It’s Time to Retire ‘Classical Liberalism’

It’s Time to Retire ‘Classical Liberalism’

“Today the tenets of this nineteenth-century philosophy of liberalism are almost forgotten. In the United States “liberal” means today a set of ideas and political postulates that in every regard are the opposite of all that liberalism meant to the preceding generations.”- Ludwig von Mises, 1962 (emphasis added) F.A. Hayek is back in the public eye, thanks to a promising and weighty new biography from Professors Bruce Caldwell and Hansjörg Klausinger. Predictably, the book has brought Hayek’s critics out of the woodwork. Consider the recent backhand in The Spectator by Lord Robert Skidelsky,...

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We Can’t Expect America to Take Its Economic Medicine

We Can’t Expect America to Take Its Economic Medicine

Does America simply lack the political will to face economic reality? In the teeth of the Depression, Treasury secretary Andrew Mellon famously told President Herbert Hoover to “liquidate labor, liquidate stocks, liquidate farmers, liquidate real estate”—in other words, to resist bailing out any industry through state intervention. This was a tough sell even in those days, and of course Hoover succumbed to politics and took the opposite approach, greatly and needlessly damaging the US economy for decades to come. Less often quoted are Mellon’s follow-up words to Hoover: Liquidation would...

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We Need Beauty in Economics, and in the World

We Need Beauty in Economics, and in the World

The architect Frank Lloyd Wright played an important role in the design of this beautiful desert resort. I’m sure I’m not the only person here tonight who was introduced to his work through reading Ayn Rand. His touches are plainly visible in the stonework, wooden touches, and organic approach to melding the buildings with the landscape. His style appeals to my personal aesthetic tastes and evokes something both intellectual and emotional. Perhaps there is a lesson here about how we win, or at least how we advance. We need something more than intellectual appeal. I suggest we have not...

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The War for Our Language

The War for Our Language

"Language is the perfect instrument of empire."- Antonio de Nebrija, bishop of Ávila, 1492 The bishop was correct, in his time and ours. Spain proceeded to become the most powerful empire in the world over the following century, spreading her mother tongue across the Americas—just as the Roman army had imposed Latin across its sweep and just as the British Empire would bring English to India and Africa. American dominance in the twentieth century similarly meant English became the default international language of business. English speakers today enjoy the privilege of traveling a world...

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Jeff Deist’s 5 Lessons for Youthful Success

Jeff Deist’s 5 Lessons for Youthful Success

The remarks I’ve prepared today relate to your personal and professional development, which are of course closely interrelated. This is not to be confused with “self-help,” a somewhat disreputable genre whose practitioners often want to sell you shortcuts. Development means just that: developing your skills, knowledge, and interests to advance toward goals which hopefully become more clear as you go through your twenties and thirties. Remember, you may well have a longer work life than your parents and grandparents, so you have more time and more choices perhaps than they did. But it is...

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Inflation as State-Sponsored Terrorism

Inflation as State-Sponsored Terrorism

Remember the quaint old days of 2019? We were told the U.S. economy was in great shape. Inflation was low, jobs were plentiful, GDP was growing. And frankly, if covid had not come along, there is a pretty good chance Donald Trump would have been reelected. At an event in 2019, my friend and economist Dr. Bob Murphy said something very interesting about the political schism in this country. He said: If you think America is divided now, what would things look like if the economy was terrible, if we had another crash like 2008? Well, we might not have to imagine such a scenario much longer. If...

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We Don’t Believe You

We Don’t Believe You

David French, maybe National Review’s most reliably wrong scribe, issued this gem in response to the FBI raid on Donald Trump’s residence in Florida: Imagine thinking federal police agents and lawyers will be “held accountable,” or that presidents are not above the law! Is this an afterschool special? “Let’s wait and see, folks, before we judge the situation. It might be perfectly on the up and up! Have faith in the rule of law and trust the process!” French, in keeping with the listless residue of Conservative Inc., either can’t or won’t face the reality of postgoodwill America. This starts...

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What Rothbard Has to Say About Today’s War Collectivism

What Rothbard Has to Say About Today’s War Collectivism

Readers of Murray Rothbard's articles and speeches on war collectivism will immediately recognize the progressive pietist fervor surrounding today's progressive war jingoism: everywhere is Ukraine! The atavistic need to analogize today's situation to 1938, with Vladimir Putin as Adolf Hitler and war skeptics as Neville Chamberlain at Munich, is proof of this. The lessons of 1914, where a series of tragic blunders turned a regional conflict into a conflagration across Europe, are far more apposite. The obvious interest for the U.S. is containment of the war as a terrible but internecine (and...

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Israel Winner of the 2003 Iraq Oil War

Israel Winner of the 2003 Iraq Oil War

From the Foreword by Lawrence B. Wilkerson: “[T]he debate over whether oil was a principal reason for the 2003 invasion has waxed and waned, with one camp arguing that it absolutely was, while the other argues the precise opposite.” “Mr. Vogler, himself a former...

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