Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: No, Mises Was not Wrong about the Middle of the Road

  1. #1

    No, Mises Was not Wrong about the Middle of the Road


    Mises Wire
    Eduard Bucher
    05/20/2024


    Ultimate Fighting Championship fighter Renato Moicano’s recent statement that patriots should read Ludwig von Mises has led the Institute of Economic Affairs to upload a nine-minute video addressing the most googled questions about Mises. It is largely accurate and does justice to some of Mises’s major contributions, and for these reasons it is to be lauded; however, the presenter, Kristian Niemitz, notes that Mises’s intransigence led to his getting “a few things wrong,” including his belief that “there could be no such thing as a mixed economy in the long term.” In contradiction of Mises’s position, he argues, “Virtually all the world’s economies are mixed economies of one kind or another.”

    The position under attack is Mises’s famous 1950 article, “The Middle of the Road Leads to Socialism,” in which he shows that each intervention

    proves abortive from the very point of view of the government and the groups it was eager to favor. It brings about a state of affairs, which—again from the point of view of the government—is even less desirable than the previous state of affairs which it was designed to improve.


    As Mises points out, this necessitates that the government either nullify the intervention in question or intervene again, this time in the sectors tangential to that in which the aforementioned intervention took place, in order to mitigate the damage. In the latter case, the follow-up interventions induce similar problems of their own, requiring even further interventions, and since there exists no sector that is completely decoupled from the rest of the economy, this process leads to an ever-increasing socialization of the entire economy.

    Summarizing the inherent instability of interventionism as a so-called third way, Mises shows that such an economic policy must necessarily tend toward a progressive socialization of ever more industries or the iterative abstention of market interference and the progressive liberalization (in the classical sense) of the entire economy:

    The conflict of the two principles is irreconcilable and does not allow for any compromise. Control is indivisible. Either the consumers’ demand as manifested on the market decides for what purposes and how the factors of production should be employed, or the government takes care of these matters. There is nothing that could mitigate the opposition between these two contradictory principles. They preclude each other. Interventionism is not a golden mean between capitalism and socialism.


    But then what should we make of Niemitz’s observation that we find only mixed economies in real life? In point of fact, it confirms Mises’s assertion, which states that over time, intervention will either increase or decrease and cannot stay stable. Yes, we find many mixed economies, but a glance at the relevant statistics will show that, in accordance with Mises’s prognosis, the size and scope of government intervention is everywhere on the rise. Anecdotally, Western governments recently demonstrated their ability to intervene on a previously unimaginable scale in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Thus, Mises was right; we are indeed well on our way toward progressive socialization of the entire economy.



    https://mises.org/mises-wire/no-mise...ut-middle-road
    ____________

    An Agorist Primer ~ Samuel Edward Konkin III (free PDF download)

    The End of All Evil ~ Jeremy Locke (free PDF download)



  2. Remove this section of ads by registering.
  3. #2
    Not to pick any bones here, but ALL roads lead to socialism. Democracies, corporatism, capitalism, fascism, anarchy... Any system naturally leads to more centralized control over that system. It's the nature of human interaction. Every individual, and by extension, every organization of individuals, has an incentive to grow their power and influence over things and try to "control" them to the best of their abilities. It's why a centralized government is bad because you can't opt out and choose a competitor.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm all about Mises. It's just that the slippery slope argument can be applied everywhere. Liberty takes eternal vigilance to stand in opposition to humankind's natural tendencies to grow power.
    "And now that the legislators and do-gooders have so futilely inflicted so many systems upon society, may they finally end where they should have begun: May they reject all systems, and try liberty; for liberty is an acknowledgment of faith in God and His works." - Bastiat

    "It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere." - Voltaire

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by CaptUSA View Post
    Not to pick any bones here, but ALL roads lead to socialism. Democracies, corporatism, capitalism, fascism, anarchy... Any system naturally leads to more centralized control over that system. It's the nature of human interaction. Every individual, and by extension, every organization of individuals, has an incentive to grow their power and influence over things and try to "control" them to the best of their abilities. It's why a centralized government is bad because you can't opt out and choose a competitor.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm all about Mises. It's just that the slippery slope argument can be applied everywhere. Liberty takes eternal vigilance to stand in opposition to humankind's natural tendencies to grow power.

    ____________

    An Agorist Primer ~ Samuel Edward Konkin III (free PDF download)

    The End of All Evil ~ Jeremy Locke (free PDF download)

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by PAF View Post
    But then what should we make of Niemitz’s observation that we find only mixed economies in real life? In point of fact, it confirms Mises’s assertion, which states that over time, intervention will either increase or decrease and cannot stay stable. Yes, we find many mixed economies, but a glance at the relevant statistics will show that, in accordance with Mises’s prognosis, the size and scope of government intervention is everywhere on the rise. Anecdotally, Western governments recently demonstrated their ability to intervene on a previously unimaginable scale in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Thus, Mises was right; we are indeed well on our way toward progressive socialization of the entire economy.
    Central banking is Marxism in drag. The entire world economy is practically socialist, with the exception of some local economies in US red states, and very large-cap industries in the Russosphere where the tragic lessons of communism have finally been learnt at the cost of countless millions murdered, starved or otherwise killed. We are in for a very rough ride in the near future.

    The apologists for the status quo always try to "asterisk" everything, as though everyone who lived before they were born was just being over-confident whenever they spoke. Somehow, the apologists themselves are the exception to this, and their pronouncements that Mises/et. al. "got a few things wrong" is not itself an example of baseless confidence. It's a trick I'm running into more and more online in the last couple years, it seems to be saturating the entire Internet. These people are self-appointed experts in the exceptions that supposedly disprove the rule. This kind of acid-etch pedantry eventually corrodes away all possibility of communication because it is impossible to make any sort of claim whatsoever without somebody piping up with a supposed "exception". Note how this is isomorphic to gender-theory -- any form of generalization about gender is ipso facto invalid and any attempt at communication on the subject becomes drowned in a cacophony of "exceptions". The end-result is that communication, as such, becomes completely impossible, and we are all locked into some kind of weird, non-verbal game of social posturing. Aka Clown World.

    But Mises wrote about this, too: The Revolt Against Reason.
    Last edited by ClaytonB; 05-22-2024 at 01:54 PM.
    Jer. 11:18-20. "The Kingdom of God has come upon you." -- Matthew 12:28



Similar Threads

  1. Community paints blue stripe in middle of road to honor cops
    By Suzanimal in forum Open Discussion
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 12-03-2016, 07:05 PM
  2. The Economics of the Middle-of-the-Road Policy [AUDIO of lecture by Ludwig von Mises]
    By Occam's Banana in forum Austrian Economics / Economic Theory
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-30-2015, 08:36 AM
  3. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-25-2013, 01:57 PM
  4. Article claiming Mises wrong?
    By ronpaulhawaii in forum Economy & Markets
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 01-25-2009, 02:11 PM
  5. Obama Stimulus Package - paving the wrong road? - QandO
    By Lucille in forum Grassroots Central
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-08-2009, 05:50 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •