Posted by: graemebird | September 2, 2010

Why Are Firms So Large On Average? (Schumpeter And Coase Mostly Wrong).

More Later



  1. On moderation:

    George W. Bush, Tony Blair and John Howard not only retailed as fact information that was at best debatable, they also smeared citizens who dared question them. If truth was the first casualty of war, the second was decency. And by and large the media went along for the ride.”

    The problem with the above Tim Dunlop, is that this never happened. This is not a real version of history. This is a fantasy version of history.

    We all knew that Saddam Hussein had an armed forces with more experience in using chemical weapons in the field than anyone else. We all knew that he had weapons programs and stockpiles at some time or another.

    If you are alleging that he didn’t have chemical weapons, then you are quite literally insane. WHEN are you claiming he was without them? Obviously he had them. But when did he lose them? Well none of us knew? None of us knew when he lost them or where they went. We know that at least SOME of them were smuggled over to Syria. Other stockpiles might simply have been thrown away. No-one knows. You don’t know and neither do I.

    What are you claiming you know that the rest of us don’t? Specify what month did Saddam Hussein not have chemical weapons and other cease-fire-proscribed materials?

    You don’t know any such thing. You have just fallen for an unreal non-factual version of history.

    What month did Saddam not have chemical weapons? What month was that? We will see that you have allowed yourself to be taken in.

    This chemical weapons business was not the true scandal of the 2nd Gulf War. The true scandal was far larger and more serious than that.

  2. Graeme Bird :
    03 Sep 2010 7:57:14pm

    There is simply no evidence that John Howard lied about anything or intimidated anyone on this matter. Proscribed materials relating to chemical weapons and nuclear ambitions were indeed found. The whole situation is buried in an immense amount of myth-making.

    No-one who claims that they were lied to can opt out of the question: WHEN are you claiming that Saddam Hussein didn’t have chemical weapons? We know that he had them. What MONTH are you talking about when you reckon he didn’t have them?

    What do the drug-dealers do when there is a drug raid? They flush the drugs down the toilet. Saddam had months to do likewise. I fully realise that these mythical claims (of Tony and John lying to people) have now become bipartisan. These are particularly strong myths on the libertarian right, just for example.

    But they are myths just the same. Since the fact is no-one knows how much of his stockpiles he still had and when, nor do we know when he got rid of them.

    He had just massive amounts of gear he was not supposed to have under the cease-fire. So its a bit of a mystery to me what this story about being lied to about WMD is all about.

    The real scandal to do with the second Gulf War is a much bigger thing than that. But the real scandal didn’t involve Tony or John. And it probably didn’t involve George either.

    Reply Alert moderator

  3. Steven Kates’ triumphant speech at the Mises institute. You wouldn’t think that the history of a theory is important to understanding the theory. Turns out that its always very crucial. If you see an economist that doesn’t know this you are looking at a bad economists. Andrew Leigh contradicted me on this point. Andrew Leigh is a bad economist. Now criminally so, since in the intervening period he was part of the economic vandalism that went on under Labour.

    I always thought that people were making too much out of Says law. Since Says law is basically tautological, I figured that there was only so much to make out of it. But Kates explains that Says law is really a series of arguments that came out in response to Malthus. Malthus in error claiming that extra government spending could help the problem of recession.

    Kates does seem to be underestimating the potential for the money supply to implode in the modern fractional reserve context. Also he seems to talk as if “demand-defficiency” is too much savings, rather than a collapse in monetary conditions. So when Kates is talking about falling aggregate demand he may be talking about an increase in savings.

    But this all aside its a great performance:

  4. “You wouldn’t think that the history of a theory is important to understanding the theory.”

    Oh? A materialist would.

  5. Milton Friedman told this fellow (Bill Still) over the phone:

    “Boy. If you kill the Fed without getting rid of fractional reserve lending; YOU’VE DONE NOTHING.”

    This is obvious under economic theory. But to ignorant people at Catallaxy this may come as a surprise.

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