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Mulligan von Mises

By Al Schumann on Wednesday November 23, 2011 09:20 PM

I could call this deranged wingnut boilerplate and leave it at that, but it's rare to find a NY Times blog post that draws so many reasonable comments. That's something special. So...

Mulligan, via CEPR, appears to be unfamiliar with the work of Fred Hayek, who was very much in favor of a "comprehensive system of social insurance " and saw no reason why there shouldn't be government interference to ensure such things as limits on working hours.

It is self-evident that if labour-time is reduced to a normal length and, furthermore, labour is no longer performed for someone else, but for myself, and, at the same time, the social contradictions between master and men, etc., being abolished, it acquires a quite different, a free character, it becomes real social labour, and finally the basis of disposable time—the labour of a man who has also disposable time, must be of a much higher quality than that of the beast of burden.*

Hayek also believed that workers deserve "a chance to decide whether the prospects of a particular occupation are sufficient to compensate for the disadvantages connected with it." They don't need to be immiserated until they're compliant. Hayek was opposed to that. Casey Mulligan really needs to read Road to Serfdom.

I typed that with a straight face. Honest, and it's all true too.

Okay, I've had my fun. One thing we do know for sure, as far as dependency goes, is that state protection for banksters does rob millions of Peters for the benefit of a handful of insatiable Pauls. The higher their compensation, the more handouts they demand. The more wealth they control, the less incentive they have to engage in productive activity. This is Econ 101!

*Some other guy, not Hayek.

Comments (30)


have we not workhouses enough ??

"those classes in society whose time is only partly or not at all absorbed in material production although they enjoy its fruits, should be as numerous as possible in comparison with those classes whose time is totally absorbed in material production and whose consumption is, as a consequence, a mere item in production costs, a mere condition for their existence as beasts of burden."

" There is always the wish that the smallest possible portion of society should be doomed to the slavery of labour, to forced labour."

" This is the utmost that can be accomplished from the capitalist standpoint."


"Were it not for government assistance, the study found, the recession would have pushed 4.2 percent of the population into poverty, rather than 0.6 percent"

". For every seven persons who let their market income fall below the poverty line, only one of them will have to bear the consequence of a poverty living standard. The other six will have a living standard above poverty."

the transfer system's
dime's worth of difference
has reduced the efficiency of the sack

prudent imperative : lower the net !!!!

" employment cannot return to pre-recession levels until safety-net generosity does, too"

Al Schumann:

I'm in favor of eliminating the income safety net altogether. It's odious. What we need instead is a huge citizen's dividend. I want the disincentive to work high enough that only the most motivated or masochistic enter the labor market. Everyone else can blog, take walks, press leaves, etc. whatever and so forth.


the fatuity of goo goo leads
to such moral spine softeners
as this:

" Adjusting for inflation..."
SNAP(food stamp program)
"...spent more than twice as much in 2010 as it did in 2007, before the recession began"

just playing by the rules of 2007
we could cut the stamp program increase by 82%


super Al
you had me at "press leaves"


" a huge citizen's dividend"

king fish socialism

you rapscallion !!!

Al Schumann:

I'm going to occupy their fatuous goo-goo spines.


the road to surferdom
by Al X Schuman


Ugh ugh ugh. But that's the U of C for you, a place for which Providence devised the neutron bomb.

Al Schumann:

King Fish Socialism sounds well suited to the temperament of this great nation. If it doesn't work out, we could always go back to shanking each other and committing vehicular homicide.


you lost an n there Al

not enough to drop the von
now i'm insisting you ethnically cleanse
the n too
the c


this un requested blight of elephantine jocularity by me myself and I
is to spite my literary oppressors

Al Schumann:

Owen, it's been all I can do to demonstrate Fred's better side. I'm afraid any cleansing will have to wait.

MJS, the NY Times had to let him post. Their own understanding of diversity of tactics includes his frivolous defecations.

Rocky Rococo:

Dear Mr. Schumann

Let me extend my utmost gratitude to you. Finally I understand why among denizens of the links, having essayed a complete waste of time and effort is acknowledged by "taking a Mulligan".

In service of Cross and Crown, m'Lords,

Rocky Rococo

Al Schumann:

If I could promote you from archvillain to devil, I would do so.

Happy Jack:

let their market income fall below the poverty line

I hope the word "let" is wearing a weightlifter's belt. There's some heavy work going on.

Jonathan Swift was right. They should have fattened up the infant Mulligan and sold him for a thanksgiving roast.

... with a potato stuffed in his mouth instead of an apple.

Al Schumann:

I wonder if his bleating is an "emergent" means of disciplining the herd of independent minds. He sets the moral bar as low as he can in order to taint his ruggedly individualistic herd colleagues. This further arouses hatred against the lot, thus forcing them into presenting a unified front.


my pal herb sorrell past this
close personal message
along to me
it's from the honored and respected replacement at SEIU
for jimminy crickit

Dear Herb

One week ago I was on the Brooklyn Bridge, one woman in a crowd of tens of thousands of students, clergy, unemployed construction workers and activists from every walk of life.

It was a profound and utterly humbling experience.

