Octavian-Dragomir Jora
Octavian-Dragomir Jora
Professor, Ph.D., Habil., at the Bucharest University of Economic Studies, where he has cultivated and developed interests in comparative economic systems, critical/creative thinking, and geo-politics/geo-economics of cultures and civilisations. Dr. Jora is involved in epistemic communities – i.e., board member of the Romanian Economic Society, the Research Center in International Business and Economics, etc. Recently, he received the Woodrow Wilson Scholarship from the Romanian Cultural Institute for research conducted in Washington, D.C., United States of America. He is (co-)author of numerous scientific works (100+ titles), as well as of journalistic op-eds, essays, pamphlets (1000+ titles), his works being distinguished over time with plentiful and prestigious scholarly and mass-media awards. Also, dr. Jora is editor-in-chief of the Œconomica journal and founder editor of The Market for Ideas pop-science magazine (Curriculum Vitae)
Faux Treaty on Witch-Hunting

Faux Treaty on Witch-Hunting

“Russia has invaded Ukraine! Russia must be punished!” Thus goes the most commonly expressed sentiment these days, postulating an imperative that seems, however, by far easier said than done. “Economically, politically”, the speech then emphatically continues, “...and militarily” in a rather light whisper. Yet, even if we were to content ourselves with “verba” without moving further to “facta”, a heady operational riddle is evident to those who pay close attention to the words being used (said usage being, in itself, a factum as much as an intended expression of facts). Which Russia are we referring to? All of Russia? Should V.V. Putin, the “ringleader” who originated this crisis, be condemned before anything and anyone else? Should we also not punish the (active and passive) accomplices of the now infamous head of state: the apparatchiks (who fill the ranks of the country’s political leadership); the oligarchs (from the pseudo-private business); the state-serving intelligentsia (with both its academic and artistic branches)? Maybe sanction the Russian nation itself, for surely it has democratically legitimized the tyrant, either involuntarily (through ignorance) or voluntarily (through deluded conviction)? Why not the Russian culture altogether, with its departed and unborn, since the racketeers have the same unhealthy origins as the Karamazov brothers and poor Karenina?  More


Long Live Europe!

Long Live Europe!

European Union remains one profoundly unaccomplished political project for too many reasons. Despite a continuous external growth, since the inception, and internal maturation, it was not able to fill entirely the “real estate” of the cultural habitat which – by both stretches of the mind and grace of geography – was and is considered to represent the whole (and holy) Europe: the Norwegians and the Swiss were not seduced by the “tender offer” Brussels displayed towards them, though they are solid parts of the continent’s historical trunk either in its “heroic” (the Viking expeditions by sea) or in its “settled” (Europe’s inland highly celebrated democracy) epochs. Also, EU struggles to digest and metabolise some of the Central and Eastern European new-comers, while the Western Balkans, with the residual nation-states of the ex-Yugoslavian failed multinational union, seem, with the notable exception of Croatia, so “estranged” from Europe. More


The War Economy: Of Bits and Bobs

The War Economy: Of Bits and Bobs

There are some key assertions which are axiomatic for the pureblood moralists and demonstrable for utilitarians, such as – “war means defeat even for the victors”, “war is the health of the state”, “peace between nations is inconceivable without limiting the power of states over their own nations”, “a durable order cannot be maintained by the sword”, “in a world of free trade and democracy, there are fewer temptations for war and conquest”. These do not exclude the need for an answer to the following question: “if we are to inevitably have war, how can it be waged rationally from an economic standpoint?”. War is the supreme immorality, - indisputable when it is a war of aggression, but also when it constitutes a hasty rejoinder -, but isn’t it also an immorality, of a lower degree, when it is waged with means that delay or hinder winning it in the most efficient/efficacious way for society? More


The Road to Sibiu, the Road to Wisdom

The Road to Sibiu, the Road to Wisdom

2018 found Romania celebrating a century of nation-state unity. 2019 finds Romania as the home of the European unity. A freely and firmly committed community of nations is one of the most delicate enterprises of mankind, one that up to now no empire has succeeded in preserving. The nation seemed the ultimate aggregate. But ration is the ultimate aggregator. More


