By G R Steele

John Maynard Keynes and Friedrich Hayek had critical variations of opinion whilst it got here to assessing the fractured inter-war global. G. R. Steele alternatives aside this debate and argues persuasively that Hayek's outlook will end up to be the extra enduring.

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Extra info for Keynes and Hayek: The Money Economy (Foundations of the Market Economy)

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Although Keynes describes his early self as a rationalist, ‘who believed in reasonable human nature and a world characterised by ‘decent rational human beings’ led astray by obscurantist customs and traditions . . from which, however, they could be detached by the power of reason’ (Mini 1994: 62), his endorsement of ‘the traditions which embody the most secure and successful choices of former generations’ (Keynes [1936] 1973: 380) is clearly contradictory. It is a safe assertion that Keynes and Hayek are close in the distinction that each suggests should be drawn between rational action (in the strict logical sense) and reasonable behaviour (in the sense of the best practical means to secure a coherent socio-economic order).

Hayek 1978b: 219) – Hayek suggests that Keynes is not entirely to blame and he believes that he would have opposed the policies that caused the world-wide post-war inflation. He recalls asking Keynes whether he was not concerned about what some of his disciples were making of his theories. After a not very complementary remark about the persons concerned he proceeded to reassure me: those ideas had been badly needed at the time he had launched them. But I need not be alarmed: if they should ever become dangerous I could rely upon him that he would again quickly swing round public opinion – indicating by a quick movement of his hand how rapidly that would be done.

Rather, it is necessary for diverse forms to be tested in order to secure the most successful adaptations. Political liberalism is the creed that secures the diversity that is necessary to achieve an harmonious social evolution. Under the precepts of liberalism, government administers only those resources that are placed at its disposal by the wishes of a majority; but Vision in economics 27 government constrained by the law is unsuited to the further task of legislation. Hayek suggests that this might rest with a constitutionally bound legislative assembly, whose sole function would be to make and amend general laws of contract, tort and property.

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