HispanicPundit + communist   139

Socialism Is Bad for the Environment
One explanation for the disparity is that central planners, unlike markets, grossly misallocate resources, as a matter of routine. Energy prices, for example, were highly subsidized in the socialist economies of Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. As a result, industrial production was far more energy-intensive throughout the socialist world than in Western European economies — five to ten times higher, according to one estimate — leading to more pollution. A 1992 World Bank study found that more than half of the air pollution in the former Soviet Union and in Eastern Europe could be attributed to subsidized energy pricing during this period.
communist  environmentalism  NationalReview 
5 weeks ago by HispanicPundit
Making Sense Podcast #117 — Networks, Power, and Chaos | Sam Harris
On the power Networks and various other topics. In order: Trump Campaign 2016 and the role of Media, Russia Meddling, conspiracy theories, communism, inequality, Kissinger and China.
TrumpCampaign  Ferguson  SamHarris  podcasts  Russia  media  conspiracy  communist  Inequality  kissinger 
5 weeks ago by HispanicPundit
Hayek's Tragic Capitalism
What Hayek was opposed to was governmental activity that would undermine the operation of the free-market price mechanism. In his view, prices generated in the market encapsulate the information that is unavailable to the central planner, and thereby enable rational economic activity. For example, the price of oranges in Omaha reflects the effects of blight on orange crops in Florida, a bumper crop of oranges in California, higher demand for oranges in New York City, lower demand in Fargo, increases in the price of fuel needed to transport oranges across the country, and so on. No human mind need gather and process all of this information, because the market price is generated in a way that already reflects all of it. Consumers in Omaha need only respond to the current price (by buying fewer oranges, say, because the price has gone up) in order to coordinate their activity with that of other economic agents elsewhere in the country. The invisible hand does what the planner cannot, precisely because it is an impersonal mechanism rather than a mind.
capitalism  Socialism  communist  Books  hayek  ClaremontInstitute 
12 weeks ago by HispanicPundit
A Kindler, Gentler Gulag
Sunkara’s Platonism is especially pronounced with respect to socialism’s political problem, its demonstrated propensity to culminate in oppression and, frequently, mass murder. “Any ideology built around a notion of destiny,” he posits, “runs the risk of calamity.” Happily, “The solution is a banal one: valuing and protecting rights and liberties, while ensuring that ordinary people are not only consulted through rallies and speeches but actually have democratic avenues to make choices and hold their leaders accountable.” Whatever wicked things were formerly done in the name of socialism have little connection with real socialism, and can be detached from any future socialism simply through willpower, astute consciousness of the dangers, and a warm-hearted commitment to democracy. Or, as Niemietz writes, “The only lesson from the Gulags is that we should not build Gulags, the only lesson from the show trials is that we should not have show trials, the only lesson from the Berlin Wall is that we should not build walls through Berlin.”
Books  communist  History  Socialism  ClaremontInstitute 
june 2019 by HispanicPundit
Utopian Experimental Socialism - Econlib
Until now, I’d always thought that despite his pretensions, Marx was no better than the Utopian socialists.  Now I realize that this was entirely unfair.  Marx was decidedly inferior to his “Utopian” rivals.  They were wrong, but at least they had the common sense and common decency to beta test their radical proposals on a small scale with consenting subjects.
communist  marx  Caplan 
march 2019 by HispanicPundit
A Short Hop from Bleeding Heart to Mailed Fist - Econlib
5. Bleeding-heart rhetoric is disguised hate speech.  When activists blame the bourgeoisie for causing hunger, disease, and illiteracy, perhaps their main concern isn’t actually alleviating hunger, disease, or illiteracy.  While they’d like these problems to disappear, the bleeding hearts’ top priority could be making the bourgeoisie suffer.  The mailed fist systematizes that suffering.
communist  History  government  Caplan 
february 2019 by HispanicPundit
There's No Such Thing as Moderate Marxism - Bloomberg
In addition, the communist utopia can't be approached in moderation. Marxism without revolution isn’t Marxism. Sooner or later, the great day will come. Marx wasn't trying to advocate or justify it particularly; he was merely predicting. But steps to ameliorate the oppression of the working class might delay the inevitable, and that would be counter-revolutionary. Really, the harder life gets for the downtrodden, the better, both for the plausibility of the Marxist worldview and for the prompt arrival of the promised land.
marx  communist  bloomberg 
november 2018 by HispanicPundit
Russia Should Own Up to Stalin-Hitler Friendship - Bloomberg
On Sept. 17, 1939, the Soviet Union invaded eastern Poland. Germany, which had done the same in the western part of the country two weeks earlier, acquiesced under the terms of a notorious neutrality agreement between Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin that divided parts of eastern Europe into Nazi and Communist spheres of influence.
