Frases de Lionel Robbins

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Lionel Robbins

Data de nascimento: 22. Novembro 1898
Data de falecimento: 15. Maio 1984

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Lionel Charles Robbins, Barão Robbins foi um economista britânico que propôs uma das primeiras definições contemporâneas de economia e por muitos a mais aceita: "A economia é a ciência que estuda as formas de comportamento humano resultantes da relação existente entre as ilimitadas necessidades a satisfazer e os recursos que, embora escassos, se prestam a usos alternativos".

Citações Lionel Robbins

„The conditions of recovery which have been stated do indeed involve the restoration of what has been called capitalism. But the slump was not due to these conditions. On the contrary, it was due to their negation. It was due to monetary mismanagement and State intervention operating in a milieu in which the essential strength of capitalism had already been sapped by war and by policy.“

—  Lionel Robbins
Context: It has been the object…to show that if recovery is to be maintained and future progress assured, there must be a more or less complete reversal of contemporary tendencies of governmental regulation of enterprise. The aim of governmental policy in regard to industry must be to create a field in which the forces of enterprise and the disposal of resources are once more allowed to be governed by the market.But what is this but the restoration of capitalism? And is not the restoration of capitalism the restoration of the causes of depression?If the analysis of this essay is correct, the answer is unequivocal. The conditions of recovery which have been stated do indeed involve the restoration of what has been called capitalism. But the slump was not due to these conditions. On the contrary, it was due to their negation. It was due to monetary mismanagement and State intervention operating in a milieu in which the essential strength of capitalism had already been sapped by war and by policy. Ever since the outbreak of war in 1914, the whole tendency of policy has been away from that system, which in spite of the persistence of feudal obstacles and the unprecedented multiplication of the people, produced that enormous increase of wealth per head…. Whether that increase will be resumed, or whether, after perhaps some recovery, we shall be plunged anew into depression and the chaos of planning and restrictionism—that is the issue which depends on our willingness to reverse this tendency. "Conditions of Recovery," ch. 8 of The Great Depression https://mises.org/library/great-depression-0 (Freeport, N. Y.: Books for Libraries Press, 1971; orig. 1934), pp. 193–194.

„Economics is a science which studies human behavior as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses.“

—  Lionel Robbins
Context: The economist studies the disposal of scarce means. He is interested in the way different degrees of scarcity of different goods give rise to different ratios of valuation between them, and he is interested in the way in which changes in conditions of scarcity, whether coming from changes in ends or changes in means—from the demand side or the supply side—affect these ratios. Economics is a science which studies human behavior as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses. An Essay on the nature and significance of Economic Science (1932), Chapter I: The Subject Matter of Economics

„I shall always regard this aspect of my dispute with Keynes as the greatest mistake of my professional career, and the book, The Great Depression, which I subsequently wrote, partly in justification of this attitude, as something which I would willingly see be forgotten. […] Now I still think that there is much in this theory as an explanation of a possible generation of boom and crisis. But, as an explanation of what was going on in the early ’30s, I now think it was misleading. Whatever the genetic factors of the pre-1929 boom, their sequelae, in the sense of inappropriate investments fostered by wrong expectations, were completely swamped by vast deflationary forces sweeping away all those elements of constancy in the situation which otherwise might have provided a framework for an explanation in my terms. The theory was inadequate to the facts. Nor was this approach any more adequate as a guide to policy. Confronted with the freezing deflation of those days, the idea that the prime essential was the writing down of mistaken investments and the easing of capital markets by fostering the disposition to save and reducing the pressure on consumption was completely inappropriate. To treat what developed subsequently in the way which I then thought valid was as unsuitable as denying blankets and stimulants to a drunk who has fallen into an icy pond, on the ground that his original trouble was overheating.“

—  Lionel Robbins
Autobiography of an Economist (1971), p. 154.

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