The New Prohibitionists

Sabrin Murray 2.26.18 04

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Throughout American history statists across the political spectrum have supported prohibition.  Prohibition punishes people from exercising their right to consume whatever product they want or own a firearm or any other “dangerous weapon.”

One of the latest targets of the old and new prohibitionists is their war on “disinformation.”  Not surprisingly, the most vocal anti-disinformation individuals have been the greatest disinformation hoaxsters.  Whether it was Russian collusion hoax, the Hunter Biden laptop denial, the imminent climate “crisis,” the Covid hysteria, and the myriad of other false assertions during the past few years, the statists entrenched in DC, in the military-industrial complex, and the Big Pharma-CDC-FDA connection have been systematically lying to the American people about the risks they face. 

The most widespread disinformation is the need to fund “our ally, Ukraine, against Russia.  Substantial evidence exits that the US did not want a peace deal between Ukraine and Russia.   In other words, the Biden administration and our allies have blood on their hands as well and the massive destruction in Ukraine.  For this reason alone, Biden or whoever will be the Democratic presidential nominee does not deserve to be elected the next president.

In Florida the House of Representatives passed by a vote of 106-13 a ban on social media use for anyone under 16 years old.  The justification for this ban is the “addictive” nature of social media on youngsters.

One legislator who opposed the bill stated, “Allowing parents to have the ability to make decisions on how they parent their child is the reason we passed (the voucher expansion bill) last year,” said Rep. Ashley Gantt, D-Miami, who voted against the bill. “In this bill, we’re saying parents have no ability at all to make the ultimate decision.” 

In other words, conservatives want parents to have more input and control over their children’s education but want the state to bypass their control over their kids’ social media use.  Logical inconsistency is the hallmark of the political class. 

In a free society, the state does not interfere with parents raising their children nor does it ban people from harming themselves.   

Using the law to ban anything is counterproductive, to say the least. The effects of prohibition are black markets where vast numbers of individuals use violence to bypass the government’s prohibitions in order to provide the goods and services some/many people want.  Instead of letting people make their own decisions—if they are peaceful–the state creates a class of criminals who want to meet consumer demand.

As Ludwig von Mises observed:

“Whoever is convinced that indulgence or excessive indulgence in these poisons is pernicious is not hindered from living abstemiously or temperately. This question cannot be treated exclusively in reference to alcoholism, morphinism, cocainism, etc., which all reasonable men acknowledge to be evils. For if the majority of citizens is, in principle, conceded the right to impose its way of life upon a minority, it is impossible to stop at prohibitions against indulgence in alcohol, morphine, cocaine, and similar poisons. Why should not what is valid for these poisons be valid also for nicotine, caffein, and the like? Why should not the state generally prescribe which foods may be indulged in and which must be avoided because they are injurious?”

We can now add social media to Mises’s insights.


“There is a right way and a wrong way, always choose the right way.”  Abraham Sabrin (1914-2001) “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future!”  Niels Bohr

Every Wednesday at 11:05am talk show host Gary Nolan and I discuss the economy and politics.  The Fort Myers Mises Circle presentations are available online

Latest podcast on healthcare with host Johnathan Westover; Incentivizing wellness podcast with Bernadette Pajer; the Human Action podcast with Bob Murphy on my American journey; Joseph Cotto and I discuss Argentina and the US, and the Human podcast with Bob Murphy on healthcare; Robert Scott Bell and I discuss healthcare on the second hour of his podcast.


Murray Sabrin, PhD, is emeritus professor of finance, Ramapo College of New Jersey. Dr. Sabrin is considered a “public intellectual” for writing about the economy in scholarly and popular publications. His new book, The Finance of Health Care: Wellness and Innovative Approaches to Employee Medical Insurance (Business Expert Press, Oct. 24, 2022), and his other BEP publication, Navigating the Boom/Bust Cycle: An Entrepreneur’s Survival Guide (October 2021), provides decision makers with tools needed to help manage their businesses during the inexecrable business cycle.  Sabrin’s autobiography, From Immigrant to Public Intellectual: An American Story, was published in November, 2022.

Murray’s Newsletter is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.



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