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April 23, 2011

Comments

James

Despite your hyperventilating, I'll check out the interview. Thanks for the tip!

Alex Linder

Your "common good," of course, is defined by a tiny minority of jew-leftists, and paid for out of the pockets of the White earners you despise. So if anyone's sick - it's you, not Hoppe.

David

Looks like some Nazis have discovered this blog.

Hattie

Junge Junge. All those white mediocrities can't take the competition.

Strahler 70

Herrenmenschen... aren't they the guys the KDF-Wagen was big enough for five of them? lol

John in Michigan, USA

To provide some context, even in America, its alleged home, the Austrian School is rather small and marginal. It shouldn't be confused with the much larger, libertarian-leaning, pro-immigration Chicago School, whose size and influence (in America at least) is roughly equal to the socialist-leaning Keynsian School.

There are many non-Austrian School economists who criticize the Fed and fractional reserve banking, or who are buying gold right now.

Also, I wouldn't describe Hoppe as the "The foremost authority of Austrian Economics" (for example, he is only cited once at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austrian_School ) but he is certainly an important voice within that School.

Is Austrian Economics "primarily an American school"? Yes, in the sense that the Marxist School, in the early years at least, was primarily a British school. Marx was the leader of a group of ex-pat Continentals who found refuge in London. I see the Austrian School as an ex-pat community that found refuge in America without truly assimilating. Given Hoppe's position on immigration, it is a delicious irony.

Marx, of course, is far, far more important to the history of ideas than is Hoppe.

People like Hoppe have attempted to base their economic and social ideas in the Continental Rationalist tradition, rather than the Anglo-American Empiricist tradition.

Libertarian Perry de Havilland of Samizdata.net provides an excellent summary and critique of Hoppe and the Austrians. You really have to read the whole thing, but here is a taste:

"Some like Hans-Hermann Hoppe have what I believe to be quite incorrect understandings of not just the inevitably fluid nature of society in a modern extended order but have also failed to grasp the dramatic effect of capitalist trade based economics on making societies more dynamic and adaptive when they interact increasingly globally. As a result, Hoppe takes an extremely non-Anglosphere, quintessentially Germanic view of the nature of civil society when viewed separately from the state: at its core he sees a blood and soil Volk, racially, genetically as well as culturally based and therefore leading to self reinforcing communities of 'like cultures'."
...
"Yet I look around at London and see a very different world to that of Hoppe. It is abundantly clear that when the state does not enforce distorting multiculturalism, social values will naturally evolve not to Hoppe's hypothetical future libertarian neo-tribalism but rather to cosmopolitanism, right here and right now. The only Volk of the future is the Volkswagen. When people of different cultures and races actually interact economically, the inevitable consequence is familiarity, cultural confluence and ultimately miscegenation, not a regression to atavistic tribalism. One only has to walk down the streets of London to see the truth of that."

Read the rest at
http://www.samizdata.net/blog/archives/2002/03/immigration_and_libertarians.html

Personally, I would modify de Havilland's statement to replace "quintessentially Germanic" with "quintessentially Continental".

As to the Tea Party connection...the Tea Party at its best is a rebirth of the practical, middle class wisdom of living within our means. No person, family, or business can live on debt forever. Governments should follow the same rule.

However, I am forced to admit that there are elements of the Tea Party for whom Hans-Hermann Hoppe's ideas do resonate. Those elements represent the Tea Party at its worst.

I am even more concerned that Hoppe's ideas will be discovered in Russia or worse, China, if that hasn't happened already.

Out of curiousness, what path led you to the mind of Hoppe? Is there a connection to Thilo Sarrazin?

David

I'll have to read de Havilland, but does he view cosmopolitanism as a good or bad outcome?

John in Michigan, USA

For de Havilland, cosmopolitanism is certainly a good outcome, as long as it isn't distorted by state-financed, state-enforced multiculturalism.

A picture is worth a lot. Be sure to scroll down to the end of his post.

