set of prices appropriate to conditions in which there is no threat of the Coronavirus and another set of prices appropriate to conditions in which there is the threat of the Coronavirus.

It’s insane to ignore the difference and pretend that nothing has changed and thus that prices must not significantly change.


Recognize the difference, allow prices to reflect reality, and such things as the shortages of hand sanitizer and respirator masks faced by hospitals will immediately disappear. For the hospitals are in a position to outbid virtually all other competitors for such things.

For one thing, they could immediately obtain the supplies held by speculators, who, under present conditions, are prohibited from selling them, a situation that is insane.

What is preventing these sales is an apparent preference for the suffering of hospital patients over the profit of the speculators, who have assembled the supplies the hospitals and their patients need.

Ironically, forcibly keeping speculators’ supplies off the market, serves to further increase the price of whatever speculators' supplies do manage to reach the market, because the market’s supply is correspondingly reduced.

The pathological hatred of speculators’ profits and their forcible prevention through threats of fines and jail terms is a cause of hoarding over and above the need to prepare for staying at home to avoid catching the Coronavirus.

If there were no price controls or threat thereof, prices in the present situation would be high enough to keep stocks on the shelves. Thus, people would know that while they might have to pay a very high price for it, what they wanted would at least be available.

They would not have to stockpile against the threat of vital supplies simply not being there when they needed them and thus of taking every opportunity to snatch up supplies whenever they appeared.

(For a critique of all aspects of price controls, see my The Government Against the Economy, available at https://amzn.to/2TSrMS4)
The Government Against the Economy


Wednesday, March 04, 2020

Capital Must Not Be Meat for Socialism’s Ravenous Wild Dogs



Under capitalism, one man may own a string of automobile factories, and one man may own a string of oil fields, pipelines, and refineries. From their wealth comes tens of millions of automobiles and the fuel to power them and to heat the houses of the millions.

Socialists—as immense in their ignorance as they are small in their minds—resent the wealth of those who sustain them and provide them with a civilized existence. They want that wealth for themselves, in the delusion that their consuming it would make their lives easier.

Intellectually, socialists are still in the Dark Ages, when the only use of wealth was in the frame of one’s own consumption. They have never learned that under capitalism, wealth is used in the production of goods for the market and in the purchase of others’ labor to help.

Socialists do not know that the wealth so used, i.e., capital, is the foundation of the supply of products and the demand for labor and thus of the standard of living of everyone, and that the greater the capital, the greater is the wealth and well-being of all.

Socialists, in their small-minded ignorance and envy, call this fact “the trickle-down theory.” Their theory, in contrast, is the loot-and-plunder theory, a theory fit for ravenous wild dogs.  

As I wrote yesterday, socialism is not an economic system. It is merely the negation of capitalism, leaving in its wake chaos, famine, and death.

For more, read the writings of Mises, Rand, and Reisman.

Sunday, March 01, 2020

The Environmentalist Left’s Remarkable New Principle

If we destroy the energy base needed to produce and operate the construction equipment required to build strong, well-made, comfortable houses for billions, we shall be safer from bad weather, environmentalism alleges, than if we retain and enlarge that energy base.

If we destroy our ability to produce and operate refrigerators and air conditioners, we shall be better protected from hot weather than if we retain and enlarge that ability, environmentalism claims.

If we destroy our ability to produce and operate tractors and harvesters, to can and freeze food, to build and operate hospitals and produce medicines, we shall secure our food supply and our health better than if we retain and enlarge that ability, environmentalism asserts.

There is actually a remarkable new principle implied here, concerning how man can cope with his environment. Instead of our taking action upon nature, as we have always believed we must do, we shall henceforth control the forces of nature more to our advantage by means of our inaction.

Indeed, if we do not act, no significant threatening forces of nature will arise! The threatening forces of nature are not the product of nature, but of us! Thus, speaks the environmental movement.

(The above passages are adapted from p. 88 of the author’s Capitalism: A Treatise on Economics, now available in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle editions at https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KCWY0Q.)



Saturday, February 29, 2020

Bernie's and the Left's Homicidal and Suicidal Philosophy


Bernie’s and the Left’s philosophy of socialism and environmentalism, with its hostility to fossil fuels and industrial civilization, is homicidal and suicidal. It is the product of hatred of humanity and human happiness.  

Our survival and well-being depend on industrial civilization. They require that we stop government efforts to manipulate the world’s climate by sacrificing industrial civilization. Only industrial civilization allows us to deal with nature successfully.