Russia  germany  wars  Stalin  communist  bloomberg 
september 2018 by HispanicPundit
Marx at 200 - The American Interest
Moreover, his entire character seemed to have been one that encouraged doctrinaire absolutism in his relations with other thinkers. He could not tolerate dissent. It is difficult to read his raging, invective-filled letters about a parade of former friends and allies and not conclude he would have been quite at home in Stalin’s purges.
marx  communist  AmericanInterest 
june 2018 by HispanicPundit
The value of a statistical human life under Stalin - Marginal REVOLUTION
We examine the value of a statistical life (VSL) in interwar Soviet Union. Our approach requires to address the preferences of Stalin. We model these on the basis of the policy of statistical repression, which was an integral part of the Great Terror. We use regional variation in the victims generated by this policy to structurally estimate the value that Stalin would have been willing to accept for a reduction in citizens’ fatality risk. Our estimate of this value is $43,151, roughly 6% of the VSL estimate in 1940’s US and 29% of the VSL estimate in modern India.
communist  Cowen 
april 2018 by HispanicPundit
North Korea's Grassroots Capitalism - Reason.com
The growth of North Korean "grassroots capitalism" (as some scholars call it) is not necessarily an unknown or unstudied phenomenon: A number of researchers, overwhelmingly but not exclusively from South Korea, have looked at North Korea's nascent bourgeoisie and market economy. They have described how people in the 1990s, amid famine and consequent social dislocation, began to create new businesses from scratch, and how those ventures grew rapidly. They have also explored the enterprises that Tudor and Pearson call "private-public partnerships." Under this very common model, state agencies lend their name to an aspiring entrepreneur, who disguises what is essentially a private operation as a state-owned enterprise. Restaurants, fishing businesses, and even some mines are de facto privately owned and operated, though they are registered as state property.
Korea  Books  capitalism  communist  Reason 
april 2018 by HispanicPundit
debunk - communism
A thread on trying to debunk the anti-communist views.
communist  History  Reddit 
january 2018 by HispanicPundit
The dog that didn't bark: 100th Anniversary of the Great October Revolution gets no celebration in Russia
As Yuri Maltsev, one of Russia's great economic reformers of the Gorbachev era, has pointed out, not even Russian President Vladimir Putin wants to celebrate it. The Russian president has some authoritarian tendencies, and might be expected to play along to communist fantasies of past glories, such as its propagandists might project, but he's not a fool, and he's having none of it.
Russia  communist  History  AmericanThinker 
november 2017 by HispanicPundit
Communism Through Rose-Colored Glasses - The New York Times
But they will insist that there is an essential difference between Nazism and Communism — between race-hatred and class-hatred; Buchenwald and the gulag — that morally favors the latter. They will attempt to dissociate Communist theory from practice in an effort to acquit the former. They will balance acknowledgment of the repression and mass murder of Communism with references to its “real advances and achievements.” They will say that true communism has never been tried. They will write about Stalinist playwright Lillian Hellman in tones of sympathy and understanding they never extend to film director Elia Kazan.
communist  History  NewYorkTimes  BretStephens 
october 2017 by HispanicPundit
Russian Revolution, 100 Years On: Its Enduring Allure & Menace | National Review
But what are the consequences of societies with so little memory of 20 million deaths in the USSR? Or the 65 million deaths caused by efforts to instill Communism in China? If those 65 million Chinese deaths cannot detain us, what are the chances that anyone will care about the 2 million deaths in Cambodia? The million in Eastern Europe? The million in Vietnam? The 2 million (and counting) in North Korea? The nearly 2 million across Africa? The 1.5 million in Afghanistan? The 150,000 in Latin America? Not to mention the thousands of murders committed by Communist movements not in power, a number that could almost seem meager compared with the official slaughter?
