… is from page 461 of the final (2016) volume – Bourgeois Equality  – of Deirdre McCloskey ‘s soaring trilogy on the essence of bourgeois values, on their transmission, and on their essential role in modern life:
Such killing of betterment by the bourgeoisie itself, de dominee, de dokter, de notaris, was made possible by economic localism enforced by the state.
DBx: Few truths are so well-supported by theory and so universally verified by experience as is the truth that the greater the number of people with whom we are free to exchange and trade, the greater is our prosperity and the more peaceful and enriching is our culture. Yet few truths are as stubbornly resisted as is this one. The myth persists, in myriad forms, that the more surely we restrict our access to other people’s offerings and creativity, the more wealthy and secure we become. It’s the absurd notion that impoverishment enriches – that Jones’s options expand and his prosperity grows if force or superstition restricts Jones’s options and makes more scarce the goods and services at his disposal.