This would be funny if it wasn’t quite such a jarring reminder of how the Soviets used to manage matters. The revolutionary vanguard were not held to the same standards as everyone else because, you know, they were the revolutionary vanguard, leaders of the people. They thus got all the nice apartments in central Moscow as they had to be close to the Ministries where they directed the peasants. They didn’t have to share the apartment because they needed to rest after their labours.…See More
So, is the world getting better? Stephen Pinker has just released the latest of his tomes insisting that it is. We’ve also, as he points out, innumerable people insisting that Gehenna is just around the corner. Or we can delve down into more detail and ask just what is progress? The answer being that it depends upon what we say it is – tautological and therefore true. Take this from Scott Sumner:
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In 1968, there was almost a universal view that the progress in things like aviation over the next 50 years would be comparable to the progress over the past 50 years (since 1918).
Back in 1908, a device was created that was so revolutionary that few existing regulations covered it.
At that point, there were essentially no regulations and no direct competitors.
How did free market capitalism deal with it?
Well, the Wright Brothers were able to patent their invention so it could not be ripped off. Then they were free to licence it or develop it themselves. Having managed to convince some wealthy individuals to absorb the risk of lending them the capital that was needed to develop their idea, they formed the Wright Company and went to work.…See More