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Art Carden Archive

Art Carden is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute in Oakland, California, Associate Professor of Economics and Business at Rhodes College.
Full Biography and Recent Publications

Hope and Change in Memphis



I spoke to the local Campaign for Liberty group last night and wanted to thank everyone who made it an excellent event. It was everything a speaker could want: a large and enthusiastic crowd (they said they counted 72 people, I think), great conversation, and excellent questions peppered with healthy skepticism. My long-run optimism...
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Race and Development



The always-excellent William Easterly has a great post entitled “How the British Invented ‘Development’ to Keep the Empire and Substitute for Racism.” After doing a lot of reading on the development of ideological justifications for slavery in the US and after searching through the papers of the Association of Southern Women for the Prevention...
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What To Do With What You Did Over Your Summer Vacation (2009 Edition)



So you’ve been to a summer program sponsored by Mises, IHS, FEE, Cato, Independent, or any of a number of other organizations dedicated to economic research and education. You’re excited, and you’re firmly grounded in your understanding of the classical liberal tradition. You wonder: what now? Here are a few suggestions that will help...
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Economics: The Art and Science of Not Killing People With Your Good Intentions



Here’s a very interesting post (with a link to accompanying PowerPoint slides) by Justin Ross at The Perfect Substitute on a lecture he is giving. The lecture is provocatively titled “Why We Need Economics to Make Policy: An Introduction on How Not to Kill People.” The title is appropriate: being cavalier about the economic...
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Hard Liquor, Murray Rothbard, and You: Partners in Freedom



The Murray Rothbard “Enemy of the State” flask. Some have suggested that the next logical step is a cigarette case featuring a prominent Austrian economist (did Mises smoke? I know Hayek did). I would like to see this conclude with a complete and official “Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms” set. Perhaps the Mises Institute could...
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Resistance, Assimilation and Honor: An Excerpt from C.S. Lewis



I thought this was too good not to share. Here is an excerpt from pp. 69-72 of Reflections on the Psalms by C.S. Lewis: He had in fact been a strict socialist at Oxford. Everything ought to be run by the State; private enterprise and independent professions were for him the great evil. He...
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Save More and Live Better, Just Not at the Expense of Others



Walmart takes a lot of heat for its alleged effects on wages, employment, labor standards, and community quality-of-life. In research we’ve worked on over the last few years, my co-authors and I have examined the merits of these claims and have found that a lot of this heat is undeserved. Rigorous empirical research shows...
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Economic Calculation in the Environmentalist Commonwealth



Just in time for Earth Day, here’s “Economic Calculation in the Environmentalist Commonwealth,” under review at the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics. The abstract: Do environmental initiatives like carbon accounting provide a viable alternative to monetary calculation based on profit and loss? Economic insights about calculation and imputation suggest that they do not provide...
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The Unintended Consequences of Common Property: Nazi Rallies



Per John Lennon’s request, I’m imagining no possessions, and I don’t like the result: Nazis staging a rally and march on property paid for with tax dollars. They were also protected by cops who were paid with tax dollars. That’s what I call a tragedy of the commons: when you have commonly-owned resources for...
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Externalities and Culture



This is why I’m skeptical of government intervention even in the face of externality arguments. Local preservation and development offers an example. A legal battle is brewing between the city of Memphis (which owns Beale Street), the management company that runs Beale Street, and some of the merchants. Let’s grant the assumption that there...
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