Democracy Disenfranchises More Voters (Electoral College)

  • the possibility that the [Constitutional Republic] in which we live provides us with opportunities for [representation] thatexceed those provided by primitive orders to far fewer people should not be dismissed.”

I wanted to edit/adapt the above HAYEK quote to fit the broader idea that what our Founders created is the most fair to the most people. I will include the larger quote at the end, in context, as, it has nothing to do with what I adapted it to. As I was reading this section of “The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism,” I thought of the attempt by Democrats to do away with the Electoral College. Which immediately brought to mind that MORE voters will be disenfranchised if it is eliminated. Why? Because the popular vote could be won by almost 4-states alone: California, Texas, Florida, New York. So, let’s take the most recent election as an example:

  • The Democrat outpaced President-elect Donald Trump by almost 2.9 million votes, with 65,844,954 (48.2%) to his 62,979,879 (46.1%), according to revised and certified final election results from all 50 states and the District of Columbia. (CNN)

In the Electoral College world, the smaller states had a say and 2.9 million voters were “disenfranchised,” so-to-speak. In a direct democracy, which our Founders specifically wrote against, all a candidate would have to do is campaign in about 11-cities to win the election.

Thus, the disenfranchisement of the voter would be closer to 60-million.

ArticleIV, Section4 of the Constitution reads:

  • “The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government

And since we know the Founders intent in delineating between a “democracy” and a “constitutional republic”….

  • James Madison (fourth President, co-author of the Federalist Papers and the “father” of the Constitution) – “Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security, or the rights of property; and have, in general; been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.”
  • John Adams (American political philosopher, first vice President and second President) – “Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.”
  • Benjamin Rush (signer of the Declaration) – “A simple democracy… is one of the greatest of evils.”
  • Fisher Ames (American political thinker and leader of the federalists [he entered Harvard at twelve and graduated by sixteen], author of the House language for the First Amendment) – “A democracy is a volcano which conceals the fiery materials of its own destruction. These will provide an eruption and carry desolation in their way.” / “The known propensity of a democracy is to licentiousness [excessive license] which the ambitious call, and the ignorant believe to be liberty.”
  • Governor Morris (signer and penman of the Constitution) – “We have seen the tumult of democracy terminate… as [it has] everywhere terminated, in despotism…. Democracy! Savage and wild. Thou who wouldst bring down the virtuous and wise to thy level of folly and guilt.”
  • John Quincy Adams (sixth President, son of John Adams [see above]) – “The experience of all former ages had shown that of all human governments, democracy was the most unstable, fluctuating and short-lived.”
  • Noah Webster (American educator and journalist as well as publishing the first dictionary) – “In democracy… there are commonly tumults and disorders….. therefore, a pure democracy is generally a very bad government. It is often the most tyrannical government on earth.”
  • John Witherspoon (signer of the Declaration of Independence) – “Pure democracy cannot subsist long nor be carried far into the departments of state – it is very subject to caprice and the madness of popular rage.”
  • Zephaniah Swift (author of America’s first legal text) – “It may generally be remarked that the more a government [or state] resembles a pure democracy the more they abound with disorder and confusion.”

AMERICAN THINKER puts it this way:

Jefferson put it this way:

What has destroyed liberty and the rights of man in every government which has ever existed under the sun?  The generalizing and concentrating all cares and powers into one body.

And Lord Acton put it this way:

Liberty consists in the division of power. Absolutism, in concentration of power.

[….]

To become president of the United States of America, one must even today win the national election state by state.  Eliminating the Electoral College and electing the president by the popular vote, as the progressives are determined to do, would transform the office.  Its occupant would in effect become the president of the big cities of America, and the last vestiges of political autonomy guaranteed the individual states by the Constitution’s electoral system would be swept away.

