I remember how much I loved Mises University in 2006, which got me more into reading economics. I was a Rothbardian well before that, loyal to free banking, property rights and a total free market, but I had simply not been reading as much about economics, which I soon realized was, unlike topics like war, a very fun and energizing intellectual topic.
Sound economics, the study of production and distribution, explains the beauty of the market economy, is a great angle from which to appreciate the glory and humanity, and offers wonderful hope for the future. It is the joyous science. As a break from studying what was wrong with the state and especially its acts of mass murder, studying economics is akin to studying the very basis of civil society and human flourishing. It was easy to see the glass half full, since you were focusing on the water itself.
What a fantastic topic. And encouraging, I thought, since America and the world have come a long way in economic understanding. Full-blown socialism and old-style hard fascism (at least by name) had been largely discredited. Even the left knew markets could not be abolished altogether. Price controls and protectionism were less popular. The debate had, since World War II, shifted to our benefit, I had long thought.
Ugh. I knew the left and right alike were weak on economics, but the situation today is simply dismal. The idea that credit and spending should be unleashed to combat a crisis of too much credit and spending is no less frustrating, especially in its current ubiquity and calamitous implications, than the crazed idea that bombing, invading and occupying foreign nations would stem terrorism.