User talk:Pestergaines

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Hello, Pestergaines, and welcome to the Mises Wiki! Thank you for your contributions. I hope you like the place and decide to stay.

Please sign your messages on discussion pages using four tildes (~~~~); this will automatically insert your username and the date. If you need help, ask me!

DickClarkMises 01:17, 5 November 2010 (CDT)


What do you think about using red links instead of links to Wikipedia? We don't want readers who find us to go off to Wikipedia--we want them to stay here. Even now, red links are allowed on WP (see WP:RED), but when Wikipedia was younger and less developed, red links were strongly encouraged, because they helped new contributors find an article to create. For these reasons I think it makes more sense to use red links as much as possible. Sure, Wikipedia's article on Tennessee will be more developed than ours ever will, but we can at least shoot for a simple stub that gives readers the basics, with an external link at the bottom to WP's article. --Forgottenman (talk) 07:32, 9 November 2010 (CST)

Good question. My take is, that this page is in many respects more focused than Wikipedia - on specific topics, it will provide more information, and specifically biased information - on many others, it will provide less information (at least in volume) with a specific spin or focus. On a great many topics, there will be no page at all.
For an example, I see no need for an article or Tennessee - unless there is a reason for it. So in that case I would link to Wikipedia. (Or even not link at all!) I have actually linked very liberally to WP's articles and consider it a strength, not a weakness - it points to more resources and (possible) alternative viewpoints, both of which make a resource richer IMO.
I will raise this in the mailing group, since it is an interesting strategic question, and deserves to be addressed by others as well. Thanks! Pestergaines 07:55, 9 November 2010 (CST)

Book sources and other crazy WP stuff

I managed to figure out what the issue was with Special:BookSources. The pages to change are MisesWiki:Book sources and MediaWiki:Booksources-text.

All the citation stuff is in place except for that dumb cite journal template... I just can't figure out why it refuses to accept a link-free work. --Forgottenman (talk) 14:36, 16 November 2010 (CST)

See [1]. Especially: "links regarding the book according to the contents of the page "Book sources" in the project namespace." So MisesWiki:BookSources isn't doing anything. --Forgottenman (talk) 14:41, 16 November 2010 (CST)
Thanks! Pestergaines 14:42, 16 November 2010 (CST)


I've been using past tense for the anniversary pages, in order to distinguish their entries from those of the "current events" box. --Forgottenman (talk) 09:33, 9 December 2010 (CST)

Right you are, thanks for fixing my first attempts! Pestergaines 10:31, 9 December 2010 (CST)

On the International Project

A bit of discussion here.  :) -- RayBirks 14:20, 8 January 2011 (CST)


Not much to report here. --RayBirks 11:03, 24 February 2011 (CST)


I did some research and found that our spammers are using open proxies, i.e., fake IP addresses that change constantly. Wikipedia blocks such proxies as fast as they appear, so I don't think there's any issue with blocking the IP addresses that the accounts use. --Forgottenman (talk) 07:48, 11 March 2011 (CST)

Thanks for the research - and good work keeping those bastards out! Pestergaines 03:12, 12 March 2011 (CST)

Decided to go with it

This was the idea: The Trail of interventions. -- RayBirks 05:19, 10 April 2011 (MSD)

edit summaries

What does "+res" mean? --John James 16:11, 1 June 2011 (MSD)

 :) "resource" Pestergaines 16:29, 1 June 2011 (MSD)

I would have never guessed that. Do you ever use a different abbreviation? I think that may get too easily confused with "response". I guess that may not really matter, but if we're using the summaries, it would make sense for them to be understandable/distinguishable. --John James 02:24, 2 June 2011 (MSD)

I made my way through all sorts of variations of "link added" and similar, but 'link' doesn't always seem like the best characterization of the page linked to, so I finally stuck with 'resource' and it eventually shrunk to 'res'. Seems pretty conclusive, and isn't hopefully confused for a response (which is used on a Talk page anyway). So it should be fine. Pestergaines 17:17, 6 June 2011 (MSD)

Quick notes

Technically, you're counting articles...not pages ;) --John James 05:40, 18 June 2011 (MSD)

You do have a point sir, substitution performed. (Thanks!) Pestergaines 14:24, 18 June 2011 (MSD)

Recommended...any images you have that are free license (like barnstars), you might go ahead and upload them to the Wikimedia Commons so that others might be able to use them on their wikis as well. All images at the commons can be used on any wiki installation just as if they were uploaded locally. --John James 02:24, 18 October 2011 (MSD)


Thank you for the welcome. Would you happen to know if it's possible for me to edit my username so both words are capitalized? I submitted it as "stephanie_herman" and ended up with "Stephanie herman" on screen. Stephanie Herman 00:01, 16 September 2011 (MSD)

Hi Stephanie, that will require a bit of tinkering. I've requested the necessary functionality to be installed, hope it will be around fast. Best regards, Pestergaines 02:34, 16 September 2011 (MSD)
It's much easier to register again with the correct user name. --Forgottenman (talk) 02:52, 16 September 2011 (MSD)
That's probably right, but now it's done. You are renamed! Pestergaines 11:39, 17 September 2011 (MSD)


Motivation Award Mises Wiki Motivation Award
This Motivation Award is presented to you in recognition of your work in promoting the Mises Wiki and rallying the troops to help move the project forward. Keep up the good work. --John James 00:25, 7 October 2011 (MSD)

Thank you very much. It can be very hard to stay motivated sometimes - and this helps! I only hope we can grow our user base some more and keep people coming back. Glad to see you coming back as well! Pestergaines 02:24, 8 October 2011 (MSD)

No Spam Barnstar Hires.png The Anti-Spam Barnstar
This Anti-Spam Barnstar is presented to you in recognition of your tremendous work in keeping the Mises Wiki free of unwanted solicitations disguised as annoying stories and pretentious informationals. Keep up the great work! --John James 17:51, 18 January 2012 (MSK)
Thanks, man, these things can get boring quickly. Appreciate the award! Pestergaines 17:26, 19 January 2012 (MSK)

No Spam Barnstar Hires.png The Anti-Spam Barnstar
You deserve another one of these. I can't imagine how messy this wiki would be without your diligent efforts. They are not unnoticed, and certainly not unappreciated. --John James 01:27, 7 July 2012 (MSD)
Thank you! I'm starting to think whether we should block new users completely and only allow them to post after an additional verification (say via the mailing list or the forums). Other than that I'm not sure what else we can do to discourage the spamming. Pestergaines 10:52, 7 July 2012 (MSD)

Barnstar of Diligence.png The Barnstar of Diligence
This is for sticking around this whole time, and not only maintaining a presence here, but continuing the work of upkeep and improvement. This place would probably have fallen apart without you. I know I haven't been around much for a long time, but I must say it's great to be able to check in, and see you here, keeping an eye on things. Thank you, thank you. --John James (talk) 17:49, 1 June 2014 (EDT)
Thank you in return! Don't be a stranger and stop by (and edit something ;) ). Cheers, Pestergaines (talk) 02:43, 2 June 2014 (EDT)

Question regarding re-directing

I was wondering if you could help with re-directing a page; I just completed the stub for A priori proposition and was thinking that maybe also searches fom A priori knowledge should point there as I could have probably used either title. I am not sure how to re-direct a page, or whether all users can do so, so was wondering if you could help me out if you agree with my suggestion? Also thanks for the Barnstar! Matthew 00:17, 24 October 2011 (MSD)