SEE MY:

Here is the fuller quote by Hayek as promised:

Nevertheless, the possibility that the evolved order in which we live provides us with opportunities for happiness that equal or exceed those provided by primitive orders to far fewer people should not be dismissed (which is not to say that such matters can be calculated). Much of the `alienation’ or unhappiness of modern life stems from two sources, one of which affects primarily intellectuals, the other, all beneficiaries or material abundance. The first is a self-fulfilling prophecy of unhappiness for those within any ‘system’ that does not satisfy rationalistic criteria oi conscious control. Thus intellectuals from Rousseau to such recent figures in French and German thought as Foucault and Habermas regard alienation as rampant in any system in which an order is `imposed’ on individuals without their conscious consent; consequently, their followers tend to find civilisation unbearable — by definition, as it were. Secondly, the persistence of instinctual feelings of altruism and solidarity subject those who follow the impersonal rules of the extended order to what is now fashionably called ‘bad conscience’; similarly, the acquisition of material success is supposed to be attended with feelings of guilt (or ‘social conscience’). In the midst of plenty, then, there is unhappiness not only born of peripheral poverty, but also of the incompatibility, on the part of instinct and of a hubristic reason, with an order that is of a decidedly non-instinctive and extra-rational character.

F.A. Hayek, ed. W.W. Bartley III, The Fatal Conceit: The Errors of Socialism (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1988), 64.

 

The Long Road To Hell – Statism and Truth (William J. Murray)

Before the excerpt, here are some short videos with the author, who happens to be the son of MADALYN MURRAY O’HAIR:

Here is an excellent excerpt from a book a friend got me reading:william-murray-utopian-road-hell-book-330

  • William J. Murray, Utopian Road to Hell: Enslaving America and the World With Central Planning (Washington, D.C.: WND Books, 2016), 112-119.

…As Hayek noted back in 1944: “There can be no doubt that plan­ning necessarily involves deliberate discrimination between particular needs of different people, and allowing one man to do what another must be prevented from doing. It must lay down by a legal rule how well off particular people shall be and what different people are to be allowed to have and do.”

From these examples you can see that the totalitarian nature of government does not suddenly appear in a democracy. First there must be social acceptance among the elite, who then persuade the rest of society to go along with them. Hayek noted this progress in his 1944 essay “The Intellectuals and Socialism”:

The political development of the Western World during the last hundred years furnishes the clearest demonstration. Socialism has never and nowhere been at first a working-class movement. It is by no means an obvious remedy for the obvious evil which the interests of that class will necessarily demand. It is a construction of theorists, deriving from certain tendencies of abstract thought with which for a long time only the intellectuals were familiar; and it required long efforts by the intellectuals before the working classes could be per­suaded to adopt it as their program.

TYRANNY THROUGH THE BALLOT BOX

Hayek reminded us that socialist tyrannies can come through legal means in the democratic process just as easily as through abrupt totalitarianism. Adolf Hitler, for example, was elected to office, unlike Cambodia’s Pol Pot, who seized power. Thus, democracies aren’t necessarily a protection against utopian central planners taking away the liberties of individuals.

Quite often, democratically elected representatives can delegate authority to bureaucrats who have the authority to impose the draco­nian policies on an unwilling populace. Hayek wrote, “By giving the government unlimited powers, the most arbitrary rule can be made legal; and in this way a democracy may set up the most complete despotism imaginable.”

Hayek isn’t the only philosopher or economist to warn about the dangers of tyranny being imposed through the democratic process. Alexis de Tocqueville, the famous French philosopher who visited the United States in the mid-1800s to study the democratic system and culture, warned that democratic systems could become despotic.

In Democracy in America, in his classic chapter “What Sort of Despotism Democratic Nations Have to Fear” (volume 2), Tocqueville accurately predicted the rise of bureaucratic czars and webs of legislation that would stifle human freedom and productivity. It is as if he were writing prophetically about the Environmental Protection Agency, which has imposed so many irrational rules on industry that our nation is in danger of losing its ability to compete in many industries, such as energy.

Tocqueville compared the ancient tyrannies of the past and noted that Roman emperors had tremendous power over the lives of their subjects who were scattered throughout the world, but that the “details of social life and private occupations lay for the most part beyond his control.” However, Tocqueville warned:

It would seem that if despotism were to be established amongst the democratic nations of our days, it might assume a different character; it would be more extensive and more mild; it would degrade men without tormenting them. I do not question, that in an age of instruc­tion and equality like our own, sovereigns might more easily succeed in collecting all political power into their own hands, and might interfere more habitually and decidedly within the circle of private interests, than any sovereign of antiquity could ever do. But this same principle of equality which facilitates despotism, tempers its rigour.