David

Well, I read the article. De Havilland is certainly better than Hoppe on the issue, but his rejection of any state sanctions on the issue is wrong. If it were up to de Havilland, there would be no civil rights laws, segregation would be the rule, women would have no rights in the workplace, etc. America would look very much like Apartheid South Africa.

John in Michigan, USA

Wow...do you read text the way normal people do? How on earth do you read de Havilland's admiration for cosmopolitan London and conclude that he wants Apartheid? Don't you get that he is appalled by Apartheid? Don't you get that, for him, state-sponsored multiculturalism is a kinder, gentler form of Apartheid?

You may not agree with de Havilland, but to so distort his position is beyond absurd.

David

How did Apartheid end? How did slavery end in the US? How did we end school segregation in the US?

By using the power of the state to enforce federal laws. As a libertarian, de Haviland opposes these state sanctions.

Do you know anything about the history of the civil rights movement in the US and the role of the federal government?

Attie Schutte

David, that is a stupid argument because Apartheid and forced segregation also came into being through the power of the state. Calling each other names does not help: Here is some nice rap music to explain it to simpletons:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0nERTFo-Sk&feature=fvwrel
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTQnarzmTOc&feature=player_embedd
People don’t all want to live in the same type of society. So the answer is simple if you acknowledge the right to cessation, we can divide peacefully into autonomous spaces for all ideologies/nations/races/religions if not the only answer left is to kill you. It is a terrible thing to say but what other alternatives are there?

John in Michigan, USA

David, you opposed the US invasion of Iraq. Therefore, you must be in favor of Saddam Hussein's reign of terror.

Do you see the problem with your logic yet?

If you don't, keep trying. I just know you'll get the hang of it!

David

What the hell is your logic? Would segregation have ended by itself? No, equality is enshrined in our constitution and the state finally enforced it. You and your friend Attie hate state intervention, so presumably you would have been fine with segregated schools, lunch counters, etc.

David

BTW, please provide examples of "state-financed, state-enforced multiculturalism."

It's just another one of your straw men.

Attie Schutte

Examples? wow I just got 33 in an hour I could probably do about a thousand a weekend at this pace but I don’t want to spend my weekends like this. Ok I admit it not all are forced multiculturalism from central government, but they are all left wing articles, some just too bizarre to leave out. http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Education/2010/0308/Obama-administration-more-civil-rights-enforcement-in-schools

Attie Schutte

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/universityeducation/8444418/David-Cameron-brands-all-white-Oxford-University-a-disgrace.html

John in Michigan, USA

Utterly fascinating. David would (correctly) be offended if anyone suggested that his opposition to the Iraq War meant that he would have been "fine with" (his words) Saddam's many crimes and injustices. And yet, he doesn't seem to see how anyone could possibly object to his accusation that Libertarians, who have fundamental moral objections to slavery, Jim Crow and Apartheid, must be "fine with" these things because they tend to favor non-intervention.

Personally, I am a libertarian-pragmatist, so (for example) I actually do favor federal civil rights laws.

David knows this perfectly well, we've discussed it many times before, but apparently when he gets in high dudgeon he looses both his memory and his rational facility.

And yet, try getting him excited about slavery in the Islamic world, or in China, or as practiced by "undocumented" sex trafficers (I mean the pimps and smugglers, not their victims) in the US...I am sure he's against slavery in all these cases, but somehow, the passion is usually lacking. Why?

ludwig

Very interesting stuff, I hadn't heard of Hoppe before this. I suppose Hoppe's position has some internal consistency, but his credibility as a philosopher is definitely undermined by his naive mystical Randian rationalism..... Hoppe seems to conclude that statism is malevolent per se, and humans are better off in the 'state of nature'.

I wonder how he deals with objections based on ecology, as well as objections based on the increase in cruelty in day-to-day life that would emerge in his utopia. In a sense Hoppe comes off as more of a conservative anarchist than a libetarian in the American sense.

