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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/8799/the-old-debate-is-back/

The old debate is back

October 17, 2008 by

Marx’s treatise on capital becomes big seller in Germany. (Thank you Fernando Labastida)

{ 18 comments }

Inquisitor October 17, 2008 at 10:03 pm

Back to the snakeoil salesman it is!

andy October 17, 2008 at 10:53 pm

Hope you all caught John Stossel on 20/20. Here’s his article.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122420352554042529.html

“Mr. Stossel’s ABC News Special, “John Stossel’s Politically Incorrect Guide to Politics,” airs today at 10 p.m. EST.”

Maybe you could find it on youtube.

IMHO October 18, 2008 at 1:14 am

Why is it that when something goes wrong, people turn into lemmings and begin to stampede in the worst possible direction?

Haas October 18, 2008 at 2:03 am

God help us all…

j4ck October 18, 2008 at 4:32 am

It’s so pathetic…our (classical) ‘liberal’ party is promoting the bailout (which has happened before there was any phony discussion in the media anyway) and everybody is talking about wages for managers. Oh yeah and ‘greed’ of course.
*arr*

D Lamont October 18, 2008 at 6:40 am

It is absurd to think that the answer to the current problems of global capitalism lies in the rehabilitation of Marx. It is much more likely to lie in the rehabilitation of Keynes. Keynes, incidentally, was very strongly opposed to Marx and the pernicious impact of Marxism. (This is demonstrated in, for example, Donald Markwell, “John Maynard Keynes and International Relations: Economic Paths to War and Peace”, and in Skidelsky’s biography of Keynes.)

Michael Smith October 18, 2008 at 7:11 am

It is absurd to think that the answer to the current problems of global capitalism lies in the rehabilitation of Marx.

But there are no “current problems of global capitalism” because we do not have global capitalism — rather, we have a series of mixed economies, with a few elements of capitalism struggling under massive government intervention and controls. And with each successive economic disaster caused by those controls, we hear only calls for more controls.

The first task is to demonstrate to people that the failures they are witnessing are failures of the unfree market — and that they cannot be cured by becoming even less free.

Dennis October 18, 2008 at 7:31 am

Yes, under any of the many variants of Marxism, one would not have to worry about the boom/bust cycle that plagues interventionist/mixed economies. Instead, the economy would be in a perpetual state of crisis and depression.

And should the entire world implement the ramblings of this fool, the vast majority of human beings would die, since socialism, as Ludwig von Mises demonstrated in 1920, logically only permits production at the household or, at most, primitive tribal level. In an entirely socialist world, no market economies and, crucially, no price frameworks would exist that the socialist states could parasitically utilize to appraise the factors of production.

Even the generally partial implementation of Marxist and socialist doctrine over the last 100 or so years has produced pernicious results that are without equal. But the intellectual foolishness and dictatorial desires of all too many human beings unfortunately keep these great fallacies alive and well, all to the detriment of human betterment.

Mechanized October 18, 2008 at 8:11 am

—-”The old debate is back

October 17, 2008 9:37 PM by Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.

Marx’s treatise on capital becomes big seller in Germany. (Thank you Fernando Labastida)”—-

Are human beings comprehension skills, at least the vast majority of them, completely nonexistent when it relates to the subject of economics? Karl Marx’s ideas have been thoroughly debunked many times over, not only theoretically, but even empirically.

Dennis October 18, 2008 at 8:26 am

“It is absurd to think that the answer to the current problems of global capitalism lies in the rehabilitation of Marx. It is much more likely to lie in the rehabilitation of Keynes.”

Since at least 1930, if not earlier, most of the world’s governments, including those of the West, have been consistently and vigorously implementing the Keynesian system. Virtually every monetary action taken by most governments is guided by Keynesianism. Even the monetarists, supply-siders, and rational expectationists have adopted significant portions of Keynes’s framework. The current crisis of the mixed economies is precisely a crisis caused by the implementation of Keynesianism.

A restoration of reasonable financial stability and sustainable growth requires a complete abandonment of the tissue of fallacies that is Keynesian “economics.”

