“In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being
“Government should be set up so that no man need be afraid of another.”
Fundamentally, there are only two ways of coordinating the economic activities of millions. One is central direction involving the use of coercion — the technique of the army and of the modern totalitarian state. The other is voluntary co-operation of individuals — the technique of the market place. Milton Friedman,
Useless laws weaken the necessary laws. Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, De l’esprit des lois (The Spirit of Laws,1748), Book XXIX: Of the Manner of Composing Laws, Ch. 16: Things to be Observed in the Composing of Laws.
By far the most important of all the conditions, under which the production of material commodities goes broadly forward, is liberty of action on the part of the individual; because, wherever such liberty is conceded, association and invention and all other needful conditions follow right along by laws of natural
The system of slavery is necessarily cruel. The lust of dominion inevitably produces hardness of heart, because the state of mind which craves unlimited power, such as slavery confers, involves a desire to use that power, and although I know there are exceptions to the exercise of barbarity on the bodies
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who
I wish my countrymen to consider, that whatever the human law may be, neither an individual nor a nation can ever commit the least act of injustice against the obscurest individual without having to pay the penalty for it. A government which deliberately enacts injustice, and persists in it, will
The inner spiritual chaos of the times, so powerfully created by the dynamics of capitalism itself, is such as to make nihilism an easy temptation. A ‘free society’ in Hayek’s sense gives birth in massive numbers to ‘free spirits’ — emptied of moral substance but still driven by primordial moral
They who have been bred in the school of politics fail now and always to face the facts. Their measures are half measures and makeshifts merely. They put off the day of settlement indefinitely, and meanwhile the debt accumulates. Henry David Thoreau, “Slavery in Massachusetts,” July 4, 1854.
“The defects of the West are innumerable, its crimes and errors very real. But in the end, let’s not forget that we are the only ones to have the possibility of improvement and emancipation that lies in free genius.” Albert Camus, as quoted in Beyond Nihilism: Albert Camus’s Contribution to
Is not the minimal state, the framework for utopia, an inspiring vision? The minimal state treats us as inviolate individuals, who may not be used in certain ways by others as means or tools or instruments or resources; it treats us as persons having individual rights with the dignity this