Two Essential Journals
Landing on my desk this afternoon are the new issues of the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics (V 8.1), edited by Joseph Salerno, and the newly redesigned Journal of Libertarian Studies (V 19.1) under the editorship of Roderick T. Long. Even though both will be available online after this issue, there is something essential about the hardcopy that draws you in and provides a way of reading without being constantly attached to a screen. Some things are worth savoring in real life, and certainly these two journals are among them. They are $29 each per year.
The new JLS features a fascinating piece by John Payne on “Rothbard’s Time on the Left.” A documentary history of this legendary time without a lot of interpretative verbiage, this excellent piece shows that Rothbard never once deviated from his attachment to property rights and capitalism, despite pressure. Rothbard’s move was strategic and not intellectual, Payne shows. It also presents the New Left’s response to Rothbard, which is very revealing of core intellectual confusion.
I’m personally very excited about Jude Blanchette’s piece called “Anderson, Hazlitt, and the Quantity Theory of Money” because it represents a very hopeful step toward something long overdue: taking Hazlitt seriously as a theoretician of economics. Not only that: Blanchette draws attention to an aspect of Austrian monetary theory that is not well known.
Hunt Tooley’s retrospective The Merchants of Death (1934) is a great piece too, as a study in how power elite analysis can affect public opinion. I’m not aware of any other scholarly article that so thoroughly examines this important work and its impact, while evaluating whether later scholarship upheld or debunked it claims.
Finally, Walter Block takes on Bryan Caplan’s latest claims against the methodology of the Austrian School.
Professor Long provides a long introduction that places the JLS in the history of ideas.
Now to the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics, which begins with a piece by G.R. Steele on Hayek. He argues that Hayek’s monetary theory went through far fewer twists and turns during his writing career than recent literature claims. Richard C.B. Johnsson documents and interprets the great Japanese Deflation. Timothy Terrell takes on “binary economics” and unmasks it as a heap of fallacies. Mark Thornton’s already famous paper on skyscrapers and business cycles appears here too, along with several books reviews.