Fredric Bastiat was a French economist, writer, and he was a prominent member of the French Liberal School. He was born on June 30, 1801 in Bayonne, France, and died on December 24, 1850 in Rome, Italy. According to Wikipedia, “He was described as “the most brilliant economic journalist who ever lived” by economic theorist Joseph Schumpeter. As an advocate of classical economics and the economics of Adam Smith, his views favored a free market and influenced the Australian School. He is best known for his book The Law where he argued that law must protect rights such as private property, not “plunder” others’ property.”
While he was a member of the French National Assembly, he developed the economic concept of opportunity cost, and he also introduced to everyone the parable of the broken window. According to Wikipedia, “The parable of the broken window was introduced by French economist Frédéric Bastiat in his 1850 essay “That Which We See and That Which We Do Not See” (“Ce qu’on voit et ce qu’on ne voit pas”) to illustrate why destruction, and the money spent to recover from destruction, is not actually a net benefit to society.” Bastiat also wrote many other essays such as The Law, Taxes, and several others, most of which are located in his book That Which is Seen and That Which is Not Seen. He is best known for his book The Law. According to Academy of Ideas, ” The Law, a work written by the French political philosopher and economist Frederic Bastiat in 1850, investigates what happens in a society when the law becomes a weapon used by those in power to control and enslave the population.”
Describe Bastiat’s concept of the politics of plunder. According to OLL, “The basis for Bastiat’s theory of class was the notion of plunder which he defined as the taking of another person’s property without their consent by force or fraud. Those who lived by plunder constituted “les spoliateurs” (the plunderers) or “la classe spoliatrice” (the plundering class).” Plunder is when someone forcibly takes the property of another person. According to OLL, “The French economist Fredric Bastiat (1801-1850) developed a theory of plunder in the late 1840s which he defined in the following way: When a portion of wealth passes from the person who has acquired it, without his consent and without compensation, to someone who has not created it, whether this is by force or fraud, I say that there has been a violation of property rights and that there has been an act of plunder.” So this is an example of plunder. According to AP News, “Bastiat observed that ‘when plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.'” So Bastiat observed that basically when a group in a society practices plundering, over time they eventually create for themselves a system that makes plundering legal and a moral code that glorifies the system.