Saturday, January 21, 2012

No, Tristan, A thousand Times No!

Tim Worstall writes (21 January) on his Blog HERE
a repudiation of the latest nonsense about Adam Smith’s use of the Invisible Hand metaphor:

Can I call Tristram Hunt a Twat?”

“Or should I use the more obvious word?

“It is a tradition of redistribution, intervention and socialism equally as compelling as Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” (which, one should remember, was a satirical attack on laissez-faire morality, drawn from Shakespeare’s Macbeth).’

It’s got bugger all to do with laissez faire morality. It’s about how the merchant (read, capitalist, for the word had not been invented in Smith’s time) will, despite the greater profits of the foreign trade, find himself still likely to invest at home.
The most important modern result of which is that even if we have perfect theoretical capital mobility it still isn’t true that labour bears all of the incidence of corporate taxation

Tim Worstall is a lively blogger. See Tim’s regular contributions to the “Pin Factory” Blog of the Adam Smith Society (HERE)

Scroll through Tim’s Blog (where he doesn’t take prisoners). Read some of his long-running contra-temps with Richard Murphy, a left-of-centre chartered accountant.

Tim’s economics are usually spot on for accurate presentations of good, common-sense economics. (He is a Fellow of the Adam Smith Institute).

The above is a clear step from Tim towards a correct reading of Adam Smith’s use of the IH metaphor on “an invisible hand”. OK, his robust use of the English language is characteristic of his style on his own Blog (somewhat toned down on the ASI Blog), but he is never boring, nor slavishly mealy-mouthed.

I do not know of ‘Tristram Hunt’, but if Tim’s quote is representative, Tristan writes rubbish on Adam Smith’s use of the IH metaphor.



Blogger Tim Worstall said...

I've interacted with Tristram Hunt before.

All very amusing of course, chortle, chortle.....

2:56 pm  

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