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*Most of these are works in progress

Chapter 10: "Three main reasons why such a numerous and strong group with fairly homogeneous views is not likely to be formed by the best but rather by the worst elements of any society. By our standards the principles on which such a group would be selected will be almost entirely negative." 1.) Hakey supposes that "in general," the higher the education and intelligence of individuals the more their views and tastes are differentiated and the less likely they are to agree on a particular hierarchy. Therefor, to find uniformity of outlook and taste, it is nescesary to "descend" into the regions of the population that have low moral and intelectual standards. "It is the lowest common denomiator that unites the greatest number of people." 2.) The would be dictator will be able to collect most easily the support of those who have no strong convictions of their own. His ranks will be swelled by the loud and insecent drumming of his ideas into the minds of people who are easily swayed, and whose "passions and emotions are readily aroused." 3.) It is far easier for people to agree on a negative program - hatred of an outside group, envy of the better off - than to agree on any positive program. Hayek observes: the highlighting the distiction between "we" and "they" is an essential ingredient in "knitting together a group for common action." Inherent contradiction of collectivist philosophy: Theoretical socialism is internationalist (being based on humanistic morals derived from individualism), while practicable socialism is intensely nationalist. - "The desire of an individual to indentify with a group is frequently the result of a feeling of inferiority and that therefor his want will be satisfied ofnly if membership in the group confers some superiority over others." - Hayek observes: It seems that the very fact that the individual must curb violent inclinations toward "his own" induces that individual to join up, as only group membership, and the ready-made enemy it provides, will allow him to act upon his inclinations. Hayek describes a confilict between collectivist morals, and individual morals. He claims that individual morals are absolute in so far as they disregard the outcome: torture is wrong, no matter what. While the collectivist believes that torture is moral so long as it serves the greater good, ie, the collective. Takeaway: Collective action and its totalitarian + ruthless and unscrupulous are a match made in heaven. Frank H. Knight: "... the probability of the people in power being individuals who would dislike the possession and exercies of power is on a level with the probability that an extremely tender-heardted person would get the job of whipping-master in a slave plantation." Chapter 11 - The End of Truth: Totalitarian Propaganda: "The moral consequences of totalitarian propganda ... are of [sic] a profound kind. They are destructive of all morals because they undermine one of the foundations of all morals: the sense of and the respect for truth." Discusses the idea of forming a mythology - from feeling to scientific theory - to support unification. References Plato's "Noble Lies": A lie told by a leader to a person to get that person to fulfill the role the leader thinks bests suits him in society. References Sorrel's "Myths": "...successful political opposition must use violence..." + social myths are necessary to insipre such collective action. "The most effective way of making people accpet the validity of the values they are to serve is to presuade them that they are really the same as those which they, or at least the best among the, have always held, but which were not properly understood or recognized before." On dissent and minority views in intellectual process - diversity, differences in thought: "It is of its essence that its [the interaction of diverse knoweledge and views] reasults cannot be predicted, that we cannot know which views will assist this growth and which will not - in short, that this growth cannont be governed by any views which we now posses without at the same time limiting it." Hakey continues: "To 'plan' or 'organize' the growth of mind, or, for that matter, progress in general, is a contradiction in terms." Me: Imagine if evolution worked in parallel with some planning system, taintable by views such as the "fact" that bipedal movement was superior to all other. Quadrapedal movement, which is observably faster today, would never be tried. Thus inherently evolution would be broken. Hayek concludes somewhat succinctly: "The tragedy of collectivist thought is that, while it starts out to make reason supreme, it ends by destroying the reason because it misconceives the process on which the growth of reason depends." Last paragraph in chapter (from which above is quoted) hits like truck. Chapter 12 - The Socialist Roots of Nazism Hayek: Nazi Socialism is not without intellectual background. And its system, once the basic tenants have been accepted, is a logical one. Germany wasn't alone in defeat, suffering, and a resultant nationalist wave, so why nazism in Germany and not elsewhere? Hayek remarks that it was the absense of a stong bourgeoisie which lead Germany down this path. "It is significant that the acknowledged leaders of National Socialism - Fichte, Rodbertus, and Lassalle - are at the same time the acknowledged fathers of socialism." It was the youth, not reactionaries and conservatives who were wrapped into the Nazi fold... Until Russian Revolution, Germany was the only place where Marxian elements penetrated thought to a large extent - largely due to one Werner Sombart, who published Handler und Helden (Merchants and Heros) in 1915. "To regard war as inhuman and senseless is a rpoduct of commercial views." I believe Hayek is here paraphrasing Sombart. Sombart was considered a bit "too much" at the time (first world war) - he thought the presence of safety razors in the english trenches was the most contemptable expression of the English zeal for individual freedom and comfort - but a contemporary, one Johann Plenge, arrived at a similar philosophical point. Plenge wrote Marx und Hegel, which lead to a "modern Hegel renaissance". Should check out Plenge's "1789 and 1914: The symbolic years in the history of the political mind." Hayek describes it as being devoted to the conflict between the 1789 ideal of freedom, and the 1914 ideal of organization. This idea that organization was at the heart of socialism, was initially somewhat divorced from "ruthless power politics" - what