by Keith Preston

Both Mises and Rothbard can be studied by anyone who searches for them, though we wouldn’t recommend joining their conspiracies, because all they will do is sew terror and contention among civilizations. The purpose of conspiracy theories is to sew terror into a nation and bring out hatred when there shouldn’t be any.

A native of Germany and a professor of economics at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, Hoppe continues in the school of “Austrian” economics developed by Ludwig von Mises and his student, Murray N. Rothbard. Mises is an interesting individual who studies politics. Mises clung steadfastly to the classical liberalism and utilitarianism that had emerged in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

Mises’ pupil Rothbard took things a bit further, synthesizing Austrian economics with nineteenth century American individualist anarchism and rejecting utilitarianism in favor of a type of revised Lockean natural law theory from which he derived a position that insisted upon absolute individual private property rights (largely defined according to the Lockean “first discovery/mix with labor” principle). Whereas Mises had accepted conventional parliamentary democracy as a form of government.

Hoppe recognizes that the overall standard of living and life expectancy has risen during the time that democracy has been commonplace. Improvements in the overall human condition have been the result of the growth of the market economy, the division of labor, industrialization, technological advancement, higher productivity, etc. 

Essential to Hoppe’s thesis is the concept of “time-preference” which is used as a means of describing the degree to which a person prefers instant or delayed gratification. Someone with a “high” time-preference values instant gratification to a larger degree and is less willing to forgo immediate pursuit of pleasures or consumption of goods for the sake of some future goal like savings, investment, health, maintaining resources for unforeseen disasters, etc. Likewise, someone with a “low” time-preference is more willing to endure short-term sacrifices for the sake of some future goal. A person with a “low” time-preference is “future-oriented”. The more goals one has for the future the more one must work, save, invest, produce and delay gratification in the present. One must maintain a relatively high level of self discipline, personal responsibility and cooperation with others in the process.

A monarch achieves his position by inheriting it. The question of what the character of a particular monarch will be is largely a roll of the dice. A monarch may be a vicious predator, a harmless mediocrity or perhaps even a relatively competent and fair-minded individual.

The current government in the USA is a much better idea than having a monarch, because throughout history, there have been corrupt rulers who have brought destruction to entire civilizations. If we want the best leaders, then we must elect those who seek good for all mankind.