What if Tyler Cowen decided to take over the world?

I brunched with Amanda of Wronging Rights today. We both got our first traffic bumps when Tyler Cowen’s gaze settled on our sickly blogs. Approximate quote: “It’s amazing; his readers do whatever he says. If Andrew Sullivan links to me, I get a few hundred people. If Tyler tells people to read my blog, they come by the thousands.”

Which led me to wonder: what would the world look like were Tyler to take an authoritarian turn?

1. Wall street and Midtown: rampaging economists would spew from glass towers in waves to do his erudite bidding;

2. Mediocre ethnic restaurants would be stormed by libertarians bearing placards: “Free of us bad Pad Thai (and by the way it’s actually called Phat Thai)”

3. You would not be able to watch films for all the people walking out midway;

4. Generations from now, public librarians would still speak in hushed, reverent tones of “The Great Demand Shock”;

5. Economics PhDs would no longer think the Austrian school of economics is a place;

6. Six times a day, we would all blog, facing Fairfax.

Full disclosure: I am part of the problem, doing essentially whatever Tyler and Alex Tabarrok tell me.  Technically, you could call this list of tyrannical Tylerisms an homage. Perhaps you can do better?

11 thoughts on “What if Tyler Cowen decided to take over the world?

  1. Is the Austrian school of economy mania that specific ? I’ve met some other Austrian advocates. I admit they a quite specific species.

    About ethnic restaurant, I can share with you some good addresses for your stay in Paris if you’re interested. More for Asian food than African where I know just a few addresses and can’t swear they’re the absolute best in Paris. Whereas I can for Asian ; if someone recommends you Lao Lane Xang for Thai food, he’s not a real pro (you can make a worse choice, but also find better).

  2. What a waste! of a good subject.

    I’m one of the few Africans that reads both these blogs, and I send other Africans here all the time, So it was with quite a bit of excitement that I saw the topic heading. I expected a serious discussion of how Tylers brand of libertarian ideas, of which I find refreshingly balanced between conservative and liberal foundations but based in pragmatism, could be applied to the problems we face in Africa… for which your good blog has been doing thought work upon….. INSTEAD..

    6 Items of…mental doodling… I understand you have to keep it light, to prevent insanity and all.. but how about at least 1 of MR’s serious ideas explored by you in reciprocity for the traffic… then maybe more of the traffic would stick… An argument between Tyler and Andrew Sulivan has provided one of my most recent Ahaa! moments, where another one of the puzzles of the recent economic unpleasantness resolved itself.. Imagine that occurring between you and Tyler…it would be a more compelling use of the Internet as an agent for human progress..than well..PORN… well one can only dream!!!

  3. Tyler directs the Mercatus Center, funded by the Kochs, who are richer than all Americans except Buffett and Gates. They would take over the world, except they are libertarians, and so they fund others like Tyler to do their talking and conquests for them. Since you consider your immigrant self to be a New Yorker now, Chris, you can read about the Kochs in the new issue at http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/08/30/100830fa_fact_mayer.

  4. Oh brother, are people still whipping that “Tyler doesn’t think for himself, he’s a wholly owned subsidiary of Koch” nonsense? Correlation, causation, what’s the difference?

    Dat you, robertdfeinman?