My experience is American libertarians are more egalitarian and more pacifist than Hoppe (Hoppe strikes me as a historical anachronism). Ron Paul--an admirer of MLK--is surely closer in spirit to de Havilland.

In my view most libetarians desire peace, smaller government, and shoring up fundamental liberties. They may be misguided, but they are potential allies in the fight against corporatism and corporate aristocracy.

Jessica Hughes

Hoppe is actually one of my favorite expositors on liberty and the functional possibility of libertarian or anarcho-capitalist society. I found your opinions to be either poorly informed, cherry-picked, or the result of one incapable of considering the logic of an argument in opposition to his own. To claim that Hoppe is racist or sick in the head is ludicrous. His ideas on immigration, monarchy, feudalism, and the like stem from very well-supported arguments on self-ownership, private property rights, and natural law. Your presentation was uninformed at best and deliberately misleading at worst.

David

The cornerstone of our democracy -"all men are created equal" - is antithetical to Hoppe's neo-feudalism. His concept of "natural elites" has much more in common with Hitler's "Herrenrasse".

There are good reasons why Hoppe is ignored by serious political thinkers, but embraced by white sumpremacists ("Alternative Right") and neo-Nazis ("Junge Freiheit")

Jessica Hughes

Being created with equal rights does not mean everyone does equally well with their assets. If you could maybe quote some Hoppe indicating that he believes Übermenschen should rule over those less accomplished or gifted I might lend credence to your assault. In reality Hoppe does not advocate any non-consensual rulership of one over another but rather contractually based and mutually beneficial community arrangements which you deride as 'tribalism.' His comparisons of Monarchy vis a vis Democracy are not presented as a plea for a return to Monarchy but rather as an antidote to the ridiculous notion that Democracy has somehow benefitted mankind by limiting government power to kind-hearted and generous 'public servants.'

You would be taken more seriously if you actually countered some of his arguments with evidence that they are flawed rather than simply deriding him as a lunatic because some jackass backwards racists use selective aspects of his philosophy to support ugly ends. Charges of guilt by association are pretty flawed. Many who oppose Obama do so for perfectly good reasons having nothing to do with racism; the fact that they share their dislike with racists is a coincidence and does not negate their concerns. Many who support George Bush share that support with white supremacists; again, a coincidence which does not make them white supremacists themselves.

Emotionally charged screeds are great as far as persuading the uninformed but they really are no substitute for rational discourse.

David

I'd love to hear your defense of Hoppe's statement in "Democracy, The God that Failed."

"There can be no tolerance toward democrats and communists in a libertarian social order. They will have to be physically separated and expelled from society. Likewise, in a covenant founded for the purpose of protecting family and kin, there can be no tolerance toward those habitually promoting lifestyles incompatible with this goal. They – the advocates of alternative, non-family and kin-centred lifestyles such as, for instance, individual hedonism, parasitism, nature-environment worship, homosexuality, or communism – will have to be physically removed from society, too, if one is to maintain a libertarian order."

Question is, where would people like me "be physically expelled" to? My guess, knowing Hoppe, is Theresienstadt.

Anonymous

All this bloviating over Hoppe's statements, and not a single attempt to refute any of it.

Oscar

What is sick about consequent non-agression?

Full Employment Hawk

"We know who these Herrenmenschen are. They are the rightful property owners in Hoppe's Libertarian order. There can be no room for those of inferior genes - or, "sexual deviants", homosexuals, etc:"

This man is not a libetarian, he is a Nazi.

Vangel

Thanks for bringing attention to the ideas of individual liberty and peace that Dr. Hoppe is trying to spread. I am sure that many libertarians are grateful for your unintended assistance.

kropotkinbeard

Hoppe is a joke and anyone taking him even remotely seriously ought to be watched carefully. I mean, he's not dangerous in the sense of a Chomsky, someone whose butthair is more intelligent than Hoppe, not to mention just his overall moral disposition, but more in the sense of literally dangerous to humanity. AM said it above "This man is not a libertarian, he is a Nazi".

