Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859)
Asked to come to America by the French Monarchy to study prisons and look at the change from an aristocratic order to a democratic one, he stayed less than two years. He did actually visit a couple of prisons, but spent most of his time traveling around the country observing and visiting with the populace.
De Tocqueville was a strong supporter of liberty and freedom. He published his thoughts on Democracy in America in two books. (They can be downloaded for free to your mobile library!)
He basically found American politics and American democracy to be a balance between the individual and the community. Reading his books one sees his distaste for politicians.
De Tocqueville often compared society in America with socialism (flaring more popular in Europe in his day) and aristocratic rule. Hence the quote above.
He had a lot to say about the different types of "equality" sought in democratic and socialist societies. Obviously de Tocqueville would have gotten along with Churchill who said that socialism seeks equality in misery.
And so, the taffy pull continues.
So, to play with the de Tocqueville thoughts quoted herein, which do you want?
- Freedom or restriction?
- Individual value or being a number in a cog?
- Equality in liberty or restraint and servitude?
- Equality in light or darkness?
How many times lately have you heard that your traditional values are on the "wrong side of history?"
Explain what in the world "wrong side of history" means! I know, it's big thinking, but vacuous. They can't explain it either, but that doesn't matter. They are always "assessing and reassessing." Another big-thinking phrase, but vacuous. And slogans! Don't forget the slogans! Oh, and rhyming chants. We need more chants! With all the braying and bleating, honking and oinking, it's a regular animal farmyard out there!
Free enterprise extends the sphere of individual freedom.