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Austrian school economist, author of Human Action
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  • Ludwig von Mises

    Ludwig Heinrich Edler von Mises (29 September 1881 – 10 October 1973) was an Austrian-American theoretical Austrian School economist. Mises wrote and lectured extensively on behalf of classical liberalism. He is best known for his work on praxeology, a study of human choice and action.


    Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973), The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics
    Includes picture and list of selected works with links to those hosted by the Library of Economics and Liberty
    Ludwig von Mises was one of the last members of the original Austrian School of Economics. He earned his doctorate in law and economics from the University of Vienna in 1906. ... Mises believed that economic truths are derived from self-evident axioms and cannot be empirically tested. He laid out his view in his magnum opus, Human Action, and in other publications, although he failed to persuade many economists outside the Austrian school.
    Mises, Ludwig von (1881-1972), by Leland B. Yeager, The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism, 15 Aug 2008
    Biographical and bibliographical essay
    Ludwig von Mises was the leading Austrian economist of his generation. He received several honorary doctorates and the distinction of a ceremonial 50th-anniversary renewal of his earned doctorate ... While at the [Vienna] Chamber of Commerce, he conducted a biweekly seminar, many of whose participants subsequently became prominent economists or legal and political philosophers in their own right, among them Friedrich A. Hayek, Fritz Machlup, Gottfried Haberler, Oskar Morgenstern, Alfred Schütz, Felix Kaufmann, Erich Voegelin, Georg Halm, and Paul Rosenstein-Rodan.


    Ludwig Von Mises - The Advocates
    182x300 JPEG, color


    29 Sep 1881, Ludwig Heinrich Edler von Mises, in Lemberg (Lviv), Ukraine


    10 Oct 1973, in New York City


    Laissez Faire Books
    The Vienna-based Mises' first major work was The Theory of Money and Credit (1912) which explained how markets, not governments, determine the value of money. He told how inflations and depressions are caused by government manipulation of money and credit. He became socialism's greatest enemy when, in 1920, he discovered why socialism would impoverish millions. Two years later, he expanded his discovery into the book Socialism, which demolished that dogma.
    Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973), by Murray Rothbard, 1990
    Lengthy biographical essay with chronological explanation of Mises' writings
    One of the most notable economists and social philosophers of the twentieth century, Ludwig von Mises, in the course of a long and highly productive life, developed an integrated, deduct­ive science of economics based on the fundamental axiom that in­dividual human beings act purposively to achieve desired goals.


    Foundation for Economic Education, Economic Advisor, 1946-1973
    New York University, Visiting Professor, Graduate School of Business Administration, 1945-1969
    Mont Pelerin Society, Founding member

    Web Pages

    Ludwig von Mises -
    Short profile and links to essays, videos and other resources about Mises
    Ludwig von Mises was a prominent Austrian economist and a prolific writer. His work influenced Benjamin Anderson, Leonard Read, Henry Hazlitt, Israel Kirzner, Hans Sennholz, Ralph Raico, Leonard Liggio, George Reisman, F.A. Hayek and Murray Rothbard, amongst others.
    Ludwig von Mises - Online Library of Liberty
    Includes photo, short biography and links to essays and study guides about Mises, to a timeline of his life and works, to various editions of his writings and to selected quotations
    Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) was the acknowledged leader of the Austrian School of economic thought, a prodigious originator in economic theory, and a prolific author. Mises' writings and lectures encompassed economic theory, history, epistemology, government, and political philosophy. His contributions to economic theory include important clarifications on the quantity theory of money, the theory of the trade cycle, the integration of monetary theory with economic theory in general, and a demonstration that socialism must fail because it cannot solve the problem of economic calculation.
    Ludwig Von Mises - The Advocates
    Biography (from Laissez-Faire Books), picture and quotes
    Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) did more than anyone else to explain why free markets outperform every other economic system, raising living standards for millions. Mises was the leading champion for free markets during the darkest decades of the 20th century, when intellectuals embraced the New Deal, socialism, communism, Nazism and other types of government interference with economic liberty.


    The Complete Mises Bibliography
    From 1902 through 2000, broken down mostly into half-decades