communist  History  NationalReview 
october 2017 by HispanicPundit
Why Did Obama Free This Terrorist? - POLITICO Magazine
Most Americans may not have heard of Lopez, or the organization he helped lead, the Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional (FALN), a radical Marxist Puerto Rican independence group. With the focus of post-9/11 terrorism falling almost exclusively on Islamist radicals, the violent nationalists of yesteryear—Puerto Rican, Cuban, Croatian and Jewish—have faded into obscurity. But during the FALN’s explosive heyday under Lopez’s leadership, the group was anything but obscure. In fact, from 1974, when the group announced itself with its first bombings, to 1983, when arrests finally destroyed its membership base, the FALN was the most organized, active, well-trained and deadly domestic terror group based in the United States.
communist  obamafailures  puertorico 
june 2017 by HispanicPundit
The "Real X" Defense, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
By these historical standards, real socialism has happened dozens of times.  Look at Lenin's Bolsheviks.  Before World War I, they were a powerless band of socialist fanatics.  Fellow socialists often loathed them, but for their dogmatism and cruelty, not lack of commitment to socialism.  Then, a perfect storm gave the Bolsheviks absolute power over Russia - power that lasted over 70 years.  The origin stories of the other triumphant Marxist-Leninist movements fit the same mold, though the socialists of the Soviet satellite states did have to compromise with the socialists of the Soviet Union proper.

And by these standards, I'm sorry to say, real libertarianism has never happened.  Yes, plenty of libertarian groups manage to become self-conscious fringe movements.  But none of these movements were ever more than junior partners in a broader political coalition.  Reagan and Thatcher gave a few libertarians a place at the table of power, but they were hardly libertarians themselves.  You could point to the Founding Fathers of the American Revolution, but they included plenty of mercantilists and slavers.  Even post-Communist Georgia doesn't qualify.
communist  socialism  anarcho-capitalists  history  caplan 
may 2017 by HispanicPundit
Supply and Demand (in that order): Puerto Rico - Cuba comparison
I have already compared the two on the basis of some national statistics, e.g., that; (i) Puerto Rican income per capita is now four times that in Cuba, when in 1950 they were essentially the same, (ii) Puerto Ricans are now more educated than Cubans, even though education is something that the Cuban government brags about.
puertorico  cuba  communist  education  mulligan 
march 2017 by HispanicPundit
A Surprising Supply of Communist Dupes, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
What actually happened under communism was rather different.  Communist regimes began with mass murder of their political enemies, businessmen, and their families.  Next, they seized the peasants' land, leading to hellish famines.  In time, they launched major "industrialization" campaigns, but obsessively focused on building up their militaries, not mass consumption.  And no communist regime has ever tried to "divide wealth for equal advantage."  Bloodbaths aside, communist regimes always put Party members' comfort above the very lives of ordinary citizens.
communist  history  caplan  books 
february 2017 by HispanicPundit
Latin America's New Politics Aren't Left or Right - Bloomberg View
To consolidate his rule, the aging autocrat went on to capture the country's courts, rig the electoral system, smother dissent, and call it a victory of popular democracy. Ortega's shamelessly lopsided 72 percent winning margin earned him comparisons to Anastasio Somoza, the bloody military dictator his Sandinista insurgents chased out of power 37 years ago. Nicaragua is no military dictatorship, but neither is Ortega a revolutionary progressive any more than Donald Trump is a Reagan conservative.
latinamerica  communist  chicanoism  bloomberg 
january 2017 by HispanicPundit
How Castro is Like the Minimum Wage, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
Any person of common sense would have foreseen the fruits of this demented recipe: mass murder, slavery, war, famine, and poverty.  But common sense is, alas, not so common.  The horrific Marxist-Leninist "experiment" spread from Russia to Eastern Europe, China, southeast Asia, Africa, and Castro's own Latin America.  And while most of these regimes were far worse than Cuba, Castro did great evil - and continues to do evil - by charismatically inspiring sympathy for this psychopathic path to a glorious future.
