Skip to main content


I reserve the right to be wrong.

But on the effects of economic freedom, I seriously doubt that I am...
It makes a pretty good case, but since you probably think this is some kind of conspiracy to extract your precious bodily fluids, here's the skinny on the Koch brothers, who funded this video.

I had a quick lookup of the Heritage Foundation's Index of Economic Freedom on Wikipedia. The index is pretty much the one thing I really like from this organisation. While the HF are a Conservative think tank, and their thinking does not align with my own, the simple facts collected together in this index do.

It is imperfect, to say the least. Some criticisms in that article above include a poor correlation between a country's ranking in the Index and its real GDP growth. Fair enough, but since the example of a fast growing, economically unfree country was China, a country which is playing economic catch-up to the developed nations of the world, I don't find it an overpowering criticism.

Singapore is an interesting case, because according to the Index it's the 2nd freest economy in the world behind Hong Kong. However, we all know that Singapore is not actually a free society at all; homosexuality is illegal, public conduct and grooming standards are inculcated and even legally binding. Life is unpleasant for those who are different, and yet I wonder how many Singaporeans would jump at the chance to live in a less politically repressive but impoverished and corrupt nation like Ukraine...

Popular posts from this blog

Will Automation Make All of the Jobs Disappear?

... No.

There is no reason to suggest that automation will dramatically increase unemployment in the short term, or at all in the long term.

Seriously, it will not.

Do read the links in the order in which they appear please. Finding the right comments in the third link might be quite interesting. They are all by a user called BestTrousers and start with "RI" meaning R1.

The main argument used by HealthcareEconomist3 is to give a survey of several works, while BestTrousers goes for comparative advantage.

Why I Am Not a Historical Materialist

Hopefully you good folks can indulge me by forgiving this post. It is an unfinished mess because I wanted it out there as the anchor for a hyperlink from a Reddit thread.
At the momebt everything below is a jumble of notes, but I will be reworking it bit by bit starting today.
Hopefully this post will be sorted out and typed in full before the end of April 2017.


Historical materialism is the idea that history progresses in stages - slavery, then feudalism, then capitalism, then socialism, then communism - driven by changes in the technologies or techniques of production, and that any human civilisation will exemplify this process.

This makes historical materialism an exercise in both historicism and materialism.

Historicism is the idea that studying the past can reveal history's in-built course or narrative, and so show you the future.

Materialism is the idea that ideas ( and institutions) ultimately* don't matter in determining our destinies, and that therefore only material…

Capital & Labor in the Race to Exploit the Other

The idea that labor exploits capital is equally as plausible, sans assumptions*, as the idea that capital exploits labor. This is only intended as a response to the formal concept, descriptive or normative, of exploitation in Marx's schema from Capital Volume I.

* Assumptions include the power relation whereby capital is just assumed to be above labor hierarchically.

~ Capital exploits labor because... ... Capital earns income from production done by labor that capital didn't perform
~ Labor exploits Capital because... ... Labor earns income from capital that labor didn't buy
Basically in good old formal logic fashion both of those cases above, being factual descriptions, are true at once or are false at once.