Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Anthony Clifford Grayling on Hayek

I now often think that if the late twentieth-century was the effects of Milton’s economic freedom movement, the twenty-first century will be the true effects of F A Hayek’s thoughts on the economy and our lives, and there is no doubt about.

It is a ironic, illusion and apathy in our academic and research institutions which continue to underestimate the Austrian School of Economics in general and Hayek’s thought in particular. Beside, the underestimating of our own great scholars like BR Ambedkar, BR Shenoy, Ambirajan, Rajaji, C.N Annadurai etc continues for no considerable reason of thoughts. But certainly the nation pays the price for this ignorance and will pay in future also.

In an interview with ET Prof Anthony Clifford Grayling says:

When you look around the world, the ideas of which economic philosophers do you see to have had the most influence? 
  • I think the contemporary western regimes are infact influenced by people like Frederich Hayek and Milton Friedman. We have a timeline here of the last fifty years as mainly rightwing political economy.

  • Economics always used to be called political economy. We have now allowed the people who control the lifeblood of the economy, those in the financial services industries and others, to separate it from the overall political process and the question of the social good. 
  • If we incorporate the government into money—taxation, fiscal policy, redistribution, etc—we get a disaster like the Soviet Union or any socialist economy you can think of. Or even what held India back for so many years under the Nehru-Gandhi economic philosophy. 
  • But a realistic one. This is why Dworkin, for instance, argues, that the old socialistic idea of equality, the equality of distribution, is a mistake. Because it terribly distorts the economy. So what a society should have is an equality of concern.   

One should read the full interview here, although one may get disappointed after reading some fiction of thoughts like Amartya Sent et al!! 

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