Commentary ( The Times )

Conservatism: Hayek letter to The Times ("Thatcher's Economics") [published version of Hayek's response to Julian Critchley]

Document type: Declassified documents
Source: The Times , 1 Jul 1982, p13
Editorial comments:
Importance ranking: Major
Word count: 208
Themes: Conservatism, Economic policy - theory and process

Thatcher's economics

From Professor F. A. Hayek, FBA

Sir, It is a long time since I have seen in The Times a non sequitur comparable to Mr Julian Critchley's comments (feature June 21) on Mrs Thatcher's "obsessive concern with economics - an obsession which has delayed our economic recovery and divided the Conservative Party."

Mrs Thatcher certainly knows as well as anybody that it would be -possible quickly to reduce unemployment for a time by increasing inflation ("reflation"). But for this, as we ought to have learnt by now, we would have to pay by even more severe unemployment later on.

It is Mrs Thatcher's great merit that she. has broken with the Keynesian immorality of "in the long run we are all dead" and to have concentrated on the long run future of the country irrespective of possible effects on the electors. Keynesian irresponsibility naturally appeals to the timid wets.

Mrs Thatcher's courage makes her put the long run future of the country first. After being much too long restrained by the believers in the Muddle of the Middle, her new stature ought to enable her to guide us by her true vision.

Yours Faithfully,
Urachstrasse 27,
D-7800 Freiburg (Breisgau),
West Germany.
June 22

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