Monday, October 3, 2011

Greg Ransom on Hayek

Greg has three posts up on Hayek and Social Security (here, here, and here). He's quoting from the same chapter that I was.

Unfortunately he seems to be deleting comments, so I'm not sure how far you'll get. I emailed him about it and asked him to continue the conversation, but no response so far. I'm not sure what I've said that offended him.

In case he deletes your comments too, think of this as a forum to discuss the material he presented in those posts. My interpretation is the same as it was (it ought to be - I read those exact passages just a couple days ago when writing my post!). Hayek supports social insurance. He has a lot of problems with Social Security, Medicare, and unemployment insurance and does not think that they at all meet the standards of social insurance he would find acceptable. As Levine and Zernike suggest, Hayek spends most of the chapter (after setting up what sort of program he would approve of) denouncing the programs that exist. So Greg Ransom is presenting that very first part - the discussion of acceptable social insurance in a liberal society.

This isn't exactly Hayek's Pure Theory of Capital. It's a fairly straightforward chapter. I wish Greg would tell me what he thinks is wrong with my read of it, but he doesn't seem interested.


  1. Daniel.

    You've repeatedly put false words and thoughts in my mouth even after you've been repeatedly and explicitly corrected by me -- i.e. I've told you that you are attributing claims and thoughts to me which I haven't written, and I've pointed out again exactly what my claims and thoughts on the matter are, e.g. on Levine & Ames and their history of "journalism" specializing in pornography, defamation, invention, violence, etc., a practice they perfected in Russia, and brag about on their web site.

    And I've said that I'm done wasting my time attempting to get you to set the record straight when you repeatedly attribute claims and thoughts I don't have, and even after you have been repeatedly told that these are false attributions and you have been advised what my claims and views actually are.

    I'm done.

    I've told you that I have identified your posts on my blog as "spam" and that is what I have done.

    Wasting people time with constant off-target and off-topic queries is the definition of a troll -- whatever one's intent.

    I have a zero tolerance policy for trolls on my site.

  2. Here's what Levine & Ames posted under MY NAME in the comments section of their web site:

    "Hayek has been completely mischaracterized by shills like the people at

    What Hayek writes about social security, government health care, and the safety net in The Constitution of Liberty can be read by anyone who reads the chapter on “Social Security” which is something that the people at hope you don’t actually do. The Road to Serfdom’s attitude towards social security and medicare was disowned by Hayek in his 1976 preface. Hayek’s arguments and views are bought and paid for by Charles Koch.

    It’s too bad Hayek did not have the eXiled Moderator to improve his corrupt sleazy Koch-sucking ways. I, on the other hand, have nothing but gratitude, O Mighty Moderator."

  3. Daniel, if you have only read Levine & Ames piece in The Nation, you only have the half of what they have said and charged against Hayek.

    And, again, I think there is something seriously wrong if you believe that Levine & Ames have factually and accurately characterized Hayek's perspective and purposes when discussing the social safety net or Hayek's activities in America in the early 1970s and his relationship to Koch. Their account, if fact, is clearly false, and defamatory -- and approach to "journalism" they brag about and ADVERTISE.

  4. Here's the blog post Greg is talking about

    What's cool is that near the end of the blog post they write that their work "...shows just how warped and corrupt America’s intellectual world has become". Then beneath the post is a largish ad proclaiming "Have you no shame?" and then beneath that is greg's comment which as the only non-sycophantic comment has been scrubbed and replaced, presumably for the benefit of the american intellectual world.

  5. I don't know what Greg's original comment was, but if it was of higher quality I wish he'd provide that sort of comment here.

    It's been incredible to see how resistant he is to actually talking about what the chapter says with me... all because I suggest I think he's wrong on a few things.

    Taking Hayek seriously is something I don't struggle with. Taking Greg Ransom seriously is increasingly hard. He's always welcome to come back and start talking again - I've presented all sorts of substantive comments on that chapter that he hasn't lifted a finger to respond to.

  6. I'm not going to spend another minute of my life "debating" Levine & Ames bogus and out of their pants false representations of Hayek.

    Life is too short.

  7. "It's been incredible to see how resistant Daniel is to actually talking to me about whether or not he beats his wife ... all because I suggest I think he's wrong on a few things he's said about it."


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