He continued: “I think then that the species of oppression by which democratic nations are menaced is unlike anything which ever before existed in the world: our contemporaries will find no prototype of it in their memories. I am trying myself to choose an expression which will accurately convey the whole of the idea I have formed of it, but in vain; the old words ‘despotism’ and ‘tyranny’ are inappropriate: the thing itself is new; and since I cannot name it, I must attempt to define it.”

According to Tocqueville, this kind of democratic oppression is

absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent, if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks on the contrary to keep them in perpetual childhood: it is well content that the people should rejoice, provided they think of nothing but rejoicing. For their happiness such a government willingly labors, but it chooses to be the sole agent and the only arbiter of that happiness: it provides for their security, fore­sees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances—what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living? Thus it every day renders the exercise of the free agency of man less useful and less frequent; it circumscribes the will within a narrower range, and gradually robs a man of all the uses of himself.

America’s schoolchildren today are educated under policies of “no tolerance” that demand they become automatons. Showing various emotions, such as anger or love, can lead to expulsion from school, or worse. Children have been arrested for pointing a finger and saying, “Bang!” and suspended from classes for sharing a hug in the hallways. Currently, some high school students, thanks to legislation promoted by First Lady Michelle Obama, are not allowed to eat more than 750 calories for lunch, even boys on the football team, who require upwards of 3,000 calories a day. This is exactly the type of democratic oppression that both Tocqueville and Hayek discussed, and it continues to spread in Western nations.

Tocqueville described what happens to citizens when they’re slowly enslaved by an all-powerful central government:

It [the statist] covers the surface of society with a network of small complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided: men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting: such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, ener­vates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to be nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.

I have always thought that servitude of the regular, quiet, and gentle kind which I have just described, might be combined more easily than is commonly believed with some of the outward forms of freedom; and that it might even establish itself under the wing of the sovereignty of the people.

Like a frog placed in cold water, and then the temperature is increased slowly until the frog is cooked, the populace do not notice the melting away of individual liberty. For instance, the American people were placed in the cold water of a “small” income tax imposed by President Woodrow Wilson that has become today almost total control of the economy by the central government. Hayek and Tocqueville both described accurately the destruction of individual liberty, not only through absolute dictatorships, but by democratic totalitarianism as well.

THE END OF TRUTH

Hayek devoted a full chapter in The Road to Serfdom to the function of propaganda in a socialist welfare state. He pointed out that in such a totalitarian system, it isn’t enough just to force everyone to work for the end desired; they must also be convinced that those ends are actually theirs and that they are obtainable. Thus, the propagandist must be able to brainwash the populace into believing that the central planners are benevolent and that their goals are actually those of the people.

As Hayek observed, “The skilful propagandist then has power to mold their minds in any direction he chooses, and even the most intel­ligent and independent people cannot entirely escape that influence if they are long isolated from all other sources of information.”

According to Hayek, the moral consequence of totalitarian propa­ganda is that it undermines the sense of and respect for the truth. In fact, the totalitarian propagandist isn’t concerned with the truth. He only wants to convince the populace that the rulers are acting in the best interest of the enslaved citizens, to achieve their utopian dreams. Lying becomes the standard of utopian governments.

FREDERIC BASTIAT’S WARNINGS AGAINST SOCIALIST UTOPIANISM

French economist and politician Frederic Bastiat’s writings aren’t well known in the United States these days, but they certainly should be. Bastiat was the deputy to the Legislative Assembly in France during the mid-1800s, when that nation was rapidly turning into a socialist state.

Alarmed by the trend, Bastiat spent his time and energies debunking all of the    excuses that were used to impose statism on the French people. His classic, The Law, was published in 1850 and followed some of the similar lines of logic as did Hayek’s later work. It was his desire to convince his fellow Frenchmen that socialism would inevitably lead to slavery and Communism. Regrettably, his warnings were mostly ignored, but his prophetic writings against socialism are very timely, as our own nation’s leaders play with totalitarian ideas about how to turn us into dependent serfs.

Bastiat began The Law by clearly asserting that God gave us life, including physical, intellectual, and moral life. In addition, God gave each person the ability to use resources to create value and to own property. He further asserted, “Each of us has a natural right—from God—to defend his person, his liberty, and his property. These are the three basic requirements of life, and the preservation of any one of them is completely dependent upon the preservation of the other two. For what are our faculties but the extension of our individuality? And what is property but an extension of our faculties?”

