One of the key moments of mid-nineteenth century French politics. The moment where those who have a little—whose grandparents had gained property to their small farms in the Great French Revolution—become convinced that they have more to lose than to gain from further reform: that sinister lazy urban socialist moochers rather than plutocrats and aristocrats are the threats to their status and prosperity: Alexis de Tocqueville: The Recollections https://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/tocqueville-the-recollections-of-alexis-de-tocqueville-1896: 'In the country all the landed proprietors, whatever their origin, antecedents, education or means, had come together, and seemed to form but one class: all former political hatred and rivalry of caste or fortune had disappeared from view. There was no more jealousy or pride displayed between the peasant and the squire, the nobleman and the commoner; instead, I found mutual confidence, reciprocal friendliness, and regard. Property had become, with all those who owned it, a sort of badge of fraternity. The wealthy were the elder, the less endowed the younger brothers; but all considered themselves members of one family, having the same interest in defending the common inheritance. As the French Revolution had infinitely increased the number of land-owners, the whole population seemed to belong to that vast family. I had never seen anything like it, nor had anyone in France within the memory of man...


#noted #2020-03-05

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