Saturday, September 14, 2019

Austrian School Hate at the Hoover Institution

I have already pointed out that Jennifer Burns, associate professor in the Department of History at Stanford University, had a skewed view of Murray Rothbard as a racist. But there is no indication that she is going to advance the theme in any of her writing.

It is a different case with Robert Leeson, a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution. When @TakingHayekSeriously first posted about a paper by Leeson where he claims of a secret plot by Mises, Hayek & Big Tobacco to bring Hitler's program of hate and tyranny to America, I thought it was some kind of spoof, but apparently, it is not.

Here is the abstract of the paper that appears in part of the  Hayek: A Collaborative Biography:
Logic and self-interested introspection (and/or deception-driven delusion) reveals that ‘von’ Hayek (I) was disinterested, devoted to liberty, and projected the ‘definite impression of austere and magisterial eminence, both intellectually and morally.’ The evidence, however, suggests that there were two more Hayeks: Hayek (II), a crude, aristocratic, Jew-hating racist; plus Hayek (III), a ‘Three-Fifths Compromise’ White Terror promoter. Whether or not he was a diagnosed schizophrenic, Hayek was funded by the Tobacco, Obesity and Fossil Fuel lobby—as are his epigones. The Austrian School of Economics maintains a ‘united front’ with ‘Neo-Nazis,’ and Mises had aspired to be the intellectual F├╝hrer of a Nazi-Classical Liberal Pact. Mises and Hitler were funded from the same employer trade union sources. The Road to Serfdom was published on 10 March 1944; the liberation of Europe began three months later. Both were successful because of a standard military tactic: deception plans. Hayek and Mises promoted the deflation that undermined democracy and allowed Hitler to seize power. The Allies expected that the Austro-Germans were expecting them to land in Pas-de-Calais and so pandered to that psychological predisposition. Hayek knew that many British neoclassical economists were concerned that the Great Depression led to both protectionist pressures and extensive economic planning and so pandered to those psychological predispositions, while blaming the Third Reich not on his own proto-Nazi family but on socialists.
This is positively off the wall.

I can't wait to read the entire paper to see how Leeson does the Nancy MacLean twist. It should be entertaining.



  1. Why wait to read? Amazon sells the 15 volume kindle Hayek "books" for about $1,650. More expensive and probably drier than Routledge.

  2. Does a person have to be schizoid to accept funding form “the Tobacco, Obesity and Fossil Fuel lobby”? Is it not more schizophrenic to suggest that “Hayek and Mises promoted the deflation that undermined democracy and allowed Hitler to seize power.”? And how did deflation undermine democracy? Did lower costs keep people from voting?

    I do not have enough knowledge of Hayek to know if he was a racist’s Nazi sympathizer or not but, Leasons’ overabundant use of words related to Nazi is a red flag as to Leeson having ulterior motives.