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tv   Book Discussion on Bourgeois Equality  CSPAN  May 29, 2016 1:00am-2:31am EDT

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if you disagree with any part of their political agenda then you are not a real woman. that is the clear explicit disqualification. i happen to be one of those women who does not happen to agree with modern feminists on every issue and yet they will set over and over again, stop talking, stop talking. or you just a tool for other people. that that robs women of their individuality. it robs them of their equality to say that unless you are in the space over here you cannot take all political issues. my grandmother, my mother before me, very interested in equality of the sexes and that's why i'm here today on tv, trying to have a family and doing all these things at one time. i do not get liberated and have to believe everything the left tells me i have to. >> one of the campaign issues, specially on the democratic side is women make 72 cents of of every dollar that men make.
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is that something you'd address? >> in that that very chapter. this is part of the war on woman that is fiction. mostly driven by abortion. they do not want to talk about the fact that women are basically evenly split on abortion but they're overwhelmingly opposed to it. they want to have that issue because it's not convenient to them. so they dress up all of these other questions and put other accusations but we can get all one can talk about economic studies and the reason behind, we been debunked most the times over there's an economist who's been part of that in the white house itself judges women by their own standard. so it's purely by -- so we have
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your back, and they don't like you, they don't represent you in the hope that the details get glossed over. >> i would argue there's plenty of discussions to be had when there is a gap. occasionally gap. occasionally will look at the economic analysis and not just say, white house economist under obama has said that's not really the whole story. it's not just discrimination. if you want to solve the problem then you look deeper than that. >> to micro, political issues like that work? are they effective? >> that's what they've done. one of the things that we've addressed is how conservatives can fight back against the law on women on that and we profile senator from colorado who mark udall made his entire campaign about it. it was called the market -- is constantly birth control, line about abortion and distorting. and cory gardner figured out early on the best way to respond
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to that in a cheerful, truth based way. he won. so it is not just all complain about how the sky swelling. it's not all white ringer he either. we believe that in order for this issue, the full exchange of ideas and cutting down on demagoguery and taking some of it out of our political diet it has to come from both sides. people on both ends of the spectrum has to link arms and say let's come together as americans, calm down a little bit and not assume the very worst about each other on every issue so we can actually have a discussion rather than ended before it begins. >> you can see guy benson on box 2, you can see mary catherine on cnn, you can buy their book, and of discussion, how the less outraged industry shuts down debate, manipulates voters, and makes america less free and fun, you're watching book tv. >> when i tune in on the weekends usually it is authors sharing their new releases.
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>> watching the nonfiction authors on book tv is the best television for serious readers. >> on c-span they can have a longer conversation and delve into their subject. >> book tv, weekends. they bring they bring you author, after author, after author. they highlight the work of fascinating people. >> i love the book tv and i am a c-span fan.eem to [inaudible] [inaudible conversation] [inaudible conversation] [inaudible conversation] >> can i get everyone's attention. i am the director of the hyatt
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program here at george mason university.. today we are thrilled we have deirdre mccloskey here in conversation with my good colleague. deirdre has just come out with the third volume of her trilogy and the "bourgiois equality" which builds on the bourgeois dignity. they would talk about this in the introduction but i want to personally congratulate you on this collection. i think it is the most ambitious trilogy an amazing achievement for what you have done and tove generate the conversation and economics. hopefully we'll have a great conversation today. that's to the student over to. >> thank you. when claire morgan asked me if i would lead and conduct a conversation with deidre, i immediately jumped at the opportunity, not only is it an
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honor but there are few books that one reads in a scholarly life, the fundamentally change or deeply change the way you look at the world. these books have done that foror me.ou so i am honored to be here for with deirdre. deirdre has taught at the university of illinois, chicago from 2000 - 2015. she is now emeriti. i will list all the departments and wish she talk but that would take us through the whole hour. one of them was economics, before that she taught at the university of iowa and also at the university of chicago. she is been a longtime friend of the economics department here at george mason and the center.schl i believe you have a scholarly articles may be number 400. i don't dare put a number on the number of other popular posts, magazine articles that you have written.
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i also believe this is your 17th authored book. as noted it is the final book in a remarkable trilogy which will consume over time today. before you get to the actual conversation let me quote from deirdre's website which i encourage you to visit, it's great website, it website, it has access to most of deirdre's works. on the website she protests, she is not a conservative economist. so here's what she is, if you don't mind me putting your words in your mouth. in deidra's words where she is quote, a literary, quantitative, postmodern episcopalian, midwestern woman from boston who is once a man. not conservative. conservative. i'm christian, i am a christiana libertarian. indeed, she is. were i were i to
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list all of deirdre's achievements, i would again, the sabean monologue by donna not a conversation with deidra. so let's get to it. congratulations on the third volume. i remember being in a transcript seminar that is when i have read it. i haven't yet gone through the entire why remember entire -- wi it. all t
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>> all nderstood in the west and the east, the south and the north, of human society in a commercial context. so courage it will would be entrepreneurship, love would be solidarity or personal reiteration in a business for example. there is not anything specifically bourgeois about the virtues. i simply taking the virtue which was the longtime way in which people talked about being good and saying well, you can >> you can be good and be an economy too.