He defined law as the “organization of the natural right of lawful defense. It is the substitution of a common force for individual forces. And this common force is to do only what the individual forces have a natural and lawful right to do: to protect persons, liberties, and prop­erties; to maintain the right of each, and to cause justice to reign over us all.”

But what happens when the state uses the law to destroy freedom? It is engaging in what Bastiat rightly called “lawful plunder.”

When a state legalizes plunder, wrote Bastiat, one of the first effects is to erase “from everyone’s conscience the distinction between justice and injustice. No society can exist unless the laws are respected to a certain degree. The safest way to make laws respected is to make them respectable. When law and morality contradict each other, the citizen has the cruel alternative of either losing his moral sense or losing his respect for the law.”

When legalized plunder becomes commonplace in a socialist govern­ment, noted Bastiat, every group in society will want to get their share of it. Everyone will begin plundering from everyone else: “Under the pretense of organization, regulation, protection, or encouragement, the law takes property from one person and gives it to another; the law takes the wealth of all and gives it to a few, whether farmers, manufacturers, ship owners, artists, or comedians. Under these circumstances, then certainly every class will aspire to grasp the law, and logically so.”

Bastiat clearly shows us how we can determine if a law is actually legal­ized plunder. His definition perfectly fits much of the transfer of wealth that occurs in Western nations today, including in the United States.

See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.

Then abolish this law without delay, for it is not only an evil itself, but also it is a fertile source for further evils because it invites repri­sals. If such a law—which may be an isolated case—is not abolished immediately, it will spread, multiply, and develop into a system.

Sadly, when Woodrow Wilson introduced the income tax, the people had the opportunity to stop just such an evil, but out of the promise that it would benefit the many at the expense of the few rich of the time, a constitutional amendment was approved to allow the theft of the income of those who produce value through labor or investment. The result is massive government today, which takes from virtually everyone’s earnings to some degree.

Bastiat continued: “Socialists desire to practice legal plunder, not illegal plunder. Socialists, like all other monopolists, desire to make the law their own weapon. And when once the law is on the side of socialism, how can it be used against socialism? For when plunder is abetted by the law, it does not fear your courts, your gendarmes, and your prisons. Rather, it may call upon them for help.”

Augustine of Hippo made a similar statement regarding government plundering in the fifth century:

Justice being taken away, then, what are kingdoms but great robberies? For what are robberies themselves, but little kingdoms? The band itself is made up of men; it is ruled by the authority of a prince, it is knit together by the pact of the confederacy; the booty is divided by the law agreed on. If, by the admittance of abandoned men, this evil increases to such a degree that it holds places, fixes abodes, takes possession of cities, and subdues peoples, it assumes the more plainly the name of a kingdom, because the reality is now manifestly conferred on it, not by the removal of covetousness, but by the addition of impunity.

Following a road to serfdom as described by Hayek inevitably leads to what might be called a benign authoritarian system, where everyone is brainwashed into docile obedience, or to a brutal dictatorship that includes a police state, a reign of terror, and gulags to keep the populace under control. Authors George Orwell and Aldous Huxley have described these two kinds of societies, but the result is the same in both: freedom of the individual is destroyed and the state rules from cradle to the grave.

Chess Master Garry Kasparov on Bernie Sanders

Front Page Magazine has some great insights by ex-soviet and chess master, Garry Kasparov:

Chess Grandmaster Garry Kasparov lived in the USSR and he is not feeling the bern.

I’m enjoying the irony of American Sanders supporters lecturing me, a former Soviet citizen, on the glories of Socialism and what it really means! Socialism sounds great in speech soundbites and on Facebook, but please keep it there. In practice, it corrodes not only the economy but the human spirit itself, and the ambition and achievement that made modern capitalism possible and brought billions of people out of poverty. Talking about Socialism is a huge luxury, a luxury that was paid for by the successes of capitalism. Income inequality is a huge problem, absolutely. But the idea that the solution is more government, more regulation, more debt, and less risk is dangerously absurd.

[….]

That reminds me of that Pavlov said about Communism as an experiment. Sure, let’s experiment with Socialism some more until everyone is poor or dead.

