I do not think it is an exaggeration to say history is largely a history of inflation usually inflations engineered by governments for the gain of governments.
A claim for equality of material position can be met only by a government with totalitarian powers.
Even the striving for equality by means of a directed economy can result only in an officially enforced inequality – an authoritarian determination of the status of each individual in the new hierarchical order.
Freedom granted only when it is known beforehand that its effects will be beneficial is not freedom.
Perhaps the fact that we have seen millions voting themselves into complete dependence on a tyrant has made our generation understand that to choose one’s government is not necessarily to secure freedom.
We must face the fact that the preservation of individual freedom is incompatible with a full satisfaction of our views of distributive justice.
He will therefore have to use what knowledge he can achieve not to shape the results as the craftsman shapes his handiwork but rather to cultivate a growth by providing the appropriate environment in the manner in which the gardener does this for his plants.
To act on the belief that we possess the knowledge and the power which enable us to shape the processes of society entirely to our liking knowledge which in fact we do not possess is likely to make us do much harm.
It seems to me that socialists today can preserve their position in academic economics merely by the pretense that the differences are entirely moral questions about which science cannot decide.
This means that to entrust to science – or to deliberate control according to scientific principles – more than scientific method can achieve may have deplorable effects.
If we wish to preserve a free society it is essential that we recognize that the desirability of a particular object is not sufficient justification for the use of coercion.
It is rather a problem of how to secure the best use of resources known to any of the members of society for ends whose relative importance only those individuals know.