Buy WILLisms

XML Feed

Featured Entries

The Babe Theory Of Political Movements.
Mar. 21, 2005 11:50 AM

Iran's Sham Election In Houston.
June 20, 2005 5:36 AM

Yes, Kanye, Bush Does Care.
Oct. 31, 2005 12:41 AM

Health Care vs. Wealth Care.
Nov. 23, 2005 3:28 PM

Americans Voting With Their Feet.
Nov. 30, 2005 1:33 PM

Idea Majorities Matter.
May 12, 2006 6:15 PM

Twilight Zone Economics.
Oct. 17, 2006 12:30 AM

The "Shrinking" Middle Class.
Dec. 13, 2006 1:01 PM

From Ashes, GOP Opportunities.
Dec. 18, 2006 6:37 PM

Battle Between Entitlements & Pork.
Dec. 21, 2006 12:31 PM

Let Economic Freedom Reign.
Dec. 22, 2006 10:22 PM

Biggest Health Care Moment In Decades.
July 25, 2007 4:32 PM

Unions Antithetical to Liberty.
May 28, 2008 11:12 PM

Right To Work States Rock.
June 9, 2008 12:25 PM



Blogroll Me!



July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004

Social Security Reform Thursday.
March 13, 2008

Caption Contest: Enter Today!
Due: July 29, 2008

The Carnival Of Classiness.
Mar. 14, 2006

Quotational Therapy: Obama.
Apr. 4, 2008

Mainstream Melee: Wolfowitz.
May 19, 2007

Pundit Roundtable: Leaks.
July 9, 2006

A WILLisms.com(ic), by Ken McCracken
July 14, 2006


Powered by Movable Type 3.17
Site Design by Sekimori

WILLisms.com June 2008 Book of the Month (certified classy):

The WILLisms.com Gift Shop: Support This Site


This Week's Carnival of Revolutions: carnivalbutton.gif

Carnival Home Base: homebase.gif


« Happy Birthday, Marbury v. Madison | WILLisms.com | Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 278 -- Less Competitive Congressional Districts. »

Quotational Therapy: Part 76 -- Jean-Baptiste Say, On Taxation.

A French Free-Marketeer-

Believe it or not, France was once a bastion of free market thought. Ahead of his time, Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Say was one of the original free market economists, supporting free trade against the common demagogic urges of nationalist protectionism that often still prevail today. He also supported low taxes.


Here's what he had to say in 1803 on taxation:

It may be urged, that the pressure of taxation impels the productive classes to redouble their exertions, and thus tends to enlarge the national production. I answer, that, in the first place, mere exertion cannot alone produce, there must be capital for it to work upon, and capital is but an accumulation of the very products that taxation takes from the subject: that, in the second place, it is evident, that the values, which industry creates expressly to satisfy the demands of taxation, are no increase of wealth; for they are seized on and devoured by taxation. It is a glaring absurdity to pretend that taxation contributes to national wealth, by engrossing part of the national produce, and enriches the nation by consuming part of its wealth….

Hence, it is manifest that, although taxation may be, and often is, productive of good, when the sums it absorbs are properly applied, yet, the act of levying is always attended with mischief in the outset….

Admitting these premises, that taxation is the taking from individuals a part of their property for public purposes; that the value levied by taxation never reverts to the members of the community, after it has once been taken from them; and that taxation is not itself a means of reproduction; it is impossible to deny the conclusion, that the best taxes, or, rather those that are least bad, are

1. Such as are most moderate in their ratio.
2. Such as are least attended with those vexatious circumstances that harass the taxpayer without bringing anything into the public exchequer.
3. Such as press impartially on all classes.
4. Such as are least injurious to production.
5. Such as are rather favorable than otherwise to the national morality; that is to say, to the prevalence of habits, useful and beneficial to society.

-Jean-Baptise Say, A Treatise on Political Economy, 447– 49.

The Dallas Fed (.pdf).


Previous Quotational Therapy Session:

George Washington, Questioning The Patriotism Of Democrats.

The right quote can be therapeutic, so tune in to WILLisms.com for quotational therapy on Monday and Friday.

Posted by Will Franklin · 24 February 2006 07:59 AM