Friday, December 19, 2008

Hazlitt 101

Yale professor Robert Shiller works so close to where I work that I should walk over to his office and kick his ass.
Or, at least, give him a copy of Henry Hazlitt's "Economics In One Lesson."

Mr Shiller would instruct the incoming president to propose creating more than the 2.5 million jobs he's already promised to create.

"All that is fine, but does not represent a commitment to full employment," advises/complains this elitist know-it-all.

Henry Hazlitt had the following to say about The Fetish Of Full Employment.
"The whole economic progress of mankind has consisted in getting more production with the same labor.
Our real objective is to maximize production.
Production is the end, employment merely the means.
We can very easily have full employment without the full production.
Nothing is easier to achieve than full employment, once it is divorced from the goal of full production.
Wages and employment are discussed as if they had no relation to productivity and output.
When we had our WPA, it was considered a mark of genius for the administrators to think of projects that employed the largest number of men in relation to the value of the work performed-in other words, in which labor was least efficient.
The progress of civilization has meant the reduction of employment, not its increase."

I am heartened that Yale's endowment has taken a 25% hit.

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