Dan Sanchez writes about Ludwig von Mises’ and Randolph Bourne’s reaction to the awful, world-historical tragedy of the Great War:
Both men deplored the Great War for upending, not only their own lives, but Western civilization itself. For Mises, it represented the end of an era. Mises called the century prior the “Age of Liberalism,” a time of rising economic freedom and integration, relative peace, and skyrocketing living standards. In 1914 that was all thrown away in favor of war, collectivism, and central planning.
The mind-meltingly frustrating thing is, how many people like things the way they are, rather than the way they could be. A society-wide endowment effect that keeps us shackled to nth-best outcomes.