Cuba  communist  caplan 
december 2016 by HispanicPundit
The Last Communist City | City Journal
But rather than raise the poor up, Castro and Guevara shoved the rich and the middle class down. The result was collapse. “Between 1960 and 1976,” Cuzan says, “Cuba’s per capita GNP in constant dollars declined at an average annual rate of almost half a percent. The country thus has the tragic distinction of being the only one in Latin America to have experienced a drop in living standards over the period.”
cuba  chicanoism  communist  capitalism  latinamerica  city-journal 
december 2016 by HispanicPundit
The Economics of Dining as a Couple - Bloomberg View
4. Full food communism. A communist economy is a terrible idea. A communist dinner table, on the other hand, truly is a bounteous paradise. This is the final flowering of the dining experience, when the barriers wither away and all ordering is centrally planned, with the fruits distributed equally. You will know that this happy moment has arrived when you start telling the waiter “Just put the plates anywhere; we share everything.”
communist  misc  mcardle  relationships 
october 2016 by HispanicPundit
Huemer's "Relativism and Tyranny", Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
Moral relativism also tends to support a total state. Only if some things are objectively right or wrong is it possible to rationally critique the existing order. If moral relativism is true, then it isn't wrong for the state to coerce or even kill individuals; for the doctrine of individual rights is a moral theory, and if moral relativism is right, then all moral theories are false or nonsense. Overall, since most of the things that total governments do intuitively seem immoral, a would-be total ruler must undermine morality in order to quell protest against his policies.
moralissues  philosophy  communist  caplan 
august 2016 by HispanicPundit
Oh, Good, It’s 2016 and We’re Arguing About Whether Marxism Works
It does not take much imagination to draw a link between this idea and the Gulag. The gap between Marxist political theory and the observed behavior of Marxist regimes is tissue-thin. Their theory of free speech gives license to any party identifying itself as the authentic representative of the oppressed to shut down all opposition (which, by definition, opposes the rights of the oppressed). When Marxists reserve for themselves the right to decide “which forms of expression deserve protection and which don’t,” the result of the deliberation is perfectly obvious.

In the contemporary United States, these ideas are confined by the fact that only in certain communities (like college campuses) does the illiberal left have the power to implement its vision, and even there it is constrained by the U.S. Constitution. If illiberal ideas were to gain more power, the scale of their abuses would widen.
communist  history  free-speech 
april 2016 by HispanicPundit
The Prevalence of Marxism in Academia, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
In contrast, I urge you to rubberneck. If 18% of biologists believed in creationism, that would be a big deal. Why? Because creationism is nonsense. Similarly, if 18% of social scientists believe in Marxism, that too is a big deal. Why? Because Marxism is nonsense. Furthermore, if 18% of a discipline fully embrace a body of nonsense, there is also probably a large bloc of nonsense sympathizers - people who won't swallow the nonsense whole, but nevertheless see great value in it. Suppose, plausibly, that there is one fellow traveler for every true believer. That would bring the share of abject intellectual corruption to fully 35% - and 51% in sociology.
Academia  communist  caplan 
april 2015 by HispanicPundit
Why Capitalism? - Reason.com
Q: You debunk the idea that capitalism engenders or cultivates certain vices-that it actually actively rewards greed and predatory behavior. A: The biggest cultural predictor that you will be trusting, trustworthy, generous, fair, and so on is the extent to which you come from a market-oriented society. People from traditional societies, from tribal societies, from non- or pre-market societies, and from socialist societies are not nice.
communist  socialism  philosophy  reason 
november 2014 by HispanicPundit
Mandela and Communist Villainy, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
I'm puzzled. How can a "hero" join a movement that murdered millions of innocents? How can a "hero" remain in a movement that continued to murder millions of innocents? Because that is precisely what Mandela did. At the time Mandela joined, the Soviet Union, Soviet satellites, and Maoist China had already murdered tens of millions via execution, terror-famine, and draconian slave labor camps. After Mandela joined, Communist movements around the world continued this villainous tradition, and Maoist China took it to new heights.
africa  history  communist  caplan 
january 2014 by HispanicPundit
Incorruptibly Evil, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
Why?  Because when your goal is mass murder, corruption saves lives.  Corruption leads you to take the easy way out, to compromise, to go along to get along.  Corruption isn't a poison that makes everything worse.  It's a diluting agent like water.  Corruption makes good policies less good, and evil policies less evil.

