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.