Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Economic Causes of War (Ludwig von Mises)

Ludwig von Mises wrote in 1944 that the only way to achieve peace in this world is through free enterprise:

War is a primitive human institution. From time immemorial, men were eager to fight, to kill, and to rob one another. However, the acknowledgment of this fact does not lead to the conclusion that war is an indispensable form of interpersonal relations and that the endeavors to abolish war are against nature and therefore doomed to failure.

We may, for the sake of argument, admit the militarist thesis that man is endowed with an innate instinct to fight and to destroy. However, it is not these instincts and primitive impulses that are the characteristic features of man. Man's eminence lies in his reason and in the power to think, which distinguishes him from all other living creatures. And man's reason teaches him that peaceful cooperation and collaboration under the division of labor is a more beneficial way to live than violent strife.

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