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Competition means decentralized planning by many separate persons.

FRIEDRICH HAYEK, Individualism and Economic Order

You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your tricks of war.

NAPOLEON BONAPARTE, attributed, The 100 Greatest Heroes

In economic theory (and in real world markets for most things we buy), competition is a matter of steady pressures to cut waste, to innovate, and to refine product quality. The threat of bankruptcy as inefficiency's final penalty is always in the background. But the chief function of competition is to set the pace for a pack of rival producers, not to annihilate the slackers.

JOHN D. DOWAHVE, The Privitization Decision: Public Ends, Private Means

To free the mind from the habit of competition, we must see in detail the process by which the mind is ensnared by competition. The way out of a trap is to know the way the trap is built. Only then will it cease being a trap. The release from the stranglehold of competition lies in the increase of self-reliance, since competition can only arise out of a lack of self-reliance! It is that simple. Self-dependence accomplishes that which competition can never touch. As we have said, the competitive person makes pacemakers out of those he sees around him and puts their heads higher than his own. He abdicates his own birthright.

MARGUERITE BEECHER, Beyond Success and Failure

Our life is not a mutual helpfulness; but rather, cloaked under due laws-of-war, named ' fair competition ' and so forth, it is a mutual hostility.

THOMAS CARLYLE, "Gospel of Mammonism," Past and Present

Competition is a ubiquitous feature of society, and economic competition is the pre-eminent dynamic force within capitalist market economies. Neither competition nor the market is inevitable or natural. Markets have to be created through processes of social change and public regulation, a genesis both historical and contemporary.... It is universally accepted that competition is essential in order to deliver the benefits available from the market. The general presumption is that competition is necessary, that it should be encouraged, and that the virtues of competition should be embodied in legal safeguards. The presumption in favor of competition is, however, relatively recent, and derives from political as well as economic rationales.

G. BRUCE DOERN & STEPHEN WILKS, introduction, Comparative Competition Policy

Competition, which is said to be "the life of trade," when pushed too far, is no less the death of it--and of the soul.

CHRISTIAN NESTELL BOVEE, Intuitions and Summaries of Thought

Focus on competition has always been a formula for mediocrity.

DANIEL BURRUS, attributed, Checklist for Life for Graduates

This dream that men shall cease to waste strength in competition and shall come to pool their powers of production is coming to pass all over the earth.

JANE ADDAMS, Twenty Years at Hull-House

It is in vain for us to devise schemes by which competition can be put out of civilized life. Competition is the condition of life.

LYMAN ABBOTT, Problems of Life: Selections from the Writings of Rev. Lyman Abbott


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