Tuesday, August 19, 2003

The tension between markets and motives 

Economics Professor Gratitude Award goes to Mitch for his coverage of how the "terror market" idea got shot down.
there's something the naysayers miss - and always miss - about capitalism: While its methods may be divorced from any direct moral imperative, its results are inherently moral anyway.
That is, there really isn't a tension. See Mises, Human Action, Chapter 15, section 9, for more.
We may admire those who abstain from making gains they could reap in producing deadly weapons or hard liquor. However, their laudable conduct is a mere gesture without any practical effects. Even if all entrepreneurs and capitalists were to follow their example, wars and dipsomania would not disappear. As was the case in the precapitalistic ages, governments would produce the weapons in their own arsenals and drinkers would distill their own liquor.
Any firm who wants to hire someone who knows his economics would do well to consider Mitch, who's available at reasonable rates. They would profit from the experience.