Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Is there any Hoppe for Austrian Marxism?

I found myself surprised by the points that Hoppe makes in his analysis as they differ extensively from what I hypothesized they would be as I first started to read the article. Hoppe finds himself agreeing with some elements of Marxist thought and states that these fit in to the Austrian model. He states that the increased productivity laborers that Marx speaks of is indeed one of exploitation this is because is a sense it wasn’t voluntary like it should be in a proper free market (as the expense is externalized to the slave/serf).

He accuses Marx of “engaging in historical investigations and arousing the reader’s indignation at the brutalities underling the formation of many capitalist fortunes, actually sidesteps at hand, evading the fact that his thesis is really an entirely different one: namely, that even under “clean” capitalism.” This I thought as interesting.

I however thought that his view of time preference is a bit stretched in his explanation of lower wages.

I was most interested in Hoppe’s thoughts on collectivity owned resources. Mr. O’Toole had an interesting view on them himself that he shared during his presentation last week. He thought that there is nothing wrong with the part of communism that focuses collectivity owned resources. This is due to the reasoning that all parties involved have the incentive to use these resources wisely (Like mutual funds). What he was against in these systems is the central planning. Currently, in northern history class we are focusing on Russia and this is interesting in the sense that Stalin’s 5 year plans (at first increased production than productivity fell) a lot if infrastructure was built at this time but it is easy to argue that the infrastructure didn’t reflect the people’s needs.

Overall this article presented very interesting viewpoint of the Communist system through an Austrian’s eyes and I can’t wait to discuss it this next Thursday.

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