segunda-feira, fevereiro 15, 2010

# 17

«(...) planning always means planning by government authorities and execution of these plans by order of the government enforced by the police power. Planning is the antithesis of free enterprise and private ownership of the means of production. Planning and capitalism are utterly incompatible. Within a system of planning production is conducted according to the government's orders, not according to the plans of capitalist enterpreneurs eager to profit by best serving the wants of consumers. It is a delusion to believe that planning and free enterprise can be reconciled. No compromise is possible between the two methods. Where the various enterprises are free to decide what to produce and how, there is capitalism. Where, on the other hand, the government authorities do the directing, there is socialist planning. Then the various firms are no longer capitalist enterprises; they are subordinate state organs bound to obey orders. The former entrepreneur becomes a shop manager like the Betriebsfiihrer in Nazi Germany. 

The idea of planning by the organized groups of the various branches of production is very popular with some businessmen. This would amount to a substitution of compulsory cartels for free enterprise and competition. It would set aside capitalism and put entrepreneur syndicalism in its place, something like a replica of the medieval guild system. It would not bring socialism, but allround monopoly with all its detrimental consequences. It would impair supply and put serious obstacles in the way of technical improvements. It would not preserve free enterprise but give a privileged position to those who now own and operate plants, protecting them against the competition of efficient newcomers. It would mean a partial abdication of the state for the benefit of small groups of wealthy men.» (p. 240, 241)

Ludwig von Mises, Omnipotent Government: the rise of the total state and total war (1944)