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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/16212/innovation-requires-economic-freedom/

Innovation Requires Economic Freedom

March 25, 2011 by

A civilization is the product of a definite worldview, and its philosophy manifests itself in each of its accomplishments. FULL ARTICLE by Ludwig von Mises


Bruce Koerber March 26, 2011 at 7:36 pm

Justice Is A Precursor of Economic Freedom!

Innovation requires economic freedom and economic freedom requires justice! And since justice is nowhere to be found in the law systems around the world – since they have been co-opted and corrupted by the ego-driven interpreters and the ego-driven interventionists – the search for justice is of prime importance for all of us!

Stranger March 27, 2011 at 8:53 am

I must disagree. While justice matters to a free society, unjust societies can enjoy economic freedom. China, for example, is an extremely unjust society where a tiny oligarchy monopolizes all sources of power. Despite that, the people enjoy plenty of economic freedom.

Allen Weingarten March 27, 2011 at 3:29 am

Mises points out that ideas are primary. Yet they must be heralded and disseminated, before the mass will accept them.

I submit that this is where the free market views have been out-competed by the statists, who have done a superior job of promulgating their economic views. They have taken a worse product, but won out in the marketplace of ideas by superior advertising. Thus the public believes: it is the evil of the greedy capitalists that cause recessions, depressions, and destructive policies; it is immoral for some to earn billions, while others are in poverty; this must be corrected by government, who acts as Robin Hood.

Were we able to summarize our views in as brief, simple, applicable, and ‘moral’ a form, we would be competitive. Unfortunately, most free marketeers claim that the problem is instead that the government, media & education system is to blame, denying Mises’ view that “In the long run even the most despotic governments are no match for ideas.”

Bruce Koerber March 27, 2011 at 7:17 am

“Were we able to summarize our views in as brief, simple, applicable, and ‘moral’ a form, we would be competitive.”

There is some amazing progress being made along those lines!

Allen Weingarten March 27, 2011 at 12:06 pm

Bruce, I agree. There has been progress in the two important pillars of economic policy, namely dealing with the morality of freedom, and simplification to the point of becoming commonsensical. I have been heartened in recent years with these breakthroughs, but merely want to point out that we have a ways to go.

Fouad March 28, 2011 at 12:49 am

I think the main problem with the liberal/libertarian philosophy, is that it considers individual liberty/freedom as the main and most important virtue for humankind responsible for all the achievements of humanity ! and this is an exageration to say the least…

it is true that liberty is fundamental and essential condition for economic development and for scientific progress and material progress of humanity in general, but it is no less an insufficient condition : cultural efficiency is also essential for humans to profit from liberty. the culture and virtues of hard work, respect of contracts, entrepreneurial culture, belief in science, rationality, logic vs belief in superstition, belief in individual responsibility, belief in the importance of liberty itself…etc are all as impportant as Liberty….

thats why with the same liberal system, different cultures achieve different results…

thats why economic liberty in china is doing miracles, as opposed to whats happening with more liberal systems (a lot of arabic countris, african sountries,south american countries…)

so I agree that everything being equal a more liberal shystem is better, but thats just a tiny part of the whole picture…liberty is not everything as liberal philosophers love to display it, culture also plays a huge role…

Allen Weingarten March 28, 2011 at 3:48 am

Fouad, one man who viewed liberty as an indispensable means, but not as the end, was Lord Acton. He wrote “Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right of being able to do what we ought.”

I also agree with you that culture is more important than government, since culture provides value, while government (at its best) protects the right of the individual to engage in cultural pursuits.

Fouad March 29, 2011 at 1:42 am

@ Allen Weingarten : interesting, do you have links where I could find the writings of Lord Acton ?
And I totally agree with you, Liberty permits people to do what they want to do, but if those people do not want to do good things, well, liberty can do nothing for them…and thats the importance of culture…

for example I really respect the philanthropic/not for profit/donations culture of the americans, in some european countries deduction tax laws for donations are more encouraging and incitive than amrican tax laws, but still amricans donate more than 2% of their GDP compared to less than 0.5% in most european countries…this example shows the impact of culture on economic decisions and human behaviour in general.

Allen Weingarten March 29, 2011 at 3:51 am

@Fouad: You could begin by googling “Acton Institute” which is “an ecumenical think-tank dedicated to the study of free-market economics informed by religious faith and moral absolutes.” This will lead you to a “Bookshoppe”, events, blog, Wikipedia, etc.

Thank you for your thoughts.

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