05 May 2012

Rory Sutherland’s Ted Talk

Economics, Mises 19 Comments

If I told most Free Advice readers, “Hey, here’s a video of a British guy talking about psychology,” they’d be bored. But if I say, “Hey, here’s a guy who has an interesting accent and builds up to praising Ludwig von Mises,” then all of sudden they have to watch the whole thing. (Thanks to John J. for bringing this to my attention.)

P.S. Watch out, he drops an F-bomb early on.

19 Responses to “Rory Sutherland’s Ted Talk”

  1. Ash says:

    I’ve literally been singing this guy’s praises for years. He’s explicitly called for an “Austrian School of Marketing”. But no one I’ve talked to seemed to find his call particularly interesting.

    Here is my favourite presentation of his (I’ve seen all of them on Youtube):


    • Bob Murphy says:

      What was the tune to the song(s) you’ve literally been singing?

      • Richie says:

        I want the lyrics so that I may sing also.

      • Joseph Fetz says:

        It goes, doop doop dee doo, dop dippity doo doo, beezow doo-doo zoppity-bop-bop. C’mon, you know you’ve heard it before…

      • Ash says:

        You think you’re pretty clever, don’t you?

        He’s Rory, and he’s from Ogilvy
        He’s got a new ideas for praxeology
        He thinks von Mises, on prices, can teach advertisers
        Subjective values are the real price drivers

        Five points to anyone who can guess the tune.

        • Bob Murphy says:

          You’re right… I do think I’m pretty clever.

          • Joseph Fetz says:

            Self-assessments are usually inflated.

            • Bharat says:

              Not when the government is self-assessing its effect on consumer prices.

        • Ken B says:

          Moses supposes his toeses are roses?

    • Christopher says:

      Seriously? I had some issues with that speech. His his sweet spot seems to be just a refined tool for the maximizer gang. There are no morals in the equation. If you tax someone, giving him a nice and comforting framework or psychological explanation doesn’t justify the violation of his rights. In the end, this seems to be closest to utilitarianism. I could be wrong, but I doubt Mises would have agreed with this interpretation.

      • Bob Murphy says:

        Christopher wrote:

        In the end, this seems to be closest to utilitarianism. I could be wrong, but I doubt Mises would have agreed with this interpretation.

        Does it matter that Mises considered himself a utilitarian?

  2. visose says:

    OT: Just searched for “free advice” on google and this blog came as the first result. I thought it’s strange so I tried through a proxy and it came second. Last time i checked it came like 6th or so.

    • Bob Murphy says:

      I’ve had 5 of my competitors killed in the last few months, maybe that was it?

      • visose says:

        I thought you were a pacifist. I see you are trying to work within the system.

      • zee says:

        Excuse me Green Eagle, I thought I told you my work was to remain confidential.

      • integral says:

        Is that why Krugman appears to have been replaced by a zombie?

  3. Christopher says:

    Whether that added value to the world depends on the framework under which it was perceived by their families.

  4. Jeffrey Tucker says:

    Rory is amazing, a great student of Mises who has worked to apply what he learned from Mises to the real world of commercial society, and he has made a difference in the world. He is an innovator and a creative genius.

    There’s no sense in stumbling on his use of the term psychology to describe MIses’s insights. Replace that with subjective value if that makes you feel better. Essentially he has Mises right.

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