Posted by: W. E. Poplaski | July 16, 2009

Weekly Read-Along—July 17, 2009: Why I Am Not a Conservative

Material for the Stout-Hearted Reader to Ruminate

♦ Essays, Lectures & Speeches ♦

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F. A. von Hayek (1899 – 1992) was an Austrian economist and winner of the 1974 Nobel Prize in Economics.   He was born and raised in Austria and immigrated to the Britain in 1931 and then to the U.S. in 1950.  He is best known for his account of how changing prices serve as a signal that helps coordinate the actions of individuals.  Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan were both followers of von Hayek’s economic philosophy. 

This week’s text is his essay, “Why I Am Not a Conservative”, which appeared as an appendix to his book The Constitution of Liberty (1960).   The title may seem strange given that von Hayek is held in such high esteem by conservatives.  The confusion is due to the changing meaning of the terms conservative and liberal.  One can find consistency between his title and his supporters by studying the original meaning of conservative and liberal. 

This website gives a brief history of liberalism:  http://www.answers.com/%22classical%20liberalism%22 . Von Hayek viewed himself as a classical liberal, though he disliked that term.

Join others from around the world in this weekly reading event! You can find von Hayek’s text at these websites:

http://robertlstephens.com/essays/essay_frame.php?essayroot=hayek/&essayfile=001WhyIAmNotAConservative.html

http://www.fahayek.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=46

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