American Thinker continues the theme via Kasparov:Sanders Dos XX

Perhaps in response to those who claim that Sanders is really more about Scandinavian-style socialism than the actual ownership of all means of production by the state, Kasparov wrote:

Yes, please take Scandinavia as an example! Implementing some socialistic elements AFTER becoming a wealthy capitalist economy only works as long as you don’t choke off what made you wealthy to begin with in the process. Again, it’s a luxury item that shouldn’t be confused with what is really doing the work, as many do. And do not forget that nearly all of the countless 20th-century innovations and industries that made the rest of the developed world so efficient and comfortable came from America, and it wasn’t a coincidence. As long as Europe had America taking risks, investing ambitiously, and yes, being “inequal,” it had the luxury of benefiting from the results without making the same sacrifices. Who will be America’s America?

Exactly so.  And I would add that Sweden has moved away from high taxes and government domination because socialism has led to stagnation and declining standing in the world. 

UPDATED! John McAfee on ObamaCare Software

Always Fails

“Central planning is a bureaucratic nightmare” ~ Hayek (get)

See Hayek, Above

Even I couldn’t log on to Healthcare.gov ~ Obamacare contractor (see)

Via Libertarian Republican:

No one even considered the scenario we are now seeing: a partially working system in which it is difficult to sign up but not impossible. This means that the most motivated consumers (the sickest) are likely to persevere in creating accounts, while the younger and healthier are more likely to skip an unpleasant process and risk a minimal fine.  “If they don’t get the necessary volume and demographic mix in the exchanges,” Yuval Levin of National Affairs told me, “it could set off a catastrophic adverse selection spiral that would not only render the exchanges inoperable but badly damage our large health care systems.”

But the failed rollout has already raised ideological issues of broader significance. It has reinforced a widely held, pre-existing belief that government-run health systems are bureaucratic nightmares. And it has added credence to the libertarian argument that some human systems are too complex to be effectively managed. Perhaps the problem with Obamacare is not failed leadership, but the whole project of putting a federal agency, 55 contractors and 500 million lines of software code in charge of a health system intended to cover millions of Americans. 

I am not a libertarian who argues against the need for programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. But Friedrich Hayek has this much going for him: He understood that the challenge of technocratic planning is always limited information. “The peculiar character of the problem of a rational economic order is determined precisely by the fact that the knowledge of the circumstances of which we must make use never exists in concentrated or integrated form but solely as the dispersed bits of incomplete and frequently contradictory knowledge which all the separate individuals possess.”

Via NewsBusters:

MSNBC’s Chris Jansing brought software expert Luke Chung onto Thursday’s Jansing & Co. to analyze the federal government’s troubled healthcare.gov website. Chung, the founder and president of software and database programming company FMS, served up a scathing indictment of the website that left Jansing reeling at certain points during the interview. [See video below the break. MP3 audio here.]

Jansing started by asking how complicated it was to get healthcare.gov up and running. Chung was very frank with her: “I don’t know why they made it so complicated. This really shouldn’t be that difficult.” Jansing fumbled around, talking about other countries and states that have launched similar programs before playing administration advocate…

[….]

Later, Chung eviscerated CGI, the IT company hired by the government to develop healthcare.gov: “This was built, I think, by people who were never paid before to create software. I think they just got out of school or something. You know, these government contractors, they win these contracts and then they’re incentivized to deliver the cheapest people possible to meet the minimum requirements.

Chung bluntly put the website problems in perspective: “I mean, this is not rocket science. We’re not curing cancer, we’re not providing any health care, we’re not even providing health insurance. We’re filling out a paper form. Not that hard.

…read more…

Via MoonBat:

HotAir has this:

There’s a growing consensus on the mid- to late-November time frame by which the Obama administration really, really needs to have ObamaCare’s online portal running smoothly to avoid inducing more death-spiral risks and subsequent industry panic, and all of their plans for public outreach and directing people to call centers and whatnot is only going to get them so far.

“Tech surge” or no tech surge, CNN reports that still more experts and computer engineers are piling on to the suggestion that fixing HealthCare.Gov’s major problems before the end of 2013 just isn’t a feasible task, and that rebuilding the system from scratch would be the administration’s easiest and safest bet:

After assessing the website, Dave Kennedy, the CEO of information-security company Trusted Sec, estimates that about 20% of Healthcare.gov needs to be rewritten. With a whopping 500 million lines of code, according to a recent New York Times report, Kennedy believes fixing the site would probably take six months to a year.