would become central to Hitler's world order - but toward the end of the end of the war the two had merged to a large extent in the minds of scientists and political thinkers. Hayek's example is Plenge. Walther Rathenau, the Jewish chief of material procurement during WWI advocated for the continuation of wartime planning in peace time. He was assassinated in 1922, but his writings, Hayeks claims, probably did more than any others to determine the economic views of the late war, and post war generation in Germany. Rathenau's collaborators went on to "form the backbone of Goring's Fire-Year Plan administration." Hayek spends some time describing the way German socialists began to view English Liberalism as evil, and the antagonist of socialism. The Liberal ideal of freedom vs. the Socialist ideal of freedom: I'm interested much in this... Hayek also notes that liberal notions of freedom cause weak government to be viewed positively: "..English Individualism, according to which a state with a weak government is a liberal state, and every restriction upon the freedom of the individual conceived as the product of autocracy and militarism." [Quote from Paul Lensch's "Three Years of World Revolution"] Lensch on one result of universal suffrage: "The state has undergone a process of socialization, and Social Democracy has undergone a process of nationalization." As social democrats occupied more and more political positions, they were operated on more and more by the forces of the state. Oswalt Spengler on English vs. Prussian economic systems (very 'reductionist'): "The structure of the English nation is based on the distinction between rich and poor, that of the Prussian on that between command and obedience. The meaning of class distinction is accordingly fundamentally different in the two countries." [From "Preussentum und Sozialismus"] Hayek seems to be generally painting the shift in Germany/Prussia towards seeing liberalism as "the archenemy". In opposition to the liberal west, which won the first world war (against socialism), Germany wanted, and did remake itself into a socialst nation, in the form of the third Reich, which combined traditional german values with socialism. Most important among these traditional values seems to have been militarism, sacrifice for the greater good, pragmatism. The fight against all forms of liberalism united conservatives and socialists. Chapter 13 - The Totalitarians in Our Midst Dense. Hayek seems to be describing, by way of exemplary writing, that pieces of the totalitarian ethos are encouraged frequently in English countries. It's the whole that's identifiable and despised, but individual tenants of totalitarianism spring up frequently, and without much reproach. Hakey: On how we confuse the Hitler's antisemitism as representative of ideals incompatible with those of the "Left": "In fact, one of the surprising features of the political emigration from Germany is the comparatively small number of refugees from the Left who are not 'Jews' in the German sense of the Term." [Paraphrasing the continuation, Hayek continues: How often do we hear the merits of the German economic mobilization prefaced by an admission like 'if it weren't for the Jewish issue'....] Hayek spends some time on the works of E.H. Carr, a British historian and international relations theorist. According to Hayek, Carr thought that the British anti-German stance during the rise of Nazism, and subsequent involvement in WWII was hypocritical, as the fundamental German style economic reform were not in fact at odds with British economic theory. The is reminiscent of the EU now, as Hayek portrays Carr as a proponent, or at least in support of, the German 'wide area economy', which Hitler attempted to create as he sought to take over and manage larger and larger sections of Europe. [Hayek here referencing Carr's "Conditions of Peace"] Hayek concludes his section on Carr with his views on War: ".. [Carr] correspondingly [to his views on planned economics] pities 'the well-meaning people (especially in English-speaking countries) who, steeped in the nineteenth-century tradition, persist in regarding war as senseless and devoid of purpose,' and rejoices in the 'sense of meaning and purpose' which war, 'the most powerful instrument of social solidarity,' creates." [Quote again from Carr's "Conditions of Peace", from the section titled "The Moral Functions of War"] On the unique role science played in the rise of National Socialism: "The way in which, in the end, with few exceptions, her scholars and scientists put themselves readily at the service of the new rulers is one of the most depressing and shameful spectacles in the whole history of the rise of National Socialism. It is well know that particularly the scientists and engineers, who had so loudly claimed to be the leaders on the march to a new and better world, submitted more readily than almost any other class to the new tyranny." For Hayek, very direct, accusatory. Returning to more general trends, Hayek writes of the trend toward monopolistic organization of industry: "The movement is, of course, deliberately planned mainly by the capitalist organizers of monopolies, and they are thus one of the main sources of this danger [totalitarianism]." Sadly, (for us reading this now) Hayek writes that the organizers are not explicitly trying to establish totalitarian control, but rather form "a sort of corporative society in which the organized industries would appear as semi-independent and self-governing 'estates'. But they are as shortsighted as their German colleagues in believing that they will be allowed not only to create but also for any length of time to run such a system." Damn. He continues, that these entrepreneurial actors themselves aren't too dangerous, but with the support of other groups, they can become so. Hayek suggests two ways they may do this: sharing their gains, or by convincing other that their success of the entrepreneurs is good for the other groups! #1 sounds like the 'donor class', and we're painfully familiar with #2. Noting that there likely exist inevitable monopolies, Hayek considers that either they may be kept in private hands, or controlled by the state. Of these two options, he sees the state control as being far worse, as it additionally combines monopolies under a single roof, subverting the purpose of the state further than if a monopolies in various industries operated independently. He goes on to say that what he thinks has the best chance of working, is to have a strong state exerting control over private monopolies.