From Bastiat’s dialogue What is Money?

B. I have not yet made up my mind that your views upon money and political economy in general are correct. But, from your conversation, this is what I have gathered: — That these questions are of the highest importance; for peace or war, order or anarchy, the union or the antagonism of citizens, are at the root of the answer to them. How is it that in France and most other countries which regard themselves as highly civilized, a science which concerns us all so nearly, and the diffusion of which would have so decisive an influence upon the fate of mankind, is so little known? Is it that the State does not teach it sufficiently?

F. Not exactly. For, without knowing it, the State applies itself to loading everybody’s brain with prejudices, and everybody’s heart with sentiments favorable to the spirit of anarchy, war, and hatred; so that, when a doctrine of order, peace, and union presents itself, it is in vain that it has clearness and truth on its side, — it cannot gain admittance.

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