Hayek and London fight against the abuse and degradation of reason (2023)

war preparations

It soon became clear that the Munich Agreement would not bring "peace in our time", but he managed to buy some to prepare for the inevitable coming conflict. Although rearmament had been part of British government policy since the mid-1930s, it moved relatively slowly. Preparations for war began in earnest during the Sudetenland crisis in September 1938 and continued rapidly thereafter. The windows were blacked out. The sandbags were full, so much so that huge pits appeared in Hyde Park and Hampstead Heath, where geologists found that the sandy soil could be excavated. London has been transformed (Todman 2016, 94–100; Ziegler 1995, 29–30).

The biggest fear was a continued air raid on civilian population centers. During the First World War, London was bombed, albeit sporadically, by the Germans. By the end of this war, 670 had been killed and many more wounded (Ziegler 1995, 9). In their worst-case scenario, the British Air Force and the Ministry of Health estimated that the first six months of bombing would have resulted in 600,000 British dead and twice as many wounded. And it was to be expected that the attack would begin immediately after the declaration of war, in an attempt to bring about a knockout. Estimates of German air power and strategy turned out to be wildly wrong, but the outlook was bleak. To further sound the alarm, in 1936 the Italians used mustard gas against the Ethiopian army, in violation of the Geneva Protocol of 1925. All-out war was expected (Price 2000, 2–3; Smart 1997, 34–36).

In preparation, even before Chamberlain uttered his words of hope, millions of linear meters of serrated moat were dug in public parks around the city for people to dive into in the event of an attack. Soon they were knee-deep in water, and worse. During the Sudetenland machinations, the government began distributing millions of gas masks, most of which were donated.out for free. By October 1938 around 90% of London's population had received one. people have to carry the boxes when they go out. Also on the loose were thousands of Anderson shelters, which consisted of two sections of corrugated steel bolted together with a steel shield to act as a door, to be installed in yards and covered with soil. An evacuation plan for children, the elderly, the disabled and the sick has become part of government policy since the bombings of the First World War. A first round of evacuations (4,300 babies and disabled children) began before Chamberlain's return, but that was the end until the following year. Meanwhile, air defenses were being prepared. The production of aircraft and anti-aircraft guns and the training of pilots gained momentum. Barrage balloons that could reach up to five thousand feet (as was the case with anti-aircraft guns, intended to force German bombers to fly at higher altitudes and therefore be less accurate) soon filled the sky (Ziegler 1995, 16-17, 19, 25, 31).

Robbins and Hayek also prepared for war. Robbins had dug an anti-aircraft ditch in his garden (like the other trenches it soon filled with water), but he also took the more important step of renting a cottage in the countryside. He and his family spent the Easter holidays at Tor Cottage, Lacey Green in the Chilterns, north-west of London in Buckinghamshire, when the dissolution of Czechoslovakia was completed (Howson 2011, 325). They would spend the summer of 1939 there and it was there on the morning of Sunday 3 September that they heard Chamberlain's broadcast declaring war.

As for Hayek, he had no money for rent as he had just bought a house. It was a good time to buy: stocks were plentiful and house prices fell as tens of thousands left London. But he too had been warned. Fortunately, one became available in Turner Close. As mentioned earlier, that spring, to pay the advance, Hayek sold to the Bank for International Settlements, through its director, Per Jacobsson, about six hundred books on money and banking published before 1900, mostly in English , which he collected in the late 1920s for the large sum of money that was never completed. They were in their new home until August (interviews with Bartley, 2 November 1983, IB 94).

The LSE also prepared for war. In early July 1939, the Department of Public Works announced that it would be necessary to take over the buildings in Houghton Street if war seemed imminent. Alexander Carr-Saunders, Beveridge's successor as headmaster of the school, sought a place outside London where classes could be held. At the end of July, the governing body of Peterhouse, Cambridge, agreed to provide space for the college if evacuation became necessary. When the Ministry of Public Works acted within its right on September 1,The LSE was ready. The administration and part of the lending library were moved to a building in Peterhouse. other parts of the library remained at the LSE. In Cambridge, the school has also rented Grove Lodge for an additional library, classroom and common room. The students were mostly housed in private residences. As the school eventually decided to offer evening classes in London, it rented space at Canterbury Hall, in Cartwright Gardens near Euston Station (Dahrendorf 1995, 341-343).

In anticipation of the outbreak of hostilities, enrollment or returning numbers fell from about 3,000 in 1937/38 to 620 in Cambridge and 359 night students in London in 1939/40. The School of Economics and Commerce was reduced to eleven: in addition to Hayek, there were Robbins, Benham, Coase, Durbin, Kaldor, Paish, Plant, Schwartz, Thomas and Ronald Edwards. Academic leave was cancelled, including one for Hayek to go to America.1 Michaelma's tenure began late and some courses were not offered, but once things got going they continued without further interruption (Dahrendorf 1995, 341-343; Howson 2011, 342-343).

During the following academic year, Robbins would spend a week in Cambridge in a house the school had rented from the faculty at 17 Clarkson Road. This became known as the Beales House because the financial historian Lance Beales and his wife, Freshman also lived there he would live and rent it out as the war progressed and their other colleagues were called up for public service. Hayek and his family lived in London, but he occasionally spent nights in Cambridge, including at Bills' house. While much had changed, there was at least one semblance of the past: That first year, Hayek and Robbins would teach their joint economic theory seminar, which now meets at 2 p.m. on Thursdays (Howson 2011, 342–343).

As noted in chapter 23, Hayek had one last task to complete before war broke out. He made a final trip to Austria, in August 1939, not to see his family, but to spend four days in a quiet mountain valley with Lenerl (Hayek 1994, 137; Hayek to Machlup, 27 August 1939; The diary by Hayek contains notes on Zurich and the Carinthian town of Spittal). He had just bought a house in London, which might take some explaining. But who knows what else they could have discussed? Plans, maybe promises, for the post-war period?

Hayek's activities during the Phoney War

A week before war was declared, Hayek wrote again to Matschlup, who was then teaching at the University of Buffalo in upstate New York. In it, Hayek envisioned the outline of his next major book: "There must first be a series of case studies, taking as their starting point certain methodological problems and especially the relation between scientific method and social problems, leading to the fundamental question of the scientific principles of economic policy and finally the consequences of socialism. The series should form the basis of a systematic intellectual-historical investigation of the fundamental principles of social development during the last hundred years (from Saint-Simon to Hitler)' (August 27, 1939).

The war suspended consideration of the project, at least for a while. A week after England's statement, Hayek wrote a letter to the Director General of the British Ministry of Intelligence offering his services. Describing himself as an "ex-Austrian", a university professor and someone who had been a British subject "for a while" (he had actually been naturalized just over a year before), he clearly wanted both his credentials and their allegiances. For reinforcement, he included as references at the end of the letter the names of Lord Stamp, Sir William Beveridge, A.M. Carr-Saunders, R.G. Hawtrey van de Treasury and F.W. Ogilvie from the BBC. While this may seem like a preventative overdose in retrospect, it wasn't. Unnaturalized aliens from Germany and Austria would be imprisoned as soon as actual fighting began the following year and not released until investigated.2 Accompanying the letter was a memorandum, "Some Notes on Propaganda in Germany," with various suggestions for launching an effective propaganda campaign in German-speaking countries (Hayek 2010 [1939j]).3 It is a fascinating document.

