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Old 07-03-2014, 08:54 AM  
KC native KC native is offline
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Brain worms and Austrian Economists

Austrian Economists, 9/11 Truthers and Brain Worms
http://www.bloombergview.com/article...ce=twitter.com

JUL 2, 2014 12:55 PM EDT
By Noah Smith

In the film ``Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,'' the super-genius villain puts alien worms into people’s brains in order to subvert them to his demented cause. I think Khan could have been an Austrian economist. To those of you who have run afoul of the defenders of Austrianism on the Internet, the analogy will be clear. The Austrian worldview is like a brain worm that has infected large swathes of our financial industry, commentariat and general public. Even you, dear reader, may carry one or two of its wriggling larva inside your gray matter.

When the Austrian brain-worm invades, you start believing things like: 1) Federal Reserve money-printing is a government plot to boost big banks, 2) prices are rising much faster than anyone thinks, 3) real “inflation” means money-printing, not an increase in prices, 4) printing money can never boost the economy, 5) academic economics is a plot to use mathematical mumbo-jumbo to cover up government giveaways to big banks, etc., etc.

The Austrian catechisms range from almost plausible (taking toxic mortgage assets off of bank balance sheets must have been part of the reason the Fed did quantitative easing), to somewhere in the neighborhood of the 9/11 truthers and moon-landing hoaxers. Most of the elements of Austrianism are so directly contradicted by data that the belief system practically screens itself for people who are out of touch with reality.

The years 2011 and 2012 were to Austrians like sunrise is to a vampire. It was simply amazing to sit there and watch Austrians writhe and contort under the pure, burning light of extant reality. Massive torrents of Fed “money-printing” failed to budge prices; this fact directly cracked the central foundations of Austrian thought. The history-book moment came when David Henderson of the Naval Postgraduate School defeated Austrian champion Robert Murphy of the Ludwig von Mises Institute in a bet about inflation.

How did Austrians deal with this assault by the forces of extant reality? First they attempted to deny it. “Have you seen the price of X?” they would ask, implying that inflation was occurring much faster than the government statistics let on. They pointed to shadowstats.com, a website that claimed that a change in the way the government calculated inflation was covering up big spikes.

But reality was relentless. The nongovernment Billion Price Project put a dagger through the heart of inflation-conspiracy theorists. The government statistics were true -- prices really weren’t going up very much. And writer John Aziz found that shadowstats.com was actually a laughably simple hoax (no surprise there, unless you’re an Austrian).

The Austrians’ next defense was to redefine reality. Inflation doesn’t mean a rise in prices, they said -- it means an increase in the monetary base. QE wasn’t causing inflation, it was inflation itself. Duh! Now the Austrians were safe -- after all, you can define inflation as anything you want. It’s a free country, ain’t it? You can define inflation to be a rare poisonous South American tree frog if you want, and the only consequence will be that people think you’re off your rocker. And so when Austrians tried to redefine the word “inflation” to mean something other than “a rise in prices,” people duly recognized that Austrians were off their rockers.

The next blow against the brain worms came with the plunge in the price of gold, which by the end of last year had fallen more than 35 percent from its 2012 peak. Gold is central to the Austrian worldview. To them, the yellow metal represents freedom from government control -- which, since Austrianism mixes politics with economics as shamelessly as unscrupulous Chinese companies mix melamine with milk, meant that rises in gold prices represented the triumph of good over evil. The rise of gold from 2000 through 2011 told Austrians that the power of the vile government-bank alliance was finally breaking, and a new era of freedom was on the way. Unfortunately, gold returns actually had more to do with foreign central-bank purchases, falling real interest rates, speculative demand, and the bursting bubble that wreaked havoc on the wealth of anyone who had bought into the worldview of gold-flogging sites like Zero Hedge.

But brain worms have a way of just burrowing deeper to escape the light, and my Twitter feed is still occasionally hijacked by true believers screeching that inflation really is off the charts, that I’m a corrupt spokesman for big banks and government overlords.