Don’t listen to fears of coastal cities being wiped out by rising sea levels allegedly caused by industrial civilization. Without industrial civilization, those cities wouldn’t exist in the first place. With industrial civilization, they can be saved if endangered.

Environmentalism and the Left want them gone. They are not interested in saving them. If they were, they would not be calling for measures making their existence impossible. They would not desire a world with more animal habitat and billions fewer people.

A coming warmer climate and higher sea level, if real, is a miniscule price to pay for a world capable of supporting billions more people and doing so at a level incalculably surpassing that of the pre-industrial ages.

Don’t lose this world out of fear of hot weather and possible floods. And don’t confuse hot weather and floods projected to occur centuries or millennia in the future with what will occur in your lifetime or that of your children or grandchildren, if it ever occurs.

For more, read the author’s Kindle essay “The Toxicity of Environmentalism” and his magnum opus Capitalism: A Treatise on Economics. Both are available at https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KCWY0Q.


Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Bernie’s Financial Plan


If you thought Joe Biden must have some kind of mental problem to say that 150 million people had been killed by guns in the hands of random shooters, you should consider what Bernie Sanders has been saying.

Bernie hopes to raise the trillions needed for The Green New Deal, Medicare for All, and the forgiveness of student loans, by such means as suing the fossil energy firms. Bernie knows that at current market values all these firms taken together are worth trillions.

He plans to make their activities illegal and yet collect those trillions. He hasn’t asked who would buy their assets if their use is illegal. All that he would be able actually to collect is their cash and marketable securities and the scrap value of the rest of their assets.

The disastrous plunge in the value of their assets would be accompanied by a comparable plunge in the average standard of living in the United States. People would be deprived of gasoline, heating oil, and all other such products and products whose production depends on them.

Bernie and his followers do not see the enormous positive contribution that fossil fuels have made both to the number of people able to survive and to the quality of life of virtually all who do. His program is that of a suicidal, murderous moron/maniac.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Why Washington’s Birthday Must Be Restored as a National Holiday


Today is Washington’s Birthday. If we value the principles on which the United States was founded, then Washington’s Birthday deserves to be ranked as our most important national holiday after Independence Day, July 4, for there would be no United States without him.

The relegation of Washington’s Birthday to the shared, ill-named holiday “President’s Day” reflects a marked degradation of his status and of the status of the founding principles of our country.

It should be seen as a half-way mark between reverence for the United States and its founding principles and the contempt shown toward our National Anthem and implicitly toward our country and its founding principles.

As an important step in the restoration of respect for the principles of individual rights and limited government, on which the United States was founded, Washington’s Birthday must be reinstated as a national holiday.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Bring Back Washington's Birthday


Tomorrow is “President’s Day.” It implies that Washington and Lincoln are half as important in American history as Martin Luther King, since he has his own, full holiday while they must share a holiday.
To remedy this injustice, I suggest that Washington’s Birthday be reinstated as a national holiday and that the celebration of Lincoln’s Birthday be combined with that of Martin Luther King in a new holiday called “Black Freedom Day,” which would replace Martin Luther King Day.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Socialism: A Philosophy of Ignoramuses or of Moral Monsters?

This post is an answer to a tweet that can be found at 
https://twitter.com/jordylancaster/status/1227725404603068417?s=12

I certainly don’t hate roads, which, BTW, can be provided privately. What I hate is government ownership of the means of production, which eliminates the incentive of profit and loss, the freedom of individual initiative, and economic competition.

When imposed on the whole economic system, government ownership results in shortages, economic chaos, enslavement, terror, and mass murder. For proof, read the essay below. It’s available for 99¢ at https://amzn.to/2N44uTu


For historical confirmation of the horrible consequences of socialism, look at the record of the Soviet Union and of China under Mao and the more than 100 million murders committed.

A better question and inference than yours is, “What? You like socialism? You must be an incredible ignoramus in economics and history, or else a moral monster.”

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Sanders Is Openly Calling for a Revolution


Sanders is openly calling for a revolution!

(See https://twitter.com/SenSanders/status/1228009835880423426?s=20)

Sanders wants a revolution in order to impose an insane program of government manipulation of the world’s climate by means of sacrificing Industrial Civilization.

Imposing such a program would cause enormous impoverishment and suffering, culminating in mass death, and it would require a totalitarian dictatorship to prevent a counter-revolution.

Sanders is no Scandinavian Social Democrat. He, AOC, and all the other supporters of the “Green New Deal” are advocates of a program that cannot be imposed and maintained other than by revolution and dictatorship.