    The Affordable Care Act Doesn't Go That Way, by Sheldon Richman, The Goal Is Freedom, 1 Nov 2013
    Examines the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act from the perspective of basic economics and its unintended consequences
    Before the 18th century, Ludwig von Mises wrote, the "belief prevailed that in the field of human action no other criterion could be used than that of good and bad. If a policy did not attain its end, its failure was ascribed to the moral insufficiency of man or to the weakness of the government ..." But, Mises continued, "Then ... came a radical change. The founders of Political Economy discovered regularity in the operation of the market ... People came to realize with astonishment that human actions were open to investigation from other points of view than that of moral judgment ..."
    The Anatomy of Antitrust: An Interview With Dominick T. Armentano, by Dominick T. Armentano, Austrian Economics Newsletter, 1998
    Discusses aspects of the United States v. Microsoft Corp case and related issues, such as product tying, exclusivity agreements, theories of compettion, price fixing, Robert Bork's views, government monopolies and Armentano's antitrust book
    Mises isn't always as consistent on this topic as we might want him to be. Even when he's talking about a competitive market, he occasionally slips into a kind of pure competition analysis. There's a statement in Human Action where he says on a competitive market, there's no such thing as a price policy for the sellers. ... Mises also discusses monopoly and even a monopoly price problem without all the distinctions Austrians make today. It doesn't come up very often in Mises, but it is there. He leaves a slight opening that would seem to call for regulation. However, he did not actually recommend antitrust laws.
    Best of Both Worlds: An Interview with Milton Friedman, by Milton Friedman, Brian Doherty, Reason, Jun 1995
    Topics discussed include: the new Congress, flat taxes, the withholding tax, the people who influenced him, what led him to write about policy issues, libertarianism and how his political views have changed over the years
    The story I remember best happened at the initial Mont Pelerin meeting when he got up and said, "You're all a bunch of socialists." ... Fritz Machlup was ... [one of Mises's] most faithful disciples. At one of the Mont Pelerin meetings, Fritz gave a talk in which I think he questioned the idea of a gold standard; he came out in favor of floating exchange rates. Mises was so mad he wouldn't speak to him for three years. Some people had to come around and bring them together again. It's hard to understand; you can get some understanding of it by taking into account how people like Mises were persecuted in their lives.
    Biography of Benjamin Anderson (1886-1949), by Mark Thornton
    Biographical and bibliographical essay
    Benjamin Anderson is a rare example of an American economist who wrote in the Austrian tradition long before Ludwig von Mises emigrated to the U.S. ... His theoretical works, while not thoroughly Misesian, fall within the Mengerian tradition ... He died of a heart attack ... just prior to the publication of his magnum opus, Economics and the Public Welfare: A Financial and Economic History of the United States, 1914-1946. Ludwig von Mises called [it] a "great book." ... Ludwig von Mises, who was often a target of Anderson's criticisms, called him "one of the outstanding characters in this age of the supremacy of time-servers."
    Related Topic: Henry Hazlitt
    A Biography of Henry Hazlitt, by Lew Rockwell, 1 Aug 2007
    Biographical and bibliographical essay
    During this time he also met the emigre economist Ludwig von Mises, whose work Hazlitt had admired. Hazlitt and Mises became friends, and Mises thrilled to Hazlitt's editorial blasts against government planning and often consulted Hazlitt on editorial matters and contemporary politics. It is said that Hazlitt even prepared, at Mises's request, a version of Human Action as a journalist would have written it. Mises thanked him, but rejected most of the changes. ... on the occasion of Hazlitt's 70th birthday ... Ludwig von Mises rose to the podium to pay tribute to his 'distinguished friend.'
    The Businessman and the Defense of Capitalism, by Benjamin A. Rogge, Can Capitalism Survive?, 1979
    Chapter 1 of Part IX, "an explicit follow-up to the Schumpeter-based 'Can Capitalism Survive?'" (the lead essay in this volume); offers business leaders suggestions as to what to do and not to do in helping "the cause of freedom"
    In the words of one of the great idea men of this century, the late Ludwig von Mises, 'The masses, the hosts of common men, do not conceive any ideas, sound or unsound. They only choose between the ideologies developed by the intellectual leaders of mankind. But their choice is final and determines the course of events. If they prefer bad doctrines, nothing can prevent disaster.'
    Related Topics: Business, Capitalism, Government
    A Call to Activism, by Margit von Mises, The Free Market, Jun 1984
    Speech delivered 27 Feb 1984 at a Mises Institute dinner in her honor; relates how she wrote My Years With Ludwig von Mises, then calling her late husband, Ludwig von Mises, an "activist of the mind" and encouraging others to become likewise
    Professor Hayek once called my husband "a great radical, an intelligent and rational radical, but nonetheless a radical on the right lines." This was correct, but Ludwig von Mises was also an activist — an activist of the mind. Not only did he write scholarly books containing great wisdom — he also promoted the free market in speeches, articles, lectures, and seminars ... He did not confine his ... time to ... scholars only ... He also had the time ... for others: businessmen, journalists ... He stimulated the interest, and then the understanding of all the people he met. And he did even more. He stimulated them to action.
    The Case for the Barbarous Relic, by Lew Rockwell, Mises Daily, 21 Mar 2006
    Argues for a return to the gold standard by reviewing U.S. political, economic and monetary history
    Is the business cycle truly a natural part of the free market? Ludwig von Mises explored this question in his 1912 book called A Theory of Money and Credit. He first explored the possibility that discoordinations in gold flows between countries, caused by bad monetary policies, might be the source of booms and busts. And while he concluded that this is the root of international business cycles, he said this doesn't explain how a business cycle could be created in a single country. ... His resulting theory is called the Austrian Theory of the Business Cycle.
    Child Labor and the British Industrial Revolution, Part 1, by Lawrence Reed, Future of Freedom, Sep 1999
    Contrasts the situation of "free labour" and "parish apprentice" children, as defined by J.L. and Barbara Hammond, during the British Industrial Revolution, the latter being mostly orphans placed in the custody of parish, i.e., government, authorities
    Ludwig von Mises ... put it well in his treatise Human Action when he noted that the generally deplorable conditions extant for centuries before the Industrial Revolution and the low levels of productivity which created them caused families to embrace the new opportunities the factories represented: "It is a distortion of facts to say that the factories carried off the housewives from the nurseries and the kitchen and the children from their play. These women had nothing to cook with and to feed their children. ... the factory ... saved them, in the strict sense of the term, from death by starvation."
    Classical Liberalism in Argentina: A Lesson for the World, by Jacob Hornberger, Future of Freedom, Jul 1994
    Highlights Argentine history from the 1810 revolution to the late 20th century, arguing that the period from 1852 to 1930 demonstrated the validity of Adam Smith's writings, also discussing 1958 visits by Leonard Read and Ludwig von Mises
    [In] 1958 ... a small group of Argentineans, led by ... Alberto Benegas Lynch ... invited two [men] to deliver a series of lectures in Argentina ... Ludwig von Mises ... who had immigrated from Austria and was then teaching at New York University ... Mises' lectures were ultimately published in a book entitled Economic Policy. In the introduction ... his wife Margit Mises wrote: "We arrived in Argentina some months after Perón had been forced to leave the country ... Mises spoke without any restraint about capitalism, socialism, interventionism, communism, fascism, economic policy and the dangers of dictatorship ..."
    Complex Societies Need Simple Laws, by John Stossel, 15 Mar 2012
    Reflects on the "uncountable" number of laws and regulations in the United States as well as Britain, and elicits the views of Laozi, Hayek, Buchanan and Mises in favor of ending "the orgy of rule-making"
    Barack Obama and his ilk in both parties don't want parameters on their utopias. They think the world is subject to their manipulation. That idea was debunked years ago. 'With good men and strong governments everything was considered feasible,' the great Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises wrote. But with the advent of economics, 'it was learned that ... there is something operative which power and force are unable to alter and to which they must adjust themselves if they hope to achieve success, in precisely the same way as they must taken into account the laws of nature.'
    Related Topics: Economics, Lǎozǐ, Law, Society
    Does Freedom Require Empire?, by Sheldon Richman, The Goal Is Freedom, 5 Sep 2014
    Critiques Daniel McCarthy's "Why Liberalism Means Empire" (July 2014), which attempts to justify British and American imperialism by insisting that "power is the basis of the peaceful order upon which liberal democracy rests"
    McCarthy portrays the British empire as essentially benign ... and even attempts to enlist Ludwig von Mises in his cause ... But Mises was under no illusions about the nature of colonialism, which ... was directed at controlling resources, grabbing land, conscripting cheap labor, and creating markets for manufactured products. As Mises wrote in Liberalism (1927):
    No chapter of history is steeped further in blood than the history of colonialism. Blood was shed uselessly and senselessly ... All this can in no way be extenuated or justified ... there can be no doubt that we must strive for its abolition.
    The Early History of FEE, by Henry Hazlitt, The Freeman, Mar 1984
    Excerpted from Hazlitt's remarks at the Leonard E. Read Memorial Conference on Freedom, November 1983; reprinted in the May 2006 issue, including photos of early FEE senior staff
    Friedrich Hayek ... raised the money the next year, 1947, to call a conference at Vevey, Switzerland, of 43 libertarian writers, mainly economists, from half a dozen nations. The group of ten of us from the United States included such figures as Ludwig von Mises, Milton Friedman, George Stigler—and Leonard Read ... And then in an amazingly short time a stream of publications began to pour forth. ... Next, in 1947, came Planned Chaos, a 90-page pamphlet by Ludwig von Mises. Lu had been put on the payroll by Leonard from the first year of the Foun­dation.
    Enemy of the State, by Lew Rockwell, Mises Daily, 24 Nov 2006
    Review of Raimondo's biography of Rothbard, An Enemy of the State, analyzing several of the conventional critiques of Rothbard that are countered in the book; includes quote of Rothbard to Robert Kephart about the Rothbard's life choices
    He worshiped Mises. Absurd. Raimondo quotes affectionate letters about Mises, and demonstrates that Rothbard saw Mises as the greatest living economist. But he also worked to improve Mises in many areas, including utility theory, the economics of law and intervention, public goods, and many other areas, giving rise to the claim that ...
    He departed from Mises. Raimondo further shows that Rothbard was far and above Mises's leading expositor and defender, in economic theory and policy. They had a warm relationship. Mises, moreover, had the greatest respect for Rothbard as a man and an economist.
    Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk: Capital, Interest, and Time, by Roger W. Garrison, 15 Great Austrian Economists, Jan 1999
    Biographical and bibliographical essay; chapter 8 of 15 Great Austrian Economists
    Reviewing [the 1959] translation [of Capital and Interest, Mises described this 'monumental work' as 'the most eminent contribution to modern economic theory.' He indicated that no one could claim to be an economist unless he was perfectly familiar with the ideas advanced in this book ... in 1912, referring to The Theory of Money and Credit ... Böhm-Bawerk mentions to Wicksell 'a book on the theory of money by a young Viennese scholar, Dr von Mises. Mises is a student of myself and Prof. Wieser, which, however, does not mean that I would want to take responsibility for all his views ...'
    Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk: A Sesquicentennial Appreciation, by Richard Ebeling, The Freeman, Feb 2001
    Broad biographical essay, including Böhm-Bawerk relationships with Menger, Mises and Schumpeter, and his two major works
    Ten years after Böhm-Bawerk's death, one of his students, the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, wrote a memorial essay about his teacher. Mises said: "Eugen von Böhm-Bawerk will remain unforgettable to all who have known him. The students who were fortunate enough to be members of his seminar [at the University of Vienna] will never lose what they have gained from the contact with this great mind. ... Even when all those who have been personally close to Böhm-Bawerk will have left this life, his scientific work will continue to live and bear fruit."
    Faculty Spotlight Interview: Walter Block, by Walter Block, 18 Jan 2010
    Asks Block about his hobbies, greatest inspiration, the impact of his work and more
    I don't like to brag, ok, ok, I do like to brag, but I am probably one of the few living people who had met Ludwig von Mises in person. The occasion was that of his last lecture at NYU. Murray brought the entire gang down to NYU for this momentous event. I am honored to have met von Mises, the best economist of the 20th century, in my view; hey, wait a minute, the best economist, period, at least so far in the history of the universe. Of course, reading these two magisterial books also 'drew' me to the Austrian School: Human Action and Man, Economy and State.
    A Fairy Tale of the Austrian Movement, by Joseph Salerno, Mises Daily, 25 Sep 2007
    Review of Brian Doherty's Radicals for Capitalism, in particular of the section in chapter 7 where Peter Boettke discusses Austrian economics
    More evidence of Rothbard's explicit denial of such a connection is found in his vigorous critique of his mentor Ludwig von Mises, who was himself a notable advocate of strict Wertfreiheit in economic analysis. Rothbard chided Mises for his various attempts to formulate a value-free and purely utilitarian standard for prescribing economic policy. ... Mises's treatment of public finance topics is woven throughout the 147 pages of analysis in Human Action (Mises 1998, pp. 712–857) devoted to 'The Hampered Market Economy.' There is, of course, also his seminal monograph on Bureaucracy (Mises 1962).
    The Flagellation of the Pursuit of Happiness, by George Reisman, 14 Jun 2006
    Commentary on Paul Krugman's arguments against a Senate vote to abolish the estate tax
    ... Ludwig von Mises [pointed] out the close connection between the ethics of egoism and the teachings of economics on the subject of the harmony of self-interests. ... Mises showed ... that the pursuit of self-interest is the foundation of the saving and investment and continuous innovation and improvement of products and methods of production that serves to raise the standard of living of all. In a country governed by the principle of the individual's pursuit of his own happiness, the standard of living of the very poorest comes to surpass the standard of living of the very richest of a few generations back.
    Related Topics: Pursuit of Happiness, Taxation
    Free Markets Aren't Conservative, by Sheldon Richman, Nov 2001
