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Economy

Hey guys, I want to recommend you this book on economics, I read it during the lockdowns and I find it full of interesting insight, it would serve as a clear exposition to the Austrian School of economics, I believe the "austrians" are right about a lot of stuff and have interesting takes on a lot more,

they use verbal deductive logical reasoning, so no need to understand complex mathematics to get their main points.

the book is called:

Man, Economy, and State: A Treatise on Economic Principles

You can download a very cool and professional edition for free here:

https://cdn.mises.org/Man,%20Economy,%20and%20State,%20with%20Power%20and%20Market_2.pdf

The second part (power and market) also included in that edition was kind or revolutionary when it was published and faced strong censorship.

We can also use this thread to discuss macroeconomics and how things like taxation and finances are related to power in the public and private sphere.

Thank you, Stef!

You reminded me of the first book I read on economics. It was "Economics in One Lesson".

It was such an eye-opener. As a matter of fact, I must add it to the list of "best red pill books" ("red pill" as intended in its larger sense of "most eye-opening books to make sense of the world").

 

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Stef
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that book by Henry Hazlitt is a very good starting point! I am pending to read it.

And by and large governments support our civilization and their impact is massively more positive than negative.

@lucio

Power and Market almost convince me of the opossite, if you read it I would love to know if you modify that perspective, or if still it remains unchanged.

Hey Stef,

I haven't yet read that article yet, but I can agree with that statement.

But with a caveat: the government must be supported and voted in by non-rigged, massive suffrage vote, and repeatedly voted in and out. In simple words, this would most often correspond to a "correctly functioning democracy".

Autocracies instead can subtract value from most people -the disenfranchised-, give back little in terms of public goods, and channel private goods to the few cronies who uphold the autocrat.

A total lack of government would mean anarchy.
But anarchy is almost non-existent in the state of nature -something anarchists don't always grasp-.
Most groups of people naturally move out of anarchy because an organized form of self-government to punish value-taking (stealing, rape, fraud, murder, etc.) and defend the value-adding and collaborative nature of society from hostile forces and marauders (armies) usually does allow for an expansion of collaborative and win-win exchanges that ultimately benefit most people.

You don't feel that way?

 

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yes, yet there may be ways for private corporations to provide those necessary government functions (the minarchist functions) even better than government itself. ( e. g.  insurance companies who want to keep you safe and alive by selfish self interest providing private police services, etc).

In many cases government may benefit from killing you (when you are older and pay taxes no more, etc)

obviously it is a complex topic, I am aware of the dangers of naive anarchism.

some of those arguments are eloquently put forward by Rothbard in his books and has become the basis of "anarcocapitalism".

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Lucio Buffalmano
Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on August 29, 2020, 6:59 am

It was such an eye-opener. As a matter of fact, I must add it to the list of "best red pill books" ("red pill" as intended in its larger sense of "most eye-opening books to make sense of the world").


Speaking of which while also touching the topic:

 

I have to bite my tongue to not comment in depth, as I really want, but the better approach is to give my own sources, as the work I'm talking about is a lot more insightful (and entertaining at the same time) than what I could possibly write on this.

I consider it a source as valuable as thepowermoves.com, but for a different topic, though they intersect quite a lot.

 

The book is called "The most dangerous superstition" and you can easily find it, even for free. But since sticking to a book (even if it has only 200 pages) is quite a commitment, I will link some of his work, to give an idea of his capabilities. All of this is also very related to power dynamics and especially severe manipulation and (mass-)psychology in general, but it also affects economy to a very large degree.

 

This is probably the biggest redpill you can possibly shove into 10 minutes:

"I'm allowed to rob you"

 

"Good funding Evil" - the economic side, article

"How to be a sucessfull tyrant"

All highly recommended, and there are many more high quality videos and articles from him, but I wouldn't start with the last one, as it begins seemingly slower and if you haven't seen anything else you may at first not know it's worth the watch.

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KellvoStef

Well, in a way, there is some truth to it. You cannot choose not to pay.

You cannot choose for example to not pay -even if you refuse to get anything for free to make it balanced-. If you do, you are incarcerated. So there is an element of coercion.

And as a lover of freedom, I see the element of oppression in it, as well as would love the option of NOT getting anything back, paying for everything out of pocket, but also not having to pay taxes.

That being said, the robbery analogy doesn't hold in my opinion.
Taxes are an exchange. You have little say in what you get back because you're part of millions, but being part of a huge society also comes with its advantages. You can for example spend your whole life without caring about politics, laws, and law enforcement and someone else will still do it for you.

In exchange for your taxes, you get plenty of goods:

  • Roads
  • Policing
  • Courts of law
  • Mitigation of business cycles and financial crisis (without central banks' intervention many financial crises would have been far worse)
  • Redistribution (you might not want to redistribute, but there some advantages)
  • Grants to smart but poor students who will add value in the future
  • Statistics and bookkeeping
  • Research (some research adds value, but only does so on such a long-term that no private enterprise would undertake)
  • Organized responses to crises (for all the mishandling of Covid, do you think it would have been better without any national and international organization? I don't think so)
  • Etc., etc.

 

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Quote from Stef on September 4, 2020, 11:03 am

yes, yet there may be ways for private corporations to provide those necessary government functions (the minarchist functions) even better than government itself. ( e. g.  insurance companies who want to keep you safe and alive by selfish self interest providing private police services, etc).

In many cases government may benefit from killing you (when you are older and pay taxes no more, etc)

obviously it is a complex topic, I am aware of the dangers of naive anarchism.

some of those arguments are eloquently put forward by Rothbard in his books and has become the basis of "anarcocapitalism".

Yeah, definitely some services might be better handled by private corporations.

But private corporations are in it only for the profit.

Private corporations also do not care to shut off people who cannot afford a certain service.
And they will never do anything that does not provide a return for the investor in the short-term.

A democratic government's job is to do the good of the people and to negotiate conflicting interests for the overall good.
Well, to be precise, most elected officials' goal is to be re-elected, but in a universal suffrage system, the best way to be re-elected is to provide public goods and good policies.
This has been proven by the way, I'm reading a book now called "The Logics of Political Survival", will also summarize it soon.
Election with universal suffrage has this great benefit of aligning the interest of the majority of the people, with those of the elected officials.

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Stef
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I'm intrigued because I both agree and disagree with several of the points made here. Government is a tool used by those who inevitably have self-interest at heart; while it can benefit the masses, it can easily be turned against them as well. It can be used for robbery as Anon said, as well as provide a structure for win-win solutions as Lucio shows. Ultimately, however, it is kept in place by the (implied) threat of violence - not just by cops, soldiers and judges, but by the degree of willingness that a citizen population is willing to trade security for freedom (and vice versa) and the capability to act in regard to that.

It's for this reason that, while I support a healthy government, I even more support a strong Second Amendment, an informed citizen population, and the ability of said citizenry to support themselves - growing food/living 'off the grid', learning useful and tradable skills, and knowing how to survive and fight being just a few. Likewise, I support a strong awareness of power dynamics, self-development and releasing of unnecessary attachments across the board to ensure maximum self-agency for each person, while also including healthy traditions and win-win exchange systems to ensure societal cohesion.

Independence starts with strong individuals who take responsibility for bettering their lives; conversely, totalitarianism begins when individuals are weak and look to a strong 'other' to save them instead of having faith in themselves. Government has its uses, but it behaves like any other organism; it inevitably seeks to propagate itself, often at the cost of others. It's up to individuals to be as strong and self-reliant as they can, while seeking mutual cooperation from a position of strength, and have the will and means to make sure the government continues to hold up its end of the bargain as well.

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