Philosophy and Methodology

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Murray Rothbard and Thomas Kuhn

Philosophy and Methodology

Blog05/01/2020

Thomas Kuhn influenced Rothbard by demolishing the notion that the history of science is one of continual progress. The truth is that once a paradigm becomes established, its basic tenets are not questioned at all until major problems crop up.

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Praxeology and Mathematical Logic

Philosophy and Methodology

Blog04/24/2020

Some argue that praxeology's deductions should be formalized using mathematical logic, but such an approach would be inappropriate for human action, whose axioms are known.

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Finally Kicking the GDP Habit

Philosophy and Methodology

Blog04/18/2020

GDP is fine for counting things like washing machines. But it is quite useless for counting other basic indicators of the quality of life.

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Mises versus Rand on the Origins of Nazism

Philosophy and Methodology

Blog04/17/2020

Ludwig von Mises and Ayn Rand held very different views about the origins of Nazism, and in this article I am going to describe these differences. Both involve German philosophical ideas.

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A Puzzle about Mises and Conscription

War and Foreign PolicyPhilosophy and Methodology

Blog04/10/2020

Not only are conscripts enslaved, often under brutal conditions, they can be sent to die in battle. Mises opposed conscription, but there was an exception.

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Beyond the NAP: Rothbard's Full Case for Liberty

StrategyPhilosophy and MethodologyPolitical Theory

Blog04/08/2020

The nonaggression principle—"anything peaceful"—comes as close to a value-free analysis in a political, ethical, economic, and legal theory as conceivably possible. It was insufficient for Rothbard, because he rightly found it insufficient for liberty.

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Equality and Levelling Down

SocialismPhilosophy and Methodology

Blog04/03/2020

Egalitarians think that equality has intrinsic value: they advocate it for its own sake, not just to forestall bad consequences. But why is a situation in which some in it have been made better off, and none worse off, worse than one of equality?

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COVID-19: The "Experts" Have No Crystal Ball

Media and CultureCalculation and KnowledgePhilosophy and Methodology

Blog03/25/2020

The 2016 election was an important reminder that most experts were totally wrong in their predictions of what would happen. Now the experts are claiming that freedom and markets must be abandoned based on new guesses about the future.

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Fail: Quantitative Methods Presume That Human Action Is Reflexive

Philosophy and MethodologyPraxeology

Blog03/21/2020

Quantitative methods can't be applied to human action, which is purposeful and not a mere reflex. For this reason, mathematical formulas can only describe events, never explain them.

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A Fallacy about Negative Externalities

Philosophy and MethodologySubjectivism

Blog03/20/2020

Some people use the concept of negative externalities to argue for government to force people toward "what is best for them." An example of this is the call for a consumption tax.

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