The goal of the propaganda effort, Hayek began, should be to explain and defend liberal democracy. The most effective way of doing this would be to remind the German people that although some of the great German poets and writers of the past had adopted the principles of liberal democracy now praised by England and France, which wasvirtually written out of German history since the time of Bismarck. The claim that Germany's separate path was taken by Bismarck and not by Hitler was, of course, one that Hayek had been advocating since 1933. "Freedom and the Economic System." He would do it againThe road to service.

The poets Hayek had in mind included Goethe and Schiller, "whose names are still hallowed in Germany, though their respective writings are largely unknown" (Hayek 2010 [1939j], 306) - these were, of course, poets whose works Father Hayek would read, or recite from memory, at the dinner table when Fritz was a child. He offered for illustration Schiller's assessment of the relative values ​​of the cultures of Athens and Sparta, "The Laws of Lycurgus and Solon," which had analogies in today's clash of ideologies.4

To correct the current German version of history, Hayek recommended the compilation of a handbook of facts, using German-language sources wherever possible, which could be consulted whenever propaganda claims were made. Obviously this would be a major undertaking, requiring many hands. Native German speakers who had a thorough understanding of German psychology should be recruited. He warned that because "there has long been a gulf in Germany separating the Jewish and socialist intelligentsia from the rest of the community," "the typical refugee may not be the most reliable guide in these matters" (Hayek 2010 [1939j] , 305).

Germans would naturally be suspicious of foreign news sources that claim to fabricate a revised version of German history or report recent atrocities committed by the regime. It was therefore necessary for the work to be undertaken by "a small committee composed largely of German (non-Jewish) scholars," which might also include some persons from neutral countries with pro-German leanings, in order to ensure the objectivity of the the resulting analysis. . The target group should not be the masses, but the leading groups outside the Nazi camp in the army and among industrialists and civil servants. Hayek was convinced that a sober and unbiased account of events was most likely to change the minds of some Germans about the nature of the Nazi regime. As he said, “I know from experience that if someone can prove how history was deliberately falsified,it does more than anything else to make German minds willing to hear the truth' (Hayek 2010 [1939j], 309). Perhaps Hayek was referring to his own experience reading about the causes of the Great War in the New York Public Library a decade earlier? In any case, his proposal complemented his earlier idea of ​​an "international newspaper page" that would counter the local bias of national news.

Hayek would wait until the end of December for a response from the Intelligence Secretary, or rather one of his subordinates, Major General Anthony Gisford. Hayek was grateful for his memorandum, but regarding his recommendation that a commission be formed, "it is believed that the machinery involved in its establishment is necessarily out of proportion to the results which may be achieved" (Gishford to Hayek, 30 December 1939) . . Hayek immediately returned a two-page letter of protest noting that he disagreed, but it was not to be done (Hayek to Gishford, 3 January 1940). He apparently briefly considered volunteering for military service, as part of the Royal Artillery, but friends persuaded him that "as a foreigner he could not mingle with British soldiers" (IB 93).

Instead of working for the government as a propagandist or serving in the military, Hayek would begin what would become his war plan. It would be the book he had described to Machlup, echoes of which would be seen in Notes on Propaganda and whose title (The abuse and corruption of reason) first appeared in his letter to Walter Lippmann some two and a half years earlier (Hayek to Lippmann, April 6, 1937).

Hayek also engaged in some minor work. In the run-up to the war, like many others, he wrote some popular articles on subjects directly related to the war economy. In January 1939 he gave a lecture at the Royal Institute of International Affairs and his notes show that he predicted that if war came, Germany would need iron and fat to achieve its goals and withdraw them from Scandinavia by force. . landing According to Hayek, Denmark was the key (FAHP 105.25). The prediction was not bad: Hitler would invade Denmark to reach Norway a month before his attacks on Belgium and the Netherlands and, in turn, France.

Another hotly debated topic was the transition from a peacetime economy to a wartime economy. Full mobilization requires the shift of resources from the production of consumer and capital goods in peacetime to the production of war materials and capital. As the government withdraws resources from the war effort, less is available to produce consumer goods. If no further action is taken, the prices of these goods will rise dramatically. This has several negative effects. A general inflation increases uncertainty, undermines the war effort as workers watch the buying processThe power of their falling incomes encourages spending and hoarding, reduces the incentive to save and invest, and makes it harder for governments to borrow money for war. Some simply called for this inflation to be made illegal by setting prices at existing levels. But if that were the case, there would be very few consumer goods relative to the demand. This would lead to shortages, queues and black markets. For a fair distribution of the few goods produced among the many who want them, price fixing should be accompanied by some kind of voucher regime. It was hard to say which of the two unattractive alternatives (inflation or price fixing plus rationing) was worse.

Hayek joined the debate with two articles in the British monthly TheBanker, appeared in the September and October 1939 issues (Hayek 1939f, g). In it he refuted the arguments of those who believed that a war economy required extensive economic planning and, above all, price fixing. His message was simple: if we want to produce with maximum efficiency in both war and peace, we must allow prices to fluctuate to reveal relative scarcity. He applied this basic economic reasoning to the prices of inputs to the production process in his first essay and to the intertemporal rate of interest in the second.

Hayek acknowledged in a footnote to his first article that people feared a general rise in prices or inflation, most when he argued that extensive government control was necessary in times of war. He noted that the government would need to cap total monetary demand for civilian and military purchases to avoid inflation, but crucially did not say how to do that. He later promised to deal with the issue of public finances and equity issues in a third article, but this never materialized. Too bad he didn't post it because it would have addressed the real pressing issues. It should be added that the resulting two looked like clear textbook presentations of how changing relative prices in a competitive market drive the marginal rates of substitution equation (at one point he even used that terminology). This was deadly and uninspired. Given what he had seen so far from Hayek, his editorBankerhe may just have decided to cut his losses.

The following month Keynes would come to the rescue. In two articles entitled "Paying for the War," published inThe timesof London in November 1939, achieved exactly what Hayek had failed to do: formulate a concrete plan for financing the war. Like Hayek, Keynes believed that the "solutions" of inflation or price fixing and deltism were undesirable. A third option was to raise taxes, which could be used both to pay for war spending and to reduce the demand for consumer goods. Keynes pointed out that if this alternative was chosen, the tax would have to be extendedthe working class, because taxing the rich would not raise enough money and would not sufficiently reduce consumer spending. To make the tax palatable to employees, Keynes proposed a system of "compulsory savings". A gradually increasing percentage of all income will be paid to the government, some as taxes, the rest in the form of compulsory savings deposited in individual accounts at a Caixa Econômica do Correios. This amount would earn interest and be available for spending after the war. Taxation and borrowing financed the war and avoided both inflation and price fixing (Keynes 1978 [1939], 41-51).

It was a brilliant plan, which Hayek published in an articleviewerhailed as "brilliant" on 24 November. His only real disagreement was with Keynes's proposal to release retained earnings in scheduled installments to ease the post-war crisis. Hayek wondered whether such a policy would actually work, but he also feared that deciding when to release money could become a kind of political football, similar to the "soldier bonus" problem that followed World War I, but in a larger size. . He briefly presented a slightly different economic plan: a wealth tax on "old wealth" instead of a compulsory savings system. Those who deferred consumption during the war would receive, in lieu of a monetary claim against the government, a share in the country's industrial capital (Hayek 1939, November 24).