Hi Matthew, redirects are actually quite easy and everyone should be able to create them - see help, all you need to do is put the redirect code into the page, nothing else is needed. (Check for example the code of this page.)
And no need to thank for the barnstar (though you certainly deserve it!) - it was promised as a reward for the contest, it only took me a while to put it up. :) Pestergaines 14:18, 24 October 2011 (MSD)
You are right redirects are pretty basic, thanks. Matthew 17:29, 24 October 2011 (MSD) bio links

Why did you change the links to some of the bios? --John James 00:23, 10 February 2012 (MSK)

It was a side effect of fixes needed in this thread, there was a page with some wrong names and links. Things should be better now, but if I got something wrong, please fix it (or tell me). Pestergaines 10:08, 10 February 2012 (MSK)


Wanted to make sure you were aware of these. They make adding links a bit easier by handling the formatting autmatically:

--John James 02:50, 18 February 2012 (MSK)

Hi! I know about these two, just never got around to actually learning their use (once I copy the basic data from a MD, it's easier for me to shuffle it around and create a link). Sorry, will see if it can be done more efficiently. Pestergaines 11:36, 18 February 2012 (MSK)

That's what I'm saying...those templates were created to make it more efficient. Basically they just allow you to input the data without having to mess with formatting. Just check out the parameters. You'll see. --John James 19:41, 18 February 2012 (MSK)
Since I'm too lazy to memorize those things, plus I needed a bit of coding exercise, I've made this script:
  1. On a (daily) article or blog page of the page, a "Remember Article..." or "Remember Blog..." button appears on the top right.
  2. Clicking on it will let the script remember that specific page (no alert, add one if desired).
  3. On a Mises Wiki page that is currently being edited, the buttons "Insert Reference..." and "Insert Link..." appear.
  4. Clicking on them adds a reference to the remembered article or the corresponding link template.
Hope it is useful for others as well! Pestergaines 11:04, 20 February 2012 (MSK)
Now also supports the Circle Bastiat blog. Pestergaines 10:45, 5 May 2012 (MSD)

mises insert script

Such a brilliant little tool. Did you code this yourself? One quick fix...the old blog articles ( redirect to, so you might update the script for that. It's literally just a find/replace for "blog.mises" with "archive.mises". --John James 06:43, 29 June 2012 (MSD)

Thanks! :) I've updated the script as recommended. Perhaps we should update the blog template as well? Pestergaines 14:25, 29 June 2012 (MSD)

Gold oxide?

I thought that one of the advantages of gold is that it never rusts or tarnishes. And yet here you are, polishing it anyway! Nathan Larson 05:48, 10 July 2012 (MSD)

badum-tss --John James 12:12, 10 July 2012 (MSD)
I'm trying more of a transmutation thing here - polish something enough and it might turn into a diamond. :D Pestergaines 14:12, 10 July 2012 (MSD)

ReCaptcha, cont'd

I notice that it says here, about the captcha: "Unfortunately, as of 2011, some spammers appear to have figured out a way to bypass it, either through character recognition or by using humans. For that reason, it is not necessarily recommended." Maybe a stronger anti-spam measure would be Asirra? One way or another, the spammers have obviously figured out a way to edit the site despite the current Captcha. Nathan Larson 07:03, 13 July 2012 (MSD)

They did, and we need to adapt. Thanks for the idea! Pestergaines 09:13, 13 July 2012 (MSD)
While you're at it, you may want to consider these suggestions as well, to cut down on the amount of "friendly fire," so to speak, from ConfirmEdit. Nathan Larson 09:33, 13 July 2012 (MSD)

Another recommended tweak

Changing the content of MediaWiki:Signature to [[{{ns:user}}:$1|$2]] ([[{{ns:user_talk}}:$1|talk]]) (as it is at would give each user's signature by default a link to their talk page. Kinda like mine. Nathan Larson (talk) 09:41, 13 July 2012 (MSD)

CategoryTree broken

FYI, Special:CategoryTree is broken. I googled the error message and didn't see anything (except for that google-indexed page on our wiki). Therefore, all I can recommend is downloading and upgrading to the latest version of MediaWiki, which is currently 1.19.1 (we have 1.18.2); downloading the latest version of CategoryTree and copying it over the old files; and seeing if that fixes it. Nathan Larson (talk) 01:31, 14 July 2012 (MSD)

Good find! I've forwarded the issue to our support people. Thanks again for all your help and contributions! Pestergaines 15:00, 14 July 2012 (MSD)
You're welcome. And thank you! I'm having a lot of fun here, and seem to be making a lot of progress. Nathan Larson (talk) 18:35, 14 July 2012 (MSD)

Student assignments

Do we know any professors who have assigned their students to write for Mises Wiki (or other wikis)? Perhaps we can have someone write a guide for other professors to crafting and managing these assignments in ways that will serve useful pedagogical goals, while adding value to the wiki. It would probably be much easier than having them write for Wikipedia (which some professors do), since we're a friendlier community to writers of the Austrian school. Maybe the student could be given a choice of assignments, one of which would be to write a wiki article of a certain length.

I'm not sure what other ways we could use to draw in participants. A lot of people have gotten turned off by Wikipedia's policies and those in charge of it, but haven't discovered or gotten involved in Mises Wiki yet. We've certainly advertised the wiki on plenty of times, and the reaction is often that it's a great resource with a lot of potential. But, despite all the well-wishers, not too many people get heavily involved.

In other news, I see this week's Time had a big article about the growing acceptance of polygamy. I feel ahead of my time for writing about it here before I saw it anywhere in the mainstream press. Who knows, maybe we'll all think of ourselves as ahead of our time for being Austrian economists before it became the trendy ideology of the future. Right now, we're more like hipsters. (Bow ties are so ironic!) Nathan Larson (talk) 07:56, 29 July 2012 (MSD)

Damn! Sometimes things really need a set of new eyes. The idea of having students write their assignments for the wiki comes from Jeffrey Tucker who seemed to eagerly advertise it before his departure from the Institute. I thought "Cool!" and happily continued working on the content. I thought with the Mises Academy it was only a question of time until the teachers start using it. And then, of course... nothing happened.
So we could complain about that, OR we could actually write a guide for teachers on how to use this resource. Why didn't we think of this before? :) Let's see what we can whip up... Pestergaines (talk) 12:09, 29 July 2012 (MSD)
What about Mises University? Wouldn't that be a logical place to start? I sent this message:
Hi Pat,
Over at the Mises Wiki, we have been trying to figure out ways to encourage more participation in writing articles. One possibility we are working on is inviting students to help:
We are still hashing out exactly what should go in both of those pages, by the way. But in the meantime, I was wondering, what ways, if any, there might be to get information about Mises Wiki to students, especially those who express interest in getting involved in helping further the Austrian School's goals. For instance, might there be an opportunity to give the Mises University students a handout on the subject, or for someone to deliver a quick speech explaining what the wiki is about, and how they can get involved?
If we could get about 5 or 10 regular contributors, we might be able to double the number of articles within a year. It really does not take very many dedicated editors to greatly enhance a wiki's coverage and quality. But it's often hard to find them. Nathan Larson (talk) 12:12, 30 July 2012 (MSD)
For what it is worth, we previously discussed getting Mises Academy students to write articles as assignments. We got a few contributions but the idea didn't pick up steam with the professors. The help page describing this is at MisesWiki:Academy. Forgottenman (talk) 20:33, 31 July 2012 (MSD)
Ah, dammit. :/ Do you see any real chance of pitching this anew? Pestergaines (talk) 20:59, 31 July 2012 (MSD)

Economies of scale

Sometimes it seems that economics of scale crush the smaller wikis. There are a lot of advantages of editing at Wikipedia, rather than at a smaller wiki. For one thing, one can more thoroughly wikify articles. I can, for instance, put double brackets around Columbia Law Review in hopes that the article will someday exist. Maybe some subjects won't ever exist here, or if they do (as in the case of countries or U.S. states), it's difficult to make the coverage as comprehensive as Wikipedia's.

