"The speculative knowledge of economics should thus guide our practical actions in ethics and politics. To realize our ends (Building a tower or attaining victory) we must consider our means (Count the cost), in other words we must perform an economic analysis. Our means (costs), in order to meaningfully inform our action, must be evaluated according to alternative uses, both our own and our neighbors. Our means of meaningfully calculating such a cost are prices which can only emerge in a free market. As the German economist Wilhelm Röpke explained:
Only a market economy makes it possible for economic science to go beyond those general and platitudinous truths and to discover relationships that have the objective definitiveness and validity which a market economy actually establishes by means of the mechanism of price. Only a market economy makes of economic science an analytical social science rather than a science which is merely a descriptive-understanding one having a logical structure like that of historiography."