Keynes' proposal was not accepted by the Labor Party, the left-wing press or the trade unions. Indeed, he privately characterized the initial reaction of Labor Party politicians as "frivolous and reckless" (Keynes 1978 [1939], 82). To appease them, in a revised edition of the pamphlet, now entitledHow to pay for the warand started in February 1940, Keynes added a child benefit as well as an "iron ration", a minimum share of consumer goods available at a low price. He also adopted Hayek's idea of ​​a tax, but allegedly used the money to finance his own cash payment scheme (Keynes 1940). In a review of the pamphlet on its pagesEconomic journal, Hayek pointed out the near unanimity among economists in support of Keynes' proposal, even among those who (like himself) disagreed with Keynes's approach to macroeconomic issues (Hayek 1997 [1940b], 168).

The episode reveals how close Keynes' and Hayek's views were about what was needed in wartime, or more generally, when the economy lived in an era of scarcity (full employment) rather than in an era of plenty (when resources were scarce). In those moments, choices have to be made. Interestingly, Hayek mocked those who criticized Keynes for the mandatory nature of his original proposal, suggesting that making the plan voluntary would have about the same chance of success as making it voluntary.voluntary tax. Times of national emergency call for common sacrifice and relinquishment of certain liberties.

Despite almost universal approval among economists, Keynes' proposal did not go far. Although a modest program of deferred payments was added to the British government's 1941 budget, the war was ultimately financed by a hodgepodge of measures: increases in various taxes, government borrowing and capital controls, interest rates, and exchange rates. Demand is governed by price fixing for some commodities, a complicated release schedule (accompanied by subsidies for) many staple commodities, and simply lack of availability (Broadberry and Howlett 1998; Capie and Wood 1993). As is often the case, the confusion turned into national politics.

The outbreak of hostilities interrupted some of Hayek's planned works. He collaborated with the publisher William Hodge on a series of book translations from German into English. Suggested volumes include the posthumous work of Max Weber,economy and society(finally completed in 1947 for another printer by A. M. Henderson and Talcott Parsons). The recently completed great book by Ludwig von Mises (entitledNational economy; although never translated, it would form the basis of Mises's 1949 volume,Human action) and, as mentioned in a previous chapter, the thought of Karl Popperfind the logic(Popper would publish an English edition in 1959, much altered with footnotes and appendices, under the titleThe logic of scientific discoveries) (IB 93; six letters from Hayek to Popper, 7 December 1936 to 12 March 1938). The war brought paper rationing, so that many publishing projects had to be postponed or stopped, but perhaps especially those that involved translating German-speaking authors into English, regardless of their politics. We mention in passing that in September 1939 his collection of essays appeared,Profits, interest and investments, and it's clear that he was still trying to put an end to the withering foreverPure theory of capital.

Hayek also took part in an ongoing debate about the possibility of a European federation. Lionel Robbins had touted the benefits of federation for bothEconomic planning and international order(1937) eThe economic causes of war(1939). At the same time, the book by the American Charles Straightcooperative now(1939) called for a federal union consisting of the United States and the European republics bordering the Atlantic Ocean. The British Federation Association was established and in October 1939 a meeting of the Department of Research into the finances of the federation was held in Oxford. Sir William Beveridge hosted and Hayek, Robbins and notable socialist economists such as HD Dickinson, Barbara Wootton and Evan Durbin attended. Although it is in other mattersit clearly differed, but at this point many British socialists (at least academics) and free market advocates favored some form of federation for defense purposes (Howson 2011, 345–48).

Robbins believed that a federal union on the Straits model might be reasonable as a long-term goal, but that the most immediate concern was an Anglo-French union. Hayek advocated reducing trade barriers between the two countries in a letter dated November 17viewer, then wrote another defensive more ambitious proposal than Robbins in December (Hayek 1939, Nov. 17, Dec. 15). He also published a longer article in which he concluded that the basic economic conditions for a successful interstate federation were to ensure the free and unrestricted movement of goods, people, and capital within the federation (Hayek 1939h).

In April 1940, both attended an economic conference in Paris to discuss a report on federation that Robbins had prepared. While the meeting was vague, the threat of actual war (the conference took place on April 10, two days after the Germans began their invasion of Denmark and Norway) gave the issue some urgency. As Robbins later confided to his sister, "Drastic Reconstruction is no longer an academic issue here...Robbins even had plans for a book, with Hayek contributing a chapter on the economic effects of federation (Howson 2011, 350).The plans were soon redundant; two months after the conference, the Germans marched on Paris and the French government under Marshal Pétain quickly sought an armistice with Germany, an agreement reached on 22 June 1940.

As noted earlier, in the May 1940 issue ofEconomicHayek published his third contribution to the debate on socialist mathematics, his extensive critique of two books, one by HD Dickinson, the other reprints of articles by Oskar Lange and Fred M. Taylor, both advocating forms of socialism of the market (Hayek 1940a). . Although revision was an important part of the development of Hayek's thought, it is believed that with what was happening in the world few people paid much attention to it.

royal war

The events of May and June 1940 surprised everyone. The so-called Phoney War (the period from September 1939 to May 1940) changed people's lives in countless ways, whether it was rationing, blackouts, disruption of family life through evacuations, the ever-present airborne guards and the like, but it felt more like an endless game of solitaire than a war. from SeptFrom 1939, London's air raid sirens signaled people to take cover, but in terms of actual air raids there were almost none: the first British death from an air raid did not occur until 16 March 1940 (Price 2000, 27 ). As one historian summed up, “In the end, the outbreak of war was the greatest disaster in modern British history” (Todman 2016, 199).

The biggest danger during the Phoney War was not bombs but the unintended consequences of blackouts, especially during the long winter nights when darkness fell long before many people started to get home from work. Street lights went out and cars were only allowed to use their side lights, a recipe for traffic accidents. Although there were far fewer cars on the road, the number of fatal traffic accidents rose by about a third to four thousand compared to last year. December 1940 was particularly dangerous in London, where the number of pedestrian deaths increased eightfold compared to previous years. More and more children arrived in London, although many schools remained closed. By the late spring of 1940, almost everyone who had been evacuated in September had returned. People who still brought their gas masks to work could become objects of scorn and derision if they were seen on the street by bored and misbehaving children (Price 2000, 17; Ziegler 1995, 56-68, 102).

The fake war obviously unsettled the LSE professors who had to camp in the Beales' house, but in this case the forced camaraderie had its advantage as classmates who didn't know each other well gained new information and ideas. As Lance Beales recalls, “I remember how we opened up the piano and pushed the chairs aside, and people were dancing around the room. It was very comical. Hayek, for example, took off his shoes and participated as if he were human!” (Shehadi interviews, 17).

It was at the Beales' house that Hayek became better acquainted with his colleague RH Tawney (IB 83). Tawney, a leading socialist thinker and activist known for his disheveled and disheveled appearance, was low-key and collected, a person who "maintained outward manners throughout his life — not just his tone, but his tone."do and act—by an Edwardian and indeed a Victorian gentleman” (Michael Postan, cited in Goldman 2013, 16). Educated at Rugby, he attended Balliol College, Oxford where he befriended William Beveridge, whose sister, Jeanette, he later married. (As Ralf Dahrendorf [1995, 239] reported, compared to her husband, Jeanette was a bit of a spendthrift, leading Kingsley Martin to joke that Tawney wrotethe greedy societyand Jeanette illustrated it.) After college, she worked as a secretary for the Children's Vacation Fund for the Country, where she gained first-hand experience of the urban poverty thatmade him a socialist. While a lifelong advocate of equal access to education for all classes, Tawney did not romanticize the working class. he found that the men he encountered in the East End were "a submissive bunch", only looking for help. It was already too late for them. capitalism had crushed them.5 His ideal was the type he had met in Lancashire, a craftsman who required no enlightenment, just a fair chance to lead an independent life. His emphasis on equity, on creating a system in which pay is linked to function, not ownership, arose from these observations (Goldman 2013, 29-30).

