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Quotation of the Day…

… is from pages 534-535 of Bruce Caldwell’s and Hansjoerg Klausinger’s excellent 2022 Hayek: A Life, 1899-1950 (original emphasis):

It is the great advantage of a liberal market system that it allows coordination of individual activity without requiring agreement on a common set of values. To be successful, socialist planning that purports to be democratic requires such agreement; without it, some set of values inevitably has to be imposed. The “inevitability” is, it should be noted, a logical condition: if there is to be a plan but there is no agreement on values, the plan must be imposed.

DBx: And so it goes also for “common good capitalism.”

If “common good capitalism” means anything other than capitalism as championed by liberals such as Adam Smith, Frédéric Bastiat, Ludwig von Mises, F.A. Hayek, Milton Friedman, Armen Alchian, James Buchanan, Thomas Sowell, Julian Simon, Deirdre McCloskey, and Robert Higgs, it must mean capitalism that is poked, prodded, and otherwise consciously arranged to satisfy particular concrete ends that “common good capitalists” fear would not be fully enough satisfied under capitalism unprefixed. Therefore, no less than for overtly socialist schemes, “common good capitalist” schemes require that some individuals impose their concrete ends on other individuals. As is true for individuals living under socialism, individuals living under “common good capitalism” would not all be equally free to choose and to pursue their own peaceful ends. Under “common good capitalism,” we’d all have to sacrifice at least some of our concrete ends in order to enable the “common good capitalists” – individuals such as Marco Rubio – who happen to be in power to enjoy greater satisfaction of their preferred concreted ends.

There is, it’s worth repeating, nothing “common good” about “common good capitalism.” The name is a beautiful mask hiding the ugly reality of a scheme that promotes the specific good as desired by power-holders, such as Rubio, by suppressing the freedom of choice of everyone who doesn’t share the particular set of concrete preferences possessed by the in-power “common good capitalists.”

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