From the editor's perspective, perhaps even more important than the outgoing wikilinks from articles one creates are the incoming wikilinks. One can go to related articles all over Wikipedia and add wikilinks to the Wikipedia article one created. It drives traffic to the content one created. Therefore, those trying to get as much exposure as possible for the subject they're interested in have logical reasons to go to Wikipedia rather than Mises Wiki.

Then of course there is categorization, page existence detection, and so on, which haven't yet been integrated cross-wiki as the template and file transclusions have. Wikipedia is sort of like the Wal-Mart that drives most of the mom-and-pop companies out of business. The question always arises, What the heck do we offer that Wikipedia doesn't?

E.g., does Wikipedia really crush the Austrian point of the view to the point that Austrian writers have to find sanctuary here? Not really. Anarcho-capitalism was (and is) a featured article on Wikipedia, and there is a lot of coverage of Austrian School subjects, such as Murray Rothbard, Ludwig von Mises, and their books. Which is probably one of the reasons why even some of the editors who were enthusiastic about this wiki spend most of their wikitime over there.

Yeah, there were some skirmishes, e.g. over the Stephan Kinsella article, but it ultimately survived. I have never had a topic on libertarianism deleted for lack of notability, except when it was about, say, a minor libertarian candidate, and we have competition from LPedia for the hosting of that sort of content. LPedia is the official wiki of the LP, so it would naturally tend to draw that sort of content there.

Sometimes I edit Libertapedia just because my ownership of it means that I can be a scofflaw and post a lot of copyrighted content (images and such) without worrying about it getting deleted. That site isn't affiliated with an organization like the LP or LvMI that has to worry about its reputation and about getting sued. I'm pretty much judgment-proof. And I don't allow BetacommandBot to operate on my wiki. Also, I liberally strew interwiki wikilinks to Wikipedia all over my articles (we have mw:Extension:RPED installed over there); that practice is frowned on at almost every other wiki I've ever been to.

Well, I'm rambling a bit, but basically the main question that comes to my mind is, What really sets us apart? We can compete on either cost or quality. Maybe in some ways, it's less costly to edit here, because users don't have to worry about the ArbCom and a host of other meddlers. On the other hand, it's more costly to duplicate work that's already been done on Wikipedia. As for quality, our scope is narrower than Wikipedia's, so it'll never be the same kind of one-stop information source for almost everything one could want to look up. The best-selling encyclopedias tend to be the more comprehensive ones.

I came up with a proposed solution to all these issues, which was my Inclupedia proposal for complete interwiki integration with Wikipedia. Now it's just a matter of coding it. I like editing these smaller wikis, but I've just never seen any of them be particularly viable. Even the Mises Wiki main page provides information that, for the most part, could be just as easily provided by a Wikipedia portal on Austrian economics. Ironically, if Wikipedia were not such a good wiki, Mises Wiki would probably have more activity. Nathan Larson (talk) 06:56, 1 August 2012 (MSD)

Economies of scale are a killer. The smaller shops have to compete with the big guys and offer something they don't have (location, different focus etc.) or they might go out of business eventually (although hey - Walmart doesn't drive everybody out, many shops do survive and thrive - so there is hope out there :) ). For wikis, yeah, it is mostly about focus and quality.
For MisesWiki, there are (hopefully) several factors in its favor: Since we do have a different focus, we can go into more detail that just wouldn't fly on Wikipedia (I've got personally burned on the Malinvestment article by a deletionist faction - so it is there but it's a far cry from ours). Wikipedia will have much of the same Austrian-focused articles we have, but they may just have less content and sometimes rather derogatory remarks about the relevance of the school. That is one thing I knew from the start - some things won't get through on Wikipedia, whether due to bias or the non-mainstream nature of the Austrian school (that part is understandable for a general encyclopedia - and offers space for alternatives). Also note our work on crises or IP - you can't really do this sort of thing on Wikipedia due to the bias.
The next major factor is quality. (Don't confuse it with quantity!) There is a large number of highly in-depth articles that offer a lot of information WP articles don't. It turns out that it's not hard to beat Wikipedia in length and quality, particularly if it comes to obscure topics. (This is also a reason why I'm so focused on quality and try to avoid editorializing.)
The focus and quality is what makes these pages ideal for linking in debates - many debates spend a lot of time on definitorial issues. Austrians use many terms with a different emphasis than the mainstream (inflation, capital, etc) - and here the terms are just a click away, so you can always refer the opponent further. One goal for the wiki is to make it the ideal background material for most debates (an 'argumentation chain' where all the basics are covered as well), for which a wiki is the perfect format. Perhaps one day we'll get there. (As for the 'ragged edge', I totally get that, although I want to make MW more of a semi-official platform of the Austrian school. Hope my reasons are clearer by now!)
At the same time, one of the covert goals is to infiltrate Wikipedia with high-quality Austrian content, which can be easily prepared here and moved when it becomes 'ready'. :-> So, perhaps one day most of the content here will simply become part of Wikipedia anyway... we'll see.
Another point, if not as heavy, is distinction - there is a huge number of websites out there that simply repeat whatever content Wikipedia has. Most of the content here was built from scratch and can serve anyone as an alternative starting point for research (of course, pushing the Austrian line as well).
Now, quantity is where we get squeezed by Wikipedia - you can really link to anything there and expect an article to exist sooner or later. Here we have to do with what we've got and hope our focus and quality will save us.
The direct 'cost', as you put it, is initially lower. However, the ultimate cost can be really high for most people in the end - most don't have the stomach for detailed research, adding footnotes and the like. Plus the ever-present lure or moralizing and inserting our own opinion is so hard to resist! :) That's also what works against us... it seems like you can have quality or fast growth, but not both. (Even WP seems to aim for the first now, so there you go.)
Hope I got my point across! Some minor points:
  • Yeah, ideally we should create content that is already linked from other pages, and add links where suitable.
  • Dick Clark wasn't here that active from the start, so it's not that surprising.
  • If you want to create an article about Morris and Linda Tannehill, go for it. :) (Use e.g. this for inspiration, may need to translate it first. Can't seem to find much info on them either... maybe this is her public profile? No idea. See also some wild speculations here, it does quote some resources though.) Good luck with this one.
Good thoughts. Pestergaines (talk) 12:32, 1 August 2012 (MSD)

Mob rule?

I guess content decisions on wikis basically boil down to mob rule, when there's not some central authority dictating. For example, this edit. I suppose it basically boils down to, "Anarcho-capitalism is an important contribution to economics!" "Is not!" "Is too!" And whichever side has enough interested editors to get in more "is nots" or "is toos" wins. Or if they're about equally divided, then maybe they compromise.

I notice the RW folk don't head over to our wiki to try to put forth their views. Maybe they only like to hang out on friendly turf, where they can call the shots? Wikipedia tries to get around it by saying "If you can cite a bunch of reliable sources saying that anarcho-capitalism is important, and the other guy can't find enough reliable sources to back up his view, then you win." Of course, in that case what's "reliable" usually is what you can find in academic databases, which is distorted by the issue of who is willing to fund scholars to put forth certain views.