Tawney's very English 'outer ways' no doubt appealed to Hayek, and perhaps also the fact that, 'like so many men of his time and upbringing, he was more at home with men than with women' (Goldman 2013, 20). . Both smoked a pipe and enjoyed the dance. But it went deeper than that. Hayek had a genuine respect for Tawney for his insight and humility, for his humanity and integrity: "I was different from him, but he was a kind of socialist holy . . . man" (Hayek 1983a, 113). He was less impressed with Tawney's historical thesisReligion and the rise of capitalismthat the rise of Puritanism in the Tudor period ushered in capitalism and destroyed the bonds of social solidarity that had existed in the earlier period, a variant of the Weberian position applied to Britain (Hayek, interviews with Shehadi, 15). Tawney was also likely one of the historians whose work impressed Hayek with the importance of offering alternative historical narratives to those of the left.

Phoney's war was so moribund that the Economic Warfare Department, which had moved into the LSE buildings in Houghton Street, decided to move in March 1940. The timing was not ideal. Germany invaded Denmark and Norway in April. Things heated up quickly. The changing environment led to a bet of 10 shillings between Hayek and Robbins, recorded in Hayek's diary on April 24, 1940: “Lionel 10 s. that within a year food prices would increase by 75% from September 1, 1939." Hayek did not say who took which side of the bet.

On May 10, Nazi troops marched and armored tanks invaded Belgium and the Netherlands, and three days later they attacked France from the north, bypassing the Mazinot Line. On May 21, the French troops split in two. Along with the French in the north, it formed the bulk of the British Expeditionary Force. Isolated and facing destruction or capture, most Allied forces moved onto the wide, sandy beaches of Dunkirk,where a mass evacuation took place between 27 May and 4 June. In the end, 338,226 soldiers were saved, but this "miracle at Dunkirk" was tempered by the huge losses suffered in tanks, other vehicles, ammunition, food, equipment, fuel and, at least, the 68,000 British soldiers killed (3,500). wounded (13,053), captured or missing. Hayek, Robbins, Honor Croome and Nicholas Kaldor heard the news of the evacuation over the radio at 17 Clarkson Road. Croome later recalled the incident: “Fritz wondered if he should not report and go to Norway? And Nicky with the "parachutes"? (Croome to Robbins, 28/29 June 1943).

England, always isolated, was now the only remaining democracy among the great European powers. With the newly acquired air bases in France, Belgium and the Netherlands, the German war machine and its bombers were suddenly much closer together. Hitler, like the French, hoped to make peace with the British, but Winston Churchill, prime minister only since May 10, the day the invasion began, was adamant. His "We will fight on the beaches" speech in the House of Commons on 4 June 1940 made it clear that negotiation was out of the question. The real war had begun.

Hayek's primary concern was to get Hela and the children out of London to a relatively safer place. Christine vaguely remembers that she and Larry may have been sent to stay with the Carr-Saunders family in Oxford for "a very short time" (interviews with Christine, 16 October 2012). But in mid-June they were sent with Hella to stay with the Robbins family at Tor Cottage. It would be a temporary arrangement. Meanwhile, Hayek explored various options for a more permanent solution.

One involved sending Hella and the children to the United States or one of the Holdings. But there were obstacles: you couldn't send money out of the country, they really didn'tbellyeveryone in the sectors, and the US immigration rules made it difficult to move to this country. Hayek asked Machlup and Jacob Wiener to see if it would be possible for him to obtain some sort of "invitation" that would allow him to obtain a family visa "if the worst should happen" (Hayek to Machlup, June 21, 1940). Another letter revealed other wrinkles. As more and more colleagues were called into public service, Hayek realized that his departure would put the school in serious trouble. As for Hella and the children left without him, he told Machlup that he categorically refused to consider the idea (Hayek to Machlup, 1 August 1940). The final decision was that they would find a place in the open near Robbins' cabin. Meanwhile, the family usually stayed in the country with the Robbins, and Hella came to London at weekends to see Fritz (Hayek to Mises, 23 July 1940).

Viennese immigrants to the United States also worried about their friends abroad. Some of the tension of the moment is revealed in a letter Haberler sent to Morgenstern that summer:

I received a very depressing letter from Hayek. I had telegraphed him last week and asked if there was anything I could do for his children. He replied that his children were currently in the field and that the transport might be too dangerous now, as Hitler could soon mobilize his submarines. Later, however, he would like to send his children to the US. He himself has no plans to leave, but he may be forced to reconsider his decision. Xenophobia is on the rise and naturally extends to naturalized foreigners. So Hayek asks to get him a job at a university... It's a shame Hayek is so unpopular. However, you should be able to find a university that interests you... There's almost nothing you can do about it. Fellner, Mises, Röpke are almost more than "can handle traffic" [English in original]... The news from Europe is getting more and more frightening. I consider the situation in England absolutely hopeless. (July 6, 1940)

Hayek received an RF-sponsored offer from the New School for the semester beginning in September 1940, but declined it. In a letter to Machlup (January 2, 1941), he confessed that he felt some "indignation" at being offered "indefinitely at about a quarter of his personal salary." Matschlup tried to reassure him by pointing out that this was the standard offer sent to "about 150 scholars ... regardless of previous employment or income" (March 14, 1941).

As suggested above, things changed quickly at the School as well. From the moment the German offensive began, Robbins was eager to join the war effort. He later recalled that at that time "academic life was becoming almost unbearable" (Robbins 1971, 168). When he was invited to join the War Cabinet Office as a financial assistant in early June, he immediately accepted and began work there on 10 June. He would later become director of the economics department (Howson 2011, 353–54, 387). Hayek took charge of evaluating Robbins' students' exams as well as his own, reporting to Matschlup that "I am deep in the exam scripts...we are trying to finish it before the bombing really starts" (Hayek to Matschlup, 21 June 1940) . Hayek worked from home in London, where he spent all summer while his family was out in the country.

Hayek's next pressing concern was to discover the fate of his friends and colleagues on the Continent, particularly Ludwig von Mises. Mises was a frequent correspondent, but also a topic of discussion between themothers for it. Part of this included finding a publisher for your big book or changing your library,6, but it was also about finding a job to be able to leave Geneva. Mises did not help much in this effort, at least from Fritz Machlup's perspective. In March and April, Machlup tried to arrange a visit for him at UCLA the following year. Mises initially declined the offer, but then decided he might as well accept it anyway. Unfortunately, he posted the letter expressing his change of heart by regular mail, so it did not arrive in time (Mahlup to Hayek, 17 April 1940; Hülsmann 2007, 748-749). As a result, he had no business to turn to when he had to leave. It was not until the end of May that Mises would write to Hayek to say that he finally planned to leave Geneva (Mises to Hayek, 22 May 1940).

In June 1940, when things took a turn for the worse, Hayek's concern for his mentor, from whom he had heard nothing more, was palpable: “My main concern at the moment is whether Mises and Roepke have escaped in time from Geneva. My French friend to arrange a French transit visa for him, but I'm afraid he came too late and the only hope is that he and R. left the Locarno-Barcelona airline before it was discontinued' (Hayek to Machlup, June 21, 1940) .7 In fact, Mises and his wife Margit had not caught the last plane, which left on May 28. Instead, they were forced to take a bus to Spain that left Geneva on the evening of the 4th of July.