As I stood there, shoulder to shoulder with my brothers and sisters in the chilly autumn air, joining my voice with the chorus of chants for economic justice, I remembered our work today stands on the shoulders of giants. Men and women of towering faith, a deep commitment to justice, and the courage of their convictions to stand up and say “enough.”

I’m thankful for their work, grateful for their courage, and in awe of the sacrifices they gave in the service of the movement.

Last Thursday was not the beginning, and it certainly will not be the end.

Pledge to stand with us as we fight for social and economic justice.

This is the latest chapter in a fight for justice that spans generations. It has been fought by social justice leaders like Mohandas Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Cesar Chavez and countless others who chose acts of civil disobedience.

Peaceful civil disobedience is not a tactic, but a tangible expression of the world we’re seeking to build. Armed with words, holding only each other’s hands, demonstrators with a moral commitment to nonviolent action brought down the British Empire in India, as well as Jim Crow in America.

Dr. King explained that nonviolent direct action is the first step towards opening negotiations with those who are comfortable with the way things are.

We’re living through an economic emergency for the 99 percent. We can’t allow anyone to be comfortable with that.

It is our turn to take action. We will not stop. We will not give up. We will not allow the 1 percent to ignore our cause ever again.

As you sit with your friends and family this Thanksgiving, please reflect and remember the work we’ve done so far, and pledge yourself to the work yet to come.

Every day I am thankful for the incredible passion you bring to the cause, and I’m humbled to stand with you in the fight for economic justice.

Happy thanksgiving,

Mary Kay


herb is celebrating this day of thanx
alone alas
at the exclusive Whispering Pines
in upper michigan
dry dock to the stars of organized labor
for three generations

" all covered owen ...full boat "

---- friends mates and comrades
can send the cuff a "dry out " best wishes
by he -mail here:
kapshow@hotmail.com ----

She of SEIU cosmetics fame. Let's hear it for non-violins!



what's this ???

the schumann and sandy show ??

sandy doin' close harmony with you these days ???

for what it's worth
my take :

the combo is too potent for comment cages

you guys need to take this to the next level

a blog site worthy of the great combos of the past

marx and engels
gilbert and sullivan
barnum and bailey


"an "emergent" means of disciplining the herd of independent minds."

brilliant !!!!

Al you have the finest swftest most nimble
analytic/synthetic mind
on the lofty hard left
since the lion of odessa
leon bronstein

Al Schumann:

I've been bitten by the disposable time bug, Owen. The desired end point I can see most clearly is the one in which we have that. I have nothing to add to the Sandwichman's song save appreciation for the clarity and questions it brings.

Al Schumann:

Owen, my theory is that there's not much more sophistication in the herd of independent minds than there is in any criminal gang. Internal discipline has to be tight and enforcement is expensive. The cheapest way to do that is to force pariah status and seek patronage.


"The cheapest way ... ( to exact Internal discipline )...is to force pariah status and seek patronage."

that is beautiful

despite our martyr complex
we of the farther left
actually have a status among our fellow merit class brain beetles
unshared by the likes of 'mugsee ' mulligan

it takes a deeply premediated point of view
to see this full gestalt

brothers and sisters
at least those without excessive
mind tattoos

practice stereoscoptic vision

Al Schumann:

We of the farther left do the disciplinary thing through schisms, sects and cults. <dead horse> For people who spend so much energy on structural critique, some of it very good, we're horrifyingly bad at organized conviviality. </dead horse>


definition of an indy pwog

beating the same two party dead horse
and expecting a different mass result


So, the only way Mulligan's response isn't completely monstrous is if there's at least as many jobs as there are people of working age.

So, since we can assume that Mulligan is not an ugly, flesh-eating ogre straight out of a Roald Dahl book, that must be the case.

My thinking is this: Given that there are just as many good jobs as people, if a good number of people stay out of the job market so they can receive those sweet government benefits, that creates a surplus of jobs, which will in turn create incentives for companies to treat their employees especially well in hopes of attracting people from the limited pool of job applicants. Sort of like what happened with tech jobs during the .com boom.

It sounds like a win-win to me!


"Given that there are just as many good jobs as people"

that is quite a "Given " comrade

in fact an unsustainable given
with our prsent set of instutional arrangements

yes if we were to maintain high demand
for job hours
by our private for profit corporations
a healthy robust social dividend (SD)
converts the transfer system
from a safety net into
a generator of ever higher
wage share in value added
aka a operating profits squeeze

a big SD tends to tighten job markets
and thus induce
faster wage rate hiking

there are two major ways to avoid this "calamity"

faster inflation...

but that tends to spiral prices
up into unacceptable zones


gut the social dividend

and simultaneously
beef up the reserve army of the unemployed

by contracting credit
and thus effective demand

get the two trends reinforcing each other
and braking
the production system's self expansion

and by doing so
a huge semi permanent stagnant pool
of idled souls
and thus
we're back raducing your "Given
back to an ungiven
back to
a fuckng slack job market

the cat chases its own tale
either way

this is one very clear view
into the fatal contradictions
intrinsic to any system based on
market capitalism

on the whole
something less then globally rational

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