… is from page 216 of the 2016 re-issue of my late colleague Don Lavoie’s superb 1985 volume National Economic Planning: What Is Left? :
This libertarian radicalism sought to carefully establish the rules of permissible conduct in such a way as to allow the competitive forces of the free market to do their progressive work. The evolution of the economy would be driven by the principles of natural law. Social progress was to be the indirect consequence of the competitive engagement of human minds with one another, not the direct result of the conscious planning of any single organization of minds. It was to be a society where no person was to coercively rule over another but where each one was to be persuasively influenced by others.
DBx: A genuinely lovely and civilized vision.
Yet here we are today, in 2019, with clamoring coming from the political right no less than from the political left for the state to take over the allocation of resources.
Not one in 1,000 of those who so clamor has the remotest understanding of what will be the actual consequences of the implementation of their schemes. And the few who do understand are the few who have some real prospect of being in the driver’s seat when the schemes are implemented.
Buckle up, people. The ride will be rough … and the destination unpleasant.