The continued life of the Austrian brain worm is due to the appealing nature of the nonsense it injects into the surrounding neurons. Austrianism wraps itself in the rhetoric of personal freedom and conservative politics, laying the free-market rhetoric on thick. If you didn’t know that monetarists such as Milton Friedman -- who strongly supported printing money to fight depressions, and had harsh things to say about the Austrians -- were also strongly pro-free-market, you might buy into the Austrian line that gold is freedom and QE is slavery.

Austrianism also appeals to workers in the finance industry, especially young men with a strong sense of self-reliance. When asset returns are controlled by a bunch of academics at the Fed, and business has to be conducted under the auspices of the big bank oligopoly, a young trader tends to feel that he can’t make money for himself -- that he’s at the mercy of The Man. To top it off, taxes are taking a cut of his trading profits and a cut of his salary. That makes him psychologically vulnerable to the idea that a bank-Fed conspiracy is behind all the woes of the global economy.

Out in the wider world, the Austrian brain-worm’s darker whisperings are music to the ears of the paleo-libertarian Ron Paul movement. Austrianism’s antiSemitic overtones are conveniently papered over by the fact that two of its founding figures (von Mises and Murray Rothbard) were Jewish. But it’s no coincidence that Austrianism carries great appeal for the more unsavory corners of American politics.

So if you’re one of the people who has been fully or partially enslaved by this brain worm, I implore you: Resist. The human mind, when awakened, is a powerful thing -- under the focus of your will, even a brain-worm as strong as Austrianism will not survive. I don’t expect many of you to heed my call, but a couple of you will (you might want to start here). That’s how brain worms get defeated -- a few minds are liberated, and then a few more, and then a few more…
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:44 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC native View Post
Anthropogenic global warming is happening. Just because you don't understand the science behind it doesn't mean it is a conspiracy.
I see you didn't understand his post either.
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:46 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
I see you didn't understand his post either.
You attribute a higher intelligence level to Phelp's Bitch than is warranted.

He assumes people and groups that he disagrees with hold identical views.
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:52 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by KC native View Post
You attribute a higher intelligence level to Phelp's Bitch than is warranted.

He assumes people and groups that he disagrees with hold identical views.
He didn't say anything about doubting that anthropogenic global warming is happening in that post.
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Old 07-03-2014, 10:54 AM   #19
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The editorial I read may not be from the same link as the original poster, as I did not read his post. I saw it on The Daily Bell.

Here's a comment to this opinion piece, that I thought was a funny spoof of the Keynesian method's math or formulas:
Division of Labor versus Division of Spoils ...

What this really means:

When you strip the rhetoric and educational subversions away, all of history is REALLY about:

We have been and are in an eternal war between the productive (those who produce more than they consume) and the greedy (those who consume more than they produce). Civilizations rise (honesty in control) and fall (predators in control). The reader should be able to determine the current state of affairs.

A mathematical proof of the relationship between productive activity and survival of society is derived. This is the most basic law of economics and civilization, which is suppressed and strategically denied by the economics "profession" worldwide, in a futile attempt to obscure the truth and defraud mankind of any possibility of freedom or survival.

Definitions:

Ruler: One who does not participate in productive economic activities or do any work that directly contributes to creation of social wealth. For instance, government, people on social services, police, military, lawyers ...
Prey: Those who actually do create wealth by engaging in productive activities. For instance, farmers, industrial workers, service industries ...
NR = Total number of rulers
NP = Total number of prey
NT = NR + Np = Population of Society
WP = Average Work output per worker (prey)
RT = Total social resources available
RAR = Resources consumed by average Ruler
RAP = Resources consumed by average Prey

Assume the consumption of social resources is equal to the resources produced. This is what Rulers plus Prey consume which equals what the Prey produce.

