“The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways: the point, however, is to change it.” — Karl Marx on his tombstone (1883)
In the 1930s, the Marxist philosopher Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937) wrote “The Prison Notebooks” while in prison. In these notebooks, he came up with a brilliant idea to convert the world to Marxism and state socialism. He rejected the Communists’ idea of a violent revolution. Instead, he advocated a long-term strategy of gradually taking over a nation’s culture and institutions.
His method was for Marxists to infiltrate the media, the churches, the foundations, politics, the entertainment industry (Hollywood) and the colleges and universities.
They have been highly successful at this “wolf in sheep’s clothing” technique, as witnessed by the “cancel” culture, the “woke” philosophy, the “fake” news and the socialist indoctrination of college students.
Meanwhile, the advocates of free markets and free minds have lost battle after battle in the freedom fight. We are like a herd of cats, while the enemies of liberty are well organized.
Over the years, I’ve seen how the Marxists gradually take over departments in economics at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, the University of California-Davis and yes, even the University of Utah.
This past weekend, I spoke several times at the annual APEE meeting, held this year in St. Petersburg, Florida. APEE stands for the Association of Private Enterprise Education.
How We Can Change the World
I told the delegates at the meeting that it was high time we led a counter-revolution. I suggested that we should adopt a similar strategy advocated by Gramsci: free-market economists should gradually take over various departments around the country, especially the Ivy League schools.
It is possible. As an example, Prof. Jeff Miron is a libertarian economist who is now the Director of Undergraduate Studies at Harvard University. He is influencing hundreds of future world leaders.
Many wealthy pro-market businessmen have sought to influence a new generation of leaders. John Allison, former president of BB&T bank (now Trust Bank), has created a series of centers to study free-market capitalism and BB&T chairs at Clemson and dozens of other universities around the country. Under the direction of Charles Koch, the Koch Foundation has also been instrumental in establishing chairs and institutions promoting economic freedom at George Mason University and elsewhere.
In my own case, I’ve taught economics and business at Columbia Business School and Columbia University, and have traveled to 77 countries lecturing on sound economic theory and policy.
I now teach economics, business and finance at Chapman University, the up-and-coming institution in Southern California. You can read about my success here: https://news.chapman.edu/2019/09/06/my-favorite-professor/.
My Secret Plan Revealed!
My formula for success is primarily to write textbooks to influence a new generation of policymakers and professors. Giving lectures around the world cannot compare to the impact of writing textbooks. As Paul Samuelson wrote, “I don’t care who writes a nation’s laws, or crafts its advanced treaties if I can write its economics textbooks.”
Influence in China
I met up with China expert Li Schoolland at the APEE meetings, and she told me about Xue Zhao Feng, considered the “star teacher” at Peking University.
Xue created a for-pay online platform, iGet, to teach economics and has become a multi-millionaire.
Xue is a big fan of Austrian economics, the sound theories of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek.
Li asked him recently: How did you find out about Austrian economics? His answer: “Mark Skousen.”
My major economics books have all been translated into Chinese.
Three Lectures That Changed Students’ Minds
I gave three lectures at the APEE meetings that have changed the minds of students:
- “What’s Better than Democratic Socialism? Democratic Capitalism.”
- “The Case Against the $15 Minimum Wage: How to Win the Argument Every Time.”
- “What Drives the Economy: Consumer Spending or Business Investment?”
In all three cases, students start out in favor of democratic socialism, $15 minimum wage and a consumer society, and after my lecture, they almost all change their minds.
My ‘Big Three’ Textbooks
I’ve written over 20 books on economics and finance, but my big three have had the most impact. How do you get rid of a bad idea (socialism and big government interventionism)?
With a better idea!
First, is “Economic Logic.” It teaches students and adults about free-market capitalism in 28 easy lessons.
Here’s what Steve Forbes says about my book:
“His textbook, Economic Logic, now in its 5th edition, demonstrates his ability to look at the whole economy, that is, the real world and real people. The rigidity between micro and macroeconomics is not for him. He realizes instead that they’re all connected together. He begins this book with a profit-loss income statement to demonstrate the dynamics of the real-world economy. No other textbook does this.
“Skousen’s book brings in many other disciplines to teach lessons of economics, whether it is history, sociology, finance or marketing management. He recognizes that individual departments may be a convenient way for universities to organize their academic activities, but in the real world, it does not advance learning. They need to be integrated. In that sense, he is the spiritual heir of Adam Smith, harking back to a time before mathematicians took over economics.