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that is why i wrote the books, is to bring the good news to our wonderful friends on the left and some on the right who regard a market society as an abomination, as corrupting. >> let me be presumptuous and summarize quickly what i take to be the main three theme of these volumes. >> he knows what i do better than i do so i'm looking forwar. to this. >> a very short summary of complex ideas. with ad so this is since adam smith economist asked what causes material progress? it certainly is no question that there has been a major increasei
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in the rate of material progress since the time of adam smith. >> a factor of 30. >> you call it the great enrichment. like one of the greatest events in human history, right afterer the invention of agriculture. >> yes. >> and you found, or find every other explanation that economists have offered for the great enrichment to be wanting.e >> yes. >> your explanation of the great enrichment is that ideas change. particularly, specifically ideao a change in such a way that practitioners of the bourgeois virtues, people people who act as a bourgeois, they for the first time in history, starting about 200 to 250 years ago became dignified in the eyes of most people, that unleashed this creative energy.
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>> so that is the key. it is not so much that psychology change, that's was claimed 100 years ago. i don't think that's very plausible. y it's not that people that i better, is that the surrounding society changed its variation of what they did. they di so the word innovation for example was a scare word until the 19th century. to innovate was to change religious beliefs or to disturb the social hierarchy, but we don't want any of that innovation. so that that is the main thing that change. in fact, in the last month or so i've decided that this last volume should have been entitled, i should add one more
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word, it's got a long title anyway. it's called "bourgiois equality" , here's how i should've set it and this will shock you. how liberal ideas, not capital institutions enrich the world. it's the basic liberal idea, noe in the modern american sense but the older sense that people are equal before the law and equal and social standing. it is that equality that inspire people.s q and i get more and more evidence of this every day. i'm reading an extremely good biography of the great norwegian national hero -- and all through your seen these poor, swedes and norwegians inventing stuff in the 19th century and the prime
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stove for example, which made inspiration so much easier. because they're being allowed to.. >> ridley has a nice review.w. >> wonderful review. >> of the "bourgiois equality". >> but he pushes back a little bit. he wonders, and i wonder how you would respond to this question, he asked, how do you know the causal direction? it is true, you document that the change in rhetoric occurred starting in about 200, 250 years ago, bourgeois activities becamm more respected and spoken of with greater dignity. cause they wonder is that the cause or an effect of other changes? >> it it is clear that there is a backwash. that is the idea of equality.
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now what i called french equality which was the idea of equality of income which is usually what we think of.eq but when a call for scottish equality, namely equality of human dignity. socially and before the law. those of course were raised in prestige by the success of this formula. you see it in scotland itself for example in england, andng hollands to begin with, it all begins in holland than the united states, australia and so forth. and you see this great success. of of course back then it increases the prestige of market tested, betterments as they call it. it. but i would say to ridley that
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you have to look at the timing. and the comparisons. but let's look at the timing. the increase in status of economic behavior and bourgeois activity and innovation happens before the financial economic success. well before. well actually they say it starts in holland. so 100 years before around 1600 you have the dutch commercialhee society about a hundred years later the english adopted a dutch king, dutch central bank, dutch exchange, unfortunately a dutch national debt. i'm surprised that they did not adopt the dutch language. they became so very dutch by 1700. that's way before there's any substantial payoff.
