L. von Mises, Truth does not need any propaganda

The main propaganda trick of the supporters of the allegedly “progressive” policy of government control is to blame capitalism for all that is unsatisfactory in present day conditions and to extol the blessings which socialism has in store for mankind.

They have never attempted to prove their fallacious dogmas or still less to refute the objections raised by the economists. All they did was to call their adversaries names and to cast suspicion upon their motives. And, unfortunately, the average citizen cannot see through these stratagems.

Consider, for instance, the problem of mass unemployment prolonged year after year. The “progressive” interprets it as an evil inherent in capitalism. The naive public is ready to swallow this explanation.

People do not realize that in an unhampered labor market, manipulated neither by labor-union pressure nor by government-fixed minimum wage rates, unemployment affects only small groups for a short time. Under free capitalism unemployment is a comparatively unimportant temporary phenomenon; there prevails a permanent tendency for unemployment to disappear.

Economic changes may bring about new unemployment. But at the wage rates established in a free labor market everyone eager to earn wages finally gets a job. Unemployment as a mass phenomenon is the outcome of allegedly “pro-labor” policies of the governments and of labor-union pressure and compulsion…

It would be a serious blunder to believe that this recommendation of economic studies aims at a substitution of another brand of propaganda for the propaganda of the various governments and parties. Propaganda is one of the worst evils of bureaucracy and socialism. Propaganda is always the propaganda of lies, fallacies, and superstitions.

Truth does not need any propaganda; it holds its own. The characteristic mark of truth is that it is the correct representation of reality, i.e., of a state of affairs that is and works whether or not anybody recognizes it. The recognition and pronouncement of truth is as such a condemnation of everything that is untrue. It carries on by the mere fact of being true.

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