It was a painful passage. The bus was mostly filled with Jews of different nationalities. The route they took as they crossed the "Zone Franca" of Vichy France was a tortuous one, with the driver stopping frequently to consult with locals, then crossing and returning as needed to avoid the newly constructed checkpoints. Finally, at noon the next day, they reached the border, where they found that only French, American and British citizens were allowed to cross. After a few days of fruitless negotiations, Mises telegraphed Rouzier, then working in the Vichy government, clearing the way for Mises to obtain the necessary documents. After crossing the border, Ludwig and Margit continued their journey to Lisbon and on July 25 they left for New York. They were lucky to get out of Europe alive (M. Mises 1984, 51–56; Hülsmann 2007, 726–27, 753–57). Hayek would not discover that Mises had escaped from Geneva until 22 July, when a letter published by Mises arrived from Lisbon, and it was not until late August that they arrived safely in New York.

The abuse and corruption of reason

Hayek began the writing phase of his new work in June 1940. He was working from home and although there was great fear that a Nazi invasion was imminent, daily life had again changed little. In a June letter to Machlup, he was stoically existential: “Though things look rather gloomy, life here goes on as usual… Since the first outings of the last few days, we notice nothing here and in the tranquility of your house and garden. , it's still hard to believe how close the war came. Of course one looks with a certain amount of "Behmut" [melancholy] at things and books that could disappear at any moment. But in the meantime we are just getting on with the job, hoping that soon there will be an opportunity to do something immediately useful” (June 21, 1940). In the same letter, Hayek described his progress so far in his war effort.

I am already working on my new book, A History of the Influence of Scientific and Technological Developments on Social Thought and Policy (entitled The Abuse and Decline of Reason), and over the past year I have worked out a very specific plan and done a lot of preparatory choose. It's a great topic and could make a great book. In fact, I believe I have found a new approach to the subject through which one can exert some real influence. But whether I ever get to write it, of course, depends not only on whether the person survives, but on the outcome of it all. If things go too badly, I certainly won't be able to continue here, and because I think it's very important and the best thing I can do for the future of humanity, I'll have to take my activities elsewhere.

These are unusual rules for Hayek, who is not usually prone to exaggeration. He was worried about what would happen next and which side would win, and since he could not directly participate in the work of government, he was convinced that this work was the best contribution he could make. As his own survival was not assured, he sent Machlup a copy of the book's chapter summary (he did the same for Walter Lippmann and Jacob Viner) and promised to send the actual chapters as soon as they were completed. He also included a table of contents for a future book titledKnowledge and need, which will collect articleswhich he had written. Such a book would indeed appear after the war, but with a different title (Individualism and economic order) and another series of articles (only two of the articles he cited would be included).

The impetus for work on the project was given not only by the course of the war, but also by the reaction of Hayek's staunch enemies, British physicists, to Nazi aggression. Their call for planning, strong before the start of the war, quickly continued as the Phoney War became a reality. A ubiquitous and reliable source was the scientific weeklyNature. It wasn't just the articles he chose to publish. the unsigned leadership page also repeatedly emphasized that scientific expertise was needed, and urgently, to lead the war effort. Shortly after the escape from Dunkirk, the leading writer opined on the lessons to be learned from the near disaster: “It became a matter of life and death that the habits and customs of alaissez-fairesociety must be abandoned and the economic and social effects of modern warfare fully recognized" (Nature, 13 July 1940, p. 40). War required planning.

Two weeks later, under the headline "Men of Science and War," the intrepid author urged his fellow scientists to use their knowledge to correct mistakes others have made in decision-making. The arrogance is palpable: “Until now (and still), planning has been the work of only our political, industrial and civil servants. We need not dwell on the results of your efforts. As scientists, it is our responsibility to make sure things get done, not to blame others when they don't" (Nature, 27 July 1940, p. 107). A final entry, this one from October 1940, even considered the contribution of science to the organization of society.alreadythe war is over. “The work must not stop with the end of the war ... the immediate concern of science to shape policy and otherwise to exercise a direct and sufficient influence on the course of government is something we must understand. Science must seize the opportunity to show that it can lead humanity to a better society" (Nature, 12 October 1940, p. 470).

Although the subject chosen was historical, Hayek's aim was clear. The subtitle of the book, as well as the title of Part 1, reveal its main theme: that the misuse and corruption of reason was caused by arrogance, man's arrogant pride in the power of his own reason. This was reinforced by the rapid progress and many successes of the natural sciences, which led to "scientism", the idea that to make the social sciences truly scientific it was enough to apply the already proven methods of nature to them. Sciences. Those infected with scientific prejudice believed that if the prescription was followed, the scientific reformation of society could begin on more rational and just lines. Hayek would be thehistorical development of this optimistic, widely accepted and apparently benign (but in my opinion quite dangerous) doctrine as it spread (always taking slightly different forms) from France through Germany to England and America. Then it would show its disastrous consequences in the 20th century.

Hayek saw scientism as emerging from the mixture of positivist and socialist ideas that emerged from 18th and early 19th century France. He began his narrative with a short and laudatory list of the achievements of the scientists and mathematicians of the French Enlightenment. In addition to scientific discoveries, these thinkers made methodological advances, notably the elimination of anthropomorphic concepts for interpreting relationships between natural phenomena. Although this was a significant advance, his descendants would make the mistake of applying similar methods to the study of society, an obvious mistake, since societies are made up of active people. Hayek also highlighted the changes to the French education system introduced by Napoleon, which eliminated the old system of colleges and universities and replaced them with more technically oriented schools. Thus a new type of "educated man" became possible: "For the first time in history this new type appeared... his life, development, problems and values, which only the study of history, literature and languages can offer". (Hayek 2010 [1941b], p.176). The most influential of the new schools was the Ecole Polytechnique, which emphasized the practical application of scientific knowledge: "the type of engineer with his characteristic outlook, ambitions, and limitations was created here" (180).

Hayek's next chapters focus on two protagonists, men who must rank among the strangest characters in the history of the social sciences, Comte Henri de Saint-Simon (1760-1825) and Auguste Comte (1798-1857). Hayek clearly enjoyed retelling the colorful early history of Saint-Simon, who lived the life of an adventurer, soldier, speculator and prospector. The good count lived extravagantly on other people's money. Only when his main benefactor and companion found out and stopped his money did he decide to become a philosopher at the age of thirty-eight. He moved to the other side of the Ecole Polytechnique, married a good table and spent the next three years and most of his money organizing dinners to which he invited the most brilliant minds of the Ecole. He then left his wifeHis three years of education and money had come to an end, hoping to marry one of the most famous figures of his day, Madame de Stael, whom he visited at her villa, Le Cope. He thought the marriage would be obvious—“the first man in the world should marry the first woman”—but Madame de Staël objected (Hayek 2010 [1941b], 187–90).

Only then did Saint-Simon begin his writing career. His first efforts were unimpressive (they formed, according to Hayek, a “incoherent and incoherent mess... His reputation improved only after he employed talented young men as secretaries, first Augustin Thierry and later none other than Auguste. In life, Saint -Simon would lose the services of Comte, who broke with him but managed to attract a new group of followers who would transform his ideas into a more authoritarian form of socialism and eventually into a new faith…: “religion of mechanics, as Hayek put it (217).

Far more influential than Saint-Simon's own writings were those of his followers, whose ideas are found in a series of lectures they gave at the École and later published in 1829 and 1830 asDoctrine of Saint-Simon, exposition. Hayek believed that they had contributed far more to socialist thought than was commonly believed, especially by scornful critics such as Marx.

