THE RESPONSIBLE SOCIETY by Stephen B. & Eugen Loebl Roman


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Can a Canadian mining millionaire and a former Czech planning official find peace, happiness, and prosperity together? Judging by this primer on moral economics, they think so. In a previous book Loebl coined the term ""Humanomics"" to describe this blueprint for stable prices, full employment, and growth without inflation. Most famous for surviving his purge from the Czech hierarchy in 1949 (as he relates in My Mind on Trial), Loebl sets sail with his new capitalist first mate, trying to steer a course between the reefs of Adam Smith and the shoals of Karl Marx. ""All"" that is required, the two baldly assert, is a change in our attitude toward the economic system from one of passivity to one of moral activism. Their proposals hinge on the establishment of free credit and the elimination of all interest charges or payments on loans and savings. Commercial banks would receive money from the central bank which they would lend to private enterprise on the basis of production efficiency. Arguing that government spending is the cause of inflation, they would virtually eliminate it, reducing taxes and subjecting the remaining budget to popular vote. By the establishment of fixed prices, the only road to higher profit would be to increase efficiency and raise productivity. By all these means, we can realize their goals and live happily ever after. This fairy tale is closer to Smith than they avow, since they aim to realize the dream of a perfectly running and efficient market, free of government intervention--adding only their monetary twist. And free credit has long been the rallying cry of the small producer; Proudhon made his reputation with it more stylishly a century ago. Theirs is indeed a simple solution--too simple.

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Two Continents