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43. LOE Part 7-THE 1848 REVOLUTION: MARX'S 18TH BRUMAIRE, TOCQUEVILLE vs BERNIE SANDERS & F. BASTIAT
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43. Liberty or Equality? [Part 7]
MARX'S 18TH BRUMAIRE, TOCQUEVILLE vs BERNIE SANDERS, AND BASTIAT'S THOUGHTS ON "THE GOVERNMENT"
[01:17:25] Alexis de Tocqueville "Speech on Socialism" or "Speech on the Right to Work" (1848)
[02:01:40] Frederic Bastiat "The Government" or "The State" (1848)
The 1848 Revolution in France was one of the very first revolutionary socialist movements in Europe, which threatened to take hold of a first-world nation's government. This week we take a look at the events and circumstances that enabled this near-disaster.
A banking crisis in England, combined with a couple of bad harvests in France, and crippling tariffs, all exercised a diabolical influence upon the French populace, which was already given to rebellion against the various constitutional monarchies in post-Napoleonic politics. The king fled the country in February of 1848 as disgruntled Frenchmen took to the streets and headed off in violent conflicts with the municipal police. During the succeeding months, there was fierce debate over the proper role and structure of a republic. Amidst these debates, the Montagnards (the socialists) agitated for guaranteed government jobs, a department of labor, and higher wages. Louis Blanc--one of the first experimenters with socialist theory--was given charge to create a National Workshops program. The plan proved disastrous, yet it did not silence the Montagnards. Nevertheless, the failure did undermine the credibility of the faction.
During the debates over the fate of the 1848 Revolution, Alexis de Tocqueville took center stage at the assemblies and delivered a speech against socialism, which helped turn back the tide of anti-economic illogic.
At the same time, Bastiat manned the presses and churned out free trade pamphlets explaining the economic depression and how the French protectionist racket (tariffs, etc.) only intensified the hard times. He also, in light of the seriously dangerous misconceptions of the State expressed by the Montagnards, sought to define what government is. And in so doing, he explained why the State was not a philanthropic institution capable of providing benefits without also giving curses in kind.
Cf. "The Long Shadow of Frederic Bastiat," G.F. Smith
Featuring music by Pietro Locatelli (https://musopen.org/music/2445/pietro-locatelli/cello-sonata-in-d-from-12-sonatas-op-6/), courtesy of musopen.org.
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Also, featuring tracks by the Passion Hifi (https://soundcloud.com/freehiphopbeatsforyou): Cold Heat, I Close My Eyes, and Untouchable.
Audio from A King in New York, a Charlie Chaplin film, provided with the expressed permission of Roy Export S.A.S. (www.charliechaplin.com), who holds the copyright thereto.Read more »