Richard M. Ebeling is the BB&T Professor of Ethics and Free Enterprise Leadership at The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He served as president of the Foundation for Economic Education (2003-2008) and was the Ludwig von Mises Professor of Economics at Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, Michigan (1988-2003).
September 29 marks what would be the 142nd birthday of the famous Austrian Economist, Ludwig von Mises. Over the middle decades of the twentieth century, Mises made a number of profoundly important contributions that challenged many of the fashionable and influential collectivist and socialist ideas of his time, and which still echo in the twenty-first century. The life and career of Ludwig von Mises Born in Lemberg, Austria-Hungary (now Lviv, Ukraine) on September 29, 1881, Ludwig von Mises died on October 10, 1973, at the age of 92. Educated at the University of Vienna, for
Once again, the United States government is rapidly approaching a fiscal debt ceiling. After March 16, 2017, Uncle Sam is not legally allowed to borrow any more money to cover its budget deficits, unless Congress votes to raise the debt limit like it has every time in the past. Uncle Sam’s debt has been growing at a frightening rate over the last several decades. It took almost two hundred years, from around 1790, when the government of the United States was established, to 1980 for the federal government to accumulate $1 trillion of debt through deficit spending. In the twenty-year period, 1980
With the beginning of 2017, what might be a “New Year’s resolution” for a friend of freedom? One answer is for each of us to do our best to become “lights of liberty” that will attract others to the cause of freedom and the free society. For five years, from 2003 to 2008, I had the opportunity and privilege to serve as the president of the Foundation for Economic Education. FEE, as it is also called, was founded in 1946 by Leonard E. Read, with the precise goal of advancing an understanding of, and the arguments for, individual freedom, free markets, and constitutionally limited government. One
Through almost all of mankind’s history, the human condition was one of abject poverty and hardship. Yes, there were kings and princes and religious orders that lived better than the mass of humanity. But when looking back at their standards of living, even the most privileged and powerful political leader or tribal chieftain spent his life in a material condition that most of us, today, would consider not much better than bare subsistence. For thousands of years, this was the circumstance of the human race. Starting less than three hundred years ago, the human condition began to change – slowly,
The ancient Greeks left a wealth of knowledge through their surviving writings on a wide variety of themes, including science, logic, philosophy, literature, and the arts. In addition, the city-state of Athens is considered the birthplace of intellectual freedom and democracy – lasting legacies that helped to mold the ideas that have influenced the development of Western civilization. But, in comparison, their discussions on economics were often few and almost always relatively unsystematic. A primary reason for this is the fact that, for the ancient Greeks, questions concerning “economics”
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