Musings on F. A. Hayek. Is he really

Discussion in 'Politics' started by editec, Jul 10, 2011.

  1. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    Currently reading F. A. Hayek's book " The Road to Serfdom" published in 1944

    He makes an excellent case for how the West's liberal governments slowly morphed from the basic priniciples of Liberalism into something more akin to governments in the socialist camp.

    He wrote this classic book during WW II when England was at was with the National Socialist State of Hitlerian Germany.

    He critque of socialism's flaws are outstanding.

    But are his throughts reflected by today's so called conservatives who continuously call for more DEREGULATION and Laisse fair government?

    Not really.

    In fact, Hayek sounds MOST like what I would call a SOCIAL PRAGMATIST, rather than any kind of modern American libertarian or conservative thinker the likes of which we read here.

    One example?

    I post the following in response to those of you who think that all we need do is obey the dicates of the Constitution ver batem.

    In other words, when a society is facing having to make a decision about a law or regulation it must create, it can only follow some underlying theme about how liberalism ought to respond.

    What is that underlying theme of Hayek's liberalism?

    Note how the above acknowledges that no document can address EVERY contingency that a nation might face?

    By extention he is telling us that yes, indeed regulations will be necessary, and yes indeed, those regulations will change as society finds they MUST change.


    So those of you who think the bluepront for how our society must be is entirely written in the US constiution are NOT adhering to the dogma of the REAL LIBERAL economists who some of you CLAIM to represent.

    Hayek drives another the nail into the coffin of that common misunderstanding that many of tdoay's lovers of freedom and self proclaining conservative thinkers have today.

    As to government not having a role in forming an effective economy, as so many here insist must be the case?

    Again, today's self proclaiming laissez faire capitalist dogma IS NOT supported by Hayek.


    So much for the theory that Hayek was calling for an end to government interference in the business and economic affairs of society, folks.

    Clearly he understood, as most pragmatist liberals understand today, that government must take a role in the business and economic affairs of the society from whence it is formed.

    If there any among us here who would like to TRULY DISCUSS what LIBERALISM really means, I invite you to explore this book with me here on this board.

    Let us breath together and perhaps we can arrive at some modus vivendi for our nation, and put aside the dogmatic ALL OR NOTHING thinking that pervades most of the discussions that happen in this place.

    I am invitign some of us to THINK LIKE SCHOLARS, rather than to bitch at each other like partisans.

    Any takers?

    This book, which is often referred to as the modern conservatives' BIBLE, needs an indepth consideration.

    It is much deeper and much more thoughtfuul and subtle than what apparently many of you imagine it to be.

    Much like as with Adam Smith, it it NOT the stuff of simpletons' thinking.
     
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    Last edited: Jul 10, 2011
  2. Baruch Menachem
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    Baruch Menachem '

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    What I got out of it was the feeling that the principle of human freedom and dignity was more important than pragmatic compromises with evil.

    That there is, even for the non religious a system of right and wrong independent of government control.

    It is a very good read. And it is proof of the saw that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I am glad you took the time to peruse it.
     
  3. Toro
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    Toro Diamond Member

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    Hayek rocks.
     
  4. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    That's my overall impression of this polemic, too, Baruch.

    AFter decades of pondering the question of what kind of government, and what sort of economic system ought mankind strive to crate for himself, I confess that my POV is that it almost does not matter.

    Not at ALL because one system isn't superior to the other.

    I think it apparent that capitalism is far more successful in creating wealth by tapping inot the ambition and creativity of the invidudual, and I also think it far more successful in allowing SOME petty freedoms for the people under that system, too.

    But as I see it, and I think Hayek glossed this problem over, the problem with modern capitalism (not the theoretical kind we pretend, but the real kind that we live with) is that it DEMANDS social order and top down dictation, not MUCH less than socialism demands it.

    Where our so-call capitalist system is headed now, is no less socialistic than anything envivioned by Marx or Englels.

    About the only people who are truly being liberated by the system that is rapidly developing is the CAPITAL CLASS. Is that outcome really so much better than when the landed gentry controlled feudal society and economy?

    In fact this world seems headed toward a sort of worlwide feudal societal system, if anything, much thanks to our breaking down of protective nationalistic economic systems.

