On r > g

How Private Capital Made America the Greatest Society

Last week we discussed Fundamental Law of Private Capital #1—that private capital is the secret weapon that allows some economies to out-compete others. This week we’ll turn to Fundamental Laws #2 and #3. Fundamental Law #2: Private capital is the progenitor of all other kinds of capital. From the beginning of human civilization, virtually all …

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Three Fundamental Laws of Private Capital

A few years after “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” exploded on the scene, the University of Chicago surveyed 36 well-known economists, asking if they agreed with Piketty. The results? One yes and 35 no’s. How could a book so celebrated upon publication diminish into obscurity in a few short years? Presumably, it had something to do with …

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The Rich Will Lose Their Money Soon Enough

We are talking about Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” including its extraordinary publishing history and its subsequent fade from grace. I reviewed the various problems with Pikkety’s theses as they have been noted in the economics literature, and I also proposed my own view of the book’s central problem: that its author is a naïf. …

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On r > g, Part II

Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” exploded on the scene in mid-2013, but it’s impact faded quickly. I reviewed last week the widely discussed reasons why Piketty’s book fell from grace, but I also proposed a reason of my own: that Piketty is a naïf. A naïf, for this purpose, is a person who knows his narrow subject …

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