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so the real payoff comes not so much in the classic industrial revolution of the late 18th century as he said to call the great enrichment of the 20th century when innovation, betterment just goes completely wacko and as ridley himself says. instead of having sex and maybe the grandbaby idea then you have all of this amazing innovation of mechanical inventions which you can see around us but also certain organizational and social. >> to have any idea why the ideas change?ve any i >> yes.at is wh that's what i devote much of this third volume two. as you said, i have the standard
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economic arguments, call is a big favorite. >> which met relief favor. >> he does, and he's wrong. he's very nice and very smart, but even even very smart people are sometimes wrong. or foreign trade, or the slave trade, or exploitation of the poor, or something like that. although although still work. they don't have noble from anth economic point of view. if you look carefully at the economics of all they're just not big enough to explain a factor 30 witches were trying to explain. and thirdly speak and don't maki sense because often, while the chinese were exploited cool for 3000 years without an industrial revolution.on. but, third volume i say why did this liberal idea become so
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powerful? all all of a sudden, and it was all of a sudden. and of sorry say don't have snappy answer. here's a simple answer, it is that it was accidents. if the accidents of the politics and sociology of europe starting in 1517, that famous year up until 1789.us yea in that. , hierarchy began to break down. now hierarchy is what runs in agricultural civilization, nott hunter gatherers, but agriculturalists. they have these horrible hierarchies, i'm the lower of the matter into bed for you, you you have to give me ransom taxes. that started to break down. ordinary people were made bold, clear example of this are
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english quakers. which even women were allowed to speak at the meeting, in which there is no hierarchy, at all. there is no priest, there's no person even appointed by the congregation. and i say that it is not so much the doctrine of salvation that change but church governments ta that made people bold. and and i give some evidence for this. here's why was the point of calling it accidental. i i don't want people to believe that there is something securely and deeply your pain about all of this..eurobo it could've happened in china, was sufficient time it could've happened in mayan, guatemala. it could've happened and lots o
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places, maybe a little later. wyatt did not happen in china earlier is a puzzle, that is this great enrichment. but, it is not some european from the successes of leave liberal economic policies in china and india right now. i think without those two recent examples would be much harder to make this argument. >> we were talking before you started filming about a book that you and i a most good economist low smells, wealth of nation. he famously, at least among people he knows work did not say very many favorable things about this people. >> no he didn't. >> at least on the surface that's a little intention. >> but for one thing he did not
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say much about entrepreneurship. pete has spoken of smith's and stupidity as the three forces that we need to be concerned with. smith is about efficiency.is abo and the other is about innovation, but the real cause of economic growth and stupidity, well well that's about the government for the most part. so let's exclude this way, smith did not know what his radically gala terry and ideas aboutwh equality the law and socially quality was going to do. he didn't quite realize that he
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was creating a document that would sustain this move of legality arianism. so and smith he's a great economist. but no one saw coming. >> limited is a. when smith does talk aboutalmost business week is almost always in the context of business people to put it modern times, lobbing the state. >> if that's what he said. sai people think it's napoleon who coined the phrase but it's smith who spoke of britain as a nation of shopkeepers. and he said, this commercialal system as he called it which we still have, namely capitalism and protectionism and so on and licensing of iq patience and all of the horrible features, he
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said this is a system not appropriate to a nation of shopkeepers but appropriate to a nation whose government is influenced by shopkeepers and that is exactly right and so true. >> at one the remarkable things about, you do it in all these last two volumes is give examples of how much better, materially. why is it that most people do not recognize it, why is that most people something that iss not a big big of deal as you believe it to be, or that it's doomed? >> it most people like pessimism. we're. we're talking about it at lunch. why do people like to say the sky is falling? they always do.
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popcorn, good friend of mine is just written a book, the, the skies falling, the sky isn falling. well bob, may be, i don't think so, it has not fallen it yet, i'm looking yet, i'm looking around dozy pieces of it. so people feel like they are sophisticated if their pessimists. and it's very easy to forget or to romanticize one's youth. my mother's 93 and is very intelligent and sharp person in every way. a moist thing to her well mom, she says things are terrible, things are terrible. but i said they were worse when you were a kid. she was born in 1922. she in 1922. she said oh no, we're happy then. well her mother in the great depression's would put pieces of cardboard in her shoes so the holes would it leak.