John October 18, 2008 at 11:13 am

Perhaps they’re reading it to try and understand what his message really is. I’m sure quite a few of the readers here have read Marx…

I haven’t read it yet, and I’m not particularly inclined to do so, as I have a lot of Austrian reading to do. However, one who seeks truth may gain strength in his own beliefs contrary to those of Marx and company by reading their works.

KRG October 18, 2008 at 11:57 am

It is absurd to think that the answer to the current problems of global capitalism lies in the rehabilitation of Marx. It is much more likely to lie in the rehabilitation of Keynes. Keynes, incidentally, was very strongly opposed to Marx and the pernicious impact of Marxism.

But let’s recall what Rothbard wrote in “For a New Liberty.” There are basically two distinct types of economists: those who think capitalism is deeply flawed and those who do not.

” By the nineteenth century, in the new discipline of economics and among financial writers and commentators, two types of theories began to emerge in an attempt to explain the new and unwelcome phenomenon: those focusing the blame on the existence of industry, and those centering upon the banking system. The former, in sum, saw the responsibility for the business cycle to lie deep within the free-market economy — and it was easy for such economists to call either for the abolition of the market (e.g., Karl Marx) or for its drastic control and regulation by the government in order to alleviate the cycle (e.g., Lord Keynes). On the other hand, those economists who saw the fault to lie in the fractional reserve banking system placed the blame outside the market economy and onto an area — money and banking — which even English classical liberalism had never taken away from tight government control. Even in the nineteenth century, then, blaming the banks meant essentially blaming government for the boom-bust cycle.”

Unlike Marxians, Keynesians believe the market can be “cured” of its innate imperfections by means of a continuous dose of government interventionism. One imagines the day when a myriad of Keynesian regulations and controls finally succeeds in strangling the market economy, and on that day the Keynesians throw up their hands in utter frustration and reluctantly admit that the market economy is incurably flawed and Marx was right after all. Thus, the destiny of the Keynesians is to reunite with their anticapitalist Marxian brethren.

Ron October 18, 2008 at 3:45 pm

RE: John Stossel’s Politically Incorrect Guide to Politics…

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

Refreshing to see something like this on mainstream TV. Wonder how many people will actually listen.

D Lamont October 18, 2008 at 11:22 pm

The extent to which Keynes was anti-Marxist is evident if you read either Markwell’s or Skidelsky’s accounts of him. He clearly wished there to be policies to stabilize the capitalist system so as to prevent or overcome crises that, as Marx expected and hoped, would destroy it. With policies ensuring sufficiently high employment and economic stability, Keynes thought the market should then be left largely to itself. So he was more a friend of the Austrians than he is often given credit for (as Hayek, I think, recognised), and more an enemy of Marx than is often realised (though some of the 1930s Marxists certainly saw him as their deadly enemy).

Haas October 19, 2008 at 6:55 am

“So he was more a friend of the Austrians than he is often given credit for (as Hayek, I think, recognised), and more an enemy of Marx than is often realised”

Problem is that Keynes distorts the free market with his ideas and repackages it as capitalism so all the problems of Keynesian government interventions are blamed on capitalism- at least when Marxism is in question everyone knows not to blame the free market system. I’d rather have a real enemy rather than a fake friend

Curt Howland October 19, 2008 at 12:54 pm

“I’d rather have a real enemy rather than a fake friend.”

That’s a lot like what I thing of Milton Friedman.

newson October 24, 2008 at 11:39 pm

to d lamont:
skidelsky and some of keynes’ other biographers receive considerable flak from ralph raico in his essay “was keynes a liberal?” here’s the link http://www.independent.org/pdf/tir/tir_13_02_1_raico.pdf

keynes showed affinity to both national socialism and the boldness of the soviet economic experiment, something glossed over by his apologists.

newson October 24, 2008 at 11:51 pm

hayek’s opinion on keynes has to be seen in the light of their personal friendship, and the fact that keynes did hayek favours during the war (accomodation if i recall correctly). hayek apparently also bit his tongue so as not to compromise the british war effort.

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