    Explains why businesses, especially the larger and well established ones, favor regulations and taxes, and why a free, unregulated or "self-regulating" market protects consumer better
    For a business to do well, it must please consumers ... But there is a problem: we consumers are a fickle bunch. As Ludwig von Mises put it,
    consumers are merciless bosses, full of whims and fancies, changeable and unpredictable. If something is offered to them that they like better or that is cheaper, they desert their old purveyors. In their capacity as buyers and consumers, they are hard-hearted and callous, without consideration for other people.
    A business can be "riding high in April, shot down in May" as ... Under capitalism the consumer really is the captain, as Mises said.
    Friedrich A. Hayek (1899-1992), by Peter Boettke, The Freeman, Aug 1992
    Lengthy biographical essay, including his criticism of Keynes and the impact of The Road to Serfdom
    Yet, ironically it was Mises, through his devastating critique of socialism published in 1922, who turned Hayek away from Fabian socialism. ... Mises, the great system builder, provided Hayek with the research program. Hayek became the great dissecter and analyzer. His life’s work can best be appreciated as an attempt to make explicit what Mises had left implicit, to refine what Mises had outlined, and to answer questions Mises had left unanswered.
    Related Topics: Friedrich Hayek, Socialism
    Government: Creator of Uncertainty, by Murray Rothbard, Future of Freedom, Jul 2000
    Discusses economic subjectivism, the principle that different persons attach different values to things or events, as evidenced by the early 2000 stock market downturn
    For Ludwig von Mises, a Kantian in epistemology, this made the study of human action (praxeology) 'synthetic a priori.' Murray Rothbard, reformulating Mises's method through an Aristotelian prism, called the certainties of human action 'broadly empirical' on the grounds that introspection qualifies as experience.... The time between act and expected consequences holds the possibility of the unexpected, which can change the consequences or nullify them entirely. In Human Action Mises quotes the adage, 'There's many a slip 'twixt cup and lip.' At any moment, a person's knowledge is incomplete, and the gaps leave his plans open to being thwarted.
    Related Topics: Government, Carl Menger, Philosophy
    Government Failure, by Sheldon Richman, The Goal Is Freedom, 5 Oct 2007
    Examines the validity of the concept of "market failures" as an argument for government intervention, reviewing arguments made by David Friedman in the article "Do We Need Government?", Liberty, Dec 2005
    Advocates of the free market have long emphasized that the countless self-regarding actions individuals perform daily in the marketplace generate a larger complex spontaneous, or undesigned, order — that is, a high degree of interpersonal coordination that is remarkably pleasing to consumers. This is the social cooperation Ludwig von Mises placed at the center of his description of the market process ... Mises and F. A. Hayek left behind a voluminous literature explaining that calculation and knowledge problems assure that government-generated outcomes will be inferior to market-generated outcomes.
    Government Interventionism in Ireland, Part 2, by Scott McPherson, Future of Freedom, Jun 2004
    Continued examination of the differences between Irish Protestants and Catholics in the early 20th century, suggesting the principles advocated by Mises could have resulted in better outcomes
    It was around this same time that an early libertarian commentator would accurately capture the spirit of the times and prescribe the appropriate antidote. In 1927, Ludwig von Mises's Liberalism: The Classical Tradition addressed the very problems that were only exacerbated by Irish nationalists' interventionist tendencies. ... 'Every interference on the part of the government in economic life can become a means of persecuting [minorities],' Mises warned.
    Related Topic: Republic of Ireland
    A Guide to the Writings of Ludwig von Mises, by Roy Childs, Dec 1990
    At the original Laissez Faire Books; a suggested approach to reading Mises works, starting off with Planning for Freedom and leaving Human Action nearly last
    The great social theorist Ludwig von Mises was born one hundred and ten years ago, published the majority of his important works before midcentury, and died nearly twenty years ago, at the end of a staggeringly productive life. ... Reading through these will give you one of the great experiences of a lifetime, an understanding of the world that you will treasure forever, and a commitment to liberty that will be as precious to you as life itself.
    Hayek: A Commemorative Album, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Jul 1999
    Review of Hayek: A Commemorative Album (1999) compiled by John Raybould
    But the greatest influence on Hayek was Ludwig von Mises, with whom he worked after graduation in an office set up to handle financial aspects of the peace treaty between Austria and the victorious Allied powers. Besides Mises's direct personal impact on Hayek's thinking, the most profound influence came from reading Mises's 1922 book, Socialism, which destroyed any of his remaining sympathy for socialist ideas ... Hayek began amplifying Mises's criticisms of socialism, explaining that a developed system of division of labor is just too complex to be controlled and directed through any form of central planning.
    Hayek, Friedrich A. (1889-1992), by Ronald Hamowy, The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism, 12 Aug 2008
    Biographical and bibliographical essay
    In 1922 ... Ludwig von Mises published his devastating critique of a planned economy. In Die Gemeinwirtschaft (later translated into English as Socialism), Mises demonstrated that once markets are replaced by central planning, there exists no way of determining the values of goods and services, thus making rational economic calculation impossible. Mises's essay was decisive in proving that without a genuine price system real costs cannot be calculated. As a consequence of reading Mises, Hayek ... became a firm adherent of free markets and a regular participant at Mises's weekly seminars.
    Hayek, Life and Times, by Jim Powell
    Lengthy biographical essay, with extensive quotes both from Hayek and others (including Keynes)
    In October 1921, with a letter of introduction from his economics professor Friedrich von Wieser, Hayek met Ludwig von Mises who was a financial advisor at the Chamber of Commerce. Mises' 1912 book The Theory of Money and Credit had made him a respected economist ... Mises found Hayek a job at the Abrechnungsamt [Office of Accounts] ... Mises' 1922 book Die Gemeinwirtschaft [Socialism] had a major impact on Hayek's thinking ... Mises helped Hayek's career many ways ... Upon his return, Hayek began attending Mises' twice-monthly private seminar on free market economics. It met in Mises' office at the Chamber of Commerce.
    Hazlitt, Henry (1894-1993), by Bettina Bien Greaves, The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism, 15 Aug 2008
    Biographical essay
    When Mises's Socialism appeared in English in 1937, Hazlitt remembered Anderson's remark about Mises and reviewed Socialism in the Times, describing it as 'the most devastating analysis of socialism yet penned ... an economic classic in our time.' He sent his review to Mises in Switzerland and, 2 years later, when Mises came to this country, he phoned Hazlitt. Hazlitt recalled Mises's call as if coming from an economic ghost of centuries past. Hazlitt and Mises soon met and became close friends. Hazlitt's contacts helped establish Mises on this side of the Atlantic, enabling him to continue his free-market teaching, writing and lecturing.
    Related Topics: Henry Hazlitt, Economics, Ethics
    Henry Hazlitt: An Appreciation, by Roy Childs, Richard Ebeling, Nov 1985
    Tribute to Hazlitt on his 91st birthday, reviews his career and works
    In 1937 he read a review of the English translation of Ludwig von Mises powerful work Socialism, asked the publisher for a copy, and brought it to the attention of American readers in an important review that called it a "modern classic." A small group of American libertarians had begun to associate in ... the U.S., and it was Hazlitt who introduced Mises' ideas to them. Years later, when Mises arrived as in emigre ... and found himself unable to get a position with a major university, Henry Hazlitt joined with others to help secure both an American publisher (Yale University Press) and a secure academic position, at the NYU School of Business.
    How Empires Bamboozle the Bourgeoisie, by Lew Rockwell, Mises Daily, 28 Oct 2006
    Comments on two issues, related to the U.S. population reaching 300 million, which Rockwell not being addressed: what kind of economy is needed to support that population and do all these people need to live under the same central government
    In the early part of the 20th century, following World War I ... A new democratic age had dawned, and monarchies had been overthrown. Mises was the new Montesquieu, warning against large states and urging radical devolution of government as the only path to peace and prosperity. The book in question is called Nation, State, and Economy. It was Mises's first book on politics. His explicit purpose was to map out a plan for Europe to avoid future war. To Mises, that meant turning the nationalist impulse toward a productive use in the creation of much smaller states, and avoiding the error of empire.
    How I Became a Libertarian and an Austrian Economist, by Richard Ebeling, 2 May 2016
    Autobiographical essay highlighting the people and events who influenced him in his path to libertarianism and Austrian economics
    [I] had the good fortune ... to locate and succeed in getting copies of Ludwig von Mises' "lost papers" – almost 10,000 pages in total – from a formerly secret archive in Moscow, Russia. Confiscated by the Gestapo from Mises' Vienna apartment in 1938, his papers were among a vast collection of documents and papers plundered by the Nazis as they conquered much of Europe ... I had the privilege serving as the editor of a three-volume collection of these "lost papers" that have been published by Liberty Fund of Indianapolis under the title, Selected Writing of Ludwig von Mises.
    How Nationalism and Socialism Arose from the French Revolution, by Dan Sanchez, 12 Apr 2017
    Examines how three crucial ideas (liberalism, nationalism and socialism) emerged around the same time (18th and 19th century) and how they depended on the rise of the modern people's state
    As Mises insightfully wrote: 'Nationalist ideology divides society vertically; the socialist ideology divides society horizontally.' Mises referred to such doctrines as types of 'warfare sociology.' He brilliantly identified the intellectual fallacies of warfare sociology as the philosophical basis for the 20th century quasi-religion of 'etatism': faith in and devotion to the omnipotent state. What Mises didn't fully realize was that it was the institutional incentives of the people's state (which he too thought was a necessary bulwark for liberty) that made warfare sociology—nationalism and socialism—so alluring.
    Israel M. Kirzner and the Austrian Theory of Competition and Entrepreneurship, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Aug 2001
    Written on occasion of Kirzner's academic retirement at age 71; begins with biographical summary and then focuses on Kirzner's understanding of entrepreneurs in the market "process" and the detrimental effects of government intervention in the market
    ... Kirzner saw listed a seminar in economic theory offered by Ludwig von Mises in the fall semester of 1954. In 1996, he recalled the first day of Mises's seminar and the impression it left on him: 'That occasion was ... my first meeting with Ludwig von Mises, and it is etched deeply in my memory... His very opening substantive sentence that evening [was], "The market," Mises began, "is a process." ... I now ... consider that all my subsequent training and research in economics, both before and after obtaining my doctorate under Mises, has consisted in learning to appreciate what it was that Mises meant by this assertion.'
    Jeff Riggenbach on Samuel Edward Konkin III, by Jeff Riggenbach, Freedom Network News, 2004
    Lengthy biographical and memorial essay
    In Manhattan [Konkin] attended Ludwig von Mises's famous seminar in Austrian economics at N.Y.U. ... One of Sam's principal mentors, Ludwig von Mises, argued in his seminal work Theory and History that history is impossible in the absence of certain assumptions – assumptions about what kinds of events are important and what kinds are not, assumptions about the ways in which causality functions in matters of human action. In the absence of such assumptions, the historian would have no basis for deciding what to write about.
    The Justice and Prudence of War: Toward A Libertarian Analysis, by Roderick T. Long, Mises Daily, 20 Sep 2006
    Examines the ethics of war from a libertarian perspective, considering both deontological and consequentialist claims
    Ludwig von Mises used to argue that a market economy regulated by governmental intervention, hailed by many as a middle path between socialism and laissez-faire, is an inherently unstable system: each additional interference with private commerce distorts the price system, leading to economic dislocations that must be addressed either by repealing the first intervention or by adding a second, and so on ad infinitum.
    The Kirznerian Way: An Interview with Israel M. Kirzner, by Israel Kirzner, Austrian Economics Newsletter, 1997
    Topics include: Ludwig von Mises, the Austrian School, equilibrium, entrepreneurship, capital, business cycle theory, time preference, Hayek, Lachmann and Rothbard
    He used to read my manuscripts, and I was honored to have him write the introduction to The Economic Point of View (1960). Otherwise, he didn't comment very much on my work, and we didn't have extensive discussions on the details.It was not easy to discuss matters of theory with Mises. He was always gracious, polite, and kind, but at the same time reserved. There was also a bit of a language barrier. He spoke English perfectly, but I think he still thought in German. ... as I was looking around for programs and professors, I did happen to notice that Mises seemed to have more books than anyone else.
    Leonard Read, the Founder and Builder, by Mary Sennholz, The Freeman, May 1996
    Biographical essay written by Read's secretary in the early days of FEE, as well as author of Leonard E. Read : Philosopher of Freedom
    Ludwig von Mises was associated with the Foundation from the day FEE opened its doors to the day of his death in 1973. Read and Mises formed a team of discovery, united in the love of liberty and truth, succeeding in all they undertook, and whose successes were never won by the sacrifice of a single principle. Their association and friendship, which began for an end, continued to the end. Their joint efforts were to make the Foundation in Irvington-on-Hudson the intellectual center of the freedom movement.
    Libertarian Thoughts Reborn, by John Hospers, 23 Aug 2003
    Part of Walter Block's autobiography series; starts off with his grandparents, early life in Iowa, skepticism, astronomy, teaching at Columbia University and University of Minnesota, interacting with Ayn Rand, the 1972 LP nomination and parting thoughts
    As for Mises, Ayn admired him greatly and gave me a copy of his book Socialism, though the one I came most to treasure was Human Action. I wish I had attended his Thursday evening seminars on economics at NYU – but I was very busy as it was ... I did meet Mises again at one of the last lectures he gave, at Long Beach State College in the late 1960s. He was well into his 80s then and ever so sweet and accommodating to students no matter how ill-informed their questions, but never enough to blunt the precision of the points he was making. I deeply regretted that I had never studied under him.
    The life and times of Murray N. Rothbard, by Jim Powell
    Full title: The life and times of Murray N. Rothbard, who showed why private individuals can do just about everything that needs to be done
