In the 13 years I have been at GMU, Frank Fukuyama was one of the most interesting colleagues I have had outside of economics. We served on many committees together and I learned every time we spoke. I also personally enjoyed his company greatly and look forward to the opportunity to see him and discuss what he was working on as well our mutual interests in social theory and public policy.
So I was disappointed to read his review today in the NYT of the new edition of Hayek's The Constitution of Liberty. I am not suggesting that Hayek's work is beyond critique; certainly his work can be subjected to multiple criticisms. Heck, even the editor of this edition, Ron Hamowy, became well-known within the classical liberal community of scholars in the early 1960s by publishing a severe criticism of Hayek. So nobody is suggesting that one must read Hayek uncritically. But Frank produces a caricature of Hayek's The Road to Serfdom and then conflates that with The Constitution of Liberty, and then produces a confused reading of Hayek's description of the problem situation we face as economic actors with the epistemic critique of government decision makers attempting to plan (or intervene optimally) in the economic reality that emerges from the mutual adjustments of economic actors who faced that problem situation. To understand how we cope with our ignorance, Hayek focused on the institutions of the market economy (property, prices and profit/loss). In short, it is a cute attempt to claim that Hayek suffers from a Cartesian hubris, but it simply isn't true. Frank would have been much better off had he tried to take Hayek as his word in The Constitution of Liberty, and that is that he is pursuing a Humean project of 'using reason to whittle down the claims of reason.'
I hope I get a chance to see Frank again soon, so I can bug him about this review of Hayek's The Constitution of Liberty as well as discuss his new book, The Origins of Political Order.