“Avoid investing in those countries with a high level of socialist or government regulation of business. Business growth depends on a strong free-enterprise system.”
— Sir John Templeton
Sir John Templeton was the original international investor, who became a billionaire by creating the first investment fund. He made a point of investing in countries whose governments had a pro-market policy. He was one of the first to invest in Japan in the 1960s and the Four Tigers of Asia in the 1980s.
Countries with a high dose of socialism result in bear markets or no markets at all.
There’s nothing automatic about American exceptionalism in the stock market. It has outperformed other countries because the United States is the bastion of free-enterprise capitalism. If America ever adopts socialism, watch out below. It could be the end of the greatest bull market in history.
Enter the New Socialists: A Threat to Prosperity
Sadly, due to the Great Recession of 2008-09 here in the United States and in Europe, socialism has suddenly become all the rage again with the rise of Senator Bernie Sanders and Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (whom I call Castro-lite).
Don’t think for a moment that the New Socialists are a flash in the pan.
The Green New Deal, Modern Monetary Policy, Medicare-for-All and Free College are all being taken seriously by students, politicians and media, as unworkable and inflationary as they are. If any of them become law, watch out below. The stock market could collapse.
Sen. Sanders is running for President in 2020. He might have been willing to consider Rep. Ocasio-Cortez as his running mate, if she were eligible, but she’s only 29 years old.
After the Berlin Wall was torn down and the Soviet central planning model collapsed, socialism became passé and “the end of history,” while global capitalism became the new model. But after the financial crisis hit in 2008, followed by the Great Recession, “democratic socialism” has regained a footing in the arena of public debate.
But the truth is that socialism, even if democratic, cannot deliver the goods. It just spreads more poverty around the globe. It must be rejected. But how?
Time to Defend Capitalism
How do you fight a bad idea? Answer: With a better idea! It’s time to start a campaign to promote the best of capitalism and free-market economics.
The Economist is convinced that pro-market forces “have all too often given up the battle of ideas” (Feb. 22 issue of “The Rise of Millennial Socialism.”)
Let’s hope not!
How to fight back? I’ve started a campaign to promote my book, “The Making of Modern Economics: The Lives and Ideas of the Great Thinkers.“
I call it “the Book the New Socialists Fear the Most.”
Now published by Routledge in a new third edition, it tells the unique story of Adam Smith, the founder of free-market capitalism, and how his “system of natural liberty” comes under attack by the Marxists, Keynesians and socialists. Smith’s view of economics often is left for dead, but then is resuscitated by the French laissez-faire school, the Austrians and the Chicago school. Smith triumphs in the end.
It has five chapters that rip apart the arguments that the socialists and the Keynesians make.
It has converted many Marxists to free-market capitalists, and one reviewer calls it “the most devastating critique of Keynesian economics ever written.”
Most importantly, my book introduces the reader to the great defenders of free-market capitalism, including Adam Smith, the French laissez-faire school, the Austrian and Chicago schools (as represented by Mises, Hayek and Friedman).
My wife Jo Ann and I posed at the Panmure House, Adam Smith’s residence in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Last November, I started the campaign by purchasing a full-page ad in The Economist and received hundreds of orders from around the world. You can click here to see the ad.
The Ayn Rand Institute recently ranked it the #2 most important book ever written about economics (just behind Henry Hazlitt’s “Economics in One Lesson”).
It won the Choice Book Award for Outstanding Academic Excellence. It has been translated into six languages — in Chinese, Spanish (Union Editorial), Turkish, Mongolian, Vietnamese and Arabic.
Students, fellow economists and business leaders are fans. Professor Roger Garrison (Auburn University) said, “My students love it. Skousen makes the history of economics come alive like no other textbook.”
“Skousen gets the story ‘right’ and does it in an entertaining fashion, without dogmatic rantings.”
— Peter Boettke, George Mason University
The late Milton Friedman wrote, “All histories of economics at BS — Before Skousen! Lively and accurate, a sure bestseller.”
