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Creative Destruction

HBOS trash’n’cash gang are chipping away at foundations of Western capitalism - Times Online

Oh please! One lot of spivs complaining that another lot of spivs has outspivved them, that isn't the end of civilisation as we know it. It is the essence of capitalism, the cold wind that comfortable companies try to keep out of their marble halls to the detriment of us all.

As Joseph Schumpeter, said when he coined the phrase "Creative Destruction"

This process of Creative Destruction is the essential fact about capitalism. It is what capitalism consists in and what every capitalist concern has got to live in. . . .

Every piece of business strategy acquires its true significance only against the background of that process and within the situation created by it. It must be seen in its role in the perennial gale of creative destruction; it cannot be understood irrespective of it or, in fact, on the hypothesis that there is a perennial lull. . . .

It is hardly necessary to point out that competition of the kind we now have in mind acts not only when in being but also when it is merely an ever-present threat. It disciplines before it attacks..

From Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy (New York: Harper, 1975) [orig. pub. 1942], pp. 82-85

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