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so you've done a service issue and how much it cheaper things are. every bridge rated, color tv, second traffic drugs. all kinds of things and not those kind of drugs for things like lithium and so forth.th which the richest people in theh world did not have to fight their mental illness. in 1950 that we now have. plus i don't know how to get people out of the dismal mood. >> nor do i.i.>> i'm pessimistic about that. [laughter] in addition to the internal pessimism, today but in the past several years we have seen a return of inequality, in a book
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which he reviewed brilliantly and then reviewing the financial time, diane coyle. >> she talks about it to smack she she wonders if you're a bit too complacent about the future because of the current concern about inequality. >> without firm while the we had taken socialism out to the crossroads by the light of the full moon and founded a wooden stake through its heart and it was dead. but socialism, since its invention in the 19th century, one of the great intellectual inventions in the 19th century along with nationalism, if youto you like those to try national socialism. it is preliminarily popular. gog i think it is the size of
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government has just kept going up and so we keep thinking thatw we will help the poor instead of letting the poor helpmselves. themselves. so, i think people like equality, socialism and so on because they grew up in families, and families are socialists enterprises. mom is a central planner and so forth.h. but in fact, think of it. from an ethical point of view, equality is not the problem, there is a line in one of shakespeare's sonnets come i can't quoted him afraid. for he points this outcome he says look, i would like to have this man's handsomeness in this man's intelligence in this man's strength and it's a hopeless project for us to be equal but it is not a hopeless project for
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us to be rich, to enrich the poor should be our purpose. that i think is an honorable, liberal and achievable purpose. at least for public policy if you want to talk about it that way, not equality. >> if this change in rhetoric and change in the way people view those who pursue those, that was sufficient to bring about this enormous and wonderful great enrichment, i presume it's the case that if the record rick moves in the other direction then we can be doomed.se >> yes, think you see this in the sluggishness of the economy of europe. it was a wonderful document and it broke down trade barriers
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among european nations. then in brussels they thought well, here again it's the ideal of the quality. what's the phrase, we have to make the playing field. >> level the playing field. >> yes, level the playing field. so cap there is no chocolate is not really chocolates said the bureaucrats in brussels. it hasn't got enough cocoa in it. so we are going to declare cadbury's chocolate, not, not chocolate. you can imagine how this played in britain. or when you take non-pasteurized i telling telling cheese and wee are going to outlaw its because after all, the other stuff is pasteurized, are good but the
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purpose of a modern society is to make everyone equal. it is a crazy program. and a pointless one if we achieve what john rawls argued was the raising of the bottom. that's what we should be doing, the improvement of the worst weh off. that is not to be done by whining about how many aunts william, the error to the l'oreal fortune has. >> i agree that she's a jerk, here's an interesting fact about her, if she still evident no.
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her charitable foundation has invested in it one half of 1% of her wealth. one half of 1%, compare andrew carnegie, 100%. >> cats are expensive. >> yes so but that doesn't make people poor. what makes people poor is a lack of equality. equality of for the law, take the drug laws for example which we are now, i've known this for many years, most the people here have. but suddenly the american public is realizing that the drug laws are not equally enforced. oh, i'm shocked. and the quality of social standings so we respect each other. that is what makes for a vital, entrepreneurial society.
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>> i did not want to sleepakes f myself into something a pessimism that you fight against and i try to fight against. i when i say the rhetoric of the past few years. >> it's been terrible. >> the intellectual rhetoric and the political rhetoric now, it is worse than it is ben any point in my lifetime. it's a possible overseen the beginning of a return to the ages of hierarchy?turn of >> here's where it might. >> are you still optimistic? >> i am. you can't change the gender without being an optimist. but i think the demonstration effect is very powerful. i think india embarked on liberalization, what the indians called a licensed roger per
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capita growing at 1% a year is supposed to five-7% per year per capita now, because they saw the chinese student. and so when he used to call the word chinese in 1978, they sawtl hong doing it so roughly i think the world will become more liberal in my sense in the next 50 years. i expect expect that to result in a gigantic worldwide enrichment. for example, in in sub-saharan africa in particular, i predict a great future, they have more ability than any other homo sapiens. so when they stop miss governing
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themselves, so like thewhen the europeans only had a first world war and the second world war and the holocaust, communism and fascism, we were so clever by comparison this is all ironic. but when the sub-saharan africans have equality before the law dignity, and when they stop having large control of the large governments in the large bands of robbers, they will grow because of the genetic ability the greatest messed mathematicians, intellectuals, artists, scientists, will all have dark faces which i think will be a wonderful irony on racism of europeans.
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>> left i hope your right. >> i normally. >> i don't disagree. op we were trained as an economist in the 1960s. >> if you call going to harvard and been trained as an economist.er >> you've done okay for yourself. what is your assessment of the state of the economics profession today compared to when you began? >> i don't think it's improved all that much. in some ways it's worse. the economist, very surprising in the last 50 years and i've been in the profession about 50 years have become more arrogant. it's a must unbelievable considering how arrogant they were in the 1960s. >> air get in what way? >> it will will thinking that they are the solution. that sociologists and english professors are stupid.
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an that they are just the cats meow and everyone intellectually and politically, and there is no basis for its. i think 11 of the great problems in modern economics is the lack of one understanding, online hyatt, kings kings another early economist that to be a goodea economist you need to have a full culture. you have to be a new wrist as well as the quantifier. you have to have both. so i advocate, with my friend bart wilson, newman not makes. economics that does not lose the math if you need it and we often do, that since quantitatively when appropriate. but then thinks intelligently about categories and that is what the communities do.
