It’s been confirmed now that economist Sandeep Jaitly has been forced to resign his position from The Gold Standard Institute following his on-air remarks about Ludwig von Mises and Ayn Rand. Jaitly, a follower of Antal Fekete, originally tweeted that “If it ain’t Menger or his direct student Eugene [sic] Von BB, it ain’t Austrian. Sorry #Mises: respectfully, too many mistakes were made.”
This is the reality of an employment-at-will situation, but it remains a grating issue when one starts talking about academic issues on which legitimate debate can be held.
I happen to find the esoteria between the gold bugs and various other flavors (and, in my view, mis-flavors) of Misean thought to be highly amusing. From my perspective there’s only one point worthy of consideration in this regard, and that is whether or not the particular economic model under debate counts all credit and currency as “moneyness” and therefore innately fungible when evaluating the impact of various policy decisions and strictures.
Sadly, few if any do, and thus I find them all flawed.
I further find it amazingly frustrating that those who claim that such a distinction is unimportant (or, at least, less important) think absolutely nothing of waltzing into the closest restaurant, bar or other establishment and whipping out their VISA card, pretending that it is currency.
There’s a certain level of intellectual disconnection required to do that, you see, and it appears in people on both the left and right, conservative and liberal and among all particular monetary theorists. Indeed, most will simply argue that credit is nothing more than a time shift for which one pays a privilege in the form of a thing called “interest.”
These same people glad-handedly ignore the fact that such an argument only works on a mathematical basis when the credit is self-liquidating over a reasonable time frame. Of course modern history, along with virtually every other financial detonation, has been traceable to a root cause of credit that fails this essential test.
Then again the sort of orthodoxy found in both gold buggery and keynesian abortions stems from the refusal to apply intellectual rigor to the theory being propounded upon, and when one finds a flaw, modifying the theory to account for that or, if you can’t, throwing that particular religious belief under the bus. It is somewhat like believing in a Ouija Board if, after the first time you use it and it predicts a car accident in front of your home in an hour said accident occurs. That would definitely raise the hair on the back of your neck.
But if the next five attempts produced predictions that all failed to occur, one would have to question your sanity if you continued to consult said board for anything other than amusement value.
This individual appears to have started to question that orthodoxy and unfortunately that happened in public. Oops.
I wish to encourage intellectual rigor and queries, even those that ultimately wind up being discarded. Indeed, I want to encourage many such inquiries that wind up being discarded.
After all, how are we supposed to come to conclusions other than by raw assertion if we are unwilling to question that which is put before us and demand that intellectual rigor be applied?