RW seems to want to label whomever they don't agree with as "pseudoscientists," "cranks," etc. For that same reason, I'm not a big fan of Skeptic magazine anymore. They want to label certain religions they don't agree with as cults, when it's admittedly a somewhat arbitrary distinction. The skeptical community as a whole needs to get off its high horse and admit that any of us could turn out to be "cranks," depending on what evidence disproves in the future. It is quite easy for any of us to think we have very strong evidence proving a point of view right, and be totally wrong. Nathan Larson (talk) 09:45, 4 August 2012 (MSD)

I guess it is only fortunate that this wiki is not a democracy. No mob rule around here. ;)
On the other note, perhaps Mises Wiki is still not that famous for people of opposing schools to come here and start rewriting stuff to fit their views (barring the rare vandalism). Let's see what the future will bring as MW is being used in Internet discussions... Pestergaines (talk) 14:31, 5 August 2012 (MSD)
Speaking of the devil, MW is finally being noticed by Rational Wiki. :) Pestergaines (talk) 12:20, 6 August 2012 (MSD)
Is that the correct link? Nathan Larson (talk) 22:40, 16 October 2013 (MSK)
What the heck? Thanks, I've fixed the link! Pestergaines (talk) 00:09, 17 October 2013 (MSK)

Template problems

I recommend the following:

That should take care of some of our template problems. It appears that MediaWiki:Common.js and MediaWiki:Common.css are already taken care of. Oh yes, and when you go to check to see if the templates now work, hit Ctrl-F5 to reload everything in your browser. Nathan Larson (talk) 12:40, 7 August 2012 (MSD)

Nebuchadnezzar remarks

Not sure how much interest (if any) you have in what goes on at RW, but this debate had me a bit stumped as to what to say in rejoinder. Maybe if you can figure something out, that could provide some material to add to the science article here! Not to mention, I'm trying to find an excuse to restore various edits made (under my Tisane moniker) to the Austrian economics article over there (sometimes with rather colorful language in the edit comments, as you may notice). Nathan Larson (talk) 13:41, 8 August 2012 (MSD)

Not so much really, but let's see. :)
A good response to Graeber might set some things straight.
A: Perhaps the wiki page could use some improvements. ;) One should probably note that Austrians certainly do not ascribe all of a man's motivations to selfishness (at least in the narrow sense) - and there is plenty of material on voluntary association and altruism. There is the notion of psychological profit with uncounted motivations behind it. Yes, people have also other things on their mind than profit in the narrow sense... so what's the point? For Austrians, human action is ultimately taken as a given, whatever reasons and motivations lie behind it.
B: Probably answered; it is perfectly valid to say that minimum wage does not have to create unemployment in each and every instance or right away; still, it needs to be asked what happens to the people on the margin in the long term...
C: See before - both Graeber and the Austrians may be right here.
D: We all do confirmation bias, brother. Amen. Now, looking solely at that article and its main graph, it would appear that the 1920s Depression did indeed have a faster recovery; although it did taper off at the end. There's also some articles out there that warn of using GNP data during the war, since the whole economy changed to a significant degree. It may have been a time of slower growth, but I don't quite see if more time was spent in recession after the 1920s one vs. the Great one... that it all culminates in possibly the worst economic situation is part of Woods' argument - that it was the evil regulators after all. Might be the confirmation bias, though.
E: Natural resources are always limited, totally agree with him. And that people are not always 'rational' in the traditional sense (is that what Behavioral economics is about?) is part and parcel of AE. Minsky appears to be somewhat compatible to AE, although AE folks might have a beef with the notion that speculative investment bubbles are endogenous to financial markets. (Sorry but I don't know his work; only skipped through the Wikipedia page.) Pestergaines (talk) 03:00, 9 August 2012 (MSD)


Well, it looks like Dave Veksler wasn't able to fix mw:Extension:Asirra for us, despite trying the suggestions I gave. At this point, I do not know what advice to give him for fixing it, because I'm not sure how I got it to work on my three wikis; each time, I just kept playing around with configuration settings, file locations, etc. until it inexplicably worked. Well, now what?

The current situation can't continue. Our spam problem is fixed, but new users can't create accounts. We have to either get Asirra fixed or switch to a different spam solution. Unfortunately, most of the other ones have been defeated by spammers. mw:Extension:KittenAuth or mw:Extension:ConfirmEdit#QuestyCaptcha are possibilities, but would require extra labor to set up and wouldn't be that hard for a determined spammer to defeat.

Any thoughts? If you want, you can get your own MediaWiki installation and play around with it and see if you can figure out how one gets Asirra to work properly. But it sounded like you're pretty busy lately. Nathan Larson (talk) 08:00, 27 August 2012 (MSD)

Test post

Test. DavidGilmartin (talk) 15:12, 1 September 2012 (MSD)


Either the spammers are operating manually now, or they've figured out a way to beat Asirra. Oh well, it was good while it lasted. Nathan Larson (talk) 19:24, 10 November 2012 (MSK)

You can't beat the power of the Internet... for good or for bad. Pestergaines (talk) 13:05, 14 November 2012 (MSK)

Human Rights Watch

A cursory search through and by google revealed that some libertarians had badmouthed HRW, but upon further investigation, I couldn't find much to substantiate the claims that HRW is all that anti-liberty. Going back at least as far as the 1948 promulgation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the libertarian movement seems to have had an uneasy relationship with the movement calling itself the "human rights" movement. Often, that latter movement has sought to establish human rights commissions and the like, which libertarians tend to distrust as more bureaucracy. (Then of course there's the fact that the United Nations Commission on Human Rights was chaired by some countries with pretty bad human rights records.)

I suppose it's similar to the feminist movement; what started out as something beneficial got hijacked by those who turned it to statist ends, so that certain terms came to have anti-liberty connotations. Anyway, I was pretty impressed with HRW's PLRA report, so I went ahead and joined for that reason. I guess it'll become evident pretty soon from their mailings whether they hold any objectionable views that weren't immediately apparent from their website. Nathan Larson (talk) 14:49, 27 November 2012 (MSK)

Absolutely, we should stay open to all possibilities. Especially with NGOs like this, it is often the case that they are a mixed bag - they may be against the evils of capitalism, "moneyed interest" and so forth, but at the same time can be really good when pointing out corruption and human rights abuses. Their views can differ from that of the average libertarian - so of course there will be disagreements. Let's give credit, where credit is due, and criticism where necessary. Pestergaines (talk) 15:16, 27 November 2012 (MSK)

Configuration issue

OK, it should be fixed now. Please let me know if other issues arise. Thanks, Nathan Larson (talk) 16:35, 30 November 2012 (MSK)

Seems to work now, thanks! Pestergaines (talk) 17:13, 30 November 2012 (MSK)

Blocking and protecting

Have you noticed any issues when attempting to block users or protect pages? We've been getting hit by the Mimco Facebook vandalbot (which has also been hitting other sites all over the wikisphere) and I attempted to block the IP and semi-protect the Main Page, but every time, after it said that the action had succeeded, nothing showed up in the log. Other than the upgrade, I don't think any recent configuration changes would have had an effect on that.

