28 Oct 2020

BMS ep 157: Peter Schiff on the Coming Crash, Ancap vs Minarchy, and Going ExPat

Bob Murphy Show 12 Comments

Audio here, video below:

12 Responses to “BMS ep 157: Peter Schiff on the Coming Crash, Ancap vs Minarchy, and Going ExPat”

  1. Jan Masek says:

    Wow, Peter sure can talk 🙂 I like him crazy and I agree with him on virtually everything but boy, this talk could have been delivered 10 years ago. And was. And every day in between. Nothing Dr Murphy said, in the few instances when he got a word in edgewise, changed his course. I first listened to him back during his Wall Street Unspun days but at some point you tune out.
    He obviously got the timing wrong and he admits it. Likewise the dollar rally. I for once would be interested in a little retrospection, an analysis into what went wrong in his forecast and how to avoid the same mistake. I get and believe it will eventually come to pass and get that his portfolios should be making money anyway but still.. To get the timing wrong by months or even a few years is one thing but it’s now been over a decade. Keynes wasn’t wrong that at some point we will be dead! 🙂

  2. Jan Masek says:

    Also, his argument against anarcho-capitalism (“it would go back to the old ways”) seems to equally apply to the constitution. For instance, what the US now has is worse than communism. I lived in it and travel was freer, job choice was more abundant, you could even be a hairdresser if you wanted to! Education propaganda was just kept to the political sciences, not grammar or math. You could only be cancelled if you said the wrong thing aloud on purpose and you always knew what was verbotten. Petty and violent crime was almost non-existent, riots unheard of, beer cheap and sex was allowed with any consenting adult regardless if they were part of the same household. Good times.
    Of course I’m a bit tongue-in-cheek but not much.

    • Harold says:

      “For instance, what the US now has…”
      Are you referring specifically to the restrictions due to Covid-19?

      If so, it would seem reasonable to compare this to the restrictions that we might expect to have occurred in USSR in similar circumstances.

      Interestingly, the claims for a more liberal attitude to homosexuality under communism are borne out. In the 1920’s the rulers in Russia were advocating for a wider acceptance of homosexuality, describing it as natural. As communism was replaced by Stalinism, restrictions went back to the old ways.

      You speak from experience, and I am sure the picture we in the “west” have of life under communist rule is largely propaganda. Both sides concentrated on the worst aspects of life under the opposing regime and ignored to positive aspects.

      I am interested in what education propaganda applies to math. The selection of data for statistical analysis would be one way to do this. However, I doubt that the USSR was not doing this just as much. I may be wrong, but just as I can see examples today using, say, income distribution in USA do subtly demonstrate issues of inequality, that the USSR was not using similar figures for,say, agricultural production to demonstrate the superiority of the soviet system or something like that.

      It seems one of the more influential advocates of radical pedagogy is Paulo Friere, a Marxist.

  3. Jan Masek says:

    Yes, referring to covid.
    “it would seem reasonable to compare this to the restrictions that we might expect to have occurred in USSR in similar circumstances:
    Not necessarily. Maybe communism would have even worse restrictions today (although: China yes, but Belarus?) but even if, so what. My point was the US today is worse than the USSR yesterday. Maybe it’s covid’s fault (I don’t think so) but regardless of why, that’s where we are.
    Most of the propaganda you were told was probably true but 1) so what, it was still life, we had the basic stuff (food, housing, clothing, car, vacations, no wars, no riots, no crime, no homeless beggars) and enjoyed whatever we had more than Americans do today, I think 2) the west has been on the decline for decades now but I think this finally crossed the Rubicon. I would rather live in communist Czechoslovakia in the 1980s than in the USA in the 2020s.
    This covid madness may eventually subside and today’s US may again be a preferrable place to a 1980 communist country but I don’t think it will reverse the downward spiral. Even if you ignore 2020 and even if you’re a fan of Trump (which I am), 2019 was worse than 2015 which was worse than 2010 which was way worse than 1990s.
    All that is not to say communism was great, not at all. It was to say that as bad as communism was, this is similar and getting worse and may get as low as communism if it hasn’t already. And back to Schiff’s original point – anarcho-capitalism has no guarantee of survival but constitutional republic does not either. This is clearly not what the Founding Fathers intended.

    And yes, the USSR absolutely misused statistics for political purposes. Not to such an extent as the “west” does now but still a lot. What I was referring to was just pure theoretical math. E.g. no one disputed 2+2 = 4. You can get fired for claiming that today (exaggerating only slightly).

    • Harold says:

      “no one disputed 2+2 = 4. You can get fired for claiming that today (exaggerating only slightly).”

      I think I must have missed something. Are there instances of math teachers getting reprimanded for saying 2+2 = 4? (I am taking reprimanded instead of fired as the slight exaggeration)

      “2019 was worse than 2015 which was worse than 2010 which was way worse than 1990s.”

      Taking the first and last, which ways was it much better in 2019 than in the 1990’s?