    Lengthy biographical essay
    Rothbard evidently heard about the great Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises in the spring of 1949, probably from F.A. "Baldy" Harper who worked at FEE. Three decades earlier, Mises had identified the fatal flaws of socialism, reasons why socialism could never deliver decent living standards – despite all the claims being made. Mises had fled the Nazis and obtained a position at New York University where he would teach weekly seminars ... Harper seems to have told Rothbard that Mises would be conducting a weekly seminar at 6 Washington Square North, the New York University Graduate School of Business.
    Ludwig Edler von Mises, by Roger W. Garrison, Business Cycles and Depressions, 1997
    Describes how Mises integrated ideas from the Austrian (Böhm-Bawerk), Swedish (Wicksell) and British Currency schools to develop his business cycle theory and offers explanations as to why the theory has not been accepted within mainstream macroeconomics
    Building upon this early integration of value theory and monetary theory, Mises sought to explain how both market forces and bank policy affected the purchasing power of money. He also provided a clear account, in this first major work, of the credit-induced boom and subsequent bust. An extended treatment of what came to be known as the Austrian Theory of the Business Cycle is provided in his 'Monetary Stabilization and Cyclical Policy' and in Human Action.
    Related Topic: Central Banking
    Ludwig von Mises and the Justification of the Liberal Order, by William Baumgarth, The Economics of Ludwig von Mises, Nov 1974
    Critically examines various Mises' writings on liberalism, democracy, the wisdom of the masses, special-interest politics, equal treatment under the law, anarchism, self-determination and of course economics
    The political thought of Ludwig von Mises provided a forceful restatement and elaboration of liberalism as applied to a modern commercial society. Mises' thought was developed during the first half of this century when liberalism, as a recognizable political force, was on the decline. ... Mises explained that the controversies of the modern world are about means and not ends ... In Mises' words, 'Liberalism is distinguished from socialism, which likewise professes to strive for the good of all, not by the goal at which it aims, but by the means that it chooses to attain that goal.'
    Ludwig von Mises: An Economist for Freedom and Free Enterprise, by Richard Ebeling, 29 Sep 2016
    Discusses three major themes in the works of Mises, namely, business cycle theory, his critique of socialism and the unfettered market economy; includes list of suggested additional readings
    Over the middle decades of the twentieth century, Mises made a number of profoundly important contributions that challenged many of the fashionable and influential collectivist and socialist ideas of his time, and which still echo in the twenty-first century. ... The author of over 20 books and hundreds of scholarly and popular articles, Mises influenced several generations of economists, sociologists, historians, and other social philosophers over his professional career, and his books and articles continue to be a major intellectual force, still regularly read by thousands every year.
    Ludwig von Mises - Hero of the Day, The Daily Objectivist, 2000
    In Socialism—published in 1922, and now hailed as the classic that predicted the breakdown of the communist experiment—he argued that socialism could not function in an industrial economy because there would be no market for capital goods and therefore no price system to calculate profit and loss. During the 1920s Mises saw a quickening of interest in his ideas in Europe, and he was one of the few to predict the Great Depression.
    Ludwig von Mises, socialism's greatest enemy, by Jim Powell
    Lengthy biographical essay on Mises, including details on Menger and Böhm-Bawerk
    Socialism's most outspoken adversary was the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises ... Mises explained how only capitalism enabled human beings to arise from barbarism ... Mises showed how, at a faster and faster pace, capitalism transformed luxuries for an elite into pleasures for millions ... Mises did a more complete job than anyone else describing a vision of liberty ... Mises persisted in expressing these radical views even though it meant being treated as an outcast. He was a highly respected economist in Austria, but the University of Vienna four times refused to make him a paid professor ...
    Man, Economy, and State: A Treatise on Economic Principles, by Wendy McElroy, 17 Mar 2012
    Review and personal impressions of Man, Economy, and State, and in particular the 2004 edition from the Mises Institute which also includes Power and Market
    The impact and importance of the Austrian icon Ludwig von Mises (1881 – 1973) should never be marginalized. His magnum opus, Human Action, was a remarkable accomplishment. ... [On] Man, Economy, and State ... Mises himself wrote, "Rothbard's work ... [is] an epochal contribution to the general science of human action, praxeology, and its practically most important and up-to-now best elaborated part, economics. Henceforth all essential studies in these branches of knowledge will have to take full account of the theories and criticisms expounded by Dr. Rothbard."
    Mises: Defender of Freedom, by George Reisman, Mises Daily, 29 Sep 2006
    Written on the 125th anniversary of his birth, describes several of Mises' contributions to economics theory and other areas, along with some of Reisman's personal reminiscences
    Mises must be judged not only as a remarkably brilliant thinker but also as a remarkably courageous human being. He held the truth of his convictions above all else and was prepared to stand alone in their defense. He cared nothing for personal fame, position, or financial gain, if it meant having to purchase them at he sacrifice of principle. In his lifetime, he was shunned and ignored by the intellectual establishment, because the truth of his views and the sincerity and power with which he advanced them shattered the tissues of fallacies and lies on which most intellectuals then built ... their professional careers.
    Mises on His 125th Anniversary, by Jörg Guido Hülsmann, Mises Daily, 29 Sep 2006
    Written on the 125th anniversary of Mises' birth, includes excerpts from memorial thoughts from Hazlitt, Kirzner, Rothbard, John Chamberlain, Leonard Read and others
    Rothbard [writing in] Human Events ... (October 10, 1973) '... what they met was a mind of genius blended harmoniously with a personality of great sweetness and benevolence. Not once has any of us heard a harsh or bitter word escape from Mises' lips. Unfailingly gentle and courteous, Ludwig Mises was always there to encourage even the slightest signs of productivity or intelligence in his friends and students ...'
    Mises's Bibliographer: An Interview with Bettina Bien Greaves, by Bettina Bien Greaves, Austrian Economics Newsletter, 1998
    Topics discussed include: Ludwig von Mises, the Mises bibliography project, language knowledge, Leonard Read, Henry Hazlitt, Human Action, the business cycle and her husband's Pearl Harbor book
    AEN: Was there a difference between the private Mises and the public Mises?
    GREAVES: In public and private, he was always a very quiet and unassuming person, but also he was positive and determined. As many people have said, he wouldn't compromise. When he lectured, he did not have the style that is popularly associated with genius: wild eyed, arms waving, demagogic. That was not Mises at all. He was conventional and traditional in his appearance. His manners were perfect. He didn't talk about what he was doing or thinking. But in a seminar setting, he could be extremely quick witted.
    Module 11: The "Austrian" Case for the Free Market
    Eleventh module of the Cato Home Study Course, includes link to listen or download audio program (2:56:27), questions and suggested readings
    In the 1920s and for many years thereafter, Mises was one of a handful of scholars willing to criticize collectivism in general and socialist economic planning in particular. He was reviled and scorned for his work, but recent years have seen almost universal, albeit grudging, acknowledgement that he was right: socialism cannot solve the problem of economic calculation. ... A market economy based on private property is necessary to generate the prices on the basis of which resources can be allocated among competing uses. Mises's book Socialism, published in 1922, marked a turning point in the intellectual battle against full-scale collectivism.
    Related Topic: Friedrich Hayek
    Monetary Central Planning and the State, Part 30: The Gold Standard as Government-Managed Money, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Jun 1999
    Describes how, by allowing central banks to manage gold-backed currencies, the road was paved for central planning in other areas
    In his Age of Fables, Gustav Stolper pointed out in 1942 that "there is today only one prominent [classical] liberal theorist consistent enough to advocate free, uncontrolled competition among the banks in the creation of money. [Ludwig von] Mises, whose intellectual influence on modern neo-liberalism was very strong, has hardly made one proselyte for that extreme conclusion." Now at the end of the 20th century, however, there has emerged a new generation ... who are in favor of ... free banking. Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich A. Hayek have been the inspiration for this new school of advocates for a free market in money.
    Monetary Central Planning and the State, Part 31: Ludwig von Mises on the Case for Gold and a Free Banking System, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Jul 1999
    Examines Mises' thinking on why the gold standard is needed, why it is necessary for it not be subject to political manipulation, why free banking is needed and the ideological environment required for its success
    Throughout most of the 20th century, one of the leading proponents of the gold standard was the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises. Why gold? Mises explained this many times, but did so, perhaps, most concisely in a 1965 essay entitled "The Gold Problem" ... at the same time, Mises was conscious of the fact that even a gold standard established and controlled by the political authority was still a managed monetary system. ... The importance of a monetary system based on gold, therefore, in Mises's view, was that it limited the range of discretion open to governments to manipulate the quantity and value of money.
    Related Topics: Banking, Gold Standard, Money
    Money and the Individual, by Murray Rothbard, 1981
    Foreword to the 1981 Liberty Fund edition of Ludwig von Mises's The Theory of Money and Credit
    Ludwig von Mises was a 'third-generation' Austrian, a brilliant student in Böhm-Bawerk's famous graduate seminar at the University of Vienna in the first decade of the twentieth century. Mises's great achievement in The Theory of Money and Credit (published in 1912) was to take the Austrian method and apply it to the one glaring and vital lacuna in Austrian theory: the broad 'macro' area of money and general prices.
    Monopoly and Aggression, by Sheldon Richman, The Goal Is Freedom, 19 Dec 2014
    Argues that monopoly and aggression are intimately related and that intellectual property laws are currently the main monopolistic interventions
    Ludwig von Mises, I should acknowledge, believed that in theory there could be "instances of monopoly prices [harmful to consumers] which would appear also on a market not hampered and sabotaged by the interference of the various national governments and by conspiracies between groups of governments." However, he added, these "are of minor importance. They concern some raw materials the deposits of which are few and geographically concentrated, and local limited-space monopolies."
    The Mont Pelerin Society's 50th Anniversary, by Greg Kaza, The Freeman, Jun 1997
    Historical and anecdotal essay about the founding of the Mont Pelerin Society and its first meeting, including insights on post World War II Germany
    The dean of the Austrian economists was Ludwig von Mises, another refugee from Nazi totalitarianism ... Mises was the first economist to demonstrate that socialism could not possibly work because of the absence of a price system. In "Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth" (1920), he had shown that without the guiding hand of the price system, there was no way to allocate scarce resources intelligently. Mises remained an implacable foe of government economic intervention; this steadfastness brought him into conflict with many of the other attendees, particularly over the role of gold in the monetary system.
    Murray N. Rothbard: Mr. Libertarian, by Wendy McElroy, 6 Jul 2000
    A tribute to Rothbard as a "system builder," an integrator of multiple disciplines into a "philosophy of freedom"; examines several of Rothbard's essays and books
    He considered Mises' great work Human Action (1949) to be pivotal in his intellectual formation because it resolved the many contradictions in economics with which he had grappled as a doctoral student at Columbia University. When Mises held his famed seminars at New York University, Rothbard attended eagerly from the very beginning. Mises emphasized the key role that human psychology and behavior – that "acting" man – played in economics. He contended that the marketplace was not an equation that functioned according to mathematical calculations. It was not a precise machine, but one driven by uncertainties.
    The Nature and Significance of Economic Education, by Israel Kirzner, The Freeman, Oct 1998
    Revised version of lecture given 19 March 1998; explains why economic education of both the general public and legislators is needed and why a teacher, such as Mises, must remain scientifically detached even if passionate about the teaching goals
    [I] have been fascinated by what at first glance seems a paradoxical feature in Ludwig von Mises's attitude to the economics he taught ... On the one hand, even the casual reader of Mises senses the enormous passion with which he preached the message of the free society and its dependence upon free markets ... On the other hand, one of the foundations of economic science was, for Mises, the austere wertfreiheit with which, he maintained, the economist must pursue his scientific work. Science, Mises insisted, must never express or reveal the personal preferences, or judgments of value, of the scientist.
    Out of Work: Unemployment and Government in Twentieth-Century America, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Oct 1993
    Review of Out of Work: Unemployment and Government in Twentieth-Century America (1993) by Richard K. Vedder and Lowell E. Gallaway
    The authors ... substantiate the explanation for high unemployment during the Great Depression given by Ludwig von Mises in 1933: "The duration of the present crisis is caused primarily by the fact that wage rates and certain prices have become inflexible, as a result of union wage policy and various [government] price support activities. Thus, the rigid wage rates and prices do not fully participate in the downward movement of most prices ... The continuing mass unemployment is a necessary consequence of the attempts to maintain wage rates above those that would prevail on the unhampered market."
    Related Topics: Unemployment, Wages
    Peace and Pacifism, by Robert Higgs, The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism, 15 Aug 2008
    Reviews what prominent classical liberals and libertarians had to say on the subject of peace and war, as well as the history of United States wars from the War of 1812 to the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the efforts of those who opposed them
    [Ludwig von] Mises observed that 'the [classical] liberal ... is convinced that victorious war is an evil even for the victor, that peace is always better than war... . The progressive intensification of the division of labor [the process at the heart of sustained economic development] is possible only in a society in which there is an assurance of lasting peace.'