It seems more like the kind of problem that I've been noticing for awhile here, which is that sometimes when one makes a change, it doesn't seem to take effect right away. Or sometimes the edit never takes effect. I disabled caching briefly, but that didn't accomplish anything. There may be some other caching that I don't know about, although I think Dave Veksler said that he disabled CloudFlare for the wiki. Anyway, if all else fails I may be able to find some workaround to accomplish page protection or blocking, but it's not the preferred solution, because it probably won't be very elegant. Anyway, if we confirm there is a glitch, then I'll start scouring through, Bugzilla, etc. and try to figure out what might be the cause. Nathan Larson (talk) 16:11, 2 December 2012 (MSK)

The weird thing is I thought the main page was already protected; as of now I can see only the Template:New articles is protected. Maybe something went wrong during the update and the protection functionality is out of order? (I tried as well, protecting doesn't work for me either.) Pestergaines (talk) 16:19, 2 December 2012 (MSK)
To my recollection, the main page was not protected before. When I first noticed that, a few months ago, I thought it was due to some radical OpenEdit wiki way policy. Anyway, protection seems to be intermittently working, which is rather strange. I'm going to create a "twin" Mises Wiki installation and see if the problem occurs there as well. Nathan Larson (talk) 16:32, 2 December 2012 (MSK)
It's doing the same thing on my twin site. I uninstalled all the extensions and the issue didn't go away. Investigation continues... Nathan Larson (talk) 17:51, 2 December 2012 (MSK)

Did anyone fix it, or did it get better on its own? I was going to continue working on resolving the issue but the state got in the way. Anyway, it's good to be back. I've always enjoyed working with you on this project. Nathan Larson (talk) 20:23, 3 October 2013 (MSK)

The issue is still there. It doesn't have too much of an impact as the spambots love to create new accounts and IP blocking goes only that far. On the other hand, page protecting would be useful for some pages at least (like Corporate board, which is inexplicably a spam magnet). Welcome back! Pestergaines (talk) 01:22, 5 October 2013 (MSK)
Okay, it appears to be fixed now. Perhaps there was a glitch in MediaWiki 1.20.1 and it was fixed by the upgrade to 1.21.2. Nathan Larson (talk) 10:29, 5 October 2013 (MSK)

(2) IS better than (3)

On the Austrian preference between "bad" debt-free fiat money issuance to fund deficits and "badder" borrowing from a central bank to fund deficits, see Jo Salerno's article here. Finally I have a reference to use to establish that a credible Austrian position could be the support of pure debt free fiat money issuance. I was waiting a long time ... Karmaisking (talk) 02:43, 1 February 2013 (MSK)

Intriguing! I still have some difficulty with some of the arguments involved, but that's definitively legit. (You may want to link to this article, btw.) Please make sure to quote Salerno's assumptions, as they can have dramatic consequences on the result. I'm also not sure to what degree this would avoid the business cycle, but it's a valid speculation. Good find! Pestergaines (talk) 16:17, 1 February 2013 (MSK)
Salerno also gave a talk on the trillion dollar coin thing at the recent Mises Circle in Houston. I think it is essentially embodied in that Daily article [in fact he may have even been essentially reading it], but you might be on the lookout for that video when it gets uploaded to add as a reference. --John James (talk) 17:42, 1 February 2013 (MSK)

Austrian predictions

I noticed at least one discrepancy between the list of Austrian predictions on the general page, and the "main page" for the housing bubble. It seems to be a problem to have a comprehensive list on both if forces every addition/subtraction from the list to have to be performed twice (i.e. in two different places), and if it isn't done, you end up with different lists. I think we need to either eliminate the "main page" for specific predictions altogether, or have the actual list of predictions located there, and removed from the general page. Thoughts? --John James (talk) 00:23, 20 February 2013 (MSK)

Any thoughts? -- 04:22, 20 February 2013 (MSK)

Was that to me, or Pestergaines? --John James (talk) 04:38, 20 February 2013 (MSK)
Looks like the big list is a bit of a problem. What complicates things are the HTML comments on the "main page" that describe each of the resources. Both pages have their place, but if we can't keep both perfectly synchronized (which, realistically, we can't), I'd prefer to keep the short summary with a few key predictions pointing to the main page which will include all the other predictions and all details. That should shorten the predictions page as well. Pestergaines (talk) 14:28, 20 February 2013 (MSK)

Access keys

Since you do a lot of anti-spam work, I thought I'd point out metawikipedia:Help:Keyboard shortcuts as potentially useful if you haven't seen it before. On my system, I can hit Alt-Shift-D and it will go to the action=delete page. Nathan Larson (talk) 17:27, 4 October 2013 (MSK)

That... looks actually pretty useful for the occasional outbursts. Thank you! Pestergaines (talk) 01:23, 5 October 2013 (MSK)


These +res edits are potentially pretty helpful; I used to do the same thing. It's better than just adding them to your favorites/bookmarks, because if you get hit by a bus tomorrow, you've already shared the information with the MW community (hmm, is there another acronym that would better disambiguate between Mises Wiki and MediaWiki, maybe MsW? I guess it doesn't matter; I think I'm the only MediaWiki dev here), despite the fact that it hasn't yet been incorporated into an article. For that matter, even if you don't get hit by a bus, the +res links are still beneficial because you are making the information available sooner than it would have been.

The only problem is that it's often easy to never get around to stuff that is put off till later (e.g. the incorporation of all information into the articles), but the perfect shouldn't become the enemy of the good. Those who are really interested in digging into a topic will appreciate the help. Of course, another option is to have an article, private schooling literature or the like, much like the wikipedia:anarcho-capitalist literature article. Nathan Larson (talk) 22:49, 16 October 2013 (MSK)

Yeah, that's pretty much the reason I put them all up. Some of them deserve incorporation in some way, most don't (or would need pages of their own). About the one only thing we can rely on is the lack of time to do things properly, once and for all. :)
But this is where I think the Mises Wiki comes close to a true encyclopedia - you can find some information in it about many a topic, even the very obscure ones, and some bonuses like countries. You want to learn about any of those? Dig in. Most of the links are (OK, should be) highly relevant.
Oh, and we do have actual reading lists, for those articles that are, and those that deserve the label due to sheer number of links. Then again, most pages are reading lists of a sort here. So if you want to make a separate reading list for private schools, go ahead - the page itself is already half there. :) Pestergaines (talk) 00:31, 17 October 2013 (MSK)
If we expand that reading list category significantly, perhaps "Reading list" could become a sidebar item, or at least a main page item. See mw:Manual:Sidebar and MediaWiki:Sidebar. We might want to create a MisesWiki:Reading list page to summarize it more neatly than a category view could. Nathan Larson (talk) 04:54, 17 October 2013 (MSK)

Archive box

May I suggest the introduction of a new piece of furniture for your talk page, an archive box? It would not only be a practical storage solution but would go lovely with the rest of the decor. :) Nathan Larson (talk) 05:06, 17 October 2013 (MSK)

I guess I spoke too soon. The archive box probably won't work properly until we get mw:Extension:Scribunto working properly. I'm working with Dave Veksler on that right now.
Wow, quite a lot of new MediaWiki extensions have been installed on Wikipedia in the past year or so. wikipedia:Special:Version shows mw:Extension:Echo, mw:Extension:ExpandTemplates, mw:Extension:GettingStarted, mw:Extension:TemplateSandbox, mw:Extension:EasyTimeline, mw:Extension:ImageMap, mw:Extension:InputBox, etc. as extensions they have but we don't. I was going to finish listing the relative complement of A in B (i.e. BA), with A being Mises Wiki's extensions and B being Wikipedia's extensions, but I need to accomplish some other stuff today. Nathan Larson (talk) 05:44, 17 October 2013 (MSK)

I have some bad news... troubleshooting Scribunto could very well involve some disruption to the site, in that all the existing templates would need to be moved to another namespace, sorta like what's described at mw:Extension_talk:Scribunto#Difficulties_in_getting_this_extension_to_work_35539, and re-imports would have to be done from Wikipedia. I haven't figured out any other way to fix it, though. Nathan Larson (talk) 07:10, 20 November 2013 (MSK)


