November 13, 2003
Mises Institute Politics
The LibertarianJackass has little problem with the Mises Institute promoting a paleo-libertarian political agenda under the name of economic study. He writes,
Talk about price theory all you want, but don't touch the fundamental issues facing society today ("national defense," galloping statism, etc.)?
More "fundamental" is price theory, the capital structure, and how knowledge is used in an economy. These are more fundamental because they need to be understood in order to better address the more political questions Mises Institute scholars talk about. I've been following the Austrian School for over ten years (the Mises Institute sent me monthly Free Market issues when I was in college) so I can safely say the Misesians wear their anarchist advocacy on their sleeves (I just wish they'd publically say it). I compare the essays and weblog entries at Mises.org to the discussions that take place on the Hayek-L e-mail list. Part of it may just be scholarly politeness, but those postings to the e-mail list aren't knee-jerk libertarian.
My main complaint with the Mises Institute is their straying from economic analysis into defending the South in the Civil War and beating the hell out of Lincoln. DiLorenzo actually compared Lincoln to Zimbabwe's dictator Robert Mugabe. As a learning institution, they have done the most of anyone in the world to keep Ludwig von Mises' ideas alive. For economics students and lovers of liberty, that's a great accomplishment for which they deserve tremendous praise.
"The Austrian Economics Hoopla"