Hayek’s slippery slope

The National Interest/Neil McInnes

“In fact, Hayek said, central planning led, via cumulative attempts to mend its inevitable failures, to ‘a servile state’ (he recalled Hilaire Belloc’s 1913 book of that name). It led to serfdom, to a condition ‘scarcely distinguishable from slavery.’ Moreover, any attempt at getting a little bit pregnant in this domain, by toying with moderate planning and a ‘middle way’ between capitalism and socialism, would set the democracies on a slippery slope that would end, more slowly but just as surely, in that same serfdom. The free market was not only more efficient economically but indispensable for political and cultural freedom. Its enemies were intellectuals, meddling politicians–and unbridled democracy, which is to say, oppression and spoilation by demagogues invoking the unrestricted will of the majority.”

USAGOLD note:  Given the developments in American politics over the past several months, including the left’s sudden embrace of Modern Monetary Theory, it might be worthwhile to revisit the thinking of Frederich von Hayek and, in particular, his book, The Road to Serfdom. Von Hayek was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1974. The article linked is a review of that book and highlights many of von Hayek’s principles. He memorably dedicated the book to “The socialists of all parties”.

Repost from 4-23-2019, article publication date = 3-1-1998

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