The second day of the Austrian Scholars Conference 2010 was quite exciting. From lunch at the Mellow Mushroom munching on the “magical mystery tour pizza” to meeting more heroic media moguls – it was a day to remember. And yes, all that alliteration was intentional.
My good friend Daniel from the University of Texas Libertarian Longhorns presented his paper on “Praxeology of the Knowledge Problem of Socialism.” The gist of the paper is actually pretty simple: Some Austrians call the “knowledge problem” (that Hayek frequently discussed) insignificant, because the problem is also applicable to a free market organization. Daniel says, “No, on the free market there is never a knowledge problem so long as there is always an opportunity for trade somewhere.” Only under a legally sanctioned monopoly – which is just socialism on another scale – or under a purely socialist economy will the knowledge problem become evident.
But the biggest event of the day was the special presentation by John Papola, the creator of the famous Keynes-Hayek rap earlier this year. Seriously, it’s got to be the single best pedagogical tool we have seen in the past few years for teaching Austrian econ. John talked about the process of making the movie and his vision for doing further work at his newly built website EconStories.tv. If you haven’t seen the video, well, you should! Here it is…
I have a picture of John and I together after the talk, but I haven’t taken it off the camera yet. Hopefully I’ll put it up in the next few days.
If you missed it, read the post on Day 1 of the ASC 2010.