Some Links

by Don Boudreaux on December 28, 2016

in Books, Civil Society, Education, Legal Issues, Prices, Standard of Living

Kevin Williamson celebrates human progress, alloyed though it be (of course) with imperfections.  A slice:

We can build railways and food-distribution networks in Ethiopia and reverse-engineer viruses and figure out clever ways to squeeze a little more productivity out of an acre of agricultural land or a lithium battery. Howard Hughes was one of the richest men in the world, but he never drove a car as good as yours. Most of your grandparents never set foot in a house as nice as an ordinary new house in 2016. And the children who are born in 2017 will one day look back on us as poor.

Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby rightly supports freedom of association for everyone.  A slice:

Tolerance and pluralism are important values in a free society. So are choice and association. Your choices may not be mine; my preferred associations may not be yours. In a diverse, live-and-let-live culture, our differences are manageable — as long as government doesn’t interfere. The state can’t force Elton John to take a gig he doesn’t want. It shouldn’t be able to force anyone else to, either.

Daniel Bier summarizes 13 canonical books for libertarians.

It’s a shame that relatively few economics professors these days understand what GMU Econ alum Abby Hall Blanco understands:

But there is one thing I hope all my students remember forever—the role of prices and private property. In particular, I want them to remember how these mechanisms are vital for a free and prosperous society. I make it clear to them that I think this material is of the utmost importance. In fact, prior to beginning our discussion of prices, I tell them I will be thrilled if the price system is one thing they remember from the class fifteen years from now.

(DBx: If you wish to be a competent economist, take note: no amount – and I mean literally no amount – of knowledge of, and facility with, econometrics, regardless of how many data are available to work with and to process, even begins to substitute for a sound understanding of price theory.  Even if you are by wide acclaim the world’s greatest econometrician, if you are a weak price theorist, you are not a competent economist.  You do not understand economics; you cannot understand the economy.)

David Henderson bids a constructive farewell to Thomas Sowell on the latter’s retirement from regular column-writing.

Speaking of Thomas Sowell, Manny Klausner sends this splendid collection of some of Sowell’s best quotations.

John Stossel believes that Betsy DeVos is a good pick to be the next U.S. Secretary of Education.

Speaking of Trump cabinet nominees, John McGinnes is optimistic.

Glenn Reynolds offers advice to Pres. Trump that I fully endorse:

My recommendation: Quickly appoint Randy Barnett to the D.C. Circuit, and Eugene Volokh to the 9th Circuit.


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