As for the now universal common property of socialism, little more needed to be added to Saint-Simonian thought...Exhibition. The concept of class struggle and the opposition between bourgeoisie and proletariat in the particular technical sense of the word are creations of Saint-Simon. The wordsocialismherself, although she is not yet in theExhibition(using "link" in much the same sense), which first appeared in its modern sense a little later in the Saint-SimonianGlobo. (229)

Hayek claimed that Saint-Simonian influence was widespread throughout Europe. His ideas found their way to England through Carlyle and John Stuart Mill, and after the July Revolution of 1830, a "veritable flood" of Saint-Simonian writings appeared in Germany. Traces of his thought are also found in Italy, Spain, Sweden, Russia, and even South America (239-45). Equally important, his influence extended far beyond socialist thought. His ideas on how to organize the banking system “paid offcapitalism its peculiar form. "monopoly capitalism" or "finance capitalism", which develops due to the close connection between banks and industry (banks organize industrial enterprises as the largest shareholders of the companies they constitute), the rapid growth of joint-stock companies and large railways together is in great degree sacred creations - Simonians" (251-52). Even the halls of political power felt its influence. Napoleon III was an ardent Saint-Simonian and (anticipating the arguments Hayek intended to make in the next part of the book, see 256n2), His ideas also influenced Bismarck, who borrowed them secondhand from the writings of Ferdinand Lassalle.

If Saint-Simon was a bigotmisunderstood genius(196), at least he had enough personal charm to attract a following. By comparison, Hayek's second protagonist, Auguste Comte, founder of both socialism (through his association with Saint-Simon) and, in his writings, positivism, was an "extremely unattractive" person. Grandiose, pompous, always confident of his genius (he decided early in life that he had read enough and then practiced "brain health" by refusing to read anything new), he felt that he had discovered the laws governing the control of growth his human race that were "as simple as those that determine the fall of a stone" (258, 269). He was verbose: his first work, thepositive philosophy course, took over twelve years to complete and had six volumes, while the second, thePositive policy system, it took until four o'clock. Only his death prevented the world from receiving a planned third series of volumes. His work, perhaps unsurprisingly, was almost completely ignored in his own country during his lifetime.

Hayek is mercifully brief in presenting some of Comte's key ideas: the three stages (theological, metaphysical, and positive) through which all scientific thought must pass. the abandonment in the positive phase of all anthropomorphism and its replacement by general laws describing the interactions between variables. the need to do away with psychology (what Comte called "the final transformation of theology") in the study of social phenomena and rely instead on "observable facts." the "evolution of the human mind as a manifestation of the 'collective organism' that constitutes humanity as a whole". the transformation of history into predictive science (258-69);

While some of these ideas may seem strange today, others will seem all too familiar to social scientists. If everyone ignored it, how did it spread so widely? As Hayek showed, it was not through people who studied Comte directly, but through the efforts of a small but powerful group of scholars who discussed and promoted his ideas that they eventually became common currency and eventually found their way back into the French language. . Among his supportersEngland was the first John Stuart Mill (in his sixth bookLogic), George Lewes, George Eliot, Harriet Martineau in her later years, Herbert Spencer and Henry Thomas Buckle. These people were read by scholars in Germany, who in turn were read by Frenchmen such as Alfred Victor Espinas, Lucien Lévy-Bruhl, Emile Durkheim, and François Simiand, who established sociology in their country (277-81) .

Both Saint-Simon and Comte, although not natural scientists, had a view of what constituted good scientific practice and believed that by applying it society could be reorganized along scientific lines. Both harbored authoritarian tendencies: Saint-Simon said that those who disobeyed the orders of the central planning body should be treated with the same severity as unruly quadrupeds. Comte's vision of his ideal society was so hierarchical that Thomas Huxley bitterly called it "Catholicism."nothing lessChristianity' (Hayek 2010 [1941b], 193, 275). Neither they nor their followers had much knowledge of the "social science" that existed in their day, but that mattered little because they shared their contempt for it. Saint-Simonians, in an earlier publication, referred to concepts such as value, price, and production as "irrelevant details." and as for Comte, he tried "to denounce political economy to some extent, and here his severity contrasts strangely with his extremely meager knowledge of the object of his abuse" (221, 272). Since Hayek's ultimate goals were similar beliefs of the men of science of his time, who documented the strange historical origins of his ideas, this combination of scientism and socialism that was so popular in the 1930s was absolutely irresistible. That Lasky praised Saint-Simon as a visionary thinker in his book on liberalism was just icing on the cake.

Hayek had previously written short historical pieces—his obituary of Wieser, his 1934 essay on Menger, his introductions to the editions of Gos-sen, Cantillon, and Thornton—and did considerable research for the book that was never written. . . about money, but he had never completed anything on the scale of these first chapters of his great work. What are we to make of this, Hayek's first extended foray into serious intellectual history?

Hayek was obviously thorough in his research. His footnotes show that he read almost everything then available in the secondary literature in French, German and English (very little was in English) on Saint-Simon, Comte and their followers. His main sources were the forty volumes of the collected works of Saint-Simon and Enfantin.(1865-1878) and the ten executed by Comte (1830-1842, 1851-1854). As for Comte, it is a testament to Hayek's academic discipline and courage that he was willing to work hard with the material. Indeed, after all this work, he could be forgiven for his final "counter-revolutionary" sentence about the spread of Comte's influence: "For this influence of Comte must so often have been much more effective in an indirect way, those tried to study his work, it will take no effort to understand' (Hayek 2010 [1941b], 281).

Much of what Hayek wrote reflected information well established in the secondary literature. The mutual emergence and intertwining of socialism and positivism was established by Elie Halévy, Hayek's senior assistant in the common room, in articles first published in 1907 and 1908 and repeated by Durkheim (Halévy 1966 [1938], 21 -104; Durkheim). At times, however, Hayek was groundbreaking, as with his suggestion that the impact of Saint-Simonian ideas on the New Hegelians was an unexplored area ripe for further study.

Hayek decided to publish what he had so far concluded under the title "The Counter-Revolution of Science" in parts over three consecutive issues ofEconomicin February, May and August 1941. The somewhat ambiguous title refers to the self-image of nineteenth-century social engineers, who sought to counter the forces of revolution and reaction by providing a means for the scientific reconstruction of society. If scientism, positivism and socialism were the counter-revolution, Hayek, in their opposition, assumed the role ofgiftedcontrarevolutionair.

For those who do not regularly read the French and German sources, which have at least a (perhaps significant) subset ofEconomicto readers, he offered a service unlike that of his previous book,Collectivist economic planning. At least one discerning modern reader who had an excellent command of foreign languages ​​thought very highly of what Hayek had achieved.8 The eminent economic theorist and historian of thought Jacob Viner wrote to Hayek: “I have just read your book The Counter-Revolution of Science and I want to tell you how much I enjoyed it. Most of the content was brand new to me and you masterfully covered very difficult material. Wiener then asked for a reprint to give to a colleague working on the history of ideas: “I'm lending him my copy to read, but he would very much like to keep it” (December 7, 1941). Mises also responds enthusiastically: “Your plan to investigate the impact of positivism is excellent. There is nothing more urgent than this' (letter to Hayek, 26 January 1940) or 'Your essays on C.R.of science constitute the most valuable contribution to the history of the decline of Western civilization" (December 16, 1941).9

