Guideposts to a Free Economy: A Series of Essays on Enterprise and Government Finance

Guideposts to a Free Economy: A Series of Essays on Enterprise and Government Finance

Guideposts to a Free Economy: A Series of Essays on Enterprise and Government Finance

Guideposts to a Free Economy: A Series of Essays on Enterprise and Government Finance

Excerpt

The period since the First World War has been one in which strange and confusing changes have occurred in economic and political philosophies. Democracy disappeared in many countries and was subjected to severe strain in those nations where it still survived. The economic system of free enterprise passed for a time into eclipse amid freely expressed doubts as to whether it deserved a further trial. In the atmosphere of pessimism and uncertainty that prevailed, the prophets of a new era gathered many followers who were ready to believe that government could and should support them.

During this unprecedented time of change, when experiment often passed for progress, the conservative economic viewpoint, with its strict adherence to principles and established values, received scant attention. It was regarded as old- fashioned and nostalgic of bygone days.

Yet throughout that whole period of economic opportunism a small group of courageous students of public finance refused to compromise with or recognize some of these strange new doctrines, based in large part upon government deficit financing. One of the leaders of that group was Professor Harley L. Lutz of Princeton, who in his writings, in his numerous speeches, on any and all occasions, preached the gospel of sound taxation and sound public finance. Most of the time, it must be admitted, however, his words fell on deaf ears.

Many of Professor Lutz's penetrating analyses of current economic problems have appeared in the pages of the Tax Review, a publication of the Tax Foundation. Because of . . .

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