This is why everyone who owns a gun should keep it, and why everyone who doesn’t own a gun should buy one.

Greenspan et al. for Carbon Tax

This post is taken from a tweet thread by the author made on January 23, 2020.

According to Bloomberg news, just about everybody who’s anybody in the world of economics or finance has endorsed the imposition of a gradually rising carbon tax to reduce CO2 emissions (https://bloom.bg/2GjxXHs).

To which I say, the greater the number of such public figures, and of celebrities in general, who endorse such a measure, the greater the proof of the intellectual corruption of our age.

For this and all other measures aimed at constricting the use of man-made power—i.e., fossil fuels and atomic energy—are measures that threaten the well-being and the very lives of billions of people. They are measures of mass murder and mass suicide.  

Prior to the Industrial Revolution, global population was stagnant at around 1 billion people, despite birthrates far higher than those of today. Now it is it well over 7 billion, virtually all of whom live at a far higher level than did their ancestors.

What made this possible was the addition to the feeble muscle power of human beings, the power of machines and tools fueled by steam power, internal combustion, electricity, radiation. These have radically and progressively increased the productivity of labor.

This has meant an increase in the supply of goods relative to the supply of labor. This in turn has made it possible for the increase in the quantity of money and volume of spending in the economic system to raise wages much more than prices, and thus to raise the general standard of living.

Reducing the use of man-made power must inescapably reduce the productivity of labor and thus the general standard of living. The further it goes, the greater the number of people it will kill. And those who survive will live in greater and greater poverty.

A carbon tax is an enfeeblement tax, a tax resulting in a general reduction in human capability and productivity. It is literally insane, in that it implies that we make ourselves safer by making ourselves weaker and less capable.

Think of it as believing that Samson was made safe by cutting his hair, the source of his strength.

The truth is that if we destroy our industrial foundations, more and more of us will die and while they still live, live in abject poverty. Far better to keep our strength—our productive power— and increase it.

In 1940, Great Britain evacuated 300,000 soldiers from Dunkirk in 48 hours, under the threat of German guns. From 1776 to 1876, the United States was settled from the Appalachian Mountains to the Pacific Ocean.

Over the course of the centuries in which global temperature and sea levels are projected to rise, the human race, armed with the energy it is capable of having, could easily settle northern and central Canada, Greenland, Siberia, Alaska, and Antarctica if necessary.

If they actually come into existence, rising global temperature and sea levels would not be a threat to a free people. They would be a devastating threat to an enslaved people, strangled by restraints on their ability to use energy.

To learn more, be sure to visit http://amazon.com/author/george-reisman, where all of his publications on Amazon.com are offered.

Falsely Shouting “Fire” in a Crowded Theater

This post is from a tweet-thread made by the author on January 18, 2020.

Enemies of freedom cite prohibiting falsely shouting “fire” in a crowded theater as an example of the necessity of sometimes violating freedom, in this case, the freedom of speech. The truth is that it is the person falsely shouting “fire” who is the violator of freedom.
The freedom he violates is the freedom of the audience members and the theater owner to contract for the production and enjoyment of a theatrical performance, whether live or on film. The audience members have bought tickets and have a property right in the performance.
Thus, the person who falsely shouts “fire” is destroying what is the property of the audience members. At the same time he is implicitly trespassing on the property of the theater owner.
The theater owner has admitted him to the theater on the implicit assumption that he is there to watch a performance, not to destroy the right of others to watch it. Doing that is using the owner’s property against his will. It is a form of theft.
Ironically, so far from being the victim of a violation of his freedom of speech, it is the person falsely shouting “fire” who is violating the freedom of speech.
In falsely shouting “fire,” he violates the freedom of speech of the actors, playwrights or screenwriters, and of the theater owner. Their spoken content, or role in its creation or dissemination, is suppressed by the false shout of “fire.” 
Thus, so far from being a violation of freedom of speech, to the extent that the threat of a fine or jail term for someone falsely shouting “fire” in a crowded theater prevents such actions, it serves to protect and uphold the freedom of speech and freedom in general.
All this applies to today’s disruptions on college campuses. Serious penalties for disrupters shouting down an invited speaker are essential to restore freedom of speech there. There is no more a freedom to disrupt a lecture by means of speech or noise-making of any kind than there is to shout “fire.”
To learn more, go to http://amazon.com/author/george-reisman. A good place to start is with the Kindle book “Freedom.” (This essay can also be found in Chapter 1 of Capitalism: A Treatise on Economics, a book which provides practically a full education on the subjects of capitalism and economics.)



