Praxeological analysis, and Austrian economics, are important because they make visible all transfers, and whether or not they are against the desires of those from whom property is transferred. Aggregate macro economics and Keynesian economics are important because they obscure the transfer of goods against the desires of those from whom property is transferred.
But, both of these methods: Aggregate Keynesian and Austrian Micro, are actually moral forms of analysis, more so than they are different sciences. If one subscribes to the proposition that all property is and must be private, then moral decisions are a function of voluntary or involuntary transfer of property. If one subscribes to the proposition that all property is owned communally and we all rent it and gain commissions on its use for the benefit of all (as under democratic socialism) , then the distribution of proceeds from the rentals is more important to the moral code than ownership and right to such proceeds.
The collectivist proposition is that all property is owned communally and that we merely lease it from the commons, and gain some portions of our commissions on it. The libertarian proposition is that all property is privately owned, and we voluntarily contribute to commons at our own discretion.
Any rational analysis of the evidence of economic inquiry from either the communal or private spectrum will illustrate that both forms of research have largely approached the same answers and discoveries of the increasingly complex properties of economic activity, over time.
The difference remains the choice of moral bias determined by the allocation of property rights in a collective body under the same territorial monopoly of property definitions and means of dispute resolution.
The scientific method is likewise a moral discipline. It prevents the use of a wide variety of errors and misrepresentations. This moral discipline will over time, because of the competition of ideas, suppress errors and fraud. Just as the market, over time, will suppress errors and fraud. The simplistic means by which the scientific method succeeds in this moral objective, is the requirement for operational language. That is, a set of observable actions open to confirmation and falsification.
Praxeology, likewise implicitly mandates the moral requirement that we can express any action in observable, empirical form. It is likewise a requirement for operational language. Both the physical sciences, and praxeological science, place a requirement for operational language on all scientific and economic statements.
This requirement for EMPIRICISM is what renders praxeology a moral science. As such:
(a) Human moral intuitions, instincts, and norms are universally, a set of prescriptions enumerating the uses and non uses of property.
(b) We can only make visible whether any action is moral or not, by operational language: determination of whether any transfer of property was voluntary.
(c) The reason that we can perform a test of voluntary transfer is that as human beings we are marginally indifferent, and can through subjective experience, objectively determine whether transfers are rational for the actor.
All the logical disciplines are moral disciplines, and all are instrumental methods, and we not only desire, but require these instrumental methods, because we in fact do argue and must argue, and must rely upon these methods, because those methods determine the use of property – firstly the property of our minds, bodies and time.
We require property – albeit the distribution of property rights between individuals, families and commons varies greatly depending upon the structure of production and the structure of the family, and the homogeneity or diversity of the population in all of the above. But regardless of the distribution of normative, or descriptive ownership in property between the collective and the individual,
This is the appropriate and defensible argument in favor of praxeology.
Mises intuited it. Rothbard artfully defended it. But they had to because they lacked the knowledge that we have today. And instead, unfortunately, they relied upon a priori, deductive certainty. A reliance which doomed praxeology to failure in broader economic circles – by simple virtue of the fact that all of economics cannot be deduced from the axiom of action without empirical support.
Very little can be deduced from it. Quite the opposite. But, while we can deduce very little, we can TEST ANY ECONOMIC STATEMENT praxeologically for rationality and voluntary transfer. As such praxeology is in fact, an empirical science, which we test by sympathy, not a rational one one.
They got it wrong. Sorry. Don’t hang onto whether they were right or not. Revel in the fact that we now have the ability to understand that praxeology is a means of measuring and TESTING all human action for whether or not it is voluntary and rational (moral) or involuntary and non-rational (immoral).