Arnold Kling

Leftist Austrian Economics

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Fishy Economics... Cost Disease...

I don't know how else to describe this article by Richard Florida (recommended with reservations by Stephen Karlson).


In the later 20th century, the pace of creativity quickened while the profit from routinized production plummeted. A new version of capitalism began evolving in which creativity was not just perennial but constant, in which rapid-fire innovation and continuous improvement were the norm. The United States surged to lead this emergent system.

Florida lambastes both Democrats and Republicans for protecting incumbent industries (Hollywood in the case of the former, airlines and steel in the case of the latter).

In spite of this Austrian diagnosis, Florida then proceeds to argue for an important role for government and collective action. For example,


we must make increasing the number of creative jobs and opportunities the guiding principle of national economic policy

For Discussion. How could government policy affect the distribution of job opportunities between "creative" and "non-creative" work? Would this necessarily be a good thing for government to do?


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CATEGORIES: Austrian Economics



COMMENTS (2 to date)
Eric writes:

The economy is "naturally" making the transition to the creative based economy. There is nothing for the government to do but get out of the way.

In a perfect world, the government would be economically agnostic. It is unfortunate that our representatives feel the need to implement government programs to juice the economy. It is not needed, as long as taxes are low and regulations light.

It is not a coincidence that the United States is the country with the lowest taxes and the least regulations among developed nations, and that we also have the highest economic growth rate.

David Thomson writes:

"There is nothing for the government to do but get out of the way."

That's right! The government should protect us and enforce contracts---and then essentially keep out of our business. It is oxymoronic to invite government officials to discussions pertaining to business creativity. This is analogous to asking the village drunk to plan a conference on the value of sobriety.

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