By Friedrick Hayek
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Extra info for Collectivist Economic Planning: Critical Studies
2 But beyond general statements of this sort, critical examination of the possibilities of a socialist economic policy made little head1 H. H. Gossen, Entwicklung der Gesetze des Menschlichen Verkehrs und der daraus fliessenden Regelnjur menschliches Handeln, Braunschweig, 1854, p. 231: "Dazu folgt aber ausserdem aus den im vorstehenden gefundenen Satzen tiber das Geniessen, und infolgedessen tiber das Steigen und Sinken des Werthes jeder Sache mit Verminderung und Vermehrung der Masse und der Art, dass nur durch Feststellung des PrifJateigenthums der Massstab gefunden wird zur Bestimmung der Quantitiit, welche den Verhiiltnissen angemessen am Zweckmiissigsten von jedem Gegenstand zu produzieren ist.
European capital, as is knowQ, has another role outside Europe besides that which has just been discussed ; it is employed in building railways and in establishing and operating agricultural and industrial undertakings. The interests of the capitalists provide the stimulus; but from the point of view of humanity the useful consequences are what we have just indicated. If on account of a reconstruction of society the forces which to-day transport capital into distant parts should disappear, then something else will have to take their place.
Pierson's Verspreide Economische Geschriften, edited by C. A. Verrijn Stuart (Haarlem, 1910, Vol. ] D 41 COLLECTIVIST ECONOMIC PLANNING words, they must know the significance of the most important economic laws and how these laws operate. Any innovation which was not based upon such knowledge would be a leap in the dark; and it is the aim of theoretical economics to provide us with this knowledge. The workman who does not wish to improve his tools need not concern himself with mechanics, and the landlord who is content to leave his house as it stands need not study architecture.