      There are many things you could be thinking of, but I have no idea what.

  4. Jan says:

    “Are there instances of math teachers getting reprimanded for saying 2+2 = 4?”. Yes. I am not sure you’re serious. Just googling the equation will link it to racism, white imperialism on the first page.

    “which ways was it much better in 2019 than in the 1990’s?” Virtually everything, mainly related to freedom. Much less regulation, air travel hassle free, kids could play outside on their own, ride bikes without helmets, teenagers could do what teenagers do without a real risk of ending up on the sex offenders list, smoking was allowed where the owner agreed. Variety of goods was much more diverse, not limited to 2-3 brands from 2-3 corporation that are identical.
    People weren’t hysterical and ideological opponents got along and discussed in good faith. Every single issue wasn’t reduced to a binary caricature. If you disagreed, you weren’t fired, cancelled or called a white supremacist. Privileged groups weren’t in your face about how oppressed you personally are making them.

    To Schiff’s point – the constitution prevented none of that. Even when it explicitly forbids it.

    What’s better today? Keyless ignition is nice. I’m sure there is more.

    • Harold says:

      Sorry, complete fail. I searched way down the google pages and did not find any instance of math class teaching 2+2=4 as controversial.

      I did find a few internet discussions about it, but nothing that suggests that elementary math classes teach anything other than 2+2 =4. I found nothing about math teachers getting reprimanded for teaching very basic math.

      My google search will produce different results from yours, so if you wish to substantiate your claim I will need a lot more, because so far it fails utterly.

      Your points about things that were better inthe 1990’s
      Much less regulation – a bit to vague to be meaningful on its own, but I guess your following points elucidate.

      Ait travel less hassle free. I agree with you there. Much of the security restrictions are probably more PR than security. However, this does not affect my life very much. An extra hour on the occassions I do fly makes very little difference. Perhaps you fly several times a week, so it makes a big difference to you, but that is not the usual experience. Most people do not fly that often.

      Kids could play outside. I also agree with you here. Kids are less free to play outside and I think it would be good forthem to do so more. In the UK, a lot has to do with traffic. Roads are not safe anymore. Some has to do with irrational fear of strangers 9opposed to rational fear of strangers)

      Also this is due to kids being able to interact with their friends over the internet. Whilst I think it would be good if they got out more, I cannot be certain that I am just being a fuddy duddy, nostalgic for my own childhood. i am not sure how much this represent things being worse as opposed to the times they are a changing.

      Ride bikes without helmets. Perhaps surprisingly, I agree here also. I used to ride a bike without a helmet all the time. It is about balance of risks and benefits. I do not wear a helmet if I go on my bike down the road. However, this does not have a major imact on my life.

      Variety of goods was much more diverse, not limited to 2-3 brands from 2-3 corporation that are identical.
      I am not sure what you mean here. Are there objectively fewer varieties? What sort of items are you thinking of? From my experience, I can’t think of anything that I had much more choice of decades ago than I have now. It may be the case, but if so it must be due ot monopoly power. This can only be limited by government intervention.

      The next group seems a bit ranty. People weren’t hysterical? I am sure they were.
      ideological opponents got along and discussed in good faith. Well, sometimes am sure they did, other times not.

      Every single issue wasn’t reduced to a binary caricature. Nor is it now.

      If you disagreed, you weren’t fired, cancelled or called a white supremacist. I fear you might be giving something away here. I am sure people can disagree now without being called a white supremacist. I have disagreed with many people and not been called a white supremacist. Of course, if I were a white supremacist I may end up being called one, but I could hardly blame it the fact that I disagreed with someone.

      teenagers could do what teenagers do without a real risk of ending up on the sex offenders list,. Again, I have some sympathy with this view. In the UK it was made an offence to have sexual activity with anyone under 16, even if the other person was under 16. Sexual activity was not well defined and technically 2 14 yr olds holding hands could potentially have both been prosecuted, although of ccourse that never happened in practice. In practice, and subsequent changes to the law, mean that teenagers are pretty much free to indulge in such activities free from the fear of prosecution arising from the activity itself. In balance, children who may feel exploited are now much more able to offer defences. There have been very many historical abuse stories in sports, church, schools, home and almost any sphere where children interact with adults. Tthese have been ignored for decades. There will always be some compromise between individual freedom and avoidance of abuse. I am not convinced that the present iteration is really worse than the former iteration. Yeah, teenagers may have to thnk a bit more about consent and there is some scope for false accusations, but also sports trainers cannot get away with abusing their child trainees as easily. I am not convinced that this is a net negative, but I am sure we have not got it quite right yet,

      smoking was allowed where the owner agreed. Many people were very happy that they were not subject to second hand smoke. No obvious winner there. Freedom to smoke where I want vs freedom to have a smoke free environment. I think the smoke free office on balance should take precedence, but I also think some measures go too far, such as not allowing smoking on the premises even when outside. That goes clearly beyond protecting passive smokers to dictating behaviour. On balance I think preventing smoking indoors in public spaces is a net benefit. I say that as a smoker.