Weiner's letter led to an extensive correspondence with Hayek about their mutual dismay at the widespread circulation of John Stuart Mill's correspondence. Hayek's interest in Mill was sparked by Mill's role in bringing Saint-Simonian and Comtean ideas to England. This eventually led him to begin the "enormous" task (the epithet belongs to Wiener) of collecting copies of the letters for their eventual publication. Viner helped found letters in America and Hayek placed an advertisementTimes Literary Supplementdated February 13, 1943, identifying known collections and requesting assistance in locating other unpublished letters. This innocent sequence of events soon established Hayek as one of Mill's leading scholars.10

Hayek's decision to begin his narrative with the transformations that took place in response to the French Revolution would have made sense to his readers.11 The shocking economic, social, political, legal and cultural transformations that followed the French Revolution, the Napoleonic Empire and the Restoration in rapid succession created a desire to restore a new order. Saint-Simon put it this way in 1814: “The eighteenth century did nothing but destroy. we will not continue their work: on the contrary, we will lay the foundations of a new building' (cited in Halévy 1966 [1938], 32). World War I and its aftermath, communist and fascist revolutions, and the Great Depression had a similar effect on Hayek's generation. Seeking a new way forward, advocates of liberalism and an emerging socialism (both opposed to Royalist and Catholic reaction) clashed in France and elsewhere in the 1820s and 1830s, and now liberals like Hayek sought to compete the socialists of their time. avoid the horrors of communism and fascism, nationalism and racism.

There were other similarities. Otto Neurath's plan for an encyclopedia of "unified science" mirrored Saint-Simon's proposal for an encyclopedia of scientific knowledge. The doctrine of Soviet Socialist Realism echoed Saint-Simon's theory of art, developed by Léon Halévy (Elie Halévy's grandfather!), among others. But perhaps more significantly, Hayek claimed to see certain similarities in attitude when he compared the words and personal descriptions of earlier writers with the writings and behavior of some of his colleagues. In an interview, he said, "The Saint-Simonians struck me as a wonderful illustration of the kind of attitude I found in the Vienna Circle ... the resemblance between Carnap and some of these people was amazing" (Bartley Interviews, March 28 , 1984). . In another, he acknowledged that J.D. Bernal "became for me the representative of a new vision, which I tried to elaborate in 'The Counter-Revolution of Science,' and which was so dominant" in Cambridge (Bartley interviews, Summer 1984). Hayek made clear comparisons in The Counter-Revolution when commenting on Saint-Simon's second major work,Introduction to the scientific works of the 19th century:

It combines almost all the features of the modern scientific organizer for the first time. Enthusiasm for physicalism (now called physicalism) and the use of "natural language", the attempt to "unify science" and make it the basis of ethics, contempt for all "theological" reasoning, i.e. anthropomorphic, . The desire to organize the work of others, especially by editing a large encyclopedia, and the desire to plan life in general along scientific lines is present. Sometimes you might think you are reading a contemporary work by an H.G. Wells, a Lewis Mumford or an Otto Neurath.

(Hayek 2010 [1941b], 195)

Hayek wanted to show that in both periods there was a clear "zeitgeist". as he put it in the notes he took while working on the project, "he described the spirit of an age through the examples of certain persons" (FAHP 107.17). The sentence itself was meant to take the reader back to an earlier era. this isspiritin his present manifestation that Hayek, the counter-revolutionary, intended to fight.12

Thus Hayek wrote a very specific kind of historical narrative. First, the spiritual story, which he knew was out of date, but for which he made no apologies. Because it was out of fashion everywhereobviously. After all, for Harold Lasky, the ideas of the defenders of liberalism reflected the class interests of those who owned and controlled property. For Karl Mannheim, founder of the sociology of knowledge, ideas or mental structures were reflections of and determined by the social structures from which they originated. For Wesley Clair Mitchell or Gustav Schmoller before him, changes in economic reasoning merely reflected and rationalized changes in the technological, cultural, economic, social, legal, and class institutions of society.

Hayek would have none of it. His aim was to trace the origin of certain fundamental ideas and to argue that the gradual spread and acceptance of these ideas helped to create the terrible mess in which the world now found itself. Significantly, many liberals of his day reacted similarly, affirming the supreme importance of ideas. Lippmann had done thisThe good society, and Keynes had done so in his final pagesgeneral theory. Everyone remembers Keynes' joke about "mad men in power" being influenced by some "academic writer". But his next sentence is where he invoked the importance of ideas: "I am sure that the power of vested interests is greatly exaggerated in comparison with the gradual invasion of ideas" (Keynes 1973a [1936], 383). Hayek would have wholeheartedly agreed.

Like Lasky's, Hayek's was a meaningful story. Hayek's approach was echoed by the liberal historian Elie Halévy, a figure Hayek cited frequently not only in "The Counter-Revolution" but also inThe road to service. RK Webb, who translated Halévy's book in 1938 into English asThe Age of Tyranny, said in his preface that "Halévy's work is a definitive justification for the central role of thesis and argument in historical writing" (Halévy 1966, xiii). The same goes for Hayek. And R. H. Tawney had advocated a similar approach to history in his inaugural address at the LSE, delivered on 12 October 1932, and probably attended by Hayek, where he stated that 'the function of the historian is to replace chronology with more substantial connections (Tawney 1933, 9).13 Hayek's approach may have been inconsistent with some approaches popular at the time, but he was not alone in doing so.

"The Counter-Revolution of Science" provided examples of ideas that Hayek would generalize about in his next essay, "Scientism." He also began his long fascination with the figure of John Stuart Mill. As the comments of Jacob Viner, then at the University of Chicago, confirm:he also established his bona fides in the history of ideas, a field in which he had been teaching in recent years.

In the London Blitz

Hayek completed the six chapters on the French origins of scientism, socialism and positivism sometime in October 1940. Although the air war for London (the so-called Battle of Britain) began in July, the bombing offensive or Blitz began seriously. with a dramatic daytime attack on Saturday, September 7, followed by another that night that lasted until 4:30 a.m. the next day. By daybreak, 430 Londoners had died, more than 1,600 were injured, and there was widespread fire damage to property (Price 2000, 101). The attack on London would continue for fifty-seven consecutive days, mostly at night, and although cloudy winter skies provided some relief, additional attacks would be made regularly until early May 1941. More than 20,000 civilians in London were said to have died by then. and 300,000 homes have been damaged or destroyed (Ziegler 1995, 161).

However, the attacks did not affect all parts of London equally, as Hayek's letter to Matschlup in October showed:

Life here in London is surprisingly unchanged. One night [so] were unpleasant, and once or twice we even had bombs here that were unpleasantly close. But overall the effects of the German attacks - at least in the parts of London I see regularly - are extremely small. I think any visitor who didn't know would think that London was bombed for a night and not for a month... You tend to sleep in a cellar or, as in our case, a fortified room on the ground floor and hope for the best. Of course, it's by no means impossible for it to get worse - so I'll probably change my current habits as well. But so far, the benefit of being able to continue my work at my own desk and among my own books still seems to outweigh the small risk involved.

(13 October 1940, letter reproduced in full in Hayek 2010, 314–15)

Hayek underestimated the natural devastation that befell London during the Blitz. In the first six weeks (concurrent with Hayek's first letter), 16,000 homes were destroyed and 60,000 severely damaged. However, the areas hit first, hardest and longest were in the East End, where the industry and docks were located, and Hayek would have had no reason to do so. It took almost a week for the bombs to start falling on the West End graffiti. He too may have been carried away by the constant chorus,in order to reassure the population, in the BBC's official bulletins: "Material damage is light and casualties are few." Finally, during the war, Sir Warren Fisher's Pioneer Corps became experts in rapid debris removal (Ziegler 1995, 121–24, 153–54, 182). Hayek's comment was an accurate reflection of what he saw, but his vision was limited.

