More on Thomas Piketty

Thomas Piketty’s book first caught my attention last April 16, but it is only now that I decided to buy it. I made a list of reviews of this book, and the first book review I read was done by John Cassidy on March 31. The most recent review is made by George Reisman just today.  

As for the importance of the book, you will notice that even Austrian economists do not agree in their assessment. There are those who dismissed it as a product of a socialist mindset. At least one Austrian reviewer appreciates it as a model of genuine scholarship. Even at Amazon, there are reviewers who gave the book as high as five star ratings, and others with just one star.  And of course, those who admire Piketty find in the book a strong intellectual defense causing conservatives to panic.

Introducing “Eating an Elephant”

I begin with God’s revelation, not human speculation. I begin with Genesis, not Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (1776) or John Maynard Keynes’ General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money (1936) or Ludwig von Mises’ Human Action (1949) or Milton Friedman’s Capitalism and Freedom (1961). This may bother economists, but so what? I do not expect economists to read an economic commentary on the Book of Genesis. – Gary North

 

Yesterday was the 116th Philippine Independence Day. It was also a day I think I returned home.

eating an elephant

What I mean by returning home is that by the grace of God, I think I already started a journey that I should have started few years back. Anyway, it doesn’t matter now whether I came home early or late; the important thing is I returned.

But this does not mean that I am now shielded either from turning left or right. Life is all a matter of grace.

And so I want to introduce my new blog – eating an elephant – and here are the first three articles I wrote:

Eating an Elephant

Follow What the Bible says, Not the Voices of the Skeptics

The Bible and the Study of Economics 

The Death of Political Capitalism

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We also notice based on Weber’s statement that the more religious the people became, the lesser was their inclination to political capitalism and the greater was their tendency to embrace market capitalism. In today’s debate, libertarians commonly understand political capitalism as related to statism in the forms of interventionism or crony-capitalism. So following Weber’s line of thought, we could say that the greater the commitment of the people to faith communities, the less statist they become and the more they are inclined to free market.

Read the article here.

Today’s Economists

Economics as a profession is in a sad state today, says Frank Hollenbeck. Is this description only limited to the US? Or does it also describe the situation of the profession all over the world as a whole? Hollenbeck raised several issues that show the unfortunate state of the porefession. Sample issues that he raised include the way special interest groups advance their advocacy, increase in monetary supply, and the impact of government spending.

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In the past, economists were able to see the fallacy in using nationalist rhetoric to advance the advocacies of special interest groups. In our day, they are considered normal, and few voices that oppose them are regarded as either paranoid or mentally deranged. In the past, economists were able to dissect and expose the misconceptions of the mercantilists concerning the increase in monetary supply. Today, similar misconceptions are proudly supported by leading and reputable economists. In the past, economists knew that massive government spending was detrimental to the purchasing power of consumers. Today, it is hailed as the only way to boost economic growth. The primary difference between the economists of the past and contemporary economists is that the former are able to see both the direct and indirect effects of economic policies, whereas the latter are short-sighted, more concerned with immediate results, and have totally lost the ability to foresee the long-term impact of existing policies.

Hollenbeck ends his article by mentioning that no man can violate the law of gravity without putting his life in danger such as jumping off a building and expecting himself to remain unharmed. Likewise, no government can continually violate the law of economics without suffering destructive results in which the most vulnerable members of society are the ones sacrificed.

Read Frank Hollenbeck’s article here:

Critical Response to Frank Hollenbeck’s Article: