The Man Who Took on Socialism – and Won

The Telegraph had a moving column about Arthur Seldon, the British champion of Capitalism who passed away in October, under the unequivocally assertive title: “The man who took on Socialism – and Won.”
In 1957, Arthur Seldon established the Institute of Economic Affairs with fellow-economists Ralph Harris and Antony Fisher. They advocated free-market economics and limited government – against the established Keynsian theories and Welfare State morals – and succeeded in rescuing Britain from its post World War II decline.
Seldon stood out among pro-free market economists by announcing that Capitalism was not only practical, but moral. He opened his book The Virtues of Capitalism, with the declaration:

Capitalism requires not defence but celebration. Its achievement in creating high and rising living standards for the masses without sacrificing personal liberty speaks for itself. Only the deaf will not hear and the blind will not see.

The Telegraph goes even further:

Seldon understated his point. Not only did capitalism raise living standards without sacrifice of personal liberty: it also guaranteed it. Capitalism has nothing to do with its caricature of oppressed workers enslaved to big bosses and exploited by them. Markets, which are the metaphysical temples in which the creed is practised, bring together buyers and sellers of goods and labour, and allow them the freedom to exercise their will about what, or what not, to buy and sell.

Seldon’s victory over Socialism is patently clear:

Now, as huge economies like China and India learn the Seldonian lesson, the options that socialists and sentimentalists have for dining à la carte from the menu of capitalism become ever more restricted. There will still be outbursts about a non-existent concept called “market failure”, and protests that welfarism liberates people from poverty rather than traps them in it, or that the state must know best. But these are merely tragic harrumphs from the defeated. Seldon has won.

Read the entire column