Reviews

I was very privileged to meet Professor Yuri Maltsev recently, the economist and author, who signed a copy of the following book for me:

RequiemMarx

Although the usual books I recommend to help cure yourself from socialism include Socialism, A Theory of Capitalism and Socialism, and The Fatal Conceit, I might add this book to be fourth in the list for everyone who wants to shake the dreadful virulent disease of socialism from their minds.

Although I will do a full review later, when I have read the full book, I particularly liked the following 1869 quote by Bakunin, and anarcho-communist colleague of Marx, which accurately prophesied what would happen if Marx’s new religion of statist socialism managed to take over large swathes of the world:

“The reasoning of Marx ends in absolute contradiction. Taking into account only the economic question, he insists that only the most advanced countries, those in which capitalist production has attained greatest development, are the most capable of making social revolution. These civilized countries, to the exclusion of all others, are the only ones destined to initiate and carry through this revolution. This revolution will expropriate either by peaceful, gradual, or by violent means, the present property owners and capitalists To appropriate all the landed property and capital, and to carry out its extensive economic and political programs, the revolutionary State will have to be very powerful and highly centralized. The State will administer and direct the cultivation of the land, by means of its salaried officials commanding armies of rural workers organized and disciplined for this purpose. At the same time, on the ruins of the existing banks, it will establish a single state bank which will finance all labor and national commerce. It is readily apparent how such a seemingly simple plan of organization can excite the imagination of the workers, who are as eager for justice as they are for freedom; and who foolishly imagine that the one can exist without the other; as if, in order to conquer and consolidate justice and equality, one could depend on the efforts of others, particularly on governments, regardless of how they may be elected or controlled, to speak and act for the people! For the proletariat this will, in reality, be nothing but a barracks: a regime, where regimented workingmen and women will sleep, wake, work, and live to the beat of a drum; where the shrewd and educated will be granted government privileges; and where the mercenary-minded, attracted by the immensity of the international speculations of the state bank, will find a vast field for lucrative, underhanded dealings.”

Have you ever heard a better description of the vampire squid activities of various government-privileged financial organisations, than in that final paragraph? There is much else of interest in this book, at least in the parts I have read so far, and I look forward to reading the rest of it.

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Eamonn Butler: Austrian Economics – A Primer

by Andy Duncan on 31/03/2014

austrian-economics-a-primer

For those who want to find the very quickest route into Austrian Economics, there’s an interesting primer written by Dr Eamonn Butler, of the Adam Smith Institute. You can buy a copy here, and you should be able to download a free PDF of the book, by following this link:

For those who like even-handed books, it’s an excellent introduction.

For those who prefer something a little more hardcore, I’m afraid you’ll still have to hit Murray Rothbards ‘Man, Economy, and State’.

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Thomas E. Woods: Rollback – Repealing Big Government Before the Coming Fiscal Collapse

March 28, 2014

When the bestriding Colossus of Murray N. Rothbard departed this mortal coil, he left the rest of us with the hallowed gift of his thoughts, his books, and his ideas, as well as an occasional secret desire to wear bow ties, and the happily-reverberating sound of that anarchic cackle. However, to those few, those lucky […]

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Philipp Bagus and David Howden: Deep Freeze: Iceland’s Economic Collapse

March 27, 2014

If you believe in a Creator, then you must acknowledge that He (or She) possesses an incredible sense of humour. Without this, how do you explain Iceland? God must have smashed innumerable comets into the Earth to provide it with billions of tons of cool blue water to wrap trillions of tons of hot red […]

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Philipp Bagus: The Tragedy of the Euro

March 26, 2014

The world centre of gravity of the Austrian Economics movement has long been the United States, especially since Ludwig von Mises arrived there on August the 3rd, at the age of fifty-eight, in a turbulent 1940. The 1998 Spanish publication of Money, Bank Credit, and Economic Cycles, by Jesús Huerta de Soto — followed by […]

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Jörg Guido Hülsmann: The Ethics of Money Production

March 20, 2014

In these times when even the president of the World Bank can be caught whispering about a return to some form of gold standard, it becomes necessary for us to examine whether we can trust a nascent world government to provide us with sound money alongside an honest financial system. That is why it is […]

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Jesús Huerta de Soto: Socialism, Economic Calculation and Entrepreneurship

March 20, 2014

There are three books that take pride of place in my Austrian bookcase. These are Socialism, by Ludwig von Mises; The History of Intellectual Thought, by Murray N. Rothbard; and Democracy the God that Failed, by Hans-Hermann Hoppe. In my own mind these books glow when I look at them, up there on the shelf, […]

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Eugene Richter: Pictures of a Socialistic Future

March 19, 2014

If someone gave me a gold sovereign for every time in my life I had heard a variation on the following phrase, then in the words of Private James Frazer, from Dad’s Army, I would now be an extremely wealthy man. Here’s the general phrase that you may have heard too: “Socialism is a great […]

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Murray Rothbard: What Has The Government Done To Our Money?

March 18, 2014

In the classic David Gordon joke, the world’s shortest book is perhaps Your Duties to Other People, by Ayn Rand. Murray Rothbard’s classic on money is slightly longer than that, but it is still a very quick read. Broken down into three main sections, What Has The Government Done To Our Money? is a breathless […]

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The Cure for Socialism

March 5, 2014

I was asked a curious question the other evening, about how it is possible for someone to be a hard-core Stalinist socialist one day, and then a hard-core Austrian anarcho-capitalist the next. Well, it’s very rarely an overnight thing. However, there are cases where such people have been instantly transformed simply by reading Human Action, […]

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