… Nish Bhalla, CEO of information-security firm Security Compass, said it “does not sound realistic at all” that Healthcare.gov will be fully operational before that point.

“We don’t even know where all of the problems lie, so how can we solve them?” Bhalla said. “It’s like a drive-by shooting: You’re going fast and you might hit it, you might miss it. But you can’t fix what you can’t identify.” …

“Projects that are done rapidly usually have a lot of [repetitive] code,” said Arron Kallenberg, a software engineer and tech entrepreneur. “So when you have a problem, instead of debugging something in a single location, you’re tracking it down all through the code base.”

A whopping 500 million lines of code is “so excessive,” says Kennedy, and that a more normal number for a project like the ObamaCare site would lie somewhere in the range of 25 million to 50 million. Dayum.

…read more…

Elana Kagan Quotes (approvingly) Natioanal Socialist (nazi) Economist

This is an important post by Libertarian Republican. It shows how Left the Left usually is. They were the racists in the Civil War (separatists and segregationists), they were the eugenicists/Nazi’s of the 20′ through WWII, they were the people standing in front of schools not wanting black kids in the same school as their kids, and they elected a black nationalist President. So the following on Kagan should come as no surprise:

One of the longest standing and most respected conservative journals Human Events, recently uncovered some shocking information on Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. She repeatedly cited a 20th century European Marxist-turned-Nazi Werner Sombert in her college thesis paper…

[….]

and now…

  • Kagan and her citing of Marxist/National Socialist Werner Sombart in her college thesis paper = zero mainstream media coverage.

Here is a larger portion of the Human Events article:

…During World War I, however, Sombart endorsed Germany’s “heroic” war against the “capitalist spirit” represented by England. In 1934, Sombart published Deutscher Sozialismus, which advocated the “total ordering of life” as an expression of the German Volksgeist, or “national spirit.”

…In the introduction to her 1981 thesis, Kagan addresses a question famously asked by Sombart: Warum gibt es in den Vereinigten Staaten keinen Sozialismus? — “Why is there no socialism in the United States?”

“The Socialist Party of the United States could not lay claim to the kind of pure proletarianism that Sombart considered essential to any socialist movement; indeed, most of the party’s members did not even consider this a worthy goal,” Kagan wrote on Page 3 of the thesis. “But the American socialists ‘failure’ to build a movement that even resembled Sombart’s idealized notion of a class-conscious party . . . did not render their party any less significant. Nor did such a failure render their party any less successful. In the first two decades of the twentieth century the American socialist movement, whose very existence Sombart refused to consider, grew if not by leaps and bounds at least by inches.”

In the final pages of her thesis — To the Final Conflict: Socialism in New York City, 1900-1933 — Kagan returns to Sombart’s theories, writing: “Why, in particular, did the socialist movement never become an alternative to the nation’s established parties? In answering this question, historians have often called attention to various characteristics of American society that have militated against widespread acceptance of radical movements. These societal traits — an ethnically divided worked class, a relatively fluid class structure, an economy which allowed at least some workers to enjoy what Sombart termed ‘reefs of roast beef and apple pie,’ — prevented the early twentieth century socialists from attracting an immediate mass following. Such conditions did not, however, completely checkmate American socialism.”

Even before he embraced National Socialism, Sombart’s socialist theories reflected an anti-Semitic tendency that identified Jews with capitalism, a theme explored in his 1911 book, Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben (“The Jews and Economics,” which was published in a 1913 English translation titled, The Jews and Modern Capitalism). In his 1915 book Handler und Helden (“Merchants and Heroes”), Sombart praised the “heroic” German character, contrasting them with “Trading Peoples,” especially Jews, whose “commercial” habits Sombart depicted as prevailing among the English.

The influence of Sombart, who died in 1942 at age 78, was scornfully cited in Friedrich Hayek’s famous 1944 book The Road to Serfdom. In Chapter 12 of that book — “The Socialist Roots of Nazism” — Hayek said that Sombart “had done as much as any man to spread socialist ideas and anticapitalist resentment of varying shades throughout Germany.”

Hayek also mentioned this in note #13 in the first chapter of The Road to Serfdom:

Historian of the development of capitalism Werner Sombart (1863-1941) was perhaps the last of the historical school economists. Hayek would view his move from left-wing socialism toward anticapitalism of the fascist variety as exemplifying a natural tendency.