Obelix Runs Away from Fiscalix

Obelix Runs Away from Fiscalix

The “fear” of taxation dies hard. In 2013, Gerard Depardieu became a French “tax refugee” in the Russian Federation. Half a decade since then, he became a Russian tax debtor in the Russian Federation. In 2018, he was listed in Russia’s Federal Court Marshals Service database as owing taxes in Saransk (the capital of Mordovia, somewhere in “Yevropeyskaya Rossiya”), where he was registered.  More


Three Unions in a (Life)Boat

Three Unions in a (Life)Boat

The unions of states, in their either federalist or inter-governmental setting, are portrayed in economics and political science literature, by certain scholars and pundits, as quasi-romantic stories and, by others, as purely-cynical undertakings: they are, for the first, expressions of common destinies, while for the second, mere cartels of political exploitation. Though, beyond charitable or circumspect translation of state gatherings, the undeniable facts are that the state, as an organization of humans, has a maximizing logic and that this logic is exercised as the monopoly of (legitimate?) violence with the privilege of (unconsented?) expropriation, by taxation, regulation and inflationary redistribution of purchasing power. The maximization logic of the state (apparatus) – rightly de-homogenized from the rest of society – leads to a triple choice: to increase domestic exploitation, to expand abroad, or both. More


“America’s Subprime-acy” in Retrospect

“America’s Subprime-acy” in Retrospect

Almost ten years have passed since the first symptoms of America’s subprime crisis emerged, yet the lessons of the “age of turbulence” remained unabsorbed by the great public. People devoured semi-explanations imputing the crisis to epidemics of greed and/or stupidity, ignoring the white elephant in the room: the flawed design of the modern finance & banking system. More


Farewell, Camil!

Farewell, Camil!

I met Camil Aurelian Petrescu as if in a revelation: it was not only the scent of the novels and plays of his well-known father, which I had read long time ago, that hit me then; it was not only the scent of freedom that he brought back home from his beloved America to his beloved Romania that I inhaled then; it was simply the scent of a vividly beautiful mind and of a imperturbably good soul. More


A Kingdom in Heaven, a Serfdom on Earth

A Kingdom in Heaven, a Serfdom on Earth

When states become “more sovereign” than human persons and their property rights, when the positive law outweighs the natural one, when people become peoples before being free, here is a question we might ask: will there ever be peace in a land that is so holy for so many, who, by the machinations of the politics of warmongers, arrive at hating each other with such undisguised anger?  More


Santa-Nomics and Santa-Comics Stories

Santa-Nomics and Santa-Comics Stories

The gift of wisdom (which does not reside in Santa’s bag of gifts) also enjoins us to reflect an additional second beyond the first impulse. For instance, Christmas is a parable of austere Birth, but we celebrate it with bells and whistles; Christmas floods us with gifts, but with every useless little thing that we receive, some say, welfare is lost; Christmas remains a Christian holiday, but it externalizes secular glamour into a globalization which is decorated with Xmasy globes. More


The Year 2050, the Imaginary and the Unimaginable

The Year 2050, the Imaginary and the Unimaginable

Both “imaginariums” and “histories”, while differing on essential ingredients, visions and vestiges respectively, share an essential imperfection – incomplete information and/or bounded rationality. We compose mosaics (using also our imagination) about a past which we did not witness; and we extrapolate tendencies/trends (undoubtedly, with a historical basis) for a future which we may or may not be there to witness. Combining “path dependencies” with “disruptive revolutions”, we can generate scenarios with varying confidence.  More


People’s Republic of Competitive Cooperation Present China’s Silky Ties

People’s Republic of Competitive Cooperation
Present China’s Silky Ties

China has a special geometry and geography of time, and whenever you touch its lands and breathe its epochs, you understand that the sizes and units of measure are different. When travelling to China, a foreigner cannot ignore the time-space continuum in which reigns the cosmopolitan-and-comradely cohabitation of apartment skyscrapers, sometime taller than their corporate cousins, pictures of hard-core communist planner Mao featuring on banknotes circulating in a market economy, workers and peasants equipped with much more than blunt sickles and hammers, apparatchiks and free spirits, mundane youngsters and flying shaolin monks. “To understand China’s last hundred years, see Shanghai. To understand China’s last thousand years, see Beijing. And to understand China’s last three thousand years, see Henan Province”, here is a good piece of advice for those who want to take the perfect tour of China. More


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