Mein Gott, I Wish I Were Freed from Gottfried!

I've just begun reading Haberler's Prosperity and Depression, at the recommendation of George Selgin, and am experiencing the bittersweet feeling I have been disturbed by a few times before: what I thought was an original idea of mine was thought well before I thought it. That is disappointing. On the other hand, the person who arrived at it was a brilliant thinker, so that is reassuring.

For instance, Haberler writes:

"That by analysing various theories it should be possible to give an explanation of the business cycle which, while leaving some questions open or offering in other cases alternative answers, nevertheless clarifies a number of problems presupposes that the difference between the theories analysed is not so radical as is sometimes believed." -- p. 2

Oy, I thought I was original in concluding this today, but Haberler saw this 75 years ago.

Or, on page 6, paragraph 2, he essentially foreshadows the paper Steve Horwitz and I wrote on ideal types and Austrian cycle theory.

Well, it is nice to know a genius agrees with one. But it stinks that he got there first (at least in terms of one's academic reputation).


  1. If he applied ABCT to the dot-com crash then you're really screwed.


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