Wednesday, February 12, 2020

A Simple and Effective Way to Radically Reduce “Gun Violence”


Every law and regulation rests on the threat of physical force, i.e., all laws and regulations rest on the threat of a violator’s being confronted with officers armed with guns or clubs and being killed by them if he resists. That’s the meaning of “law enFORCEment.”
So, if one is serious about reducing “gun violence” (or "club violence") the simplest, most effective way would be to abolish all laws and regulations that prohibit anything other than an individual’s own use of force or violence.
Likewise, for all laws and regulations that compel any action by an individual who has not first resorted to an act of force or violence or is about to.
Reducing “gun violence” means, above all, reducing gun violence by the government in upholding laws or regulations that constitute acts of aggression against individuals, i.e., against individuals who have not and are not about to use force or violence.
In sharpest contrast, laws using the threat of force and violence against prior or impending such acts, serve to reduce force and violence, both by providing a deterrent to them and by removing from society those who commit them.
Similarly, ownership of guns by private individuals serves as a deterrent to aggression by the government. If, for example, the Jews in Germany had been armed and in a position to kill one or more of the Gestapo members who came to arrest them, the Gestapo may well not have come.
For more, see my Kindle essay “Gun Control: Controlling the Government’s Guns.” Available for 99¢ at https://amzn.to/31AKeRJ.








Sanders and Warren

Reproduced from my tweet-thread of January 16, 2020

Sanders and Warren call each other a liar. See http://bit.ly/30urJ0P
Both Sanders and Warren are far, far left and need to be very careful in engaging in such feuding, because if either of them wins, the other may end up dead, à la Stalin and Trotsky, or Hitler and Röhm.
Advocacy of force and violence permeates their Marxist/Socialist philosophy. The only way to get things done, according to it, is to threaten to kill people if they don’t do it. That’s the meaning of making something a matter of law and making laws control all aspects of life.
Laws are enforced by men with clubs and guns, ready to use them in the face of resistance. At the same time, the individual human life is valueless in the eyes of Marxists/Socialists. It’s an egg that must be broken “to make an omelet,” the omelet being socialism.
While Sanders and Warren need to fear each other, the American people need to fear them both. Both advocate a philosophy fit for gun-slinging, club-wielding thugs.
To learn more not only about what is wrong with Marxism/Socialism but also about what is right with Capitalism and its philosophy of individual freedom and rational self-interest, see http://amazon.com/author/george-reisman


Lincoln’s Birthday

Today is Lincoln’s Birthday. It is no longer widely celebrated. Rather, it has been joined together with Washington’s Birthday in “President’s Day.” This was done to make room for Martin Luther King Day without creating a third holiday.
Washington was the father of our country. Without him, we would not have a country. Thus, no one is more deserving of a national holiday than Washington, not even Dr. King.
Therefore, I propose that Washington’s Birthday be reinstated as a national holiday and that Lincoln’s birthday be combined with Dr. King’s birthday as “Black Freedom Day.” Lincoln freed the slaves, Dr. King helped secure their descendants’ civil rights.
I propose January 29 as the date of the new holiday, which will replace “President’s Day.” This date falls exactly 14 days after the birthday of Dr. King and 14 days before the birthday of President Lincoln.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Bernie Sanders on Socialized Medicine


Bernie Sanders claims that socialized medicine will result in medical care being available to Americans at a substantially reduced cost per capita. He ignores such facts as the 70% higher taxes in the Nordic countries than in the US. (See https://nyti.ms/2PWoxF6)

Keep in mind that the amount of money spent on anything is determined by a combination of its price per unit and the number of units one buys. Thus, the only way to reduce per capita medical costs is either to reduce the price of medical care or the quantity of it provided.

Bernie’s method of reducing the price would almost certainly be price controls, which would result in shortages and waiting lists, à la the VA. (He’s spoken out in favor of nationwide rent control, as his method of reducing rents.)

A likely way that the quantity of medical care would be reduced is by denying it to the elderly, who, from the perspective of the state, are merely large consumers of medical care and generally provide little or nothing in tax revenues, because they no longer work.

Indeed, the elderly are paid social security. Thus, to the extent they died sooner, the state would save not only on medical expenses but also on social security payments.

Apparently, what makes per capita medical-care outlays high in the US, at least in large part, is a combination of high drug prices and high incomes of doctors.