Be that as it may, Hayek was ready for the next step in his work. As the sketch showed, he intended to trace the movement of ideas from France to Germany, England, and then America, and had prepared preliminary notes for a chapter comparing Comte and Hegel. But before continuing with the story, he decided to do what is referred to as Chapter 1, which would cover "Science". There he will contrast the pseudoscientific approach with what he considered appropriate methods of social science. This chapter would become an essay and take much longer to complete than the six he had just written.

Tor Cottage, Tintagel and anger at isolationism

The housing arrangement made by the Hayek and Robbins families was intended to be temporary. It turned out to be more than that. As the war progressed, Lionel spent most of his time in London, only occasionally coming to Tor Cottage for a weekend. When the school year began in the fall of 1940, Robbins' two sons were also less present. Anne, then fifteen, was given weekly boarding at the Farmhouse School in Wendover ("kind of a weird school where she took care of farm animals," Christine Hayek recalled), and thirteen-year-old Richard was sent to New York City. Secondary school. School in Oxford (Howson 2011, 354, interviews with Christine, 14 October 2012). For the most part, it was just the two mothers, Iris and Hela, with Hayek's two children, Christine and Lawrence, attending the local school. This situation lasted until the school year 1940-1941, with the exception of the Christmas and Easter holidays. In the summer, the Hayek family finally left.

During the school holidays they went to Cornwall on the west coast to the town of Tintagel. Keynes vacationed there as a child, so he may have recommended it (Skidelsky 1983, 52, 73). The town itself is dark and grey, especially in winter, but the coastline is breathtaking ("one of the most beautiful parts of the country" in Hayek's words: Hayek to Machlup, 2 January 1941) and perhaps magical: it was the legendary King Arthur's home. As usual, the Hayeks rented rooms in a private house. The meal routine was simple: Hella bought the food and the owner's wife cooked. The Hayek family had their own separate living room and dining room with a fireplace, and Christine remembers her fathersitting by the fire, embers crackling, readingArthurs Doud. She also remembers climbing the sea cliffs, exploring coves and caves and such, 'playing' with Laurence, the first time they really played much together (interviews with Christine, 14 October 2012). They would be back for nearly three weeks in April 1941 and much of August.

It was from Tintagel, on 2 January 1941, that Hayek completed a letter to Fritz Machlup which he had begun at Cambridge in December. From him we learn that sometime during his Michaelmas term in 1940, Hayek was given rooms (by Keynes's good graces, we now know) at King's College. As befits a New Year's letter, he talked about his plans for the future. It is the first time that he mentions the possibility of trying to change his big work a little: “At the moment I am mainly concerned with a more extensive and somewhat more popular exposition of my subject.Freedom and economic systemwhich, if I finish it, might come out as a Penguin sixpenny volume.

The letter also contains extensive and scathing remarks about the United States' ongoing flirtation with isolationism and (perhaps inevitably, given Hayek's continued interest in the subject) its inaccurate newspaper reporting. Backed by the northeastern internationalist wing of the Republican Party, former Democrat and New Deal critic Wendell Wilkie won the Republican presidential nomination over the more isolationist wing, such as Robert Taft and Thomas Dewey. However, when he faced Roosevelt in the general election, he reversed himself and said that if elected, he would not send troops to Europe because the bombs fell on London. Roosevelt's electoral victory was decisive, but he did not treat it as a mandate, still facing an isolationist Congress. All these political machinations infuriated Hayek:

That the Americans may have felt before the fall of France that the Allies would win without them is, of course, partly the fault of the people here. That they may have felt it was too late right after, I can understand - although it's kind of hard to see here. But now that no one can be under any illusions about what a Hitler victory would mean for America and it is so clear that every day can be decisive and the election is behind us, things cannot go faster. it is incomprehensible to me. I say this after Roosevelt's last speech and with full knowledge of the "political difficulties". I cannot understand the blindness of American isolationists. Compared with them, Baldwin and Chamberlain were prodigies of foresight. It would be too long to discuss all this in more detail - but in what I see of the current discussions in the US I can't find a single suggestionwhich does not prove that people are still completely unaware of what is at stake - and how irretrievably lost days are.

(Hayek to Machlup, 2 January 1941; for the entire letter, see Hayek 2010, 316-318)

Matschlup's response excited Matschlup, who showed the letter to friends and eventually reproduced parts of it to send to others: "In every group we find some isolationists - and so a letter from England is the best answer to their arguments." (Machlup to Hayek, March 14, 1941). Later, Mises would also complain that while Americans were beginning to realize that they were not living on Mars, there were “still too many stubborn isolationists” in the United States (Mises to Hayek, January 27, 1941). As we shall see, Hayek's announcement of a possible change in his research plans would have even greater implications for his relationship with the United States, a place he had already visited and, absurdly given his reaction to the visit, would one day live. But again, on to the story.



Hayek planned a four-week trip for 1939/40 that included visits to Harvard, Washington, the American Economic Association meetings in Philadelphia, Chicago, and Minneapolis (see letter to Machlup, 28 August 1939).


Ludwig Lachmann was among those arrested, although he held a Leon Fellowship at University College London (Lachmann, interviews with Shehadi, 6). Others included the art historian and former Geistkreis member Johannes Wilde, as well as Keynes's Italian friend Piero Sraffa when Italy entered the war.


The note is at FAHP 61.4–5. reprinted in Hayek 2010.


Later, Hayek took an English translation of the last paragraphs of Schiller's article and advised his readers to insert "Hitler" for "Lycurgus" and "Germany" for "Sparta", publishing it under the title "Schiller on Hitler". in the British newspaper. weeklytime and tide(Hayek 1945, April 7).


This may explain Hayek's rather curious and inexplicable remark that he found Tawney "slightly bigoted but very experienced" (IB 83).


After the Anschluss, in late March 1938, Mises' apartment in Vienna was ransacked by the Gestapo, who took all his possessions—including his books and papers—in 21 boxes. Mises sought out a Viennese lawyer and asked Hayek to intervene, but from the start he had no hope of getting his library back. See various letters in FAHP 38.24 and Hülsmann 2007, 727.


As noted earlier, Röpke resided in Geneva during the war. The "French friend" was Louis Rougier.


Paul Samuelson (1989, 126) described his former teacher Viner as "hypercritical."


His Austrian colleague Hamberler, on the other hand, disapproved of Hayek's turn from economic theory to intellectual history (letter to Matschlup, 18 April 1940).


The Viner-Hayek correspondence is reproduced as an appendix in Hayek 2015b, and Sandra Peart's introduction to the book details Hayek's development as a Mill scholar and where this led him. Hayek (1994) would later remark: “The work on the Simonian saints in particular unexpectedly led to spending a lot of time on John Stuart Mill, who never really fascinated me, although I unconsciously acquired a reputation as one of the leading experts in his area. .” (128).


As Laski put it in his own dissection of the collapse of liberalism: "To understand our own age, in short, we must think of ourselves in the age of the Reformation or the period of the French Revolution" (Laski [1936] 1997 , 246-47).


Lasky invoked the phrase in his own "war effort,"Reflections on the revolution of our time(1943), choosing it as the title of his first chapter. Did he answer Hayek?


In his talk, Tawney (1933) also wisely joked with economists, noting that “The law of diminishing utility is undoubtedly exemplified by the savage, who, having eaten a missionary, finds his hunger for a second momentarily exhausted. . . . " (17).

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