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Creator of "Fear the Boom and Bust" at the ASC

February 19, 2010

The Mises Institute is pleased to welcome John Papola to the Austrian Scholars Conference, March 11-13, 2010, Auburn, Alabama. John is the co-producer along with Russell Roberts of “Fear the Boom and Bust,” the youtube smash hit that pits Hayek against Keynes in a rap song about the business cycle.

The video (now with 785,000 views) has brought more attention to the Austrian theory of the business cycle, and with surprising theoretical accuracy, than any medium in history, and driven sales of Hayek’s book on the business cycle. John told us that what fed his interest in this project in the first place was a series of podcasts from Mises.org, in particular, those with Joseph Salerno provided a detailed account of the Austrian theory, together with the presentations of Roger Garrison at the Mises University. Here we see an example, not only of the influence of Mises.org, but also of the fluidity of ideas across many sectors of public opinion.

As a honored guest at the Austrian Scholars Conference, he will talk about the ideas behind the video and how it came to be made. We’ll screen the video and get an inside look into the issues he confronted in turning this highly complicated subject into the subject matter of a music video everyone can enjoy. In many ways, he is a pioneer, not just in explaining Austrian theory but also in the presentation of economic ideas to a general audience, thereby inspiring people to take up economics as a discipline and helping even present practitioners to take a closer look at what Hayek had to say.

His lecture will follow a talk by Caroline Baum of Bloomberg who will speak on “Economics Confronts Public Culture.” John’s topic: “The Making of the Keynes-Hayek Rap: Economic Theory Meets Popular Culture.”

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