Drug prices could be brought down, consistent with free-market principles, by allowing the unfettered importation of drugs from abroad. Sellers of patented drugs could then no longer set the price of drugs in the US appreciably above the price they set abroad.

Another measure that would help bring down drug prices would be requiring the FDA to speed up its approval process for new drugs. This could be accomplished by allowing the purchase and sale of new drugs without FDA approval, when patients were willing to take the risk.

Artificially high incomes of doctors would be reduced by allowing the establishment of new medical schools and by allowing already licensed physicians to employ apprentice physicians, who would eventually become licensed. PAs and NPs would be good candidates.

For more on the subject free-market medicine vs. socialized medicine, see my Kindle essay “The Real Right to Medical Care Versus Socialized Medicine,” available for 99¢ at https://amzn.to/2OjmKxy


Monday, February 10, 2020

My Answer to a Claim that Nazism Was Not Socialism

A Twitter reader attempted to deny the fact that Nazism was socialism. (See his tweet thread at https://twitter.com/torstenkathke/status/1209950007891243009?s=20). Here's my reply, written on December 26 and 27 of 2019:

You say, “History is about detail….” It is also about decisive facts. Such a fact is that under the Nazis, Germany was a socialist state. Private ownership of the means of production existed in name only. All the substantive powers of ownership were exercised by the state.

As the result of expansion of the money supply to pay for rearmament, and the rise in prices that started to result, the Nazis imposed price and wage controls. Price and wage controls result in economic chaos.

To deal with the chaos, the Nazi state determined what was produced, in what quantity, by what methods, and to whom it was distributed. These controls, added to price and wage controls, constitute de facto socialism. Mises calls it “socialism on the German or Nazi pattern.”

For more, see my essay “Why Nazism Was Socialism and Why Socialism Is Totalitarian.” 99¢ at Amazon.com: http://amzn.to/127XpsM.



The next day, I added the following:

Some differences between what Mises called socialism on the Russian or Bolshevik pattern and socialism on the German or Nazi pattern:

The Russian socialists, aka Communists, had 5-year plans. The German National Socialists, aka Nazis, had 4-year plans.

The Communists wore red shirts. The Nazis wore brown shirts.

The Communists primarily hated capitalists, many of whom were Jews.

The Nazis primarily hated Jews, many of whom were capitalists.

The Communists urge class war. The Nazis urge race war.

While the differences between Communists and Nazis are superficial, their similarities are fundamental:

Both deny the universal applicability of the laws of logic and claim that different classes/races have different logics, what Mises calls polylogism. E.g., “proletarian logic” vs. “bourgeois logic”; “Aryan logic” vs. “Jewish logic.”

Both are lovers of force and violence, which is a logical consequence of their belief that there is no common logic on the basis of which people can reason with one another and thus settle disputes peacefully.

Both are collectivists, denying that the individual is an end in himself with a right to the pursuit of his own happiness, and believe instead that he is a means to the ends of society/state.

Both establish all-round government ownership of the means of production. The Communists, de jure and openly; the Nazis, de facto and surreptitiously. Thus, both are socialists in fact.

Economic Stagnation and Decline in US


A Twitter reader asked, “What exactly are you referring to when you say “the stagnation and decline of our economic system in recent decades”? What data points or concretes are you referring to? Thanks.”

The primary basis of my statement is the claim constantly repeated in the press, and, to my knowledge, never disputed, that real wages have been stagnant for several decades and that it is increasingly necessary for married women to work to earn as much as 1 breadwinner used to.

This claim seems reasonable to me because we now have a Federal Register with over 2.5 million pages, almost all of which describe regulations that either prohibit actions that individuals would benefit from or compel actions that they judge would harm them.

We have also had currency depreciation to the point where a paper dollar is now worth only 1.3 gold cents, in the process creating repeated increases in paper profits and capital gains, both of which are subject to substantial taxation.

This has resulted in substantial additional taxes on funds that would otherwise have been saved and invested. The absence of this saving and investment results in stagnation in the productivity of labor and thus in real wages.

I know better than most people that today’s media are profoundly ignorant and often dishonest and are thus unreliable But my knowledge of economic theory and of such facts as the volume of regulation and the extent of inflation confirms what they have been saying in this case.

If you can cite facts which show otherwise, please write an article explaining them, and be sure to reconcile those facts with the negative results we should expect from the ever-increasing government intervention we’ve experienced for so many years.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is the source of press reports about real wages. It compiles data on money wages and then adjusts the money wages for changes in the consumer price index. E.g., if both average wages and the price level double, real wages are unchanged.

