Sunday, September 02, 2012

The Non-Existence of "New Support" But A Good Account of 'Austrian Economics'

Bert Tieben,  SEO Economic Research, Amsterdam, presents a paper to the 44th Annual UK Conference of the History of Economic Thought.  It is scheduled for the same section in which I was to present my own paper on the "Myth of Adam Smith’s Invisible-Hand: a view from the trenches", but which, due to a short illness last week, I am now unable to travel to Keele to participate.
Bert Tieben: New support for the Invisible Hand: lessons from Chicago and Vienna”
“As a corollary, economists are called upon to defend what many considered one of the key principles of their science, the beneficial effects of the invisible hand, guiding individual actions in a free market society to the benefit of all.” (p7)
And in the references:
“Selgin, G.A. and L.H. White (1994), “How Would the Invisible Hand Handle Money?”, Journal of Economic Literature, vol. 32(Dec.), pp. 1718-1749. 22
These are the only direct references to the “invisible-hand” in Bert Toeben’s paper, suggesting that “what many considered one of the key principles of their science” is hardly supported by evidence in the text of the paper.  Even the stated “key principle”, namely the “the beneficial effects of the invisible hand, guiding individual actions in a free market society to the benefit of all”, is not clearly – or at all – argued for by Bert.   
This is a pity.  The so-called “new support” is an empty set.  It makes my absence on health grounds only, doubly disappointing.  I do no get a chance to challenge the existence of the so-called “new support’ and I do not get a chance to hear Bert’s supporting arguments.
However, reading the rest of Bert’s paper I found it a most interesting account of the political economy of Mises’ Austrian economic theory, with side-steps to the ideas of Hayek and I. M. Kirzner’s Works.  These were most readable, in my opinion, and worthy of  the attention of Lost Legacy readers. 


Blogger gcallah said...

"I. M. Kirzner"

Huh? I have seen Israel Kirzner, Israel M. Kirzner, or just Kirzner, but "I. M."? Not a single one of his books or papers, that I know of, has appeared as "I. M." Kirzner. Are you fearful he readers will confuse him with the famous economist I. R. Kirzner?

5:15 pm  
Blogger Gavin Kennedy said...

Hi Gene
I'm not clear what your point is. If this is slip of an initial that has caused you to be offended, I apologise profoundly and I beg your forgiveness, if it is forgivable.
As a two-finger typist (sometimes one) I make literal and spelling mistakes occasionally.
If your anger is of a more fundamental nature, please make your point more clear. Sarcasm is a poor substitute for substance.

9:23 pm  
Blogger gcallah said...

Gavin, I am not angry in the least, just puzzled.

11:01 pm  
Blogger Gavin Kennedy said...

Gene Callahan
Now you are confusing me.
I checked Israel M. Kirzner, an Austrian economist, much quoted by Daniel B. Klein in his new book, which I am reviewing. I see he was named Israel Meir Kirzner, which in English, can be written: I. M. Kirzner, though other languages may have different rules.
It also is written in English as Kirzner, I. M. in academic bibliographies.
So what is your exact complaint? Have I offended some unknown to me grammatical rule or convention is another language?=, or have I upset you on some way?
If so, I apologise, but I am not going to re-form the English convention just to appease you. Does Kirzner care?

7:50 pm  

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