Value and Exchange

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A Catechism on Political Economy

Calculation and KnowledgeValue and Exchange

Blog04/22/2008

I surely should have heard about J.B. Say's Catechism on Political Economy, but in fact I don't recall knowing about it. It appears in this newly uploaded and bookmarked volume Letters to Malthus. So a short sample:

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Bookstores in Trouble

Monopoly and CompetitionValue and Exchange

Blog03/21/2008

Sadly, Borders Group, Inc. is in trouble and it's up for sale. More and more of these companies continue to drop as consumers pinch pennies on wanna-have but don't-need items. I listened to...

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Free Trade versus Free-trade Agreements

Free MarketsValue and Exchange

Blog03/10/2008

The Mises Institute has consistently favored free trade--the real thing--while criticizing "free-trade agreements" as mercantilism in disguise. The position is a lonely one, except that looking back history we find that the Austrians were against trade agreements from the beginning,...

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Maybe the Monkey Kingdom needs a Federal Reserve

Value and Exchange

Blog01/31/2008

From Wired:

The researchers first trained chimpanzees in the basic rules of trade: you give to me, I give to you. They used apple slices, which chimps generally like, and grapes, which chimps really like...

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Will Radiohead be able to sell what it has given away?

EntrepreneurshipValue and Exchange

Blog01/01/2008

Today the CD called "In Rainbows" by Radiohead (a British rock band) goes on sale, and the sales figures will provide an exhibit in the relationship between free downloads and retails sales. the...

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Christmas and Consumption

Production TheoryValue and Exchange

Blog12/25/2007

Christmas is a make-or-break time for many retailers, and the holiday season's importance to the American economy is so great that "Black Friday" sales at some retailers, particularly Wal-Mart, are reported as a macroeconomic indicator. The holiday season is indeed festive and...

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Live by the Sword...

Monopoly and CompetitionValue and Exchange

Blog12/18/2007

Am I unlibertarian for hoping this guy wins? I mean, live by the sword, die by the sword, right? These companies clearly actively pursue, support, and employ government monopolies (patents) and use them to squelch competition. If this happens to violate federal anti-trust law, is this a tragedy...

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Gold and Mining Costs

Production TheoryValue and Exchange

Blog12/08/2007

Gold fund manager John Embry writes in Investors Digest of Canada, Gold Gleams as Influence of Central Bankers Wanes. Embry cites another analyst, Leonard Kaplan, who asks, why should gold cost $700...

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High School Senior's Questions about IP

Philosophy and MethodologyPrivate PropertyProduction TheoryValue and Exchange

Blog12/07/2007

I received an impressive inquiry from a high school senior: “I am contacting you to ask if I can interview you for my senior project paper, which is a persuasive paper about why copyrights are invalid and impractical. I will have between 5-10 questions regarding intellectual property for...

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Contra the "Labor Theory of Property"

Private PropertyValue and Exchange

Blog10/23/2007

The Lockean (and Rothbardian) theory of initial acquisition of property involves the necessity of mixing one's labor with an object in the external environment. Once labor has been applied to a thing, it can legitimately become one's private property. The immediate question that arises...

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