Monday, March 23, 2009

Wisdom from dead white guys

Winston Churchill:
“Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance and the gospel of envy, its inherent value is the equal sharing of misery.”

Joseph Schumpeter (via former student John Tamny):
In his 1942 book, Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, Schumpeter asked the essential question: “Can capitalism survive?” His unsettling answer was, “No. I do not think it can.” Schumpeter’s words were in no way meant to denigrate capitalism, instead he felt “its very success undermines the social institutions which protect it.”

...the commercial success wrought by the pursuit of profit has created an unproductive elite that lives off the very business profits that it regularly casts a skeptical eye on.

... Schumpeter was of course talking about a United States that he envisioned post World War II, but his fears then don’t stray too far from the concerns of many today. Indeed, he worried that as wars usually accrue to the power of the state, that heavy government spending “would likely evolve into total government control over investment.”

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