    Persuasion Power Point #202: Are Government Failures the Result of the Wrong People Running It?, by Michael Cloud, The Liberator Online, 11 May 2006
    Examines the excuses given for the failure of government programs and whether the outcomes would be different if the "right" people were in charge
    What if the great Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises were alive -- and put in charge of the Internal Revenue Service. He's subject to today's mandates, laws, regulations, budget, constraints, and political reality. Could Ludwig von Mises make the IRS collect the money while NOT damaging lives -- or the economy?
    Related Topic: Government
    Problemas Economicos de Mexico, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Jan 1999
    Review of Problemas Economicos de Mexico (1998), translation of the 1943 English monograph "Mexico's Economic Problems" by Ludwig von Mises
    In December 1941, Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises was invited by Luis Montes de Oca, a former director of the Mexican central bank, to deliver a series of lectures in Mexico during January and February 1942 ... he prepared, in English, a monograph on "Mexico's Economic Problems" in June 1943. ... Mises argued that the trading opportunities Mexico was enjoying with the United States due to the Second World War were likely to end with the cessation of the conflict ... He emphasized that the benefit from trade came from the imports obtainable at prices less costly than alternative domestic production.
    Related Topics: Free Trade, Mexico
    Professor Ludwig von Mises Discusses Free Enterprise, La Prensa, 2 Jun 1959
    Translation of interview with Ludwig von Mises upon visiting Buenos Aires; discusses Mises' views on free enterprise, inflation, the policies of De Gaulle and Adenauer and the possibility of an Argentine economic recovery
    Dr. Mises, who was born in Austria and moved to the United States in 1940, has been a member and consultant of the Foundation for Economic Education in Irvington-on-Hudson, New York, since 1946. He also teaches at the business administration school of New York University (NYU) and is the author of many books on economics, translated into Spanish, including, The Theory of Money and Credit, Omnipotent Government, and The Anti-capitalistic Mentality.
    Radical Economics: An Interview with Walter Block, by Walter Block, Austrian Economics Newsletter, 1999
    Discusses topics such as the effect of Rothbard's death, Block's own intellectual development, the legality of blackmail and barriers to Austrians in academia
    That's real influence, on the level of Marx and Keynes. Mises had that kind of influence in Austria before the war. ... I remember when Rothbard first criticized Mises in print, not on economics but on political ethics. He was very cautious because Mises was always our model. But it is always necessary to build on others, just as Mises went beyond Böhm-Bawerk and Menger. ... Mises ... believed that economics was a science, not one to be studied with the methods of the physical science, but nonetheless a science, with axiomatic propositions, a formal structure, and universal applicability.
    Rand, Ayn (1905-1982), by Chris Matthew Sciabarra, The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism, 15 Aug 2008
    Biographical essay
    Rand also had dealings with other libertarian writers, such as Leonard Read and Henry Hazlitt. Hazlitt introduced her to Ludwig von Mises, the leading economist of the Austrian School. Although Rand objected to certain aspects of Mises's 'praxeological' approach to the human sciences and to his views of morality, she respected his economic defense of free markets, and, in later years, she championed his writings in her various publications. Mises, in turn, is said to have greatly respected Rand's ideological courage.
    Reading the Literature of Liberty, by Roy Childs, May 1987
    Childs' selection of "great books", including works by Hazlitt, Bastiat, Rose Wilder Lane, Nock, Ayn Rand, Friedman, Hayek, Rothbard, Mises and Nozick
    ... Mises ... without a doubt ... has made a greater contribution to the intellectual defense of capitalism in our time than anyone else. Get copies of his two undeniable masterpieces: Socialism and Human Action. Socialism is without a doubt one of the great works in social philosophy of the twentieth century; it is the most devastating indictment of socialism ever penned. Human Action is a bit more difficult to read, but it is undeniably one of the greatest products of the human mind of the 20th century. It is a full-scale treatise that really covers much more ground than just economics.
    A Salute to Bettina Bien Greaves, by Jim Powell, The Freeman, Jul 1997
    The Freeman guest editor column, written for Greaves' 80th birthday to show an appreciation and the extent of her work for liberty
    [Bettina] helped make arrangements for the "Mises Dinner Circle" which, during the 1950s and 1960s, gave libertarian speakers a rare respectful forum in New York. She did practically everything, even humble chores, to help make Ludwig and Margit von Mises comfortable during their last years. Along the way, Bettina made herself into the world's foremost Mises authority ... The material she gathered became the basis for her authoritative two-volume Mises: An Annotated Bibliography (1993, 1995), which provides generous selections from articles and books, illuminating the intellectual history of the twentieth century.
    Selling Ideas, by Lew Rockwell, 21 Dec 2005
    Discusses the 2005 incident involving Bandow and Jack Abramoff and reminds us of previous incidents of left-vs.-right attacks (and vice versa), concluding with quotes from Mises' Liberalism (1927)
    I'll end with this strong reminder from Mises about the difference between liberalism and antiliberalism:
    The parties of special interests, which see nothing more in politics than the securing of privileges and prerogatives for their own groups, not only make the parliamentary system impossible; they rupture the unity of the state and of society ... All antiliberal parties want nothing but to secure special favors for their own members, in complete disregard of the resulting disintegration of the whole structure of society. They cannot withstand for a moment the criticism that liberalism makes of their aims ...
    Socialism: Illegitimate, Not Just Inefficient, by Gary North, 15 May 2001
    Discusses two aspects in the criticism of socialism: whether it is efficient compared to capitalism (according to the theory of value-free economics) and whether it is immoral (or contrary to human nature)
    [Harper] told me that he had once asked Mises this question: 'If socialism were more efficient than capitalism, would you still oppose it?' Mises answered: 'But socialism is not more efficient than capitalism.' He said that he asked it again, and got the same reply. ... Mises believed that the case against socialism was best made in terms of its economic irrationality, i.e., its inability to enable central planners to make rational economic calculations. ... Mises argued that socialists successfully persuaded people to accept their economic system on this basis: the unproven slogan that socialism is inevitable.
    Socialized Medicine in a Wealthy Country, by Lew Rockwell, Mises Daily, 2 Dec 2006
    Discusses the view of socialized medicine held by left-socialists, examining the problems that existed in Soviet-controlled countries as well as current U.S. problems, and urges for a "complete separation of health and state"
    Wouldn't it be better if everyone could just consume all the services ... that they needed? Mises addressed this point brilliantly in 1922. He pointed out that that there is no clean division between sickness and health. We ourselves are capable of making misjudgments on this matter, believing ourselves to be sick and even making ourselves sick if we so will it. The will to health, Mises wrote, is an important determinant of our well-being. ... Here is Mises ...: '... We cannot weaken or destroy the will to health without producing illness.' Note that he said this 42 years before the US created just such a situation.
    The Story of a Movement, by Peter Boettke, The Freeman, May 1995
    Reflects on the growth of Austrian economics from a set of lectures in South Royalton, Vermont in June 1974 to the current spread through several scholars and institutions, and discusses a Karen Vaughn book on the school and its debates
    Vaughn's analysis of the potential tension within Mises' theoretical system is extremely important in this regard. Mises' Human Action presented the reader with a system of thought which was at the same time: (1) a radical subjectivist research program in economics that demanded a reconstruction of the entire corpus of economic science (from methodology to capital theory), yet was also (2) an example of orthodox economics pointing out the errors in the 'New Economics' of Keynes and the fallacies of Institutionalism and mathematical market socialism.
    Szasz on the Liberal Tradition, by David Gordon, The Mises Review, Sep 2004
    Review of Szasz' book Faith in Freedom: Libertarian Principles and Psychiatric Practices, highlighting his criticisms of J.S. Mill, Mises, Hayek, Rothbard and Nozick
    Szasz finds very much to his liking Mises's contention that all action is, from the point of view of the actor, rational: praxeology has nothing to say about the rationality of ends, and a person always chooses means he thinks best fitted to attain whatever ends he has. '... It is only a short step from Mises's assertion that human action is always rational, to my [Szasz's] assertion that mental illness is a myth' (p. 152). Unfortunately, Mises sometimes fell from grace by speaking of mental illness as though it were real; but he was a great man nonetheless.
    A Tribute to Edmund A. Opitz, by Robert Sirico, The Freeman, Oct 1993
    Remarks made at the dinner in honor of Opitz' retirement from the Foundation for Economic Education, on 13 Dec 1992
    The birthday present my friend arrived with that day was a small library of books and magazines. Among them were titles with which this gathering will be familiar: Socialism, by Ludwig von Mises ... Not more than four years ago, Europe was in the literal death grip of history's most brutal institutionalization of collectivism. With great prescience Ludwig von Mises, of esteemed memory, and no stranger to these very corridors, demonstrated in the 1920s that socialism would fail because it interfered with the coordination of information as expressed in the free market’s pricing system.
    The Undiscountable Professor Kirzner, by Roger W. Garrison, The Freeman, Aug 1997
    Review of Kirzner's 1996 Essays on Capital and Interest, a collection of three previously published essays
    Mises went so far as to suggest—as only Mises could—that no citizen who takes his civic duties seriously should exercise his right to vote until he has read Böhm-Bawerk! ... In late 1974, Professor Kirzner presented a paper titled "Ludwig von Mises and the Theory of Capital and Interest" in a special symposium at the Southern Economic Association meetings in Atlanta. At that time, a year after Mises's death ... there was a small but eager audience for his Austrian perspective. ... Kirzner shows how Mises's theory differs from Böhm-Bawerk's and how it compares favorably to the theories of J. B. Clark and F. H. Knight.
    Up From Freedom: Friedrich von Hayek and the Defence of Liberty, by Richard Ebeling, ama-gi, 1996
    Opens with biographical and bibliographical details and then discusses Hayek's insights. concluding that he was fortunate to witness the collapse of communism which "demonstrated the practical impossibility" of social engineering
    After Ludwig von Mises, Professor Hayek was the leading figure of the Austrian School of Economics during the last six decades ... In 1923, he became an assistant to Ludwig von Mises at the Austrian Reparations Commission, and in 1927 they founded the Austrian Institute for Business Cycle Research, with Hayek as the director and Mises serving as the executive vice president ... Developing several of Mises' ideas, Hayek argued that the Great Depression had been caused by the Federal Reserve System ... In the 1930s and 1940s, Hayek and Mises were the leading opponents of socialist central planning.
    Von Mises Finds A Sweet Home In Alabama, by Kyle Wingfield, The Wall Street Journal, 11 Aug 2006
    Describes the Mises Institute, its location, its programs, faculty and students, including comments from Jeffrey Tucker (then a vice president at the institute) and Italian scholar Alberto Mingardi
    In the 1920s and '30s, Ludwig von Mises was a leading light of Austrian economic thought, seeking to counter the growing trend toward socialism by arguing for limited government, lower taxes, stronger private property rights and less business regulation. In 1934, he fled the Nazis in Vienna — going first to Switzerland and later to America, where he was a prolific thinker and writer until his death in 1973 ... Having such an outfit so far away from the usual urban hubs is itself a rejection of the central planning and authority that Ludwig von Mises spent his life fighting.
    The War the Government Cannot Win, by Lew Rockwell, 1 May 2007
    Discusses how government cannnot win the war on terror because economic law is more powerful than the state
    Thus has one bad intervention led to another, precisely in the way that Mises spelled out in his 1929 book Critique of Interventionism. He explained that interventionism is not a stable policy. ... 'The idea of liberalism starts with the freedom of the individual,' Mises wrote. 'It rejects all rule of some persons over others; it knows no master peoples and no subject peoples, just as within the nation itself it distinguishes between no masters and no serfs.' ... World War I had ended with many resentments stewing ... Mises wrote with an impassioned desire to stop the course of events.
    William Harold Hutt (1899-1988): A Biographical Essay from an Austrian Perspective, by John B. Egger
    Biographical and bibliographical essay
    Austrian by neither birth nor residence, he could know nothing of Mises' privatseminars in Vienna. He apparently did not read German, and Mises's The Theory of Money and Credit was not translated until 1934 ... His personal recollection of Mises is interesting: "Mises had inspired me for many years before I first met him, through his impressive contributions in articles and books, but it was not until 1955 ... that I could first greet him face to face ... I was immediately struck by his really remarkable personality ... created by his deep emotional attachment to a free economy and the institutions on which it had to rely ..."
    The Wisdom of Ludwig von Mises, by George Koether, The Freeman, Sep 1981
    Preface to a selection of excerpts from Human Action arranged topically from Accounting to War, by one of Mises' former students
    Human Action, generally considered to be the greatest work of the greatest economist of our times, is a towering monument to the mind of a genius. ... As every human action bears on every other human action, so every principle of economic analysis relates to every other principle. Thus, in dealing topically with one subject, Professor Mises never overlooked its relation to all others. Hence his convictions on any one topic were spread throughout his book.
    Related Topic: Human Action
    Work!, by Sheldon Richman, The Goal Is Freedom, 7 Mar 2014
    Contrasts the "gospel of work" and "joy of labor" espoused by moralists and state socialists with the views of economists such as Adam Smith, Bastiat, John Stuart Mill, Mises and Rothbard
    Mises devoted an entire chapter in Socialism to refuting the state socialists' claim that work is unpleasant only because of the market economy, and that it would be blissful if private property were abolished and the market were replaced with state central planning. Under any system, Mises wrote, labor may afford a small (and insignificant, he thought) measure of direct satisfaction, but that soon passes. Yet people must keep working to obtain its indirect satisfactions, the goods it enables them to buy ... Mises mocked the state socialists by putting scare quotes around the words joy of labor ...


