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Joe Salerno on Rothbard’s History of Economic Thought

We wrap up our look at Murray Rothbard’s sprawling two volume An Austrian Perspective on the History of Economic Thought with Dr. Joe Salerno, Rothbard’s friend and colleague. This show covers the second volume exclusively, starting with the Frenchman JB Say and working through Ricardo, the British Currency School, John Stuart Mill, and finally Karl Marx. Salerno has penetrating insights about all of these thinkers, from Say’s understanding of production to Ricardo’s erroneous systemization of Adam Smith. He also has great background regarding Mises and the Currency School vs. Banking School debate, on free banking and full reserve banking, and on Mill’s deep misconception of money. The show ends with a thorough look at Rothbard’s treatment of Marx over more than 100 pages: Marx’s sick view of man as a collective, his hatred for the division of labor, his absurd and deterministic “laws of history,” his materialism as a replacement for spiritualism, and the underlying folly of “superabundant production.”

You don’t want to miss this show!

Additional Resources

Read Rothbard’s important work: