What I've Been Reading
By Arnold Kling
1. Wilhelm Ropke’s Political Economy, by Samuel Gregg. On p. 52, he describes three ways of allocating resources and assigns moral values to each method.
The first moral position was described by Ropke as ‘the ethically negative’ method: that is, solving the scarcity problem by employing force to take others’ resources. The second was the ‘ethically positive’ method of altruism…The third was ‘the business principle’ –an ethically neutral method through which people increase their well-being by increasing the well-being of others.
I would say that the anti-market view confuses these three moral positions. This view treats government redistribution as if it were altruism, thereby confusing the ethically negative method with the ethically positive one. It also treats the business principle as if it were employing force, thereby confusing the ethically neutral method with the ethically negative method.
2. The Big Short, by Michael Lewis. Finally, some financial crisis porn that failed to grab me. I recommend the Charlie Rose interview with Lewis instead.