Topic: Economic History

Review: Milton Friedman: The Last Conservative

– January 11, 2024

“Friedman wasn’t a contrarian, but a firm believer in following the facts wherever they led. This ‘positive economics’ approach would underpin his later contributions for which he was most known.” ~Michael N. Peterson


The Golden Constant

– December 27, 2023

“The fear fueling this increase in the demand for gold is that the “unsinkable” ship of state has been so compromised by debt that it now risks slipping under the waves.” ~Clifford F. Thies


The Failure of the Pilgrims’ First Christmas

– December 25, 2023

“Believing that human nature is flawed and selfish, the colony leadership should have known that any system based on voluntary goodness was bound to fail.” ~Will Sellers


When Liberal Became a Political Adjective

– December 24, 2023

“Before the 1770s, liberal meant generous, munificent, as in “with a liberal hand,” or tolerant and befitting a free man, as in liberal arts and liberal sciences. Those meanings were not political.” ~Daniel Klein


The Monroe Doctrine Turns 200

– December 10, 2023

“The Monroe Doctrine sought to express the consensus of American sentiment about its view of its place in the world. Americans wanted to limit involvement with the politics and factious belligerence of Europe.” ~Will Sellers


What if the First Great Age of Globalization Began 100 Years Earlier?

– December 9, 2023

“Given that the first era of globalization is tied in the imagination of many to rising and converging living standards, this argument amounts to saying that living standards could have surged earlier had free trade been more popular.” ~Vincent Geloso


Why Ordinary People Enable Totalitarians, Part 1 

– December 7, 2023

“After the First World War in Germany, peace came with hyperinflation, which obliterated all wealth. The bonds of civilization fray during hyperinflation.” ~Barry Brownstein


What Might Have Been

– December 3, 2023

“Wasteful uses of resources necessarily result in some economic opportunities that are possible being rendered impossible. What were these foregone opportunities?” ~Donald J. Boudreaux


Frank Capra’s Timeless Vision of American Exceptionalism

– December 2, 2023

“Each film contains a large dose of middle-American values magnified time and again against the traps and situations of a complicated impregnable bureaucratic world. And in each case, the little guy wins.” ~Will Sellers


The Jobs You Don’t Want to Be Destroyed By Trade Were Created By Trade

– November 13, 2023

“By keeping prices down, and outputs and product varieties up, trade makes every dollar earned go further.” ~Donald J. Boudreaux


College History Textbooks spread Misinformation about the Great Depression

– November 10, 2023

“US history instruction, including at the college level, is badly out of sync with the scholarly literature on the Great Depression. History textbooks show little cognizance of the leading economic explanations for this famous event.” ~Phil W. Magness


Gobbledegook! The Bretton Woods System of Fixed Exchange Rates According to E.C. Harwood

– November 6, 2023

“In 1954, Harwood testified in the US Senate about the ‘advantages of returning to the full gold standard with the nation’s currency redeemable in gold coin on demand,’ as it had been throughout most of the nation’s history before the New Deal.” ~Robert E. Wright