Walking the Peaceful Path of Ludwig von Mises

by: Ron Holland

Last week, Lew Rockwell posted my essay “In the Summer of 2009” with the title: Smart, Rich People Are Leaving the US. As usual, I received a number of responses both positive and negative.

Many of the negative, mostly “super patriot neocon types” wrote in slamming Steve Wynn and other Americans who decide to leave America as unpatriotic and cowardly while they always proudly announce in a macho tone, “I’m staying to fight to the end” or “I will give up my gun when they pry my cold, dead fingers from around it.” While this talk of Alamo-like resistance might look good on a bumper sticker or a blog post, it is not very practical.

In our situation, violence will only make the situation worse and will be a clear indication that the forces of real freedom have lost. In a worst-case scenario, a more likely outcome is an American public reduced to destitute paupers as we survive like latter-day serfs working for the government or on handouts.

What Would Mises Do?

“There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as a result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final total catastrophe of the currency involved.” ~ Ludwig von Mises

I believe we are facing a future collapse of our debt and dollar as Mises outlines in the above quote. We should forgo the macho, “Apocalypse Now smelling napalm in the morning rhetoric” and ask ourselves, “what did Mises do in a similar situation?”

In 1934, Mises left Austria for Switzerland rightly fearing a Nazi Anschluss or annexation with Germany which most of the population eventually supported in 1938. Later in 1940, he left Switzerland for the US fearing a successful German invasion of Switzerland. What could a little Jewish man have done fighting the German Wehrmacht or the Waffen-SS? Absolutely nothing!

“Not mythical material forces but reason and ideas determine the course of human affairs. What is needed to stop the trend towards socialism and despotism is common sense and moral courage.” ~ Ludwig von Mises

Mises chose a smarter course of action which we should follow today to win the battle for freedom and liberty over those who would enslave our children in poverty for generations after they have finished looting our liberties and wealth today. His solution did not involve violence or material forces but rather reason, education and ideas. The ideas of Mises and the Austrian School of Economics might not even exist today were it not for Mises escaping to America with his philosophy and dedication. He fought smart with common sense and courage and this is what we all need to do today.

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Reposted from LewRockwell.com