… is from pages 111-112 of John Mueller’s superb 1999 book, Capitalism, Democracy, & Ralph’s Pretty Good Grocery  (footnote deleted; link added):
The nineteenth-century British historian Henry Thomas Buckle hailed Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations  as “probably the most important book that has ever been written” because it convincingly demonstrated that gold and silver are not wealth but are merely its representatives, and because it shows that wealth comes not from diminishing the wealth of others, but rather that “the benefits of trade are of necessity reciprocal.”
DBx: Far be it from me to dissent from Buckle’s astute assessment of the Great Scot’s 1776 book!
Where is the Adam Smith of 2021? Where is the great scholar who will demonstrate that government checks and central-bank-supplied money are not wealth but are merely its representatives – and that when government-imposed lockdowns and media-stoked deranged fears of pathogens cause the production of real good and services to fall, prosperity cannot and will not be preserved merely by government creation of more nominal spending power?