Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to address from a normative perspective issues raised by John Mueller (2010) in Redeeming Economics: Rediscovering the Missing Element. Mueller criticizes economists, including Austrians, for failing to properly address unilateral transfers—in particular, charity, childcare, and crime—in economic thought. Mueller challenges economist Gary Becker’s position that giving increases the utility of the giver. Mueller also claims that the ends of action are persons, not utility or satisfaction. Further, unlike Ludwig von Mises and other economists, Mueller maintains that there is not a single preference scale but that there are separate scales for ends and means. In addition, his view is that people give in proportion to love for others and steal in proportion to hatred of others. One of my aims is to integrate my work on unilateral transfers based on Objectivist ethics with some ideas from the Austrian school. I discuss the overlap between some Objectivist principles and those of Austrians such as Mises, Friedrich Hayek, and Henry Hazlitt. In so doing, I extend work I have done on crime, childcare, and charity to the Austrian school. I compare this work with Mueller’s, focusing on some heuristics I have derived for childcare and for charitable giving.
Keywords: Objectivism, Ayn Rand, Ludwig von Mises, charity, childcare, crime
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