    The masters of capital ARE being liberated from the dictates (and responsibilities, too) of national indentity, and are striving to do everything they can to ursurp the power of nationalism, in favor of a kind of internationlism that is an every more egregious example of CENTRAL PLANNING than the Soviet.

    Only NOW the central planners are the BANSTERS, and they SUCK at planning, as ought to be OBVIOUS given this most recent (but hardly uncommon) banking disaster that they foisted upon the modern industrialized world.

    Only in the case of where we are headed now, the central planning isn't even pretending to be controlled by forces of democractic representatives, and is instead all based on CAPITAL TYRANNY.

    Now of course, one cannot expect Hayek to address the end game of this development of modern FREE TRADE, or the international monetary games that the masters of national economies are now playing as they systematicall bankript one nation after the other.

    One certainly cannot fault Hayek for failing to see a half century into the future.

    But seriously, Barack, (and speak to you seriously because you have proven time and again to be a serious thinker about social science) do you really believe where the masters are taking us NOW, is going to be libertopia?

    They are, if anything, taking us in exactly the opposite direction. Liberty will be (de facto) only the wealthy will truly have. The rest of mankind will have the kind of liberty that only those with nothing left to lose will enjoy.

    As yourself this...

    Do we have less regulation now that we've been granting the supply side more and more authority and less and less national responsibility for the last 40 years?

    Are we a freer people now than we were when Reagan took office?

    Are our governments (federal state and local) more or less intrusive?

    In theory, there are more democratically elected governments worldwide who are also practicing a capitalistic economic system today than at any time in human history.

    Are people freer?

    Are governments less oppressive?

    Are there less wars?

    How long must people wait before the benefits of the death of nationalism and the advancement of this internationalism based on the domination by wealth, becomes something that actally improves the human condition for most of us?

    Cause I do not see anything on the horizon that is taking us in that direction.

    In fact, wuite the contrary.

    We are becoming a less free people than EVER in my brief lifetime.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2011
  5. LordBrownTrout
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    LordBrownTrout Gold Member

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    Good read. "There is nothing in the basic principle of liberalism to make it a STATIONARY CREED; there are NO-HARD-AND-FAST RULES FIXED ONCE AND FOR ALL."

    I agree and disagree with this notion. There has to be a fixed/ground document to set a nation upon its course. That should be a basic tenet in survival in reference to a nation - - as it has to be able to draw from it's originations and meet high moral standards. The empires of past usually always had an underlying theme of moral rot, decay, greed, decadence, just before they fell.

    BUT, a constitution should leave room for improvement upon itself. No one on this earth is perfect.


    Therein lies the paradox.
     
  6. whitehall
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    whitehall Gold Member

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    Funny how the left can read a book and get exactly the opposite viewpoint than the author intended. It's a knee jerk myth circulated around the liberal camp that conservatives "continually call for deregulation and lassie-fair government". This is such a symplistic and foolish not to mention ignorant notion that it defies reality. Like any other sane American, conservatives appreciate government regulations but they draw the line at government control. Who wouldn't want reasonable regulations and trade agreements as well as corporate law? The problem for progressives (as they like to call themselves these days) is that they rely on emotion instead of reason. They can't defend the creeping socialism they support or ignore so they invent symplistic phrases that support their bigotry.
     
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  7. 8537
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    8537 Senior Member

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    To the topic at hand: I disagree with some of the economic conclusions Hayek reaches (as I do with most Austrian economists), but much respect his ability to be pragmatic and to address problems with appropriate solutions free of ideology.

    How can you have effective regulation without a controlling entity with enforcement capability?

    You should read some posts around here - you'll find a number of people who wouldn't want that and believe it's an unnecessary intrusion.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2011
  8. Contumacious
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    Contumacious Radical Freedom

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    HUH?

    Article Five of the United States Constitution

    The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate."

    .
     
  9. daveman
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    daveman Diamond Member

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    The fundamental principle that in the ordering of our affairs we should make as much use as possible to the spontanious forces of society, and resort to as little as possible to coersion, is capable of an infinite variety of applications​
    Like the left's insistence that abortion be safe, legal, and rare, the bolded is lip service and doesn't stand up to scrutiny.

    The left loves to force adoption of their policies by coercion.
     
  10. LordBrownTrout
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    LordBrownTrout Gold Member

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    Thanks for stating the obvious. I already knew that.
     

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