By John Jewkes
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Additional info for A Return to Free Market Economics?: Critical Essays on Government Intervention
Openings for profitable investment would be restricted. The savings of these communities would be at a level which would make for extensive and chronic unemployment. It was, so the argument ran, hopeless to assume that invention could take place on a scale which would maintain the dynamic forces which had kept industrial countries going in the nineteenth century. The implications of this were obvious. Thrift and saving would cease to be virtues. The important role of governments would be to maintain and increase the level of consumption.
Cairnes, Political Economy and LaiJJn. Faire, p. 238. 4· This is a case where in 1953 I myselffell into the trap ofpredicting too confidently. My present view (see p. 124) is that ours is an epoch of comparative technological sluggishness. 1. A Return to Free Market Economics·' The Economist and Economic Change• Anticipations will be assented to much more readily than interpretations, because being deduced from a few instances, and these principally of familiar occurrence, they immediately hit the understanding and satisfy the imagination; whilst on the contrary interpretations, being deduced from various subjects, and these widely dispersed, cannot suddenly strike the understanding, so that in common estimation they must appear difficult and discordant, and almost like the mysteries of faith.
Fourth, all our experience points to the almost terrifying momentum which can be created, in public discussion of economic organisation and policy, by the very words which are employed. Everyone must find regrettable at least some of the things which have been done in the name of 'rationalisation', 'planning', 'nationalisation', 'balanced distribution of industry', 'co-ordination', 'integration' and so on, phrases which have gripped the popular imagination and have led to headlong charges down frustrating cui-de-sacs.