    "Anticommunism" versus Capitalism, The Anti-Capitalistic Mentality, 1956
    Excerpt from part V
    There exists today a sham anticommunist front. ... They make an illusory distinction between communism and socialism and — paradoxically enough — look for a support of their recommendation of noncommunist socialism to the document which its authors called The Communist Manifesto. They think that they have proved their case by employing such aliases for socialism as planning or the welfare state.
    Related Topic: Communism
    Capital Goods and Capital, Human Action, 1949
    Chapter 15, Section 2; explains what are capital goods, differentiates them from "capital", defines other terms such as saving, income and capital consumption, and discusses spurious concepts such as real capital and social capital
    At the outset of every step forward on the road to a more plentiful existence is saving--the provisionment of products that makes it possible to prolong the average period of time elapsing between the beginning of the production process and its turning out of a product ready for use and consumption. The products accumulated for this purpose are either intermediary stages in the technological process, i.e. tools and half-finished products, or goods ready for consumption that make it possible for man to substitute, without suffering want during the waiting period, a more time-absorbing process for another absorbing a shorter time. These goods are called capital goods.
    Related Topic: Capital Goods
    Catallactic Unemployment, Human Action, 1949
    Chapter 21 "Work and Wages", Section 4; defines catallactic or market-generated unemployment, details reasons why some people choose to remain unemployed and discusses "frictional" and institutional unemployment
    What causes unemployment is the fact that--contrary to the above-mentioned doctrine of the worker's inability to wait--those eager to earn wages can and do wait. A job-seeker who does not want to wait will always get a job in the unhampered market economy in which there is always unused capacity of natural resources and very often also unused capacity of produced factors of production. It is only necessary for him either to reduce the amount of pay he is asking for or to alter his occupation or his place of work.
    Related Topic: Unemployment
    The Economic Role of Saving and Capital Goods, The Freeman, Aug 1963
    Explains there is a third factor of production aside from nature's resouces and human labor, and also that entrepreneurial judgement is necessary to attain the desired end of production
    Capital goods come into existence by saving. A part of the goods produced is withheld from immediate consumption and em­ployed for processes the fruits of which will only mature at a later date. ... Civilized man produces tools and intermediary products in the pursuit of long-range designs that finally bring forth results which direct, less time-consuming methods could never have attained, or could have attained only with an incomparably higher expenditure of labor and material factors.
    The Fallacy of the Concept of "National Character", Omnipotent Government, 1944
    Section 2 of chapter 10, "Nazism as a World Problem"; explains why it is incorrect to generalize from some supposedly representative persons of a given nation to a national "character"
    In the first World War British propagandists used to cite over and over again a few lines from Goethe's Faust. ... These verses do not at all express Goethe's own tenets. Faust concludes with a glorification of productive work; its guiding idea is that only the self-satisfaction received from rendering useful services to his fellow men can make a man happy; it is a panegyric upon peace, freedom, and—as the Nazis scornfully call it, 'bourgeois'—security.
    General Observations Concerning the Theory of Rent, Human Action, 1949
    Chapter 22 "The Nonhuman Original Factors of Production", section 1; explains that the differential rent concept, formulated by David Ricardo, can in general be accepted within modern economics, whereas the residual rent idea is incorrect
    The fact that land of different quality and fertility, i.e., yielding different returns per unit of input, is valued differently does not pose any special problem to modern economics. ... Land and the services it renders are dealt with in the same way as other factors of production and their services. ... Only if one clings naively to general terms such as land or labor, is one puzzled by the question why land and labor are differently valued and appraised.
    Related Topics: Economic Resources, Land
    The Idea of Liberty is Western, American Affairs, Oct 1950
    Argues that the "idea of liberty is and has always been peculiar to the West", meaning primarily the cities of ancient Greece, and discusses "liberty" as viewed by Harold Laski, contrasting, for example, life under Stalin with Italy under fascism
    What gives to the individuals as much freedom as is compatible with life in society is the operation of the market system. The constitutions and bills of rights do not create freedom. They merely protect the freedom that the competitive economic system grants to the individuals against encroachments on the part of the police power.
    Related Topics: Capitalism, Greece, Liberty, Socialism
    Inequality of Wealth and Incomes, The Freeman, May 1955
    Describes how attempts to equalize incomes and wealth lead to lowered standard of living for the masses and eventually to socialism
    When Marx and Engels in the Communist Manifesto recommended 'a heavy progressive or graduated income tax' and 'abolition of all right of inheritance' ... They were fully aware of the inevitable consequences of these policies. They openly declared that these measures are 'economically untenable' and that they advocated them only ... as a means of bringing about socialism.
    Middle-of-the-Road Policy Leads to Socialism, 18 Apr 1950
    Speech to the University Club of New York; argues that the middle of the road policies of interventionism, such as price controls and progressive taxation, eventually lead to socialism via central planning
    They advocate the substitution of public control of the means of production for private control. They aim at the establishment of what is called socialism, communism, planning, or state capitalism. All these terms signify the same thing. No longer should the consumers, by their buying and abstention from buying, determine what should be produced, in what quantity and of what quality. Henceforth a central authority alone should direct all production activities.
    Minimum Wage Rates, Human Action, 1949
    Chapter 30, "Interference With the Structure of Prices", Section 3; discusses the setting of minimun wages both by legislation and by collecitve bargaining, pointing out some of the resulting problems
    The advocates of minimum wage rates, whether decreed and enforced by government or by violent action, contend that they are fighting for the improvement of the conditions of the working masses. ... However, the problem is precisely whether there is any means for raising the standard of living of all those eager to work other than raising the marginal productivity of labor by accelerating the increase of capital as compared with population.
    On Equality and Inequality, Modern Age, 1961
    Examines the premise that "all men are created equal" and some possible as well as purported conclusions
    The doctrine of natural law that inspired the eighteenth century declarations of the rights of man did not imply the obviously fallacious proposition that all men are biologically equal. It proclaimed that all men are born equal in rights and that this equality cannot be abrogated by any man-made law, that it is inalienable or, more precisely, imprescriptible. Only the deadly foes of individual liberty ... interpreted the principle of equality before the law as derived from an alleged psychical and physiological equality of all men.
    Prices, The Freeman, Sep 1981
    Extracted from Human Action by George Koether
    The valuations which result in determination of definite prices are different. Each party attaches a higher value to the good he receives than to that he gives away. The exchange ratio, the price, is not the product of an equality of valuation, but, on the contrary, the product of a discrepancy in valuation. The characteristic feature of the market price is that it tends to equalize supply and demand. Any deviation of a market price from the height at which supply and demand are equal is—in the unhampered market—self-liquidating.
    Related Topic: Prices
    Rationality and Irrationality; Subjectivism and Objectivity of Praxeological Research, Human Action
    Chapter 1, "Acting Man", section 4; argues that all human action is rational, i.e., the outcome of reasonable deliberation
    The impulse to live, to preserve one's own life, and to take advantage of every opportunity of strengthening one's vital forces is a primal feature of life, present in every living being. However, ... man has the power to master even these impulses. He can control both his sexual desires and his will to live. He can give up his life when the conditions under which alone he could preserve it seem intolerable. ... To live is for man the outcome of a choice, of a judgment of value.
    Related Topics: Economics, Life
    The Ricardian Law of Association, Human Action, 1949
    Chapter 8 "Human Society", section 4; discusses how all people benefit when they cooperate with each other and how the division of labor results in greater productivity
    Ricardo expounded the law of association in order to demonstrate what the consequences of the division of labor are when an individual or a group, more efficient in every regard, cooperates with an individual or a group less efficient in every regard. ... It is advantageous for the better endowed area to concentrate its efforts upon the production of those commodities for which its superiority is greater, and to leave to the less endowed area the production of other goods in which its own superiority is less.
    Wages, Human Action, 1949
    Chapter 21 "Work and Wages", section 3; discusses labor, wages, how are wages determined and erroneus attacks on that explanation
    Labor is a scarce factor of production. As such it is sold and bought on the market. The price paid for labor is included in the price allowed for the product or the services if the performer of the work is the seller of the product or the services. If bare labor is sold and bought as such, either by an entrepreneur engaged in production for sale or by a consumer eager to use the services rendered for his own consumption, the price paid is called wages.
    Related Topics: Entrepreneurship, Labor, Wages


