shallnotgrowold

The Veneer of Civilization Slipped Away

– February 22, 2019

Every idealist hopes that humankind can learn from history. There is plenty of evidence that we do not.

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bohemian2

Bohemian Rhapsody Shows That Artists Should Care About Audiences

– November 16, 2018

The wonderful movie based on the life of Freddie Mercury and his band makes a great case that commerce can be and is the friend to art. It has always been so, but we are only now fully coming to terms with what this implies for the artistic endeavor generally.

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Incredibles 2 and the Power of Envy

– November 10, 2018

The Incredibles must discover the fortitude to push through and say no to those who want to bury talent in a thicket of mediocracy.

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Vlad the Impaler

The Economics of Dracula

– October 31, 2018

Vlad the Impaler and his literary incarnation — Count Dracula — have real historical roots in a dark period of economic nationalism.

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jeremy-irons-margin-call1

Three Solid Movies on the 2008 Crisis

– September 19, 2018

The most well-known of the movies on the 2008 financial crisis is also the weakest. On the other hand, there are two wonderful films about it that deal with both the difficult times for traders and the underlying causes.

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Taylor Swift: Heroine for Property Rights

– July 18, 2018

Swift has used her celebrity and art to stand up to bullies, whether they be corporations or colleagues in the music industry. She’s also singing her way to the bank.

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deathofstalin

A Hilarious Comedy about Ghastly Evil

– May 29, 2018

The film brilliantly shows the wild jockeying for power that follows Stalin’s death, with fantastic portrayals of all the important figures from this period: Nikita Khrushchev, Lavrently Beria, Vyacheslav Molotov, Andrey Andreyev, Georgy Zhukov. It also serves as an excellent guide to what actually happened in those strange months that led to Beria’s execution and the rise of Khrushchev to become General Secretary.

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I, Tonya, and the Malleability of Class

– May 10, 2018

It is a rare film for dealing directly with a topic that Americans talk about often but think about hardly any at all: class distinctions and the barriers they create to social and economic mobility.

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This Is How David Hume Would Interpret Peter Rabbit

– March 11, 2018

The classic story of Peter Rabbit is ultimately a tale about property rights: where they come from, how they are enforced, and the consequences of their violation. Here is the core of what makes the film remake of this story so wonderful. It challenges us to think carefully about the topic, and, as a bonus, offers up a Humean-Misesian view of property (an improvement over John Locke) and its meaning in our lives.

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Economics Gave Unified Culture a Mercy Killing

– March 6, 2018

The fall of the Oscars is only one sign of a larger trend. Technology fueled by economic considerations has given people more options than ever. We are curating culture according not to some mythical “national” sense of things but rather in accord with our individual preferences. This is happening now simply because we can. The economic trajectory of technology has made it possible. Any institution that strives to embody some mythical ideal of a unitary culture will fail.

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xgiving-01

The Real Meaning of Thanksgiving: The Triumph of Capitalism over Collectivism

– November 24, 2008

This time of the year is when we gather with our family and friends and enjoy a Thanksgiving meal together. What is less appreciated is that Thanksgiving also is a celebration of the birth of free enterprise in America.

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