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The Ludwig von Mises Institute

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Ludwig von Mises: "Great conflicts of ideas must be solved by straight and frank methods; they cannot be solved by artifices and makeshifts." - Planning for Freedom


Quotable MisesThis database of quotations from Mises was prepared for The Quotable Mises edited by Mark Thornton, available from the Mises Institute store for $20. Send corrections to the editor. Here is a source page on the editions of the books referenced.

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Top> Browse by subject: Self-Interest
AuthorQuoteSourcePageSubject
Ludwig von MisesThe member of a contractual society is free because he serves others only in serving himself. What restrains him is only the inevitable natural phenomenon of scarcity.Human Action p. 280; p. 283Self-Interest
Ludwig von MisesWith all the regard due to the sublime self-effacement of saints, we cannot help stating the fact that the world would be in a rather desolate condition if it were peopled exclusively by men not interested in the pursuit of material well-being.Planning for Freedom p. 146Self-Interest
Ludwig von MisesUnder such a socialist mode of production all personal incentives which selfishness provides under capitalism are removed, and a premium is put upon laziness and negligence. Whereas in a capitalist society selfishness incites everyone to the utmost diligence, in a socialist society it makes for inertia and laxity.Human Action p. 674; p. 677Self-Interest
Ludwig von MisesIn the society based on division of labour and co-operation, the interests of all members are in harmony, and it follows from this basic fact of social life that ultimately action in the interests of myself and action in the interest of others do not conflict, since the interests of individuals come together in the end.Socialism p. 357Self-Interest
Ludwig von MisesThat everyone lives and wishes to live primarily for himself does not disturb social life but promotes it, for the higher fulfillment of the individuals life is possible only in and through society.Socialism p. 361Self-Interest
Ludwig von MisesIn social cooperation everyone in serving his own interests serves the interests of his fellow men. Driven by the urge to improve his own conditions, he improves the conditions of other people. The baker does not hurt those for whom he bakes bread; he serves them.The Ultimate Foundation of Economic Science p. 88Self-Interest