"The common man is the sovereign consumer
whose buying or abstention from buying
ultimately determines what should be produced
and in what quantity and quality."
by:
Ludwig von Mises
(1881-1973) Economist and social philosopher
Source:
The Anti-Capitalist Mentality, p.1
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Reader comments about this quote:
If production wasn't so controlled, I would give this 5 stars. In Communist and other heavily governmentally controlled economies, the consumer is reduced to a liquidator of what the producer allows to market. My last post on this subject went into the food strains that have gone extinct because governmentally supported producers didn't want the competition.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    One of the greatest economists that has ever lived. Mises gives perhaps the most simple definitions for the free-market.
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
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    Unfortunately though, we have a system where government makes itself partner and banker to industry. This is a form of non military fascism and also determines what we can and can not buy. One of the basic tenets of freedom is at stake here.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    Mike can you name a product that you are denied access to because of a controlled market? Can you describe the controls that are hampering the desires of your heart?
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    If the free market existed in agriculture, food products would be far less expensive. As an example, dairy product prices are propped up by the government as in the case of cheese. The government buys up cheese at an arbitrarily inflated price, stores it in giant warehouses and then gives it away.All, of course, at taxpayer expense. No one in our Congress dares to speak out against this for fear of losing votes in their next election. This is especially true in the farm belt. This is classic vote buying.
     -- jim k, austin     
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    An obvious absolute
     -- RBESRQ     
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    Waffler, I gave multiple examples the last time this subject came up but, for one example, gasoline that will get 1 to 2 hundred miles to the gallon. Even the model As and Ts got better millage than most of today's vehicles.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    RBESRQ, to many it is obvious but unfortunately to most it is not, just like other simple common sense truths.
     -- Anon     
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    Waffler, just a couple more besides the food stock, then I will leave it alone. Cuban Cigars and certain polyester products that work better in conjunction with my manufacturing. I can't get such polyester product domestically, nor can I import it legally. I could build a plant and make it myself but, for the little I need, it is not economically feasible.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    No matter how much we wish to tinker with this law of supply and demand, it does not change it one iota. Few of us know how much our government has subsidized and monopolized our trade economy. Prices are fixed high resulting in manufacturing being pushed to other nations. Farmers are paid to keep their land fallow -- i.e. paid to NOT grow crops. Loans from the World Bank and IMF require farmers to buy genetically modified seeds that grow into plants that cannot reproduce thus requiring eternal dependence upon buying their seed from monopolies. Exceedingly high export fees and licenses hamper the export of American products to other countries. The importation of products from communist-slave-labor replace home-grown products, while we discover these imported products are tainted with melamine, lead, and other poisons. There is no free trade today, and as a result a HUGE black market has grown in the shadows, often with profits ending up in politicians pockets. The government's purpose today is no less than to get a percentage every single time money changes hands from one person to another, and gradually that percentage gets higher and higher until businesses collapse and then become nationalized because they are too important to fail. This is the trend towards totalitarian and authoritarian government.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    What more can I add, it's been summed up by the best, here.
     -- M. Brown, Florida     
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    Well said Archer. Further to the point... The government has been paying milk farmers "not" to produce while subsidizing other milk farmers to use chemicals to enhance production in concentrated areas. The chemical injections are produced by Monsanto... I don't need milk that's been chemically or genetically enhanced while my tax dollar pays someone else "not" to produce.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    E Archer, Jim, Mike, and J.C., check and mate on Waffler. Unfortunately, the controls you all pointed out made it too easy.
     -- Anon     
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