Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Economists' Almanac

 Mises on the blessings of the production structure in the market division of labor:

To drink coffee I do not need to own a coffee plantation in Brazil, an ocean steamer, and a coffee roasting plant, though all these means of production must be used to bring a cup of coffee to my table. Sufficient that others own these means of production and employ them for me.
From Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis, (Indianapolis, IN: LibertyClassics),  p. 31.

Monday, September 14, 2020


Ludwig von Mises' magnum opus Human Action was published on this date in 1949. Mise once said that it was his reading Carl Menger's Principles of Economics that made him an economist. Well the same thing happened to me when I read Mises' Human Action. I documented the importance that book had on my life as a student in an address I gave at a conference celebrating the publication of the Scholars Edition of Human Action by the Ludwig von Mises Institute. What I said those many years ago are still true today:

It is impossible to calculate the full benefits I have taken from Mises's Human Action. It showed me the truth of economics. It made me want to become an economist. It inspired me to be a scholar, and it set forth the rational case for liberty. It does the same for my students.

I more recently discussed the importance of Human Action, explaining why everyone should read the book on the Human Action Podcast:


God providentially used Mises' work to confirm me in my calling as an economist and college professor. For that I continue to be grateful.