Zitate von Frédéric Bastiat

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Frédéric Bastiat

Geburtstag: 29. Juni 1801
Todesdatum: 24. Dezember 1850

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Claude Frédéric Bastiat war ein französischer Ökonom und Politiker. Er kann zur klassischen Ökonomie gezählt werden und gilt als bedeutender Vertreter des Liberalismus und des optimistischen Harmoniegedankens.

Zitate Frédéric Bastiat

„Zu viele Menschen fürchten die Freiheit, als daß diese Besorgniß nicht aufrichtig gemeint sein sollte.“

— Frédéric Bastiat
Die Trugschlüsse der Schutzzöllner gegenüber der gesunden Handels-Politik, Frédéric Bastiat, Übers. Carl August Noback, August von Schröter, Berlin 1847, S. 1 Google Books

„„Der Staat ist die große Fiktion, mittelst deren alle Welt leben will auf Kosten von aller Welt". “

— Frédéric Bastiat
zitiert in Karl Braun: Von Friedrich dem Großen bis zum Fürsten Bismarck. Berlin L. Simion 1882. S. 314 books. google

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„In the department of economy, an act, a habit, an institution, a law, gives birth not only to an effect, but to a series of effects.“

— Frédéric Bastiat
Context: In the department of economy, an act, a habit, an institution, a law, gives birth not only to an effect, but to a series of effects. Of these effects, the first only is immediate; it manifests itself simultaneously with its cause — it is seen. The others unfold in succession — they are not seen: it is well for us, if they are foreseen. Between a good and a bad economist this constitutes the whole difference: the one takes account only of the visible effect; the other takes account of both the effects which are seen and those which it is necessary to foresee. Now this difference is enormous, for it almost always happens that when the immediate consequence is favourable, the ultimate consequences are fatal, and the converse. Hence it follows that the bad economist pursues a small present good, which will be followed by a great evil to come, while the true economist pursues a great good to come, at the risk of a small present evil. That which is seen and that which is not seen (Ce qu'on voit et ce qu'on ne voit pas, 1850), the Introduction.

„Either fraternity is spontaneous, or it does not exist. To decree it is to annihilate it.“

— Frédéric Bastiat
Context: Either fraternity is spontaneous, or it does not exist. To decree it is to annihilate it. The law can indeed force men to remain just; in vain would it try to force them to be self-sacrificing. p. 312

„Everyone's effort will be directed toward snatching a scrap of fraternal privilege from the legislature. The suffering classes, although having the greatest claim, will not always have the greatest success.“

— Frédéric Bastiat
Context: "[The socialists declare] that the State owes subsistence, well-being, and education to all its citizens; that it should be generous, charitable, involved in everything, devoted to everybody;... that it should intervene directly to relieve all suffering, satisfy and anticipate all wants, furnish capital to all enterprises, enlightenment to all minds, balm for all wounds, asylums for all the unfortunate, and even aid to the point of shedding French blood, for all oppressed people on the face of the earth. Who would not like to see all these benefits flow forth upon the world from the law, as from an inexhaustible source? … But is it possible? … Whence does [the State] draw those resources that it is urged to dispense by way of benefits to individuals? Is it not from the individuals themselves? How, then, can these resources be increased by passing through the hands of a parasitic and voracious intermediary? ... Finally…we shall see the entire people transformed into petitioners. Landed property, agriculture, industry, commerce, shipping, industrial companies, all will bestir themselves to claim favors from the State. The public treasury will be literally pillaged. Everyone will have good reasons to prove that legal fraternity should be interpreted in this sense: "Let me have the benefits, and let others pay the costs." Everyone's effort will be directed toward snatching a scrap of fraternal privilege from the legislature. The suffering classes, although having the greatest claim, will not always have the greatest success. p. 319

„This is done now; we desire that it be done better.“

— Frédéric Bastiat
Context: If socialists mean that under extraordinary circumstances, for urgent cases, the State should set aside some resources to assist certain unfortunate people, to help them adjust to changing conditions, we will, of course, agree. This is done now; we desire that it be done better. There is however, a point on this road that must not be passed; it is the point where governmental foresight would step in to replace individual foresight and thus destroy it. p. 313

„Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.“

— Frédéric Bastiat, The Law
Context: Life, faculties, production — in other words, individuality, liberty, property — this is man. And in spite of the cunning of artful political leaders, these three gifts from God precede all human legislation, and are superior to it. Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.

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„When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.“

— Frédéric Bastiat
Economic sophisms, 2nd series (1848), ch. 1 Physiology of plunder ("Sophismes économiques", 2ème série (1848), chap. 1 "Physiologie de la spoliation").

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