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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

If the "community" or the state are prior to the individual, if they have ends of their own independent of and superior to those of the individuals, only those individuals who work for the same ends can be regarded as members of the community.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

One of the inherent contradictions of the collectivist philosophy is that, while basing itself on the humanistic morals which individualism has developed, it is practicable only within a relatively small group. That socialism so long as it remains theoretical is internationalist, while as soon as it is put into practice, whether in Russia or in Germany, it becomes violently nationalist, is one of the reasons why "liberal socialism" as most people in the Western world imagine it is purely theoretical, whole the practice of socialism is everywhere totalitarian. Collectivism has no room for the wide humanitarianism of liberalism but only for the narrow particularism of the totalitarian.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

Collectivism on a world scale seems to be unthinkable--except in the service of a small ruling elite.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

The fact that German anti-Semitism and anti-capitalism spring from the same root is of great importance for the understanding of what has happened there, but this is rarely grasped by foreign observers.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

It is in connection with the deliberate effort of the skilful demagogue to weld together a closely coherent and homogeneous body of supporters that the third and perhaps most important negative element of (the creation of a popular totalitarian movement) enters. It seems to be almost a law of human nature that it is easier for people to agree on a negative program--on the hatred of an enemy, on the envy of those better off--than on any positive task.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

That socialism can be put into practice only by methods which most socialists disapprove is, of course, a lesson learned by many social reformers of the past. The old socialist parties were inhibited by their democratic ideals; they did not possess the ruthlessness required for the performance of their chosen task.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

We must here return for a moment to the position which precedes the suppression of democratic institutions and the creation of a totalitarian regime. In this stage it is the general demand for quick and determined government action that is the dominating element in the situation, dissatisfaction with the slow and cumbersome course of democratic procedure which makes action for action's sake the goal. It is then the man or the party who seems strong and resolute enough "to get things done" who exercises the greatest appeal.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

Just as a democratic statesman who sets out to plan economic life will soon be confronted with the alternative of either assuming dictatorial powers or abandoning his plans, so the totalitarian dictator would soon have to choose between disregard of ordinary morals and failure. It is for this reason that the unscrupulous and uninhibited are likely to be more successful in a society tending towards totalitarianism. Who does not see this has not yet grasped the full width of the gulf which separates totalitarianism from a liberal regime, the utter difference between the whole moral atmosphere under collectivism and the essentially individualist Western civilization.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

Some security is essential if freedom is to be preserved, because most men are willing to bear the risk which freedom inevitably involves only so long as that risk is not too great. But while this is a truth of which we must never lose sight, nothing is more fatal than the present fashion among intellectual leaders of extolling security at the expense of freedom. It is essential that we should re-learn frankly to face the fact that freedom can be had only at a price and that as individuals we must be prepared to make severe material sacrifices to preserve our liberty. If we want to retain this, we must regain the conviction on which the rule of liberty in the Anglo-Saxon countries has been based and which Benjamin Franklin expressed in a phrase, applicable to us in our lives as individuals no less than as nations: "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.

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Thought for the day

From The Road To Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek, 1944, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, 1994, The University of Chicago Press.

The younger generation of today has grown up in a world in which in school and press the spirit of commercial enterprise has been represented as disreputable and the making of profit as immoral, where to employ a hundred people is represented as exploitation but to command the same number as honorable. Older people may regard this as an exaggeration of the present state of affairs, but the daily experience of the university teacher leaves little doubt that, as a result of anticapitalist propaganda, values have already altered far in advance of the change in institutions which has so far taken place.

Excerpted under Fair Use for purposes of non-commercial education, discussion and comment. Any transcription or typographical errors are mine.