Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Frederich Hayek - another damned socialist?

"If you haven't read Atlas Shrugged, read this..."
Frederich Hayek is one of the patron saints of anti-government types who posit the "free market" as solution to any and every problem.  He is considered the Anti-Keynes in the history of 20th century economic thought.

As measure of Hayek's contemporary place in our political discourse, the government-hating nutcase Glenn Beck is credited for ramping up Hayek's Amazon ratings to #1 simply by devoting several shows to some FOXified version of the dead Austrian's economic theories - although this factoid is hardly fair to Hayek himself in it's implications of raving anti-intellectualism and lack of even the most modest aspirations to analytical integrity.

But from recovering neo-conservative Francis Fukayama, who reviewed "The Constitution of Liberty," one of Hayek's major works, for the New York Times Book Review over the weekend, we get this footnote to Hayek's insistent case for the superiority of markets:
It may...surprise some of Hayek’s new followers to learn that “The Constitution of Liberty” argues that the government may need to provide health insurance and even make it ­compulsory .
Surprise?  My sense of the current aggressive ignorance and emotional discombobulation among the Tea Party, Hyper-Foxoid right-wing is that if Glenn Beck and his minions got wind of that rather stunning "caveat" to Hyek's anti-government case, he'd add Hayek to his list of folks out to destroy America!