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Piketty Cut to Ribbons, Slice by Slice

Written by Gary North on August 4, 2014

Thomas Piketty, a French Marxist, got rich this year on book royalties. That his unreadable 700-page book got a huge market will go down as one of the great mysteries of early 21st-century capitalism. We have seen nothing like this since Tiny Tim sang Tiptoe Through the Tulips.

That the world of the Left literati could take this book seriously indicates the degree of desperation of an entire generation of would-be economic reformers. This is not grasping at straws. This is trying to resurrect a corpse. Gorbachev gave up. Deng gave up. East Germany, the only potentially efficient society Communism ever had, gave up.

Now a previously unknown French economist comes along and tries to persuade us that policies that have universally produced economic paralysis and massive corruption are just the thing to deal with the stagnant economy that central bankers and Keynesian politicians have produced. America’s Left literati bought it — hook, line, and sinker; lock, stock, and barrel; bell, book, and candle.

The book has now been taken apart, absurdity by absurdity. The man doing the public vivisection is George Reisman, one of only four Ph.D. students to receive his degree under Ludwig von Mises. Only he and Israel Kirzner are still alive. This is bad news for Piketty.

Now into the midst both of the assault on the capital supply of the American economic system and its ability to produce, and the unfounded resentment against economic inequality that has been stirred up by the impoverishment caused by that assault, has stepped one Thomas Piketty. Piketty, a neo-Marxist French Professor has written a near-700-page book published by Harvard University Press. His book is titled Capital in the Twenty-First Century, in honor of Karl Marx’s 19th century Das Capital. It has been greeted with fervent applause from the left-wing intellectual establishment, including reviews in The New York Times, Newsweek, Time Magazine, The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, and elsewhere ranging from highly favorable to glowing. His book has been on the best-seller lists of both The Times and Amazon.com.

Piketty urges measures purposefully designed to further prevent the accumulation of capital, indeed, to achieve outright capital decumulation. Namely, a progressive income tax as high as 80 percent “on incomes over $500,000 or $1 million a year,” accompanied by a progressive tax directly on capital itself, as high as 10 percent per year. This program is to be carried out in order “to avoid an endless inegalitarian spiral.”

(For the rest of his article, click the link.)

Continue Reading on www.georgereismansblog.blogspot.com

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8 thoughts on “Piketty Cut to Ribbons, Slice by Slice

  1. His footnotes point to articles on his own "C:" drive. Oops.

  2. Kdenney1 says:

    Rich Marxist!!! When will people understand it is only your money that is evil their money is moral and earned!! How many wealth Marxist are their?? Only the elites!!!!

  3. mutantone says:

    does Obama's book count?

  4. In another words we communist want to be capitalist, only in reverse and sideways. Meaning we want all your money so WE can spend it.

    What a great idea! It’s called ROBBERY!

  5. >> The depths of Piketty’s ignorance are such that he believes that capital accumulation not only does not raise real wages but reduces them, by allegedly increasing the share of national income that goes to profits <<

    Yeah, Picketty simply rehashes Marx's tired and old exploitation theory of profits which is based on the severely and mercilessly debunked labor theory of value. The whole book of his is centered entirely on it and the theory that capitalists plunder from a limited wealth pool that somehow exists. Everybody could've saved themselves $29.99 if Picketty simply posted in his Facebook page "My thesis is that capitalists bamboozle workers and wealth is limited, so let's raise taxes!"

  6. Barbaree says:

    Amazing, isn't it! These Marxist professors are always decrying capitalism, but make enormous amounts of money via capitalism selling their books. A lib friend was married to a lib professor, and bragged how well they were doing because of him selling his books to the captive audience students. They have theirs, but begrudge you yours!

  7. Barbaree says:

    His entire book can probably be summed up in one sentence. These libs can really get wordy when they have absolutely nothing of any intelligence to say.