It seems to me that a lot of human rights organizations focus on trying to get tyrannical regimes to quit being so tyrannical, when the problem could be solved by opening the borders of freer countries to asylum seekers. Suppose, for example, that all a North Korean peasant had to do was make it across the border to South Korea, and he could be free from Kim Jong-Un's regime. Are Kim's border guards really that efficient that they'd be able to stop the refugees? Eventually, his regime would collapse as he lost more and more of his best and brightest overseas. I just wonder why the human rights groups don't devote almost 100 percent of their efforts to reforming the immigration laws, in light of what a comprehensive solution that would be. Nathan Larson (talk) 07:10, 20 November 2013 (MSK)

Yeah, just look what happened in East Germany when the people had a (comparatively easy) choice and a way out. Now if it comes to human rights movements, it's for many people a very different beast from immigration reform. It's one thing to want people have a better life far away, and another to let them move in with you. It's a much tougher sell. (But note that a focus of immigration would not be enough without making emigration from those countries possible - if they devote a lot of focus on fencing off, setting mines and patrolling the borders, then yes, even otherwise inefficient regimes can stop most refugees from getting out. Again, East Germany comes to mind, once it was able to close the loopholes, see also here.) Pestergaines (talk) 10:58, 20 November 2013 (MSK)
I guess it depends partly on how long the border is and how much commerce in goods and tourism there is between the countries. The 3,145 km (1,954 mi) long U.S.-Mexico border has been famously difficult to secure from illegal immigrants. The Military Demarcation Line between the Koreas is roughly 248 km (155 mi) long. Also, there are a lot of cargo trucks and trains as well as tourists that travel between the U.S. and Mexico, while the border between the two Koreas is mostly closed. Insular states like North Korea that seek to close off their economies from their neighbors are probably better able to keep their people from escaping.
Still, money talks; if private organizations were to fund the emigration of North Korean refugees (which could include digging tunnels, hiring professional smugglers, bribing border guards, etc. as well as helping the refugees get on their feet in their new country), it might make a difference. Hopefully, many of these refugees would pay it forward; if each were to fund, on average, the emigration of one more refugee, then it could be self-sustaining.
I guess North Korea would probably tend to want to apply pressure to its neighbors to get them to put a stop to such active assistance of refugees, though. That becomes a matter of brinksmanship; North Korea can rattle its sabers, but so can the U.S. An existential threat might get Kim Jong-Un to actually do something desperate, however, whatever the risks. The U.S. can't attack pre-emptively either, to destroy the nukes, because China might object. Yes, it's a difficult situation.
I wouldn't mind more North Korean refugees coming to the U.S.; I think I'd probably prefer a lot of them to some of the people currently here. Of course, Mises wrote "As conditions are today, the Americas and Australia in admitting German, Italian, and Japanese immigrants would merely open their doors to the vanguards of hostile armies." He probably based that on the experience of Austria, in which the immigration of certain Germans paved the way for the Anschluss. Likewise, the migration of Americans to Texas paved the way for taking over that territory from Mexico. I just don't see North Koreans as likely to take over the U.S., though, given the difference in population and wealth between the two countries. Nathan Larson (talk) 20:07, 20 November 2013 (MSK)

Economics: science or philosophy?

"Austrian economists are not fooled, because they reject the idea of empirical data in the validation of theory in the social sciences. Reason is the only tool available for economic discovery."[2] I thought sciences arrived at their conclusions by means of evidence gleaned through experimentation and observation (induction), while philosophies relied solely on reasoning that applies logic to some ultimate givens (deduction). Which should we consider economics to be? I guess the answer depends partly on whether philosophy is itself a science. "Other German philosophers saw philosophy itself as a science, indeed as a rigorous science in something like the Mengerian sense."

But I guess Mises regarded economics as, although a science, one that must proceed according to a different pattern than other sciences. Then of course we have this whole debate. What perhaps confuses the issue is that Mises includes a lot of historical interpretation and political commentary only tangentially related to economics in books like Human Action. That's part of what I love about those books, because otherwise several hundred pages of economics might get monotonous, but it probably contributes to the perception that Austrian economics is more a political philosophy than science. But, if the shoe fits... Nathan Larson (talk) 01:54, 6 December 2013 (MSK)


Civility Barnstar Hires.png Have some tea/coffee/hot chocolate on a star-shaped beverage coaster to celebrate our survival of the recent server move
And thanks for your contributions to Mises Wiki. You make this a lot more of a fun (and less lonely) place to work for the advancement of liberty. Leucosticte (talk) 03:20, 5 January 2014 (EST)

For the most part, you quietly labour in your own spheres of interest and treat others with Misesian tolerance, but also say what needs to be said when the times come to say it, yet in a very diplomatic way. I have to admire your skills and dedication to the project; I sometimes think that you are to Mises Wiki what Paul McCartney was to The Beatles. But then, perhaps, I overly flatter myself by thinking of myself as the John Lennon. But that kind of narcissism is very typical of me, as indeed it apparently was of Lennon too.

He was kind of a wikidragon before wikidragons even existed. A musicdragon, perhaps! A diva, perhaps. Whatever one may say about divas/narcissists, probably there's only room in society for a certain number because if everyone were that way, they would get in arguments about who's the most important. Even this thread shows manifestations of narcissism, since I turned a post that was about awarding a barnstar into being all about me. Might as well cue the soundtrack!

The Beatles incidentally are to admired at least for not altruistically donating all their income to a regime that wanted to seize 99 percent of it, although I'm not sure they even could have operated under those financial constraints, so maybe it was a case of doing what they needed to do to survive. Leucosticte (talk) 03:20, 5 January 2014 (EST)

Love that song! Thank you for the barnstar, and the narcissistic piece. :)

Mises Made Easier

Oh, getting started on it, huh? I found that the approach you're taking, of doing a little at a time, sometimes works well. That was how I added all 138+6 of Cato's letters to Wikisource. It took about a month. Leucosticte (talk) 11:10, 19 June 2014 (EDT)

Indeed! That's how I got this wiki started in the first place. :)
And... 144 letters? Not bad at all, mister, not bad at all! Mighty kudos! Pestergaines (talk) 13:11, 19 June 2014 (EDT)
Nice to see that we actually have some new articles now in the main page new articles feed! :) Leucosticte (talk) 19:08, 15 July 2014 (EDT)
We do! Might finally make it to 2000! :) Pestergaines (talk) 19:29, 15 July 2014 (EDT)

tables broken again?

I think this happened (again) a long time ago and it never got addressed. Any ideas?...


--John James (talk) 16:55, 2 August 2014 (EDT)

I really thought it was fixed?! Pestergaines (talk) 19:02, 2 August 2014 (EDT)


Hello, I was wondering, what do you think of the possibility of migrating content over to Wikiversity? They seem to be more relaxed about notability and NPOV requirements over there, since I guess there's the same kind of academic freedom a professor would have, in that if he's the one running the class, he can to a large degree teach what he wants. I created, for example, this glossary, although perhaps what I should have done is made each entry a subpage and then transcluded all of them to the main glossary page. Wikiversity encourages the creation of deeply nested subpages.

It doesn't look like the migration to is moving ahead very quickly; in fact, it may have stalled. Not that there's necessarily any hurry. I suppose Wikiversity will be around for awhile, since this petition attracted a lot of opposition.

