Monday, April 5, 2010

Tocqueville on democracy vs. socialism

I've been reading Hayek's "The Road to Serfdom" and came across this quote from Alexis de Tocqueville (in 1848):
Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.
You'd think if people figured this out over 150 years ago, we'd still be aware of it.

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