Calculation and chaos: Reply to Caplan

Critical Review 17 (1-2):171-178 (2005)
Abstract
Abstract Ludwig von Mises argued that (1) economic calculation under socialism is impossible, and that (2) the lack of calculation would entail chaos and starvation. In these pages, Bryan Caplan has accepted the first claim but rejected the second, and has argued further that in real?world attempts to implement socialism, it was the lack of incentives, not the absence of economic calculation, that was responsible for economic chaos. I suggest, against Caplan's interpretation, that by ?chaos? Mises meant the lack of calculation, rather than some further state of affairs entailed by this lack. So interpreted, Mises's argument escapes the brunt of Caplan's criticisms.
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