Category Archives: Business

2 Immutable Libertarian Truths About Gold Stars & Creating Value For Society

Business, Donald Trump, Free Markets, Government, libertarianism, Military, The State, War

Shall I play the litmus-test game of, “Are you a libertarian”? OK. I don’t believe you can call yourself a libertarian and disagree with these two statements I tweeted out:

1) The obscenity of the Gold Star designation, given for the “privilege” of dying for Uncle Sam. You are not awarded for bravery, where your obligation is toward your brothers-in-arms, for whom most men in the military are prepared to die; your family is awarded with a special status for simply dying, for getting killed.

2) Donald Trump has created more value for many more fellow Americans than any one man dying in the service of The State. (He just doesn’t know how to express himself. Neither do his “surrogates.”) Are we back to conflating The State’s wars with the Common Good? Wars destroy wealth and life; they don’t enhance them. America hasn’t fought a Just War for a long long time. (Read “Just War for Dummies.”)

UPDATED (4/9): Cruz Blames Victim; Big Business, For Big Government Shakedowns

Business, Donald Trump, Free Markets, Government, libertarianism

For someone who’s supposed to be so smart, Ted Cruz makes stupid arguments. This career politician, Cruz, repeatedly claims that Donald Trump is part of the DC corruption because (like all business moguls), Trump has paid politicians to let him operate. It’s ridiculous to blame the victim of government predation. Take away government and there would be no shakedowns.

More ridiculousness came today from Fox News and what passes for analysis there. In defense of Trump, bobbing-head Andrea Tantaros offered only that at least Trump admits to being part of the problem.

In Tantaros’ defense, Trump (who reads the wrong people) has adopted this idiotic line, namely blaming himself, the businessman, for a reality government brings about.

Again, take away government and there would be no shakedowns.

The correct answer is to be found under the heading “POLITICAL POWER VS. ECONOMIC POWER”:

“A successful politician and a successful businessman represent two solitudes, never the twain shall meet—except when the capitalist must curry favor with the politician so as to further his business interests, a reality brought about by corrupt politics. Trump’s donations to both parties fit a pattern forced by the regulatory state, whereby, in order to keep doing business, business is compelled to buy-off politicians. …


UPDATE (4/9): Aside the fact that in a David vs. Goliath scenario there is never a moral equivalence between the parties—a libertarian never-ever conflates or draws equivalences between government corruption and individual or corporate corruption. Never! Thread:

Myron Robert Pauli: “Corruption is corruption whether it is business or government. A football team owner wants a taxpayer funded stadium. A State Department staffer negotiating a 2500 page ‘free trade agreement’ wants Hollywood to fund her spouse to be a DC lobbyist in return for writing IP protection for record companies into the agreement. I want a special tax exemption for overweight physicists with daughters from China! Whatever…. – who shakes down whom, the general idea is to benefit me and my friends over everyone else (taxpayers, consumers, competitors).”

Ilana Mercer: “Myron Robert Pauli, you show a profound lack of understanding of the workings of government vs. those of the individual; the workings of a monopolist in the use of force, vs. one who has no such power. Profound lacuna. Surprising too, given you write for my blog. This ancient column should tell you what I mean: “Media Concentration Is Not A Threat to Free Expression, Government Is.”

MSNBC Guest Claims Trump Abusing Put-Upon Media

Business, Democracy, Donald Trump, Free Markets, Media

MSNBC’s Chris Hayes entertained a guest who framed the fact that Donald Trump bowed out of the next debate, as the act of a strongman in power, bullying a put-upon, abused press. How does one unpack such messy thinking? First to consider is that Trump has been extremely accessible to media.

More important:

1. Trump is not in power. He is not bolstered by police powers. Not yet. So he is not a political strongman.
2. Trump has grown his support like a business grows on the free market, non-coercively. You offer a product. If people like it, they buy it. Your business grows through the democratic dollar vote of the consumer. Again, no coercion was involved in Trump’s rise.
3. In absenting himself from a media extravaganza with the showy Megyn Kelly, Trump might annoy media, but he is not disappointing his base, who’ve had enough of the debates, and he is certainly not violating anyone’s rights.


Business, China, Donald Trump, Economy, Free Markets, Trade

My 2011 “Sinophobia Trumps Common Sense,” unfairly called Donald Trump “megalomaniacal.” It fairly pointed out, however, that “Sinophobia is sanctioned among American opinion makers. The dislike for China falls within the realm of perfectly respectable economic theory.”

The business mogul is motivated by the sense that the nimbus of great power that surrounds the US is dissipating. It hasn’t occurred to him to search closer to home for the causes of America’s economic anemia—at Fanny, Freddie, and the Fed, for a start. Since Trump has no idea what’s potting, and is not eager to look in his own plate — he blames OPEC and China for the burdens of doing business in the US.

With his “Sorry Mr. Trump, the Chinese Aren’t ‘Crushing’ Us,” our friend, professor George Reisman, deconstructs the “killing us in foreign trade” Trumpism:

American job losses are not the result of freer trade and an excess of imports over exports, but of government policies that prevent capital accumulation in the United States, among them policies that limit imports. An essential part of any economic policy that would truly help to “make America great again” is to avoid preventing imports. …

… READ THE REST. “Sorry Mr. Trump, the Chinese Aren’t ‘Crushing’ Us” By George Reisman is on Real Clear Markets.