I've read thousands of pages about Hitler.  I can't recall the slightest hint of "corruption" on his record.  Like Robespierre, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot, Hitler was a sincerely murderous fanatic.  The same goes for many of history's leading villains - see Eric Hoffer's classic The True Believer.  Sincerity is so overrated.  If only these self-righteous monsters had been corrupt hypocrites, millions of their victims could have bargained and bribed their way out of hell.
sidebar  caplan  corruption  history  communist 
october 2012 by HispanicPundit
Cambodian Genocide Denialism in Counterpunch
For the record, the most credible sources all estimate excess deaths under Pol Pot’s brutal regime of between 1.4 and 2.2 million people, approximately 20-25% of the entire population. The estimates come from three types of sources, 1) Interviews with survivors about relatives and neighbors killed, 2) Demographic estimates from before and after the Khmer Rouge which even today show massive discrepancies, especially for men of the relevant ages and 3) Surveys of mass graves. A good review is here. See also Yale’s Cambodian Genocide Project which does not overlook US involvement. None of this is especially controversial so Wikipedia is a good overview:
communist  history  cowen  sidebar 
september 2012 by HispanicPundit
Do You Care More than Paul Krugman Cares? | John Goodman's Health Policy Blog | NCPA.org
What about within the United States? Some years back the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) calculated a “predicted poverty rate” based on economic growth alone. In other words, economic growth by itself lifts people out of poverty, even if nothing else is happening. The CEA results suggest that if there had never been a welfare state (no Aid to Families with Dependent Children, no food stamps, no Medicaid, etc.) the poverty rate would actually be lower today than it actually is! This adds to a wealth of evidence that the welfare state is subsidizing poverty, not eliminating it.
communist  sidebar  goodman  fundamentals  liberalism  conservatives  welfare  capitalism  Democrats  Republicans 
august 2012 by HispanicPundit
Was Central Planning Really Inefficient? - Why Nations Fail - Why Nations Fail by Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson
The important leap in Allen’s conclusion, and the reason why his thesis is ultimately unconvincing is that as Gerschenkron noted long ago in Economic Backwardness in Historical Perspective, partly in the Russian context also, backward economies can grow rapidly and may do so using a variety of arrangements. This is made feasible because they are benefiting from catch-up and technological convergence. The fact that Soviet Russia took advantage of catch-up opportunities and transferred resources from its massively inefficient agriculture to industry implies neither that central planning was efficient in the short run nor that it could be a steppingstone for more growth-enhancing institutional structure in the long run.

Textbooks sometimes simplify things. But in this instance, the textbook treatment of central planning as economically inefficient is right.
sidebar  Acemoglu  history  communist  russia 
august 2012 by HispanicPundit
The Banality of Leninism, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
The key difference between a normal utilitarian and a Leninist: When a normal utilitarian concludes that mass murder would maximize social utility, he checks his work! He goes over his calculations with a fine-tooth comb, hoping to discover a way to implement beneficial policy changes without horrific atrocities. The Leninist, in contrast, reasons backwards from the atrocities that emotionally inspire him to the utilitarian argument that morally justifies his atrocities.
communist  human-rights  history  caplan  sidebar 
march 2012 by HispanicPundit
Refuted By Events, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
What real-world events would measure up to my standards?  I'd be willing to argue that extreme nationalism was refuted by the history of Nazism, and radical socialism was refuted by the history of Communism.  Both sets of events were awful; neither produced significant countervailing events; and both showed philosophies in very pure forms.  You could argue that Nazism and Communism suffered from the bad luck of extremely wicked leaders.  But given the two philosophies' disdain for division of powers and embrace of unrestrained hatred of their enemies, the atrocities of Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, and Mao reveal a systemic flaw in the philosophies themselves.
sidebar  caplan  al-jazeera  capitalist  communist 
february 2012 by HispanicPundit
Greg Mankiw's Blog: Transitioning from Communism
Seven lessons from my Harvard colleague Andrei Shleifer.
sidebar  mankiw  history  russia  communist 
february 2012 by HispanicPundit
North Korea’s Economic Failure in a Second Picture « Donald Marron
North Korea isn’t just dark. If you look at the nation’s per capita income, it’s clear that the economic situation has gotten darker.

Over at the Washington Post Wonkblog, Brad Plumer crunches the data on per capita income in South and North Korea since the 1970s. Stunning divergence:
communist  capitalism  korea  marron  sidebar 
december 2011 by HispanicPundit
North Korea: The Long Coma — Marginal Revolution
Broadcasters would speak of Kim Il-sung or Kim Jong-il breathlessly, in the manner of Pentecostal preachers. North Korean newspapers carried tales of supernatural phenomena. Stormy seas were said to be calmed when sailors clinging to a sinking ship sang songs in praise of Kim Il-sung. When Kim Jong-il went to the DMZ, a mysterious fog descended to protect him from lurking South Korean snipers. He caused trees to bloom and snow to melt. If Kim Il-sung was God, then Kim Jong-il was the son of God. Like Jesus Christ, Kim Jong-il’s birth was said to have been heralded by a radiant star in the sky and the appearance of a beautiful double rainbow. A swallow descended from heaven to sing of the birth of a “general who will rule the world.”
korea  communist  books  cowen  sidebar 
september 2011 by HispanicPundit
Nothing to Envy — Marginal Revolution
Up until that moment, a part of her had hoped that China would be just as poor as North Korea. She still wanted to believe that her country was the best place in the world. The beliefs she had cherished for a lifetime would be vindicated. But now she couldn’t deny what was staring her plain in the face; dogs in China ate better than doctors in North Korea
korea  communist  standardofliving  books  cowen  sidebar 
september 2011 by HispanicPundit
The Love Potion of Socialized Medicine, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
My point: Whatever you think about socialized medicine, it's not that great. It's not remotely enough to, say, redeem North Korea. The fact that anyone would imagine otherwise reveals a strong human tendency to judge socialized medicine like a bad boyfriend - with our hearts instead of our heads. When someone says, "Dump him - he's just not good for you!" we really ought to calm down and listen.
healthcare  government  communist  korea  caplan  sidebar 
march 2011 by HispanicPundit
*Why Marx was Right*
One of the best books on the topic - but still utterly wrong.
marx  history  communist  books  cowen  sidebar 
march 2011 by HispanicPundit
Mao's Great Famine and Depraved Indifference, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
If I were prosecuting Mao, I'd further cover my bases by pointing out that he gave explicit orders to literally enslave hundreds of millions, then invoke the felony murder rule. However you slice it, Mao was a monster - and it's high time for China to tear down his remaining posters and replace them with monuments to his victims.
communist  china  caplan  sidebar 
february 2011 by HispanicPundit
Commie Cargo Cult, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
I've been reading up on the history of Communism for over two decades. But even now, I find it hard to wrap my mind around its absurdity. If the first-generation Communists had grown up in a culture where people had worshiped steel and cotton cloth for centuries, I could chalk their crusades up to intellectual laziness. What staggers the imagination is that these pseudo-intellectuals actually originated their own nonsense.
communist  caplan  sidebar 
february 2011 by HispanicPundit
Mandela and the Communists, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
The most damning fact on Mandela's public record, in my view, is his long-time fraternization with Communists. The most striking defense of his approach, though, admittedly impressed me.
africa  history  communist  caplan  movies  sidebar 
december 2010 by HispanicPundit
Raico on the Lop-Sided Treatment of Mass Murderers, David Henderson | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"This is from Great Wars and Great Leaders: A Libertarian Rebuttal, by historian Ralph Raico, Ludwig von Mises Institute, 2010, pp. 162-163. I read through almost the whole thing this morning. This is Raico at his best, although, I admit, I've never read anything by him that wasn't good. The book is available to all here. The book's title reminds me of the famous quote from Lord Acton: "Great men are almost always bad men." Raico's analysis of Winston Churchill is eye-popping. "
books  austrian  communist  history  mises  henderson  sidebar 
december 2010 by HispanicPundit
Greedy capitalism vs. the beauty of collective action
"Does commercial life enhance our civilization or does civilization thrive despite commercial dealing? Does being in business degrade our human sensibilities or enhance them? Adam Smith argued that being in business enhanced fellow-feeling forcing one to put oneself in the shoes of the customer. Others argue that this is romance, that it is collective action through the political process that calls to our higher instincts."
fundamentals  communist  government  capitalism  greece  boudreaux  sidebar 
november 2010 by HispanicPundit
Soviet Poland, 1939-41, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"Timothy Snyder's Bloodlands is the best history I've read in five years: important, careful, beautifully written, and morally wise. Many excellent books explore the parallels between Nazism and Communism, between Hitler and Stalin. But Snyder almost makes you feel like you're really there in the "Bloodlands" - the tragic region that endured both Nazi and Soviet rule."
communist  statist  poland  russia  books  caplan  sidebar 
october 2010 by HispanicPundit
China Catch-Up and Two Freedoms « ThinkMarkets
"We’re witnesses to a gigantic experiment in political economy. Here is an authoritarian government that apparently recognizes the superiority of free markets, private property and individual enterprise in organizing an economy. It has lifted the shackles off industry and commerce, to an extent, so as to benefit from these powerful forces. Thus China is growing at phenomenal rates."
china  communist  capitalism  freedom  friedman  ThinkMarkets  sidebar 
august 2010 by HispanicPundit
TheMoneyIllusion » Is China a free market success?
