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Quotation of the Day…

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… is from page 60 of one of F.A. Hayek’s greatest essays, his 1945 lecture “Individualism: True and False,” as this essay is reprinted in Studies on the Abuse & Decline of Reason [2], Bruce Caldwell, ed. (2010), which is volume 13 of the Collected Works of F.A. Hayek (original emphases):

To the accepted Christian tradition that man must be free to follow his conscience in moral matters if his actions are to be of any merit, the economists added the further argument that he should be free to make full use of his knowledge and skill, that he must be allowed to be guided by his concern for the particular things of which he knows and for which he cares, if he is to make as great a contribution to the common purposes of society as he is capable of making.  Their main problem was how these limited concerns, which did in fact determine people’s actions, could be made effective inducements to cause them voluntarily to contribute as much as possible to needs which lay outside the range of their vision.  What the economists understood for the first time was that the market as it had grown up was an effective way of making man take part in a process more complex and extended than he could comprehend and that it was through the market that he was made to contribute ‘to ends which were no part of his purpose’.

DBx: Here’s Sheldon Richman on “Individualism: True and False. [3]

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