The Politics of Utility; The Technology of Happiness-Applied; Being Book III of "The Economy of Happiness,"
General Books LLC, 2009 - 156 pages
This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated.1906 Excerpt: ... CHAPTER IV PANTOCKACY In discussing the third objection to socialism in the preceding chapter we have discovered a valid criticism of all systems which have thus far been proposed for the guidance of society. To cure poverty and to make the average individual self-supporting, a better distribution of wealth is a necessary, but not a sufficient, condition. A greater rate of consumption per capita is essential and the only means of attaining it is to make greater the rate of production per capita. We shall point out later that the population of a community is entirely beyond human control when the consumptive rate is of low value, and hence cannot be brought to beneficent equilibrium. The first essential then of an economic system is to simultaneously raise the efficiency of production and of consumption. Capitalism, whether competitive or monopolistic, admits of no means of accomplishing such a result. Socialism does. I propose, then, to undertake the exposition of a modification of socialism which will presumably combine all the advantages of public monopoly with the single advantage of competition, at the same time augmenting that single advantage in a degree impossible under competition. To understand the relation of this proposed system to that at present in operation a slight analysis of profit wih be necessary. Profit under the present system accomplishes two and only two useful objects. (1) It induces men to undertake the production of desiderata: (2) It induces them to undertake to improve the means of production. Economists claim no other element of utility in profit. Aside from these two objects the incentive furnished by profit, or the hope of profit, is not an incentive to useful acts, but to harmful ones. Under the wage system the recompense of ...