John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Markets, said, “I have read it three times. It’s fun to read on every page. I love this book and have recommended it to dozens of my friends.”
The late William F. Buckley Jr. told me, “I champion your book to everyone. I keep it by my bedside and refer to it often. Every student should have a copy.”
Nicholas Vardy, the Global Guru, wrote me, “Your book is just outstanding across the board. It’s addictive and entertaining. I’m amazed how you integrate all the personal details of economists’ lives with their work. ‘The Making of Modern Economics’ deserves to be read and digested far and wide!”
The story behind this book is quite extraordinary. You can read it here: http://mskousen.com/2018/10/adam-smith-and-the-making-of-modern-economics/.
How to Order at a Super Discount
“The Making of Modern Economics” is a 500-page book available in hardback, paperback, Kindle, or audio. The quality paperback retails for $53.95 if purchased through Routledge and $43.74 purchased on Amazon, but you can buy it for only $35 postpaid directly from Skousen Books, including postage. I will autograph each copy and mail it for free. (For orders outside the United States, add $30 for airmail shipping.) To order, call Harold at Skousen Books, 1-866-254-2057. Or order online at www.skousenbooks.com.
I was interviewed on C-SPAN Book TV about “The Making of Modern Economics.” Watch the 20-minute interview here.
We can win the battle of ideas. Let the campaign begin!
Yours for peace, prosperity, and liberty, AEIOU,
CFA Society Luncheon, Thursday, March 14, Santa Barbara, California: Mark will be speaking on “Eurekanomics: Discovering the Missing Link in Macroeconomics,” about his new gross output (GO) statistic. We will meet at the Viva Restaurant at 12:30 p.m. The price is only $25 for my subscribers. To register, or for more information, go to https://www.cfala.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=5421.
Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, Monday, March 18, Maui, Hawaii: Mark will be speaking on “Who’s Winning the Battle of Ideas: Marx, Keynes or Mises?” He will speak at a luncheon to be held at 11:30 a.m. at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center. The price is only $10! For more information, go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/whos-winning-the-battle-of-ideas-marx-keynes-or-mises-tickets; to reserve a space, email email@example.com or call (808) 591-9193.
Hawaii Pacific University, Tuesday, March 19, Honolulu, Hawaii: Mark will be appearing along with his wife Jo Ann to speak at the following events: 12:30-1:55 p.m, Principles of Macroeconomics, 1164 Bishop St., Room 214. His topic is on Smith vs. Marx and Gross Output.
4:00-5:00 p.m., Laissez Faire Society, 1188 Fort Street Mall, Room 243. Jo Ann’s topic is on Politics and Film.
5:45-7:00 p.m. International Trade and Finance, 1162 Bishop St., Room 214, My topic is on Contemporary Trade Issues.
If you want to attend any of these sessions, email Professor Ken Schoolland at firstname.lastname@example.org.
See you in Hawaii!
You Blew it!
Millennial Films: A Faithless Generation
By Mark Skousen
Editor, Forecasts & Strategies
My wife and daughter recently joined me to see a film called, “Artic.” It is the story of a man (performed admirably by Mads Mikkelsen) stranded in the Arctic after an airplane crash.
In the film, the man must decide whether to remain in the relative safety of his makeshift camp or to embark on a deadly trek through the unknown in hopes of making it out alive. We enjoyed the film, including the final scene (spoiler alert), where he and a woman (another crash victim) are ultimately rescued just as they were about to give up.
The movie, produced and written by Brazilian Joe Penna, reminded me of Tom Hanks’ 2000 film, “Castaway,” where Hanks’s plane crashes and he is the only survivor on an island.
Both millennial films reminded me of the future: Godless secular humanism Hollywood-style. Both films are about surviving in desperate circumstances. After a plane crash, most survivors would thank God that they are alive. Both none of the characters in “Artic” or “Castaway” do. And when they face near death, none pray or ever say anything remotely like, “Please, God, help me!” In the case of Hanks, the character he plays worships a soccer ball. In Mikkelsen’s case, he uses a profanity.
O, ye of little faith!