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that is what the humanities are. it is the study of categories. in theology, just got exists is a simple, simple one, exist, not exist. in philosophy, what is a category knowledge? is it just fiber that you believe, said enough? the categorical inquiry. most of that with manic, is categorical talk. talk what categories do these things fall into? then when you have the categories you can measure. i think that the more civilized economics and economics that takes seriously philosophy and literature is the way to the future. to answer questions straightforwardly, economists are rushing in the other
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direction and like ther proverbial winnings are aiming for the clip.the >> this is on the same topic really. i remember when i i first met you in april of 1986, 30 years ago. i was 12. [laughter] >> well, i was younger. >> george, john lavoie, we had dinner here in fairfax and oestreich was something you said that day. i never heard this from an economist, that karl marx had a lot to teach us. >> sure he did. >> so briefly, what? to >> well, my joke is that marks, say to my libertarian friends,
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say, mark's was the greatestea social scientist of the 19th century without compare. and they they all get mad at me. and then i turned to my left-wing friends and i was once a march marcus myself is a hugeo about almost everything. and they get mad. mad. which is why i don't have any friends. >> but what marks come i suppose you could say the question that marks at come are they important enough is there a pattern to history, other stages of history, actually as adam smith was one of those but marks of course to get much further. is, our ideas, independent of material conditions or is the superstructure a mere
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consequence of the material base? he asked all these questions and cut all the answers wrong. but he asked the questions in as serious way. so i really admire him in a lot of ways. i have come to admire other people too. but as a a kid i was a marxist because i was a socialist i was a socialist as they say and i sang the labor marxis song. i know more left-wing songs than most of my left-wing friends. what's what's irritating is there no good libertarian songs. so get to work. >> and it was marx who call that the industrial revolution. >> no. the first use in english have been used in french before, the first prominent use in english was the follower of marks, arnold, not his uncle, or his
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nephew the 20 of universal -- at age 31, which is when he died he gave lectures on the industrial revolution and they're basically the communist manifesto/-- that became what most people, to this day think happened in the industrial revolution. >> and that is the -- >> exactly it was like a spoof of this by seller in bateman and their great book, 1066. they said around 1800 all the richest men in england to all the sudden realized that women 0 and children could work 25 hours per day without many of them
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dying or becoming excessively deformed. this was known as the industrial revolution. [laughter] basically that idea taking the novels of the time, especially charles dickens as reports inin the industrial revolution when he didn't know anything about it. is the most was life in london which was not having an industrial revolution. >> so here's a question that i know economic historians debate and i wonder where you come down.ot was there industrial revolution, was it slow or was it fast enough that we can legitimately call it as we do. >> it was fast by certain standard. here's the history of the world and one diagram. anyway i'll start here. so the invention of language or
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something and it goes along at $2, $3 a day. and then 1800 goes like this, rip, factor of 30. factor 30 you can make a case if you include it's in provement of quality. it's not like 100 per capita. everyone in this room is a descendent of unspeakably poor and ignorance people and here we y are. so yes there was an industrial revolution but here's the key points. as a number of us economic historians say there have been other industrial revolutions. so, china, you know it happened a lot of times. certain periods, there have been
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industrial revolutions. so it's strange about this one is that it continued to build and it continued, continued, continued to this day. so there has to be something else, not just a few guys get together and invents come i don't know water wheels. but they invent waterwheels and say what can we do with these. let's turn them into airplanes and do all kinds of other things. that requires a deep change in how many people there are who are allowed having ago and a a traditional agricultural society, no, no goes here you're not allowed, not permitted.
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>> play devils advocate, most economists would say, what we do need something else but that something else is a better institutions better institutions are set a better institutions. >> that doesn't work. andls i devote space in the last two lines to this new institutionalism that male friend doug north who died a few months ago advocated and a lot of other people. there are lots of problems with it. institutions, it is becoming orthodoxy. my scornful scornful description of it is, add institutions and stir. [laughter] you want a good legal system? you want it in your salad eagle system? provide all the the lawyers with weeks.
