Dennis P. Returns, Libertarian Persuasion, & Free State New Hampshire (1h11m) – Episode 411

Episode 411 welcomes back Dennis Pratt to chat with Skyler on the following topics: the shutdown of Rodger Paxton’s Pax Libertas Productions; his multi-year career writing thoughtful answers to libertarian questions on Quora; New Hampshire’s Free State Project; life and politics in NH; how the locals are responding to the influx of libertarians to NH; what taxes are levied in NH; his involvement in building community centers for NH residents; why all economic regulations are a type of hidden tax; libertarianism as a paradigm shift; respecting cultural diversity among libertarians; slavery reparations as federal land divestments; why everyone is owed reparations by government for its many crimes; the dangers of cultivating and maintaining victimhood mentality; Porcfest, freedom festival; Joe Biden on the minimum wage; and more.

ARK3 Returns, The Year 2020, & Changing Statists’ Minds (1h7m) – Episode 353

Episode 353 welcomes back Alex R. Knight III to chat with Skyler on the following topics: the tumultuous year 2020; coronavirus hysteria; looking forward 10 years and what we should expect; reducing statism through technology instead of ideological persuasion; Kamala Harris’ possible ancestry; what becoming a politician does to people; why voters are rationally ignorant; who’s to blame when democratic government fails; inconsistency in the behaviors we tolerate from other people, government and not; postmodernism; the effectiveness that communist defectors have on getting people in freer countries to see the mistake in pushing for more government; 2020 US presidential election prediction; and more.

If the Only Way You Can Get Your Great Idea Implemented…

Economics textbooks are full of clever-and-appealing policy proposals.  Proposals like: “Let’s redistribute money to the desperately poor” and “Let’s tax goods with negative externalities.”  They’re so clever and so appealing that it’s hard to understand how any smart, well-meaning person could demur. When you look at the real world, though, you see something strange: Almost no one actually pushes for the textbooks’ clever-and-appealing policy proposals.

The Only Thing Stupider Than Your Policy Ideas is Trying to Enact Them

It’s one thing to make an argument that more individuals would get greater returns doing X than Y, or that common ideas about economic or cultural value are off base. These are great discussions. But when they move from individuals to aggregates, and especially when they move from exploration or persuasion to policy, they descend into stupidity. Or more precisely, what Hayek called the Fatal Conceit.