Anti-Statist

I'd love to hear your defense of Hoppe's statement in "Democracy, The God that Failed."

"There can be no tolerance toward democrats and communists in a libertarian social order. They will have to be physically separated and expelled from society. Likewise, in a covenant founded for the purpose of protecting family and kin, there can be no tolerance toward those habitually promoting lifestyles incompatible with this goal. They – the advocates of alternative, non-family and kin-centred lifestyles such as, for instance, individual hedonism, parasitism, nature-environment worship, homosexuality, or communism – will have to be physically removed from society, too, if one is to maintain a libertarian order."

I"ll defend this - you'd be expelled. It's pretty obvious that you subscribe to such things, thus, your time preference would be too high to exist in a purely libertarian society where those that exist, the so-called "Hoppeian conservatism" would have a much higher time preference than current society. With that being said, who said that Hoppe's society is correct? No one. Hoppe would want to live in a society with an exceptionally low time preference, where no homosexuals, cretans and other perverts would exist - so what!? His entire argument revolves around a society to which HE would like to live in that HE views as being "most correct". I'm a great fan of Hoppe, but if you had done any research at all, if you had dug any deeper than your cursory understanding of what he's said, you'd see that those of us in the private property movement need not totally agree with this idea. Walter Block has come out against "Hoppean conservatism" with the idea of physically removing various perverts. But again, without a state, without a place where you are required to interact with those whose lifestyles you don't approve of, you'd be free to set up your own hedonistic, libertine society. But, you would quickly die out, as your high time preference would see the entire capital stock be consumed quickly. Without a decline in overall time preference, without future goods preferred over present goods, the capital stock can't grow as current income is the only component of the capital structure that matters. Did you notice that? Did you notice how I just blew up your entire premise? That despite Hoppe's continuum issues of who he wants to surround himself with, he's still perfectly in the right to want to surround himself with like minded people? That no one cares who a racist is assuming he's not aggressing against someone. That as Rabbi Lapin says, it's not what you say that matters, it's what you do. Your whole argument falls to shambles as you're simply making a value judgment for government compulsion, one that requires people that don't want to associate with one another, to do precisely that. You cling to the defunct, leftist ideal of egalitarianism, which despite your wanting, doesn't exist in nature. I'm sure you're an atheist (do you like how I took no time to dig into that further and yet, beyond pure conjecture reasoned from statements that I have no idea are actually true?? sound familiar?? sometimes you have to come down to one's level to get them to understand) what's great is that you would lose that argument to, as your "system" of belief doesn't even allow for the one that you hold, as nothing in nature is equal.

Hoppe, as Libertarian, as private property proponent would not want you around. Yet, Hoppe, as private property proponent, would not exclude you from setting up your own enclave full of various parasites and perverts. All of us would revel in the idea, that you would quickly fall by the wayside, as your lack of understanding of economics would quickly lead you to consume the entirety of the capital stock you had - assuming you had any base to begin with.

David

"I'm sure you're an atheist."

Actually I'm a Christian - of the Anglican variety. We accept people of all ethnic backgrounds and sexual orientation. Because that is what the Gospel teaches.

Based on my reading of the Gospel, Hoppe's (and your) vision of the world resembles Hell.

Cassio Alexsander

First, you need to read his books to criticize a man's writing. Dr. Hoppe doesn't support racism, but as libertarian he believes that nobody should be forced to be part of a group. So, if an individual doesn't like (for whatever stupid reason) of people of certain ethnicity, he has the right to don't accept those people in his bar, restaurant or even in his condominium.
About the attack on democracy, he couldn't be more accurate than that. Democracy doesn't respect private property. For example, here in Brazil I cannot allow my clients to smoke in my bar. I pay the bills, I pay my employees, and even with that other people keep telling me what I can and cannot do in my own property.
I'll give you a suggestion: read the book Democracy-the god that failed.

David

Wrong. I did read "Democracy: The God that Failed" and was sickened by it. I am the type that Dr. Hoppe would like to isolate and destroy: someone who believes in democracy and the Common Good.