      Privileged groups weren’t in your face about how oppressed you personally are making them.
      I cannot speak to your personnal experience, but this is something I have never exprerienced. Never have I found myself in a position where someone was in my face about how I am personally oppressing them, certainly not a person belonging to a priivileged group. I am eager to share your experience. Please enlighten me.

      As a counter argument that things are better now than in the 1990’s, We have the internet. Children are more able to speak out about being raped. Office workers do not have to be subject to seconfd hand smoke, yet people are still alowed to smoke. Gay people can marry.

      More than half of Americans approve of interacial marriage, which occurred in 1994. To me that is an indication of how far we have come since the 1990’s. Do you really want to go back to an era where racism was so entrenched? Are things really so worse now?

      I think on balance, there have been changes for the worse and for the better, but on balance things are better now.

      • random person says:

        Harold wrote,

        I cannot speak to your personnal experience, but this is something I have never exprerienced. Never have I found myself in a position where someone was in my face about how I am personally oppressing them, certainly not a person belonging to a priivileged group. I am eager to share your experience. Please enlighten me.

        If you haven’t had the misfortune to meet one yet, or at least not one who was open about it, look up “incel”. It stands for “involuntarily celibate”, however, the term is primarily used by men who blame women for not having intimate relations with them. If you look at their online forums, they get quite nasty in their hatred of women, as well as of good looking men. They’ve made the news on a few occasions when members of their community have committed mass murders.

        See for example:
        https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/09/world/americas/incels-toronto-attack.html

        • Harold says:

          Jan and Random
          I can think of many thngs that are worse now, and many of them I share with Jan. One of these things is the way we get information tends to reinforce existing beliefs rather than enlighten. Incels are an example. This is a double edged swaord. Crazy groups like flat earthers can restrict themselves to echo chambers where it appears to them that everybody shares their view. This has some bad effects. On the plus side, people suffering can find support from others going through similar suffering and can feel much less isolated. It can build groups for both good and ill. I have never had an incel in my face, although I am aware of them.

          Countering Jan I am not trying to claim eveything is better now, but I can’t support that everything is much worse either.

          • random person says:

            Having an incel in your face can be like… you turn them down for a date, and then they forcibly press you against a wall, grope and kiss you (without permission), and whisper in your ear that they would do much worse if only you were in a more private place, because you are oppressing them by failing to date them and according to them, you deserve it.

            In other words, they are the sort of people who claim you are oppressing them at the same time as they assault you, and dream of being able to get away with assaulting you worse.

            I gather that is not the original meaning of the term incel, but unfortunately, that is ultimately the sort of people a lot of them are. (Although not all of them have enough courage to actually act on their desires.)

            Jan wrote earlier that, “People weren’t hysterical and ideological opponents got along and discussed in good faith.” I don’t believe this has ever been a general rule at any time in history, although it may seem that way if your “ideological opponents” are too oppressed to be able to do much. It may also seem that way if you mostly talk to people who have merely an academic interest in ideology and aren’t really all that terribly committed to it.

            For example, consider the Roman empire. Many forced labor victims would have been severely punished for talking back to those who hurt them. Thus, it may have seemed to many of the perpetrators that they were getting along, even though it was only because many of the forced labor victims were probably too terrorized to argue back.

            But lurking underneath that facade of getting along, many probably wished to revolt, and some did, such as Spartacus. The revolts didn’t happen because everyone was getting along fine and then suddenly they weren’t. They happened because they weren’t getting along, some were merely pretending because they had been terrorized into pretending, and then some decided not to pretend.

            Also, there were some Stoic philosophers who noted that forced labor was wrong, but didn’t seem particularly inclined, at least so far as history records, to do much about it. (I don’t know, maybe they secretly freed people but never admitted it in writing or got caught. Or maybe not.) So, unless they did more than history records, these people did indeed get along in spite of ideological differences. But they aren’t exactly representative of people who objected to forced labor because they were suffering under it. And even here, perhaps it is a stretch to say they were truly getting along. Perhaps they, too, were too afraid to act on their ideals, because perpetrators of forced labor do not only oppress the forced labor victims, they also oppress those who try to free their victims.

            More recently in history, people who were attracted to the same gender were subject to lobotomy and other horrible fates if caught. If they weren’t complaining about being oppressed, it wasn’t because we were all getting along, it was because they were terrorized into hiding their true feelings.

            Probably not the best source of information on the topic, but one of the first to come up on Google at least, to give you at least a general idea on the topic of the lobotomization of gay people in US history:
            http://www.opportunityinstitute.org/blog/post/when-the-u-s-used-lobotomies-to-create-gay-auschwitz/

          • random person says:

            If you want to see someone with some really backwards, messed up ideas about reparations for forced labor, see IOTBW’s comment in this thread.

            https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t1274612/

            Warning: stormfront is a white supremacist website, and IOTBW isn’t the only person there with messed up ideas.

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