Quotes from Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom

Glenn Beck spent an entire show talking about Friedrich Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom. In The Path to Tyranny: A History of Free Society’s Descent into Tyranny, I quote The Road to Serfdom seven times.

  • “Fascism and Communism are merely variants of the same totalitarianism which central control of economic activity tends to produce.”
  • “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.”
  • “Where there is one common all-overriding end there is no room for any general morals or rules… Where a few specific ends dominate the whole of society, it is inevitable that occasionally cruelty may become a duty, that acts which revolt all our feeling, such as the shooting of hostages or the killing of the old or sick, should be treated as mere matters of expediency, that the compulsory uprooting and transportation of hundreds of thousands should become an instrument of policy approved by almost everybody except the victims, or that suggestions like that of a “conscription of woman for breeding purposes” can be seriously contemplated. There is always in the eyes of the collectivist a greater goal which these acts serve and which to him justifies them because the pursuit of the common end of society can know no limits in any rights or values of any individual.”
  • “Though hot socialism is probably a thing of the past, some of its conceptions have penetrated far too deeply in the whole structure of current thought to justify complacency.”
  • “It was the union of the anticapitalist forces of the Right and of the Left, the fusion of radical and conservative socialism, which drove out from Germany everything that was liberal.”
  • “In Germany as early as 1928, the central and local authorities directly control the use of more than half the national income (according to an official German estimate then, 53 percent), they control indirectly almost the whole economic life of the nation. There is, then, scarcely an individual end which is not dependent for its achievement on the action of the state, and the “social scale of values” which guides the state’s action must embrace practically all individual ends.”
  • “The demand for the new freedom was thus only another name for the old demand for an equal distribution of wealth.”

One response to “Quotes from Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom

  1. Pingback: Past century books come to life…the path to tyranny | pindanpost

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