I wrote the forewords to both volumes of Laissez Faire Books’ ebook editions of Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America (I and II). Though this book is a much-admired classic, it astounds me how few people I meet have read it. Perhaps the challenge of the book wards them off. Perhaps the concept of “the tyranny of the majority,” floated in the first volume, and the chapter on the kind of tyranny that could grow in democracy, in the second, are, together, too much of a challenge for the tender ears of modern politically correct ideologues. Maybe the idea that a Frenchman in 1835 could not merely accurately predict, but acutely describe, the moral failures of the modern age is just too much.
And, while you are at it, take a look back in French history, when government “hope and change” ruined an economy, deeply crippling a culture, and brought on totalitarian state terror. Read Andrew Dickson White’s excellent discussion of fiat money inflation in France, during the revolutionary period. I wrote the foreword to that book, too.