    The Essential von Mises
        by Murray Rothbard, 1973
    Partial contents: Part One: The Essential von Mises - The Austrian School - Mises and the "Austrian School" - Mises on the Business Cycle - Mises on the Methodology of Economics - Mises in America - Part Two: Ludwig von Mises: Scholar, Creator, Hero
    Human Action: A 50-Year Tribute
        by Richard Ebeling (Editor), 2000
    Volume 27 of Champions of Freedom: The Ludwig von Mises Lecture Series; contributors include Gene Epstein, Sanford Ikeda, Israel Kirzner, Robert Poole, Roberto Salinas-León, Charles Murray, Hans Sennholz, Karen Vaughn, Gleaves Whitney and Leland B. Yeager
    The Legacy of Ludwig Von Mises
        by Peter Boettke (Editor), 2006
    Partial contents: Vol. 1: Theory - The Misesian System - Methodology - Market Theory and the Price System - Money, Capital and Business Cycles - Vol. 2: History - Price Controls and Interventionism - Socialism - The Great Depression and Business Cycles
    Ludwig Von Mises: The Man and His Economics
        by Israel Kirzner, 2001
    Contents: Ludwig von Mises, 1881-1973 - Ludwig von Mises, Economist - The Nature of Economic Inquiry - The Economics of the Market Process - Monetary Theory, Cycle Theory, and the Rate of Interest - Mises: Free-Market Economist of the Century - Postscript
    Ludwig von Mises: Scholar, Creator, Hero, by Murray Rothbard, 1988
    Partial contents: The Young Scholar - The Theory of Money and Credit - The Reception of Mises and of Money and Credit - Mises in the 1920s: Economic Adviser to the Government - Mises in the 1920s: Scholar and Creator
    [In] 1906, Mises ran into a problem ...: the refusal of academia to grant him a full-time, paid position. It boggles the mind what this extraordinarily productive and creative man was able to accomplish in economic theory and philosophy when down to his mid-50s, his full-time energies were devoted to applied political-economic work. Until middle-age, in short, he could only pursue economic theory and write his extraordinary and influential books and articles, as an overtime leisure activity. What could he have done, and what would the world have gained, if he had enjoyed the leisure that most academics fritter away?
    • ISBN 9999827659: Paperback, Ludwig von Mises Institute, First edition, 1988
    Mises: An Annotated Bibliography: A Comprehensive Listing of Books and Articles by and About Ludwig Von Mises
        by Bettina Bien Greaves, Robert W. McGee, 1993
    Partial contents: Books and Monographs - Articles - Audiocassette Tapes - Excerpts from Works - Reviews of Books (all previous: by Ludwig von Mises) - Books and Articles About Ludwig von Mises: 1909-1981
    Mises Made Easier: A Glossary for Ludwig von Mises' Human Action, by Percy L. Greaves Jr., 1974
    Alphabetical list of definitions, each with one or more references to Mises' books; includes the essay "A Critique of Böhm-Bawerk's Reasoning in Support of his Time Preference Theory"

