The Struggle for Science in Demented Times

– May 13, 2020

During a crisis, fate appears to hang in the balance, and mental and material resources must be coordinated and that requires a commander who is in control of the process. But that will not work if curiosity is squashed in the effort to courageously command.

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The Magnitude of the Economic Challenge Even in Normal Times

– May 11, 2020

To rely only on select and officially approved researchers, or to ignore ideas from all or even some foreigners, is to unnecessarily reduce the number of human beings working to discover from among an incalculably vast number of possible chemical arrangements the one or a few that might render the coronavirus harmless.

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Governments Don’t Have Magic Wands To Ward off Asymmetric Information

– May 10, 2020

With the “asymmetric information” argument, the left got a seemingly bulletproof theory with which to whack markets and subject them to government regulation: capitalists prey on the uninformed consumer and extract unfair rents from them in the informational version of haves that take advantage of have-nots. If not remedied, beneficial exchange disappears.

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Public Choice and the Lockdowns

– May 7, 2020

Public Choice seeks to apply our assumptions about human beings and their behavior to the state in the same way we apply those assumptions to other human institutions. It asks us not to be romantic about political power and the way it operates.

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Science and the Pandemic

– May 5, 2020

I can think of no greater offense against a genuinely scientific attitude than to support policies – especially ones adopted in haste and in a panic, and which diminish the amount of information that is uncovered and put to good use throughout society – simply because these policies are recommended by some epidemiologists.

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innovation

Matt Ridley on Innovation

– May 5, 2020

Innovation happens when ideas can meet and mate, when experiment is encouraged, when people and goods can move freely and when money can flow rapidly towards fresh concepts, when those who invest can be sure their rewards will not be stolen.

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Austrian Economics

An “Austrian” Agenda for Post-Coronavirus Recovery

– May 5, 2020

The “enemy” in our case is not a “them,” but the “us.” Only by facing, challenging, and defeating the ideas of collectivism, welfare statism, and the political paternalism of governmental planning with which too many Americans have become intellectually and culturally “infected,” is there a way back to the prosperity that we can have.

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It Is Not Our Ignorance that Will Kill Us, But Our Arrogance

– May 4, 2020

Join me in collectively repeating the following — I do not know what is best for everyone to do. If we internalize that, we begin to realize that is true for everyone. This prevents us from falling prey to what Adam Smith referred to as innumerable delusions. There is no panacea to our social ills. There are social ills, but there is no one size fits all solution to it.

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Reflections on the Economic Value of Life

– April 25, 2020

When New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said any efforts were worth it to save just one life, it likely came from a place of human decency, but it revealed an old moral compass that in a post-industrial, post-modern medicine world no longer makes sense.

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The Urgent Need for Intellectual Change

– April 24, 2020

The rebuilding of a free society after this chaos is over will require a great deal of work in the above four areas: mathematics, moral philosophy, history, and economics. In my darker moments I think that in fact we have gone back to ground zero in all these areas.

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How Wrong Were the Models and Why?

– April 23, 2020

Epidemiological expertise may convey specialized knowledge about the nature of disease transmission that is specifically suited to forecasting a pandemic’s spread. But it does not exempt the modelers from social scientific best practices for testing the robustness of their claims. Nor does it obviate basic rules of statistical analysis.

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We Don’t Need a Cure to Reopen

– April 21, 2020

I hope someday soon we will once again be having very rational yet vigorous discussions about the fundamental issues related to the liberal principles of justice and political economy, and we can point to the resiliency and ingenuity of a free people even in the face of adversity as one of the main arguments in favor of true liberal radicalism.

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