"So to summarize, to the extent that China is a free market, it is an economic success, and to the extent it is statist, it is mostly a failure (excluding some sectors like transport.) But the question “Is the Chinese miracle due to a free market economy?” is nonsensical. It isn’t a miracle at all; it is a country rapidly transitioning from being extremely poor to having a so-so economy. That is all."
china  capitalism  communist  sumner  sidebar 
june 2010 by HispanicPundit
What If Lenin's Stroke Came Five Years Sooner?, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"Of course, something else could have gone wrong. Counter-factual history is never certain. But if a stroke killed Lenin in 1917, there's good reason to think that the world could have skipped decades of bloodshed, poverty, terror, and totalitarian dogma. Alas".
russia  communist  history  caplan  sidebar 
may 2010 by HispanicPundit
Hayek and Central Planning, David Henderson | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"to understand why socialism must fail, you need to understand Hayek's argument (which he drew from Ludwig von Mises and elaborated on) that the information that's most valuable is information held in the hands of millions of individual actors. A central planner simply cannot have the information needed to plan an economy well."
russia  communist  socialism  hayek  henderson  sidebar 
january 2010 by HispanicPundit
Evil Shortage: Why the Evil Empire Fell, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"So why did the USSR fall? Because a new generation of half-hearted Communists like Gorbachev were allowed to take the reins - and they just weren't evil enough to retain power. If Stalin had been in Gorby's shoes, he would have reinforced the foundations of totalitarianism by murdering a few million people - beginning with active dissidents and gradually expanding to anyone who'd ever visited the West. And like Kim Jong Il, he would still be in power today. Gorbachev's generation of leaders were far from saints, but as tyrants go, they were wimps."
russia  communist  history  kling  caplan  sidebar 
january 2010 by HispanicPundit
The Solow Model and Soviet Growth Optimism, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"Even on Brad's charitable interpretation of Samuelson and company, their argument was unreasonably sympathetic to the Soviets. There was never a point in Soviet history when a sensible economist would have seen communism as good for growth in any meaningful sense. (Especially in the Thirties when millions starved to death while Stalinists told the credulous West that the USSR was growing by leaps and bounds)."
russia  communist  economists  history  samuelson  DeLong  caplan  sidebar 
january 2010 by HispanicPundit
Sorel on Totalitarian Political Entrepreneurs, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
"The deeper point: Successful politicians - totalitarian, authoritarian, or democratic - can be quite irrational about the effects of policies as long as they are rational about how to win and hold power. If I had to spend a day studying Barack Obama Thought, I'd focus on his political strategizing. After all, that's the main area where he clearly has a lot to teach me."
communist  politics  obama  caplan  sidebar 
august 2009 by HispanicPundit
Chicago Boyz » Blog Archive » Another Day, Another Speech, Another History Trashed
"Claudia Rossett’s “The Bear Scare” analyzes Obama’s rather weak grasp of history on display in Moscow as it was in Cairo. But it is not just the confused focus, the generalizations at odds with history. It is also an attitude."
obama  history  ObamaFailures  communist  chicagoboyz  sidebar 
july 2009 by HispanicPundit
EconLog Book Club: For a New Liberty, Chapter 14, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty
Caplan continues his review of Rothbard's book, "For A New Liberty". This time dealing with the argument over isolationism and the radical difference in foreign policy between the USSR and the USA.
books  libertarianism  foreignpolicy  history  communist  caplan  sidebar 
may 2009 by HispanicPundit
Gods That Fail (Cato-at-liberty)
Even if we consider the current crisis a failure in capitalism...you can't even compare it to the real failure of communism.
subprime  capitalism  communist  History  cato  sidebar 
october 2008 by HispanicPundit
Marginal Revolution: Someone once asked me what I thought of Slavoj Zizek
"He can't simply admit: "I was a fool to follow Mao and Stalin" but instead he has to push the line "I just need to reinterpret everybody more and I will still find some movement for "egalitarian terror" [those two words are his] to sign on to." Grow up, I say, yet he is almost sixty years old."
books  communist  academia  cowen  sidebar 
august 2008 by HispanicPundit
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