Murphy\’s Bye-Laws

Law #4: Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it. –H.D. Thoreau

Optimism in the Face of Disaster

Posted by PintofStout on September 29, 2006

Today marks the 125th anniversary of the economist and scholar Ludwig von Mises. Contrary to T.S. Eliot, whom I blogged about previously, Mises was an optimist with an affable and cheery outlook despite seeing, understanding, and trying to reverse the wrongness that was all around him.

The Mises Institute has a trio of articles commemorating the event today, which are well worth the read: Mises: Defender of Freedom, Mises on his 125th Anniversary, and Ludwig von Mises: Scholar, Creator, Hero.

When people actually ask questions about the world around them and stop taking “experts” and “court historians'” word for everything, the outlook is usually bleak and depressing. If one actually tries to actively oppose or change the situation, the depression and hopelessness get worse (it takes a special person to keep it up passionately). Mises is one of the great minds that exposed the fallacies, and yet he was joyous and not bitter. Perhaps this is due to the high esteem in which he viewed human endeavor and possibilities. If his life was any indication, I’ve no choice but to believe him.

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