Forbes is also a big fan of my history of the great economic thinkers, “The Making of Modern Economics,” now in its third edition and published by Routledge. It won the Choice Award for Academic Excellence.”
‘The Making of Modern Economics’
Want to read the thrilling episodes of the great economic thinkers and how they changed the world? Get a copy of my book, “The Making of Modern Economics.” John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, says, “Mark’s book is fun to read on every page. I’ve read it three times, and recommend it to all my friends.” The retail price is $49, but you pay only $35. I autograph all copies and mail them at no extra charge if mailed inside the United States. To order go to www.skousenbooks.com
Milton Friedman said it best: “All histories of economics are BS — Before Skousen!”
Greg Feirman, manager of Top Gun Financial writes: “Skousen is a brilliant and prolific economist as well as writer of a popular financial newsletter, Forecasts & Strategies, for decades now. Because of his interest in financial markets, Skousen is an economist obsessed with the real-world applicability of his economic ideas. He has written over 20 books, including Economic Logic, his brilliant introductory textbook to economics, and The Making of Modern Economics, the best history of modern economics around.”
And the late great William F. Buckley, Jr., wrote, “I champion Skousen’s book to everyone. I keep it by my bedside and refer to it often. An absolutely ideal gift for college students.”
Take This Course to Be a Better Investor
Last but not least, my third textbook is “A Viennese Waltz Down Wall Street: Austrian Economics for Investors.” It introduces you to all the great Austrian economists — Menger, Mises, Hayek, Rothbard and Schumpeter — and how to profit from the Austrian theory of the business cycle. I write about the “Austrian Indicator” (the yield curve) as a way to predict when a bear market and recession are about to begin. It also has a major section on investing in gold and silver.
How to Order All Three and Save 30%
To purchase copies of “Economic Logic,” “The Making of Modern Economics” or “A Viennese Waltz Down Wall Street,” all at a sizable discount, go to www.skousenbooks.com.
“Economic Logic” and “The Making of Modern Economics” are only $35 each. “A Viennese Waltz Down Wall Street” is $20. I autograph all copies and mail them at no extra charge if mailed inside the United States. Total for all three books: $90.
All three make great gifts to students to inoculate them from the socialist indoctrination in our colleges and universities.
Update on FreedomFest
My wife Jo Ann and daughter Hayley join me at Mount Rushmore, the site of this year’s FreedomFest.
The mayor of Rapid City, South Dakota, rolled out the red carpet for our staff last week during our site visit to the host city for this year’s FreedomFest. The city has dramatically increased our hotel room block. (More than 2,100 people have signed up so far.) It felt great to be in a state and a city that respects our liberties.
I can’t wait to breathe the fresh air of liberty in South Dakota in July! We attended a country-western concert on Friday night at the Rushmore Civic Center, where FreedomFest will be held from July 21-24, and more than 3,000 attendees were enthusiastic to get back to normal life.
My staff and I had dinner with the mayor, the lieutenant governor and other dignitaries. They have arranged to double the room block for us at various hotels in the area.
The response to our move from Vegas to Mount Rushmore has created a “rush” of new registrations. We now have more than 1,600 paid attendees, and when you count all the speakers and exhibitors, we are now over 2,100 attendees!
In addition to new hotel rooms, the airlines are increasing their non-stop flights into Rapid City for our big conference. Non-stops can now be booked this July from Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Salt Lake City, Houston, Dallas, Minneapolis, Chicago, LaGuardia, Newark, Charlotte, Atlanta, even Fort Myers. Click here to see the current map.
I encourage you to register now. In a couple of weeks, we will be announcing new hotel rooms in Rapid City. We are providing frequent bus transportation to the Rushmore Civic Center, where the conference is being held.
Use code EAGLE50 to get a $50 discount on the regular conference fee. We also offer a special discount for students and young professionals. Go to www.freedomfest.com, or call Hayley at 1-855-850-3733, ext. 202.
Fly there, drive there, bike there, RV there, be there!
Good investing, AEIOU,
You Blew it!
Ignorance and Blatant Racism by ‘Woke’ Students
Do “woke” students know what they’re talking about when they say that black people and other minorities don’t have ID cards and don’t have access or understanding of the Internet?
They complain loudly that the new voter law in Georgia (and soon to be passed in Michigan) is racist because it requires ID to vote. Even major corporations like Delta and Major League Baseball are now weighing in.
Click here to see one of the most revealing surveys I’ve seen recently.
It appears that those who think that minorities don’t have easy access to IDs or are being kept from voting are delusional at best and racist at worse.