Mises Against the Neoliberals

by Ryan McMaken

In his essay on the pervasive evil of “neoliberalism” George Monbiot demonstrates confusion similar to that of Philip Mirowski in his book More Heat than Light: Economics as Social Physics, Physics as Nature’s Economics.

In a lengthy review of Mirowsky’s book, Philipp Bagus notes that Mirowski is rightly critical of many aspects of neoclassical economics, including the Chicago school. But Mirowski runs into trouble when he must display a greater understanding economic schools of thought. Either out of laziness or ignorance, Mirowski is incapable of distinguishing between the Chicago School and the Austrian School, to list one example. Moreover, as Bagus notes, the differences between the Chicago School and the Austrians are significant on matters such as spontaneous order, entrepreneurship, government planning, “efficiency” business cycles, and many other topics. These differences produce sizable disagreements in terms of favored policies and world views in general.

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