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Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 191 of the profound 1976 Vol. II (“The Mirage of Social Justice”) of F.A. Hayek’s trilogy, Law, Legislation, and Liberty:

The constructivist prejudice which still makes so many socialists scoff at the ‘miracle’ that the unguided pursuit of their own interests by the individuals should produce a beneficial order is of course merely the reverse form of the dogmatism which opposed Darwin on the ground that the existence of order in organic nature was proof of intelligent design.

DBx: Hayek is correct, although his choice of the phrase “reverse form” is inaccurate.

What Hayek means by “reverse form” is that many people who correctly recognize the fact that undesigned yet productive orders arise among biological phenomena – and who rightly dismiss as uninformed and unscientific any and all denials of the reality of natural selection in the world of biology – ‘reverse’ themselves by denying the reality of undesigned yet productive economic order.

But the dogmatism of those who reject the reality of spontaneous order in economic phenomena is exactly the same, in all essential respects, as is the dogmatism of those who reject the reality of spontaneous order in biological phenomena. In both cases, dogmatic attachment to creationism – or the inability to comprehend the fact that complex, useful orders can and do arise without being designed or intended – blinds the dogmatists, as well as the intellectually immature, to the reality of spontaneous orders.