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that will do it. and, the problem is there needs to be much deeper, ethical change in the society.ciety. an ethical change about one's own behavior to be sure, but especially about other people's behavior. but how you evaluate commercialu honesty. that is the change in which it has to do with institutions but has to do with the weather to and lots of things. it is not as if you can just switch on an institution and say let's take a case that is often cited, the glorious revolution of 1688 in britain. well, doug and his colleagues said now we have good property in britain after 1688. in eight. and it just ain't so. anyone who knows anything about
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english history knows that english was contractor property, established in famous phrase before edward the first.he famos there anti- monopoly, 70 years before the glorious revolution. so, prompts comparatively china has very good property laws in the sixteenth, 17, 18 century 18 century before. in fact, for hundreds of years d depending's on -- 12 for hundreds of years they had security of property and the emperor didn't bother them and they did not have the industrial revolution. >> you don't deny that institutions are important. you deny that there the spark. >> that's a key point. what i say in the title, how
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liberal ideas is how you like to set now, not capital or institutions, because you have to have capital to have a building, you have to have bricks and put the bricks on top of each other, mortar and so forth. you have to have capital. but it's the capital is of no use unless you have the ideas for innovation before hand.ea fr as king said. i'm not a big big fan of him these days, i once was, the reward to capital could be driven down to zero in a couple of generations. if you you just keep making the same stuff over and over again i don't have any new ideas, process would happen. you. you're going to run into sharply turns to capital. the same same thing holds for institutions. they are intermediate. you have to have property rights. or the problem with property
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rights is a little sharper. the problem with property rights is that what you mean by an organized society is that it has property rights. organized genghis, succeeded succeeded as the great mongrel leader because he insisted on the mongols of being property rights. he said, you still of course, or or a wife, and i will kill you. and they said all come okay. we will stop stealing horses and wives. they became a great military power. so, it, it is commonplace to have property rights. but in any case, these other so-called, clauses are intermediate at best. the spark is you put it is equality. equality before before the law and the quality of
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social dignity. that is is new. that is new and weird. by 1776, the notion, the notion that all men and by the way women are created equal in a down by their creative by certain inalienable rights such as life, liberty in and the pursuit of happiness was somewhat of a commonplace among advance your p&l and intellectuals. this was written by an owner of slaves but let's pass that by. with but it was only about 100 years old as a clear political program. in the 17th century the idea that people were equal was viewed as extremely radicale it was dangerous in my word, we have to suppress these levelers and primitive congress and quakers, we have to stop all of this stuff.
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>> i love the focus on ideas.. a few questions for you. why are economists, that's a group i know know best, why are economists so important. >> you poor man. >> why are economists so resistant to recognize the roles and ideas? >> i won't name him because he is such an one scholar but i wrote it paper via history and friend of mine who were talking about the history of books in europe and all through the paper they put the word ideas in scare quotes. >> they're not real. >> so there's some influence people claim from ideas but, pev okay. i don't know if this is the reason, guess it is a reason from about 1892 about 1980,
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which is about an isolated keeping it in mind, most thinkers, intellectuals, or materialist. even people, conservative peopl. were materialist. and certainly marxists were. it is just the cynicism of modern intellectual life, march and be an early example of it. so to say all, yet you claim your dominated but i know it'sor because you have stock in
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general motors corporation, that's why you're talking this way. my friend wayne booth, great booth, great professor of english called this, attribution this article motive is in. that you are i see that you are motivated by your selfishsome ta interest. like journalists there are professional cynics. there motivated to think of material for prices, incomes, and i'm an economist, i agree as agree as important. i think they are too. and that's all we need. my collie, the great economists, gary becker was an extreme example of this or george, another great economists. the trouble with this is, it's it's what the english professors call formative country. because these are professors and journalists saying ideas
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expressed by professors and journalists are pointless. interest is all that matters. and you can see that there is kind of a lunacy about that. >> you mean name to two of the most notable university of chicago professor, third as a a colleague of yours, milton friedman. >> so what was friedman? >> i have a story about that. as a young assistant professor at chicago, it must been around 1979, ms. 69. in 1970 comes something like that. i was in was in the coffee room of the social science building a milton friedman and george stigler who by the way often play tennis and milton was for a short and george was very tall. short it is one of the great comic scenes of academic life to see
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them playing tennis on the quad. >> did one have an advantage over the other?'t advanta no because milton would run very fast, george would leap and and it was very funny to watch. but here's what the conversatior was. these great economist and i admire them both very much. george seto settled milton, you're such a picture. i was telling people that wee should go for free trade. i believe that people arera against free trade it's in theie interest or zero-point today. friedman said well, but george he said that the difference between us. i'm a teacher and i believe that people advocate for protection and so forth because they're
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misled. and if i can just get them to understand the stuff they'll be better. george was just disdainful. you're crazy, you're just a preacher. >> let me ask you to comment on another great hero of mine, also an economist who put emphasis on ideas, he kinda play some role in your books. there was one criticism to play even a larger role. so his main idea is the ultimate resource is creativity and human effort from the bush off --
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bourgeois attended the. >> you must not die young to have that effect. and i completely agree that the top of resources is silly. rather eartha's nor are rare and tell they could be used for computer batteries. we thought one item was your intel realized it could be made into aluminum. and israel points out the
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great enrichment was a free lunch because of follette was was a marginal existence to put a little more money into ships to run the slave trade will make us rich that would not make them rich as it did. with the production curve leading up. others that keep tending but mostly economists learned how the marginal benefit of marginal cost but then they cannot remember to say anything else i've always
