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Book review – The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism


I frequently enjoy Hayek’s writing less than anticipated. The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism was no exception. The book is mercifully brief and its substance is insightful and yet it was a dull read. It begins by explaining that tradition arises between instinct and reason. Hayek destroys the case for a rational reconstruction of civilisation. It is a fatal conceit to imagine society can be designed, one grounded in fear and a revolt against reason. Markets, money and trade emerged […]

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Three videos to start the Autumn


On levels of debt: On the madness of QE and the current economic consensus: On the battle of economic ideas:

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Hayek’s neglected truths about credit, capital and the trade cycle


Last night, I caught up with Martin Wolf’s November programmes for Radio 4 Analysis, which you can find here. He offered a predictable blend of commentators calling for more money printing, world central banking and greater global governance. It prompted me to look out Monetary Theory and the Trade Cycle (1933). Hayek wrote (emphasis mine): It is a curious fact that the general disinclination to explain the past boom by monetary factors has been quickly replaced by an even greater […]

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The Rule of Law


Please note: this post was written at my request by Michael Dowsett, after yet another European policy which breached the Rule of Law, as classically understood. – Steve The rule of law is a phrase which is widely used but perhaps little understood. Far from being merely the sum total of all the laws passed by a particular central or local administration plus courts to enforce them, the term ‘the rule of law’ draws on a higher concept of laws […]

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Remember, remember, the 5th of November


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As CNN reports, the V for Vendetta-style Guy Fawkes mask has inspired Occupy protesters around the world. CNN points out: Ironically Fawkes, far from being the anti-establishment hero he has come to be seen as in the years since his death, was a monarchist who merely wanted to replace the Anglican king with a Catholic queen. A transcript of his trial with co-conspirators is available here. It’s hard reading for one not accustomed to 17th century English but, in relation […]

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