How on earth should we fight against a school that has the power in its hand and promises perfect happiness to everybody?

Frédéric Bastiat
Complete Works volume I, page 82 (in French)
Letter dated February 29th, 1848

First letter from Frédéric Bastiat to his friend Félix Coudroy in the days following the revolution of February 1848 and before he became elected to parliament. What he is complaining about here is the dilemma that liberals keep on facing almost two centuries later. Indeed, offering liberty is demanding individual responsibility along all the drawbacks embedded in it, notably for those of us who make mistakes (i.e., each and everyone of us).

Opposing liberals, one can find a few politicians who are convinced and promise to have the solution to improve the well-being of people without looking into the details of the associated costs but also mainly ethically challenged politicians who do not care one wit about truth and are ready to offer happiness to everyone against being elected.

So far as the electorate does not learn that the former are kidding themselves while the latter are kidding them, the liberals speaking truth will not be able to compete.

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