A fellow writer on this site, Ryan has talked about the economists’ Ludwig Von Mises’ book Socialism and specifically this chapter and how here,
Mises explains the benefits of markets in counteracting the negative effects of work over that of Socialism. Lots of great points for the growing anti-work crowd to integrate.
Ryan specifically quotes this passage as his favorite:
Now it is evident that the minimum performance calculated for the worker of average quality, skill, and strength will be achieved only by a part—say one-half—of the workers. The others will do less. How can the authorities ascertain whether a performance below the minimum is due to laziness or incapacity? Either the unfettered decision of the administration must be allowed free play, or certain general criteria must be established. Doubtless, as a result, the amount of work performed would be continually reduced.
As well as this:
Under Capitalism everybody who takes an active part in business life is concerned that labour should be paid the whole product. The employer who dismisses a worker who is worth his wage harms himself. The foreman who discharges a good worker and retains a bad one, adversely affects the business results of the department under his charge, and thereby indirectly himself. Here we do not need formal criteria to limit the decisions of those who have to judge the work performed. Under Socialism such criteria would have to be established, because otherwise the powers entrusted to persons in charge could be arbitrarily misused. And so then the worker would have no further interest in the actual performance of work. He would only be concerned to do as much as is prescribed by the formal criteria in order to avoid punishment.
But for the life of me I really couldn’t see it. I just didn’t get that intention or resolve from Mises. It would be cool (I think) to say that we could use such a central figure in right-libertarianism to prove this or that about anti-work philosophy but if it’s in here I couldn’t find it.
So I ask the readers, did you see anything in it?