At this point, the main reason for migration is that we don't really have any tech support anymore here, so we won't be able to keep up with software updates and fix stuff that's broken. People aren't too impressed when they notice a wiki is running old software. Leucosticte (talk) 10:04, 30 September 2014 (EDT)

I don't worry too much about old software per se, but getting stuff fixed and possible vulnerabilities are a serious concern. So, yeah, we should keep an eye out on alternatives. What kind of a position would we have on Wikiversity - our own project, subdomain, etc? Would we be running our little corner of that universe, or would it be a free for all? What kind of crowd does it attract?
It looks like a viable alternative and might just have the things we need. Pestergaines (talk) 08:26, 2 October 2014 (EDT)
More info. Leucosticte (talk) 21:06, 10 October 2014 (EDT)


Hello. I don't know who else to notify, but, when I was making making my account I noticed that it said that the captcha is no longer going to be supported anymore. So...that's a thing. Smith (talk) 09:07, 10 October 2014 (EDT)

That... is indeed a thing, a rather serious thing. I have alerted our admins at the MI. Hopefully this will be fixed soon! Thank you for letting me know, Smith! Pestergaines (talk) 18:08, 10 October 2014 (EDT)

On a slightly related note, I notice that since the site change it isn't exactly easy to find the wiki from the main site. Do you know if the Mises Institute is planning to continue to keep the Wiki? Smith (talk) 16:27, 24 November 2014 (EST)

That... is something that is a bit unclear, my friend. Pretty much the only statement that I've got from Chad Parish (MI's Technology Manager) was:
Once the new is live this fall, Jeff Diest wants to re-focus on the Wiki and decide the best way to proceed with its management, etc.
It is a valuable and important online resource, and we certainly do not want to neglect it. Unfortunately, it sits on the back burner, for now...
We will keep you updated.
That was July. I haven't heard anything since then. They have just gone live with the new, so it is time for them to address the Wiki. Pestergaines (talk) 16:44, 24 November 2014 (EST)
I think if they were really serious about making the most of the wiki, they would've moved more resources into it. E.g., instead of having a page to list typos, those documents would be on the wiki and we could directly edit them here. DreamHost, for example, has all or most of its support documentation in the DreamHost Wiki because they wanted to go all in and trust in the wiki way to produce a high-quality product. They have staff assigned to help curate and manage the wiki, and it works fairly well. Leucosticte (talk) 19:29, 26 November 2014 (EST)
I think they are still not quite sure what to do with this wiki thing, so that might be a far cry... or not. Or the wiki should be exactly what it is right now - a userspace run not by the Institute but by the fans. In any case, I would like to see at least some kind of engagement besides the rare troubleshooting. Pestergaines (talk) 19:51, 26 November 2014 (EST)
At the very least, a link on the main page to the wiki would be nice..... Smith (talk) 13:31, 27 November 2014 (EST)
It certainly would. Pestergaines (talk) 12:40, 30 November 2014 (EST)
And it's official. Pestergaines (talk) 10:24, 6 December 2014 (EST)

IP addresses

I took a look at Special:CheckUser. It looks like it thinks everyone is logging in from Odd, huh? Leucosticte (talk) 19:44, 17 October 2014 (EDT)

Another thing that will need fixing; however, if the block on that IP holds, it might help with the spam... or not. Pestergaines (talk) 19:45, 17 October 2014 (EDT)
It will also prevent anyone from creating a new account. Leucosticte (talk) 19:57, 17 October 2014 (EDT)
And we will be back where we have started... but at least without spambots destroying everything. :/ Pestergaines (talk) 19:58, 17 October 2014 (EDT)

User page vandal

Thank you for catching the edit to my user page. I know I'm incredibly infrequent, but I wouldn't leave so soon! Smith (talk) 11:20, 29 October 2014 (EDT)

No problem, good to see you around nonetheless. :) Pestergaines (talk) 19:08, 29 October 2014 (EDT)

Fallacy identification

Blair Naso writes, "For one thing, by flooding the workforce with women, wages have plummeted. Labor is a commodity like everything else, and it is subject to supply and demand." There's a name for this particular economic fallacy, isn't there? Isn't the truth that workers create demand for labor too, by using their wages to buy products that will require labor to produce? Kinda like in Chapter 11 of Economics in One Lesson. Leucosticte (talk) 15:17, 14 March 2015 (EDT)

Interesting fella, I didn't find that in the article, but the claim would be correct, ceteris paribus. You have brought up one way how things can play out, I would also point out that even if wages were plummeting as a consequence of a larger workforce, the larger total production would lead to lower prices of goods and so the real wages would not necessarily fall.
I don't see more people working as a bad thing as long as it's their own choice. Pestergaines (talk) 18:50, 15 March 2015 (EDT)
Oops, that was Blair Naso, not Psanctus. Good point about the real wages. Especially since the increased division of labor would also make each unit of labor more productive, in theory. This might be offset, though, by the law of returns, since if you keep throwing one factor of production at a situation (especially a specific kind of labor, in this case the kinds of work women typically do in the workplace, such as office work), eventually it will start being used wastefully or will even get in the way.
Really, the main point that is to be made here is that workers should go where their labor will be most productive; and if women are more productive in the home and men are more productive in the workplace, then maybe that is where they should be employed. Women probably tend to be better at certain kinds of office work than men, such as middle management (requiring social skills) or accounting (requiring multitasking and attention to detail). They may have even more of an advantage over men as homemakers, though; who knows. Leucosticte (talk) 20:47, 15 March 2015 (EDT)


I'm glad that we got Scribunto installed before we lost the ability to maintain the technical side of the wiki. I consider Scribunto, Cite, and ParserFunctions to be among the minimal set of extensions required to have a wiki that's reasonably compatible with imported Wikipedia content.

I was thinking that another good extension to write would be one that would email the user a copy of every revision he makes to the wiki. That way, if the wiki were to ever get taken down, he would still have a copy of all the contributions he made, that he could use to re-create those articles elsewhere. Unfortunately, it's too late to get that installed here. Leucosticte (talk) 19:23, 29 March 2015 (EDT)

Can we disprove this minimum wage argument?

"This higher minimum wage won't cause job losses because it puts money into the hands of people who will spend it, mostly locally, and thereby create more jobs. It will also attract more people into the labor market, thereby giving employers a greater choice of whom to hire and resulting in less turnover and lower costs."

But wait, aren't higher costs a good thing? The more turnover there is, the more human resource personnel firms have to hire to find new workers to replace those who quit, and the more managers firms have to hire to train these new workers. These HR personnel and managers then spend money, mostly locally, and thereby create more jobs. Also, more turnover means that workers are less productive on average since it takes new workers time to get up to speed at their new jobs; thus, more workers have to be hired to pick up the slack, and these additional workers spend money, mostly locally, and thereby create new jobs. If we decrease turnover, then what happens to aggregate demand?!

According to the Department of Labor, "Myth: Increasing the minimum wage will cause people to lose their jobs. Not true: A review of 64 studies on minimum wage increases found no discernible effect on employment." Wait, where's the citation? Oh noes! Leucosticte (talk) 14:32, 25 July 2015 (EDT)

Also, this runs squarely into the question, is say, $15/hour is good, why not raise the minimum wage to $100/hour? The point about more people being attracted into the labor market can be actually true, so enjoy the sight of college-educated people getting jobs at burger joints, pricing out the immigrants, the badly educated and the poorest of the poor. Keep in mind who is actually excluded from the market. And if nobody is, why are there so many exceptions to those laws?
A link would be indeed useful. For another viewpoint (albeit older), checkout a review of minimum wage studies (pdf) that shows just the opposite.
But it may be easily true that minimum wage increases do not (always) cause direct unemployment, which some recent research seems to indicate. There are always other factors in play.
However, the libertarian argument is more complicated than MW increases being automatically followed by people losing their jobs. If somebody is indeed on the edge of being affected an increase, there are many other ways to compensate (smaller benefits, longer hours, unpaid duties, reduced perks, worse work environment, etc.)
Most importantly, we need to consider the long-term consequences an increase will have on the labor market - minimum wage reduces long-term job growth, particularly for younger workers and in industries with a higher proportion of low-wage workers.
An MW increase may not fire anybody outright, but it can make the lives of many people much more miserable. Cue complaints about the proliferation of lousy jobs. Pestergaines (talk) 09:16, 26 July 2015 (EDT)

Refactoring the wiki

We probably should start thinking about refactoring the wiki. I'm not sure it will or should survive as an Austrian economics wiki, but maybe the content could be moved to a libertarian wiki of some sort. I could revive Libertapedia, and I'd be willing to make you a bureaucrat and sysop on there just as you are here. The same would go for John James, etc. Libertapedia was blatantly partisan, but that could change.