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advocated for efficiency but it isn't modern economic growth is in the imperfect property rights that is not what did it. is the explosion. >> as you alluded to the production possibilities and one of the standard ways is to say that their production impossibility curve is rediscover more resources. spirit that is the artistry
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way to talk about it. >> i imagine and those inhabitants were probably upset it wasn't a resource. >> so back to the book of 1848 plays a prominent role. so what happened? around europe is the revolution the bourgeois that is radicalized the great german migration to the united states is to a
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surprising extent a direct result of the failures of the revolution was -- revolutions the only large country is europe but it has the irish famine so it becomes important than symbolic and with this terrible idea to use compulsion to organize society instead of the agreement and persuasion. along the formerly liberal
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intellectuals. and i love john stuart who was both in the most eloquent and clear my did exponent of liberalism and also one of the first major intellectuals to turn towards socialism and what is remarkable by bt '80s -- 80 '80s all intellectuals have turned against capitalism. >> why? >> i don't know this is such a thick book because i was quick to write six and sell
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a lot of books but that i thought that doesn't satisfy bourgeois virtues a like cram it all into the last one and some of my speculation are these observations may be this bothers and sons and those that turn against capitalism in the most famous examples who own that textile factory
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>> so hayak to summarize is the go-between for the researchers said that the scholars in the etf that ideas matter. so when intellectuals are changing it is filtered down to the general public. if the intellectuals begin to change their ideas 160 years ago so why is that still occurring? an earlier fight the good
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fight to change the way intellectuals the we are a small group of we're smart and hard-working. and as to why it continues and there is the basic and control ability as i was driving here looking at the richness that this cannot be stopped the junior senator from massachusetts i am sure she is a nice person.
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[laughter] that they see kids the way to go adding more and more regulation is very hard to control its economy in the united states even with the gigantic size of government i will make a confession i had a lot of work done in my apartment in chicago it is done by a non-union worker and i haven't ever gotten a building permit. now hoping this on national tv will get me into trouble but it probably will.
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if you thought the laws were effected of and that they are obeid and that is a shocking fact but i bet half of the construction in chicago of small-scale does not have building permits. and we don't obey the you year monopoly. >> maybe they're not as influential as we think? >> so the idea is that keep it going are added different levels. >> because of breath or the
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depth of the serious political opinions i don't mean team speaking in an upper level but it is much bigger than it once was in there are many, many people who believe bin trade tested to think it is great we have the suburbs with the icehouses what a wonderful country of of america even though even with "the national review" they are railing against each other in this society in which they live there is momentum towards capitalism that is a
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hard stop it is not impossible but how do i know? that he believed an infant baptism? i have seen it. do you believe that economic growth can be stopped by excessive regulation and over taxation with wars and stupid policies? i believe i have seen it. >> manchin hi you document that a pretty much came to a stop economically in the '30's and i agree with the argument with the left-wing friends but the other thing that happened in the thirties as the historian
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has shown that even though the government was screwing it up in the background how innovation was continuing so they were threatening to move to socialism or fascism so when we got over that we had a great boom. >> so first it was published 20,062nd in 2010 that the third volume is the sheer. >> praise the lord. >> i am working on a popular version that we are going to make thinking of airport
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type of book disease are all wonderful books they're not exactly summer reading i have to with it you can try. [laughter] >> i have short chapters i learned that a long time ago that is the way to go you can put it by your bed like a bible you can read a chapter and flawlessly. so we will do that and i have a longer-term project that you and i are involved in to revise a micro economics books because i really want to get economist understanding price theory i have a style book called
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economical writing that the university of chicago will bring out as a third edition then after that i am thinking of a book called god and economic servants i'm episcopalian i know it is shameful but there you are. i want my progressive episcopalian friends to realize that capitalism is not necessarily corrupting of the soul so this will be a short book which will show that jesus was not a socialist. >> now we will turn to the audience for questions
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directed at deidre if anybody has any questions about our discretion discussion anything you have read now is your opportunity >> recently with donald trump's discussion about the increasing class divided in the u.s. of the upper middle-class educated elite and the general population so given your book that there are some similarities how they approach the problem and that the values are transmitted to the upper class and lower class and
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there is the reason for that decline but not as the same level of success. >> that particular argument is older but my friend and colleague revoke about 16 years ago called forth greater enlightenment which made exactly that argument the problem in the united states is not poverty of material character that is not the problem it is spiritual poverty so to speak he was rather exclusive about it but it might be good to know he was a paid organizer for the communist party and was married to a black woman for
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all of his adult life way before was fashionable to be a biracial couple. is an older argument and is possible to me that you can have cultural values that cripple you and they say it is blaming the victim it isn't a just hoping that they will see for a while i was at university of california for fellowship and and i kept being told by the administrators there that the large hispanic population in southern california was the working
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class did not think of college in would be tempted to join the lawn mowing firm instead. and was a constant problem of these bright his blunt -- hispanic kids for go if i worry about that but on either hand i worry more about the other obvious imposition of what comes from the government i am here from the government and i am here to help like the war on drugs we would have much more prosperous hispanic and african-american neighborhoods if we never had a war on drugs.
