Here is Hans Hoppe’s first treatise in English — actually his first work in English — and the one that put him on the map as a social thinker and economist to watch. He argued that there are only two possible archetypes in economic affairs: socialism and capitalism. All systems are combinations of those two types. The capitalist model he defines as pure protection of private property, free association, and exchange — no exceptions. All deviations from that ideal are species of socialism, with public ownership and interference with trade.
Within the structure of socialism, he distinguishes between left and right versions. “Conservative” socialism favors high regulation, behavioral controls, protectionism, and nationalism. The “liberal” version tends more toward outright public ownership and redistribution. The consequences of socialism vary based on their degree and kind, but they have similarities: high costs, resource waste, low growth.
The theoretical apparatus is Rothbardian to the core, and its main contribution is to provide an organizing principle for understanding the structure of real-world economies as measured against pure types. A tour de force.
Playlist link for complete presentation: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLKjJE86mQRttMlUS3JhITdB1zE08_PWg9
Full text of “A Theory of Socialism and Capitalism” available online:
PDF version: https://cdn.mises.org/Theory%20of%20Socialism%20and%20Capitalism,%20A_4.pdf
EPUB version: https://cdn.mises.org/Theory%20of%20Socialism%20and%20Capitalism,%20A_4.epub
Hans-Hermann Hoppe, an Austrian School economist and libertarian/anarcho-capitalist philosopher, is Professor Emeritus of Economics at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Distinguished Senior Fellow with the Ludwig von Mises Institute, founder and president of The Property and Freedom Society, former editor of the Journal of Libertarian Studies (2005–2009), and a lifetime member of the Royal Horticultural Society. He is married to economist Dr. A. Gulcin Imre Hoppe and resides with her in Istanbul, Turkey.
Hoppe was born on September 2, 1949, in Peine, West Germany. He attended the Universität des Saarlandes, Saarbrücken, the Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt/M, and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, for studies in Philosophy, Sociology, History, and Economics. He earned his Ph.D. (Philosophy, 1974) and his “Habilitation” (Sociology and Economics, 1981), both from the Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main.
He taught at several German universities as well as at the Johns Hopkins University Bologna Center for Advanced International Studies, Bologna, Italy. In 1986, he moved from Germany to the United States, to study under Murray N. Rothbard. He remained a close associate of Rothbard until his death in January, 1995. (Biography source: Mises.org)
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