I believe that the consumer price index understates the rise in prices and thus overstates real wages. E.g., if the rise in price of Good A leads people to switch to lower-priced Good B, it reduces the weight given in the index to the rise in the price of Good A.


Anti-Biotics Crisis


Today’s (12/25/19) NY Times describes a developing crisis in antibiotics (see https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/25/health/antibiotics-new-resistance.html). Bacteria and fungi are becoming more and more resistant to existing antibiotics. New antibiotics are needed.

But FDA regulations make their development extremely costly, and the government and health-insurance companies don’t want to pay the resulting high prices. Result: makers of anti-biotics are unprofitable and are going out of business. Development of new anti-biotics is throttled.

SOLUTION: in cases in which an infection threatens the loss of life or limb, a) waive the need for the drug having been FDA approved; b) give the patient the option of paying its high price.

This will allow developers of new drugs to bypass the FDA, thereby cutting their costs, and to be paid profitable prices.

Private medical insurance policies could be designed that, for an additional premium, would pay much or most of the drug price in these cases.

The key is getting the FDA out of the way of the drug companies and giving freedom to the patients to buy or not buy their drugs.

For more on medical care and the need for freedom from government interference to safeguard and improve it, see my essay “The Real Right to Medical Care Versus Socialized Medicine.” 99¢ at https://amzn.to/2OjmKxy.   


It and They


The New York Times reports that according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, “They” is “the word of the year,” having become a SINGULAR pronoun to designate individuals who claim to be neither male nor female. (https://nyti.ms/34i3C5z)
Standard English already has a singular pronoun that is neither masculine nor feminine. It’s “IT.” That’s the word that should be used. Use of “they” in this context, represents Orwellian Newspeak.

I want to add that “they” refers to two or more of something, including two or more “its.” It does not refer to one unit.

A person who would truly be an “it” would be a very sorry creature indeed, even if called “they.” It could be neither a son nor a daughter, neither a wife nor a husband, neither a mother nor a father. In short, it would have the life of an isolated creature in an empty desert.

A world of “its” would be a world without sex. Sex, as an activity, is the genital union of an adult male and adult female of the same species, and the foreplay leading up to such union. Without males and females, there can be no sex.

There can be sexual pleasure divorced from sex and attached to something else. But the experience of sexual pleasure without sex, is not sex. It is something else.

If you value sex, if you want a world with sex, then take as your maxim the good old French motto, “Vive la différence”—“Long live the difference between men and women.” Long live men and women.

Rising Tides


If the tides are rising, don’t fight it, ADAPT to it. Especially when the only alleged means of fighting it, is to sacrifice the man-made power that underlies our ability to survive and prosper.

With man-made power, we can cope with rising tides and floods. Without it, we can’t cope with anything. For more, read my essay “The Toxicity of Environmentalism,” 99¢ at https://amzn.to/2E0RnQg.



Listen to the YouTube lecture version of this essay at http://bit.ly/35qkisx.

Sunday, February 09, 2020

Two-Volume Paperback Edition of Capitalism


I’m proud and happy to announce that my book Capitalism: A Treatise on Economics is now available in a paperback edition in two volumes at https://amzn.to/3bhWM4S.
Volume 1 can be used as a textbook in “microeconomics” courses; Volume 2, in “macroeconomics” courses.
The volumes are a virtually complete alternative and antidote to the assorted interventionist, Marxist, and Keynesian nonsense that typically fills such courses.
I call their orientation “Austro-Classical” in that it integrates Austrian economics with needlessly abandoned major doctrines of the British classical school, while eliminating the classical school’s errors, above all the labor theory of value and the “iron law of wages.”
Note: use of Volume 2 requires the last chapter of Volume 1, which will be made available to adopters without charge, in pdf format, along with a license to reproduce as many copies as one has students. The chapter could not be included in Volume 2 because of Amazon’s limit on pages.




George Reisman, Socialism: Armed Robbery and Murder Based on Delusion and Ignorance




If you want to fight the socialist tide, watch and urge others to watch this video “Socialism: Armed Robbery and Murder Based on Delusion and Ignorance.”

Introduction to Reisman's Theory of Profit- Interest





I'm happy to announce the publication on YouTube of the "Introduction to Reisman's Theory of Profit/Interest." It was presented in 2005 at the Mises Institute's Summer University.

To watch the whole video, please be sure to back up to the beginning.