Alternatively, Mises Wiki could just be spun off as an independent Mises Wiki; I don't think the LvMI has a trademark on that name. We could set up our own Mises Wiki Foundation, with officers, a board, etc. to manage the financial side of the wiki. If we had more activity on the wiki, I would say that this idea would seem more promising.

I'm already thinking that I should split the essays off onto my own private bliki. The way I see it, the Mises Institute is quietly waiting for us to make a move, and the gradually deteriorating technical side of the wiki will be our impetus for doing that. Leucosticte (talk) 16:28, 20 October 2015 (EDT)

Researching some options, give me a few days. Either option is possible. (For the essay stuff, just do it!) Pestergaines (talk) 02:40, 23 October 2015 (EDT)
I'm pondering whether I want to import these essays to my personal bliki, or resurrect Libertapedia and import them there. Did you ever see Libertapedia, before it went defunct? Leucosticte (talk) 18:55, 14 November 2015 (EST)
I remember seeing Libertapedia a few times and pondering what exactly to take over. I remember it had some hopeful points and some issues (but that was after a long period of inactivity and some spamming). I take it you have a backup? It would be good to go through it and see what can be salvaged. (And take the essays no matter how this place develops. Put them up somewhere!)
As for the ultimate direction, I'm thinking of going an alternative route, but let's see... I expect answers of whether we can go a certain direction in the next few days.
And as for the first question, I would like to keep a certain Austrian focus, but yes, we should go more libertarian. Pestergaines (talk) 16:37, 17 November 2015 (EST)
I can put Libertapedia up again just for the heck of it. Yeah, it did get spammed pretty badly, but I think I got rid of most of that.
It's too bad the Mises Institute broke all the links to works like Human Action. Sometimes when I google Mises quotes, I have to retrieve them from Mises Wiki because they're no longer easily available elsewhere. I consider that a regression. Leucosticte (talk) 12:43, 25 December 2015 (EST)
Yeah, at least they should be easier to find with a well-described link, but still. :/ Ah well. Happy New Year, as it were! Pestergaines (talk) 16:09, 6 January 2016 (EST)


What's the parameter to use in Google searches to find backlinks to a page? Thanks, Leucosticte (talk) 21:06, 21 March 2016 (EDT)

For backlinks to the domain I simply use quotes and exclude the domain - "" (you can do the same for specific pages, although I am not sure how good the quality is - "" ), although Google doesn't show everything. Besides the general search I recommend to filter by time and see what the most recent results are. There's also plenty of specific tools and websites which offer more options and more results, I used this one for a while. Cheers, Pestergaines (talk) 03:45, 22 March 2016 (EDT)
Yeah then there's this thingy. Leucosticte (talk) 21:36, 17 April 2016 (EDT)


Hey, if you check the recent changes, there's been a lot of spamming the past month. Smith (talk) 13:44, 28 July 2016 (EDT)

I put a notice on all the articles, here's all the suspicious usernames for whenever you get back:
Smith (talk) 09:31, 29 July 2016 (EDT)
Thank you for keeping an eye out for this! Pestergaines (talk) 17:56, 3 August 2016 (EDT)

Interest as a price

I'm not sure if you saw it through the ten pages of spamming attempts in the recent changes, but I made a small change to the interest page. Smith (talk) 01:37, 14 August 2016 (EDT)

Noted. Thanks for reminding me! :) Pestergaines (talk) 12:58, 15 August 2016 (EDT)

Show, don't tell

Lew Rockwell even had an article on that theme. Leucosticte (talk) 08:01, 24 November 2016 (EST)

Nice progressive taxation scheme

Illustrated by this scene from Vacation. Leucosticte (talk) 14:25, 16 March 2017 (EDT)

still around

Nice to see I'm not the only one still lurking. Any idea what the status is on the ownership side? Is there anyone we can talk to about site issues? --John James (talk) 23:37, 20 August 2017 (EDT)

No clue to be honest. Nathan was the last one in contact with someone but I didn't hear anything recently.
You kick ass though, great job at keeping the spammers at bay! Pestergaines (talk) 02:36, 21 August 2017 (EDT)
Chad Parish ( I think is the one to talk to about anything that can't be fixed by SSH'ing in to the server.
Seems like the spammers have been breaking through the new CAPTCHA. So, we can switch over to a QuestyCaptcha if we can come up with some good questions and answers. Leucosticte (talk) 08:39, 21 August 2017 (EDT)

Uploading images fails. Is this something we can fix?:

Could not open lock file for "mwstore://local-backend/local-public/c/cf/Bourbon_for_Breakfast_bookstore.jpg".

--John James (talk) 18:04, 21 August 2017 (EDT)

I tried chmod -R 755 images/ Does it work now? Leucosticte (talk) 18:20, 21 August 2017 (EDT)
Still "Action Failed." This time I got:
Could not open lock file for "mwstore://local-backend/local-public/b/b2/Bourbon_for_Breakfast_cover.jpg"
--John James (talk) 02:36, 22 August 2017 (EDT)
We might need to get Chad to play around with it with e.g. chown. Leucosticte (talk) 10:28, 23 August 2017 (EDT)
Now it looks as though virtually all the files on this wiki are gone. Anywhere a file would be, it now says "Error creating thumbnail: File missing." Navigating to the specific file page, it gives a "Forbidden You don't have permission to access (file location string) on this server." Any ideas?? --John James (talk) 22:26, 2 September 2017 (EDT)
I'm thinking what I will try is upgrading to MW 1.29 and then seeing if I can get the permissions right. I'll do that sometime in the next few days. Leucosticte (talk) 22:41, 2 September 2017 (EDT)
Okay, try now. Leucosticte (talk) 23:21, 2 September 2017 (EDT)
Same error. :( --John James (talk) 23:07, 10 September 2017 (EDT)

Show, don't tell

Leucosticte (talk) 02:28, 4 September 2017 (EDT)

Ninth Anniversary

The ninth anniversary of this wiki is coming up. I get a feeling we're the only two users left :U. Smith (talk) 18:57, 3 November 2019 (UTC)

  • fweeee* Happy anniversary! Smith (talk) 12:32, 5 November 2019 (UTC)
Hahahahaha, we're not dead yet! Cheers! :D Pestergaines (talk) 21:22, 13 November 2019 (UTC)
Make that three users. --John James (talk) 10:15, 9 December 2019 (UTC)


I just found this on Wikipedia the other day:

I feel like I'm being gaslighted. 2008 was an Austrian resurgence, right? I'm pretty sure it was not Keynesian. Dear lord.

Smith (talk) 12:41, 10 December 2019 (UTC)

Like zombies, some bad ideas never seem to die! Pestergaines (talk) 13:03, 30 January 2020 (UTC)