Ferdo Crane

So easy to debunk!

Gene Berkman

The Austrian School is based on the ideas of Eugen von Boehm-Bawerk, who was Minister of Finance in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, as developed by Carl Menger, and brought to America by Ludwig von Mises. Mises served as an Economist for the Vienna Chamber of Commerce; he left Austria for Switzerland after the Nazi seizure of power in Germany, and came to America after the the Third Reich annexed Austria.

Ludwig von Mises was an outspoken opponent of National Socialism. His first book in English was "Omnipotent Government:the Rise of the Total State and Total War."

Mises was committed to popular sovereignty expressed in democratic elections, as he makes clear in "Liberalism" - originally published as "Liberalismus" in 1927.

The views expressed by Mr Hoppe on Democracy are at variance with the views of the founders of the Austrian School of Economics, as are his views on immigration and many other issues.

David

Thanks for your comment.

I haven't read von Mises, but I have read a couple of Friedrich Hayek's key works, which impressed me.

The problem is that von Mises and Hayek have been hijacked by American libertarians - such as the followers of Ron Paul - who propagate crude conspiracy theories and wallow in racist fantasies.

a racist Nazi

If you love the "common good" so much, feel free to donate all of your income to it - but don't use the power of the state to force me to do so.

sol1

Why the Free Markets concept is useless:

http://dbzer0.com/blog/why-the-free-markets-concept-is-useless

Pam

So many strawmen, bias, sophistry and outright lies in this article. 80% of what you claim he believes is simply false.

David

I only cite Hoppe's own words - they speak for themselves:

"There can be no tolerance toward democrats ... in a libertarian social order. They will have to be physically separated and removed from society."

EnCacaoVeritas

Will someone please point out a modern functioning purely anarcho-capitalistic society of even moderate size, say 30,000 people or above? I am a champion of the individual first and foremost. I believe in life, liberty, property, the pursuit of happiness. Government exists to protect those most basic rights. So naturally on first blush libertarianism sounds good to me. But as much as so much of this ultra hardcore libertarian stuff sounds good (or does it?) in theory, it strikes me as awfully funny that it hasn't been instantiated anywhere that I know of. Rather it seems an obscure academic fetish of some people. "Oh so-and-so gave an argument for that in his book blah blah blah..." Ok great. Show me a real functioning society based on these premises. On the other hand, every human group of even a few dozen people soon sets up rules and regulations, i.e. government. Form, storm, norm as the concept goes. I am no fan of statism, of the large and ever-growing welfare state, but it does seem that some form of government is a necessity. A dangerous servant, like fire, that must be closely watched, as the founders counseled. The idea of competing private security firms with no overseeing authority seems like a recipe for disaster. Sounds like Mogadishu. No thanks. No government will ever be perfect and we can argue, as people have since the beginning, about what constitutes a good one, but anarchy doesn't seem to support human thriving. Even if a small band of people were to get a decently functioning little society going on a secluded patch of land somewhere, eventually outsiders would bump into that society and it would have to defend itself, or allow the assimilation of outsiders, deal with them in some way. And a small group of everyone-for-himself types would be quickly routed by any organized armed force. So like it or not, they would need to organize themselves to defend themselves. And make rules. And wait for it, govern themselves...a government by any other name is still a government...an army by any other name is still an army...Minarchy and meritocracy, private property and voluntary trade to mutual benefit seem to me the ideas and forms most conducive to human flourishing

AnCap Warlord

PHYSICAL REMOVAL,SO TO SPEAK! *autistic screeching*

maltabro

EnCacaoVeritas Liechtenstein. Their prince is actually a Hans Hermann Hoppe's friend and admirer and he fought parliament to accept self-determination on an individual level, which is exactly what Anarcho Capitalists want.

In the end they came to a middle ground of cantonal self determination, which is by itself quite close to Anarcho Capitalism.

Liechtenstein is the richest country in the world when purchasing power is considered.

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