4. Time Preference, Capital, Technology, and Economic Growth
The theory of time preference, capital, technology and economic growth will be viewed through both theoretical and historical elements. People have a preference for satisfaction earlier as compared to satisfaction later. Capital goods allow greater production, but this requires saving now, not consuming now.
Humans are constrained by time preference. Our interest rate is always higher than zero. Little children have very high time preferences. They don’t want to wait, they want things now. Populations have become more hedonistic and childlike in the current century, compared to earlier.
Capital needs to be preserved. Economic growth requires strong property rights to encourage people to save and invest. Sustaining large populations of people requires economic growth through capital goods and innovation. Taxes and debt destroy civilizations.
Lecture 4 of 10 from Hans-Hermann Hoppe's Economy, Society, and History.