Quotation of the Day…

by Don Boudreaux on September 10, 2016

in Crony Capitalism, Myths and Fallacies

… is from Turgot, as quoted on page 131 of the 1990 Transaction Publishers reprint of W.H. Hutt‘s 1936 book, Economists and the Public [the first few words are supplied by Hutt]:

The whole object of ‘the spirit of monopoly (l’esprit de monopole)’, said Turgot, ‘is to discourage industry, to concentrate commerce in a small number of hands by the multiplication of formalities and expenses, by the requirement of apprenticeships and journeymanships of ten years for trades which can be learnt in ten days, by the exclusion of those who are not sons of masters, of those who are born outside certain limits, by the prohibition of employment of women in textile manufactures.’

Two-and-a-half centuries later, much the same can be said.  It is sad how persistent is the myth that mass prosperity is created or furthered by government policies to restrict the supply of goods and services.

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