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>> thanks for talking about your book so using the recent examples of india and china to support your thesis if what matters is these ideas and then how does it change happen in such a short period of time? >> and it indicates i had a student who worked on a dissertation and he showed that it did graduate don't think it was the bottom here is the central planners in top intellectuals but what matters is what goes on in
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between of the conversation of society with the ethical discussion but he noticed in hollywood movies after the independence in the '50s and '60s the heroes were government bureaucrats the enemies are people in business than it started to change then they finally realized the government officials were not their friends and it switched around by the '70s the late '70s and '80s with the unpopular culture was staring at the police that the planners and regulators not the people in enterprise.
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so that is one example like think you are right with the point that i make frequently that ideas can change very quickly some people say i see what you are saying that culture matters. not all. not quite the rhetoric matters and how people talk matters and that can change quickly not always but it can. >> what is the relationship between interest and ideas in a hot style environment? what is that incentive structure to mention africa but you are optimistic so have we bring about that
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change of ideas with such a high style structure? >> that is the big historical question or the fact that for millennia the power structure was hostile to new ideas of the economy is very noticeable like geology imbedded in the 18th century a scottish invention and why did that happen? why did this system of liberalism we call economics develop rather suddenly out of a little corner of northwestern europe?
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the ideas can change by your right if the powers that be worked on it they can stop them as they successfully did over 70 years in the soviet union. but why they changes crucial for the idea is to have any effect they have to be new ideas and where you get new ideas? sometimes it is internal to the logic. with the quality is shockingly novel that has the tendency to get bigger and bigger to apply to more and more people women in the united states and britain have our big forces in the anti-slavery movement in the
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early 19th century and then they say to the men and what about us? and out of that came the women's movement and then gay people in the '60s and that wonderful time and they started to say wait a minute and the drag queens fought the cops in new york so the ideas i do think this is internal logic sometimes but sometimes it makes them collapse but it isn't just a sociological forces all of in the case of europe's it is the accidents that i talk
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about. >> we are taking this one day after the u.s. treasury announced that they will appear. >> i am simply appalled that jackson was in it for so long that we will change the $10 bill. go after jackson citizen just blacks that he owned but the treatment of native americans. >> i have two questions the first is broad i have been listening because i don't have the patience to read the empress book of the lewis and clark expedition -- expedition that is 18 '03 and what struck me in the beginning of a book in
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st. louis and they're having a conversation the diary says we cannot remember the name but he is more adams smith and adam smith's book and that was 18 '03 so in a short period of time so there is something about ideas and a clarity that was already there in a way so reminds me when i was a graduate student that was told about john a thin shoes the great teacher and said he said if you think the government is growing you should receive the colonials there is nothing new about trying to interfere someone to ask when do ideas sustain
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steering oar when does it become so great that they survive? >> i will say i don't know. [laughter] but we have to take ideas seriously it would be very strange to give a history of the united states that did not take seriously all men are created equal or the "gettysburg address" i have a dream come on. words and ideas matter but how? one part of the intellectual world is the humanities and my colleagues and friends in
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english and history are students and can tell you how the idea of equality for african americans developed and to some degree tell you why for fit was obstructed. >> with communist russia and that popular characterization that people have to become non skiers to have at bush or ross society -- bourgeois society one way to interpret irradiance is there is a lady is an institutions and practices and without that spark they don't go in the right way stowe yenisei it doesn't
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matter. >> no not at all but if you don't have the idea of the brick building in you cannot build a brick building but it would be crazy to say that the bricks caused the building to be built but it is the idea. >> if you have a car and was picked up you see all the wealth over the last 25 years is washington d.c. has become the hub of a lot of the richest counties in america it wasn't because of the creation. [laughter] so you have an expansion of the renewed idea of wealth creation but there is a line
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and adam smith that says the natural effort is so powerful it is along without assistance to carry on the society of wealth and prosperity to serve man out those instructions with the quality of human laws so when we look around we have this rent seeking state but then all the of the ways to get around it so the role that ideas play for us to tip that balance one way or the other? >> take a look at the local example the public choice approach to think about the role of the government also
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the virginia school and if we can get across the idea that the government is not composed of swedish philosopher kings we will have accomplished a great deal i have cousins that work for the cia and they're nice people but every time i come to washington i am appalled that all these intelligent people like my cousin is working for the great beast so here is a fact that i calculate for the book. have a 170 ranked countries for honesty of public administration there is about 170 countries take the top

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