Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Mises on Uber

Ludwig von Mises:
Every step on the road toward intensification of the division of labor hurts in the short run the personal interests of some people. The expansion of the more efficient plant hurts the interests of less efficient competitors whom it forces to go out of business. Technological innovation hurts the interests of workers who can no longer make a living by clinging to the discarded inferior methods. The vested short-run interests of small business and of inefficient workers are adversely affected by any improvement. This is not a new phenomenon. Neither is it a new phenomenon that those prejudiced by economic improvement ask for privileges that will protect them against the competition of the more efficient. The history of mankind is a long record of obstacles placed in the way of the more efficient for the benefit of the less efficient. [Theory and History: An Interpretation of Social and Economic Evolution, p. 236]
The other day my son asked: "Why would anyone not support Uber?" This observation by Mises seems like a very good answer.

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