NR * RAR + NP * RAP = RT = NP * WP


Equation #1

Substitute ( NT - NR ) for NP ( NT = NP + NR ) into Equation #1:

NR * RAR + ( NT - NR ) * RAP = ( NT - NR ) * WP

Multiply terms:

NR * RAR + NT * RAP - NR * RAP = NT * WP - NR * WP

Collect common terms:

NR * ( RAR - RAP + WP ) = NT * ( WP - RAP)

NR / NT = (WP - RAP) / (RAR - RAP + WP) = Fraction of Rulers in population

NR / NT * 100 = Percentage Rulers

( NR / NT ) * 100 = ( ( WP - RAP ) / ( RAR - RAP + WP ) ) * 100


Equation #2


Define:

G = Greed of rulers
= RAR / RAP = resources consumed by rulers versus prey

P = Productivity of prey
= WP / RAP = resources created versus consumed by prey

Therefore;


WP = P * RAP

RAR = G * RAP

Substitute into equation #2


( NR / NT ) * 100 = ( ( P * RAP - RAP) / ( G * RAP - RAP + P * RAP ) ) * 100

Collect terms:


( NR / NT ) * 100 = ( ( P -1 ) * RAP ) / ( G - 1 + P ) RAP ) * 100

RAP cancels out:

Percent Rulers = ( ( P -1 ) / ( G + P - 1 ) ) * 100


Equation #3

This equation is plotted in the percent Rulers versus Greed for various values of productivity graph below.....[and on and on]



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Old 07-03-2014, 10:58 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
He didn't say anything about doubting that anthropogenic global warming is happening in that post.
Yes, let's just ignore his posting history and takes. This is a far stretch even for you.
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:00 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
The editorial I read may not be from the same link as the original poster, as I did not read his post. I saw it on The Daily Bell.

Here's a comment to this opinion piece, that I thought was a funny spoof of the Keynesian method's math or formulas:
Division of Labor versus Division of Spoils ...

What this really means:

When you strip the rhetoric and educational subversions away, all of history is REALLY about:

We have been and are in an eternal war between the productive (those who produce more than they consume) and the greedy (those who consume more than they produce). Civilizations rise (honesty in control) and fall (predators in control). The reader should be able to determine the current state of affairs.

A mathematical proof of the relationship between productive activity and survival of society is derived. This is the most basic law of economics and civilization, which is suppressed and strategically denied by the economics "profession" worldwide, in a futile attempt to obscure the truth and defraud mankind of any possibility of freedom or survival.

Definitions:

Ruler: One who does not participate in productive economic activities or do any work that directly contributes to creation of social wealth. For instance, government, people on social services, police, military, lawyers ...
Prey: Those who actually do create wealth by engaging in productive activities. For instance, farmers, industrial workers, service industries ...
NR = Total number of rulers
NP = Total number of prey
NT = NR + Np = Population of Society
WP = Average Work output per worker (prey)
RT = Total social resources available
RAR = Resources consumed by average Ruler
RAP = Resources consumed by average Prey

Assume the consumption of social resources is equal to the resources produced. This is what Rulers plus Prey consume which equals what the Prey produce.

NR * RAR + NP * RAP = RT = NP * WP


Equation #1

Substitute ( NT - NR ) for NP ( NT = NP + NR ) into Equation #1:

NR * RAR + ( NT - NR ) * RAP = ( NT - NR ) * WP

Multiply terms:

NR * RAR + NT * RAP - NR * RAP = NT * WP - NR * WP

Collect common terms:

NR * ( RAR - RAP + WP ) = NT * ( WP - RAP)

NR / NT = (WP - RAP) / (RAR - RAP + WP) = Fraction of Rulers in population

NR / NT * 100 = Percentage Rulers

( NR / NT ) * 100 = ( ( WP - RAP ) / ( RAR - RAP + WP ) ) * 100


Equation #2


Define:

G = Greed of rulers
= RAR / RAP = resources consumed by rulers versus prey

P = Productivity of prey
= WP / RAP = resources created versus consumed by prey

Therefore;


WP = P * RAP

RAR = G * RAP

Substitute into equation #2


( NR / NT ) * 100 = ( ( P * RAP - RAP) / ( G * RAP - RAP + P * RAP ) ) * 100

Collect terms:


( NR / NT ) * 100 = ( ( P -1 ) * RAP ) / ( G - 1 + P ) RAP ) * 100

RAP cancels out:

Percent Rulers = ( ( P -1 ) / ( G + P - 1 ) ) * 100


Equation #3

This equation is plotted in the percent Rulers versus Greed for various values of productivity graph below.....[and on and on]



That's not funny at all.

stupid **** has a terrible sense of humor.
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:15 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by KC native View Post
Yes, let's just ignore his posting history and takes. This is a far stretch even for you.
I don't know his history on this subject, but you're lying if you're telling me that your response was about his history instead of a flawed attempt to respond to what he said in that post. Pathetic.
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:26 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by KC native View Post
Anthropogenic global warming is happening. Just because you don't understand the science behind it doesn't mean it is a conspiracy.
It's one thing to doubt whether, how much, and what effect there is of man-made global warming. I think that is a place where there are question marks a thinking person could have.

To see shadowy conspiracies around every corner orchestrated by your political enemies and to bubble yourself only with pet sources until you groupthink yourself into insanity is the domain of the tinfoil stuff.
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:33 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
It's one thing to doubt whether, how much, and what effect there is of man-made global warming. I think that is a place where there are question marks a thinking person could have.

To see shadowy conspiracies around every corner orchestrated by your political enemies and to bubble yourself only with pet sources until you groupthink yourself into insanity is the domain of the tinfoil stuff.
Completely agree.
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Old 07-03-2014, 11:45 AM   #25
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It's a conspiracy theory, like any other. People who are inclined to believe in one conspiracy theory are usually inclined to believe in many others. They want to believe any theory that they can say validates their political stances. .. appeal to wishful thinking.
Just like all of those morons who said that the 2nd attack at the gulf of tonkin didn't happen. They all insisted it was made up so we would invade Vietnam. Those nuts.

Oh...wait...
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Old 07-03-2014, 12:50 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
I...until you groupthink yourself into insanity is the domain of the tinfoil stuff.
Like your group-think anything remotely connected to Ron Paul,his ideas or followers?

You seem to have a funny way of falling into the same behavioral or thinking patterns as many on the left at times. Such as, thinking something is identical to Paul's ideas when it is not. Or thinking something is similar or different when it is not. Those things are a lapse in logic--just as your unquestioning belief in anything right-wing media or govt tells you. Particularly on foreign policy. You're in the worship of the state camp there.

Actually, to some degree, all of us do it. It's just a matter of degree. You do it a lot.
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Old 07-03-2014, 12:53 PM   #27
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Just like all of those morons who said that the 2nd attack at the gulf of tonkin didn't happen. They all insisted it was made up so we would invade Vietnam. Those nuts.

Oh...wait...
The state is always right and always worthy of our trust to Cochise especially on things like that. He even needs a Consumer Price Index card in his back pocket to tell him if he's seeing any inflation at the supermarket. When, it tells him there isn't any or if it's barely there, he goes by that.
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Old 07-03-2014, 01:01 PM   #28
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BigotEyedPea's posting is following the op-ed perfectly.
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Old 07-03-2014, 01:14 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by KC native View Post
Yes, let's just ignore his posting history and takes. This is a far stretch even for you.
I'm agnostic on climate change because I don't care about it. So go ahead any post my denials. I'm sorta interested in my scientific (or dogmatic) contributions to those threads.


Or, maybe you're just caught lying again. Like usual.
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Old 07-03-2014, 01:18 PM   #30
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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Fort Worth, TX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prison Bitch View Post
I'm agnostic on climate change because I don't care about it. So go ahead any post my denials. I'm sorta interested in my scientific (or dogmatic) contributions to those threads.


Or, maybe you're just caught lying again. Like usual.
Being agnostic on climate change in the face of the evidence available is equivalent to being a denier.
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The diameter of your knowledge is the circumference of your actions. Ras Kass

Quote:
Originally Posted by Iowanian View Post
I'm just a little pussy from Iowa
Posts: 18,903
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