Wilhelm Röpke’s prescience, 1957

Among these slowly spreading cancers of our Western economy and society, two stand out: the apparently irresistible advance of the welfare state and the erosion of the value of money, which is called creeping inflation. (page one hundred and fifty)

Social demagogues use the promises of the welfare state and inflationary policy to seduce the masses, and it is hard to warn people convincingly of the price ultimately to be paid by all.* (page one hundred and fifty-two)

Both are the outcome of mass opinions, mass claims, mass emotions, and mass passions, and both are directed by these forces against property, law, social differentiation, tradition, continuity, and common interest. Both turn the state and the ballot into means for advancing one part of the community at the expense of the others in the direction in which the majority of voters push by means of their sheer weight. Both are an expression of the dissolution of firm moral principles which were formerly accepted as self-evident. (page one hundred and fifty-two) [My emphasis. – NPO]

[I]f we are to take respect for human personality seriously, we ought, contrarily, to measure progress by the degree to which the broad masses of the people can today be expected to provide for themselves out of their own means and on their own responsibility, through saving and insurance and the manifold forms of voluntary group aid. (page one hundred and fifty-five)

A Humane Economy, “Welfare State and Chronic Inflation”

*The dollar’s current exchange rate with the pound, Euro, Australian dollar, and Canadian dollar

*The United States’ national debt

Bob Barr is far from perfect, at least in my humble estimation, but politics is, they say, the art of the possible (if improbable, in the case of electing the former congressman from Georgia), not the are of the perfect. Röpke supported the existence of a national bank; however, I suggest, begging pardon for my uncharacteristic (on this web-log, anyway) use of foul language, that, were he to witness the monstrosity that the Federal Reserve has become, he would s**t himself. Unlike the bellicose, red-face, angry Elephant and the elephantine-eared Jackass, the elephant-king in the green three-piece suit (Unsurpassable sartorial splendor!) wishes to to overhaul current American monetary policy.

Moreover, sure, Obama lived in Hawai’i and Indonesia, and McCain endure the hells of Commie Cong prison, but Babar, when a young elephant, once shipwrecked on Skull Island.


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