Advocates of Reason: 24 October 2013

Man has only one tool to fight error: reason.

Ludwig von Mises

1. The Uruguayan government is toying with the idea of selling marijuana at $1/g. Why this case would be any different from, say, the scalping “problem” associated with under-priced concert tickets, I don’t know.

2. Economies of scale and Britain’s industrialization.

3. Why has Somali oceanic piracy died off? Private security (I linked to another story earlier this year). The article mentions that “pirates” people looking for ransom money have begun to look for inland targets.

4. Matt McCaffrey reviews a recently published book on Edwin Chadwick, a 19th century English “utilitarian social reformer” whose economic insights are remarkably parallel to those of various modern economists.

5. “18 signs you’re reading a bad criticism of economics.” Unlearningecon is not impressed. I want to make my own list now.

6 thoughts on “Advocates of Reason: 24 October 2013

    1. Scott Gaff

      Wow, at a time when high tarrifs were the norm, thats proof it was the tarrif. It couldnt be that they cut other forms of regulation, though, could it? That would do great disservice to your purpose.

      I heard that line from many, but when you dig deeper you realize tariffs were more of a balancing act while countries were cutting regulations across the board.

      1. Unlearning Economics

        It was more than high tariffs: the British state built ‘model factories’, poached skilled workers and technology, and subsidized and steered certain industries. It must also be pointed out that even things like the repeal of the corn laws were designed to make materials for domestic manufacturing cheaper, and also to make foreign agriculture more competitive, so that British manufacturing could out compete other countries.

        1. Scott Gaff

          Even up to the late 19th century? That probably rings true for England. I dont doubt they were in a frenzy over the economic rivalry of competing countries like the Us and Sweden. Both sides seem focused on outflanking the other party with rhetoric. LK’s article made the case Britain became economivally proficient solely because of tariffs, which were scaled back afterward.


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