    Books Authored

    The Anti-Capitalistic Mentality, 1956
    Partial contents: The Social Characteristics of Capitalism and the Psychological Causes of its Vilification - The Ordinary Man's Social Philosophy - Literature Under Capitalism - The Noneconomic Objections to Capitalism - "Anticommunism" versus Capitalism
    Related Topic: Capitalism
    Bureaucracy, 1944
    Partial contents: Profit Management - Bureaucratic Management - Bureaucratic Management of Public Enterprises - Bureaucratic Management of Private Enterprises - The Social and Political Implications of Bureaucratization
    Related Topic: Bureaucracy
    Economic Policy: Thoughts for Today and Tomorrow
        by Bettina Bien Greaves (introduction), Ludwig von Mises, 1979
    Six lectures originally given in 1959 on the following subjects: capitalism, socialism, interventionism, inflation, foreign investment and policies/ideas
    Related Topic: Economics
    The Free Market and Its Enemies: Pseudo-Science, Socialism, and Inflation
        by Richard Ebeling (Introduction), Ludwig von Mises, Foundation for Economic Education, 2004
    Based on lectures delivered in 1951; partial contents: Economics and Its Opponents - Pseudo-science and Historical Understanding - Acting Man and Economics - Marxism, Socialism, and Pseudo-science - Capitalism and Human Progress - Money and Inflation
    Related Topic: Free Market
    Human Action: A Treatise on Economics, 1949
    Partial contents: Acting Man - The Epistemological Problems of the Sciences of Human Action - Economics and the Revolt Against Reason - A First Analysis of the Category of Action - Time - Uncertainty - Action Within the World - Human Society
    Related Topics: Economics, Human Action
    • ISBN 0809297434: Hardcover, NTC/Contemporary Publishing Co, 3rd edition, 1966
    • ISBN 0945466242: Hardcover, Ludwig Von Mises Institute, Scholars Edition, 1998
    • ISBN 1572460210: Hardcover, Foundation for Econ Education, 4th edition, 1996
    • ISBN 0930073185: Paperback, Fox & Wilkes, Scholars edition; 4th edition, 1996
    Interventionism: An Economic Analysis, 1940
    Partial contents: Capitalism or Market Economy - The Socialist Economy - Interference by Restriction - Interference by Price Control - Inflation and Credit Expansion - Confiscation and Subsidies - Corporativism and Syndicalism - War Economy
    Related Topic: The State
    Omnipotent Government: The Rise of the Total State and Total War, 1944
    Partial contents: German Liberalism - The Triumph of Militarism - Etatism - Etatism and Nationalism - Refutation of Some Fallacious Explanations - The Peculiar Characteristics of German Nationalism - The Social Democrats in Imperial Germany
    Related Topics: Germany, War
    Planned Chaos, 1947
    Partial contents: The Failure of Interventionism - The Dictatorial, Anti-Democratic and Socialist Character of Interventionism - Socialism and Communism - Russia's Aggressiveness - Trotsky's Heresy - The Liberation of Demons - Fascism - Nazism
    Related Topic: Socialism
    Planning for Freedom: And Sixteen other Essays and Addresses, 1952
    Partial contents: Planning for Freedom - Middle-of-the-road Policy Leads to Socialism - Laissez Faire or Dictatorship - Stones into Bread, The Keynesian Miracle - Lord Keynes and Say's Law - Inflation and Price Control - Profit and Loss
    Related Topic: Liberty
    Selected Writings of Ludwig Von Mises: Volume 2, Between the Two World Wars: Monetary Disorder, Interventionism, Socialism, and the Great Depression
        by Richard Ebeling (Editor), Ludwig von Mises, 2002
    Partial contents: The Quantity Theory - On the Currency Question - Remarks Concerning the Establishment of a Ukrainian Note-Issuing Bank - Foreign-Exchange Control Must Be Abolished - Direct Taxation in City and Country
    Related Topic: Money
    Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis, 1922
    Partial contents: Ownership - Socialism - The Social Order and the Political Constitution - The Social Order and the Family - The Nature of Economic Activity - The Organization of Production Under Socialism - The Distribution of Income
    Related Topic: Socialism
    The Ultimate Foundation of Economic Science: An Essay on Method, 1962
    Partial contents: The Human Mind - The Activistic Basis of Knowledge - Necessity and Volition - Certainty and Uncertainty - On Some Popular Errors Concerning the Scope and Method of Economics - Further Implications of the Neglect of Economic Thinking
    Related Topic: Economics


    Leonard Liggio on the Rise of the Modern American Libertarian Movement, by Jacob Hornberger, Leonard Liggio, 9 Mar 1995
    Talk given at Vienna Coffee Club (Future of Freedom Foundation). Liggio starts off with the New Deal and covers many events and individuals both at the core and the periphery of the modern libertarian movement

    The introductory paragraph uses material from the Wikipedia article "Ludwig von Mises" as of 20 Jun 2018, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.