Defending the Undefendable I

See below for two interesting letters regarding my book Undefendable I (published in 1976) and my replies to their authors. (Defending the Undefendable II was published in 2013, and I am now working on Defending the Undefendable III; each book has an entirely new and different cast of characters.)

From: W
Sent: Saturday, January 13, 2018 12:59 PM
Subject: interested in Libertarian thought
Dear Dr. Block, I am a registered Republican but a friend of mine has recently been working to get me interested in Libertarian ideas and has suggested that I read a couple of your books and follow your blog. I just wanted you to know that I found Defending the Undefendable to be very interesting and very funny. Thank you for writing such an amazingly good book. Sincerely, W. P.S. The cartoons in Defending the Undefendable really added to the book. If you don’t mind my asking, where did you find them? Or did you draw them yourself?

Dear W: Thanks. The cartoons were drawn by a professional, Charles Rodrigues. I agree with you, they are excellent. In their review of this book of mine, the Sunday London Times Literary Supplement said that the only good thing about this book was those cartoons. Oy vey. I found the cartoon about the pimp in a magazine. I wrote to him asking him to illustrate other chapters with other cartoons, and he did so, for a fee.

From: B
Sent: Saturday, January 06, 2018 3:43 PM
Subject: Follow up
Dr. Block, I just wanted to say thank you for the welcoming response I received following my rather groupie-like previous email. I was overwhelmed. Among others, I still think Defending the Undefendable is one the finest pieces of economic literature I’ve ever encountered behind only Man, Economy, and State (just barely, too. What can I say? It’s so ground-up). That being said, I have a nice set-up at XYZ University with free housing and scholarship. Had I been 18 again, I would’ve been at Loyola. At this point though, I have to stick with the game plan, graduate from XYZ, and then look for grad school opportunities. I have no idea what kind of bureaucratic runaround you’d have to go through, but it would be a dream come true if you could orchestrate some kind of economic Ph. D. program down there in New Orleans. That’s the only thing that stopped me from transferring there this year. Anyway, thanks for your time and your writing. Warm regards, B

Dear B: Thanks for your compliment about this book of mine. But to mention this effort of mine in the same category as MES is way over the top. Rothbard’s book is one for the ages. Mine is a mere very pale carbon copy of his. But I’m honored you mention both books in the same sentence.

Hey, Loyola gives scholarships too. Sometimes full ones. If we did have a Ph.D. program here, you’d be unwise to come here as an undergraduate, for then you would have the same set of professors at both levels. Please reconsider your choice of school for undergraduate and enroll here. I’d LOVE to have you as my student. I suggest you peruse this material:

Block, Walter E. 2017. “C’mon Down To New Orleans; The Water’s Fine. Enroll at Loyola University.” June 27;

C’mon Down To New Orleans; The Water’s Fine. Enroll at Loyola University

Loyola Economics Students Published Widely in Refereed Journals;

Block, Walter. 2017. “The Best Place to Study Undergraduate Economics.” June 30;

Wenzel, Robert. 2017. Interview with Walter E. Block. “The Inside Scoop on Studying Economics at Loyola University-New Orleans” September 3;

Top Ten Contemporary Academics Helping The Political Right (#8)

100 Most Influential Libertarians: A Newsmax/FreedomFest List (#46)


5:17 pm on January 21, 2018