Principium Volume II, Book 8, Quote 864, 866, and 869

864. (8-9-2010) (The next is important in context of the people in government and how and where they choose to spend our tax dollars.)ATJ The prodigal (unwise spender)ATJ perverts it in this manner. By not confining his expense within his income, he encroaches upon his capital. Like him who perverts the revenues of some pious foundation (think government waste of tax dollars)ATJ to profane purposes, he pays the wages of idleness with those funds which the frugality of his forefathers had, as it were, consecrated to the maintenance of industry. By diminishing the funds destined for the employment of productive labour [sic], he necessarily diminishes, so far as it depends upon him; the quantity of that labour which adds a value to the subject upon which it is bestowed, and, consequently, the value of the annual produce of the land and labour of the whole country, the real wealth and revenue of its inhabitants. If the prodigality of some was not compensated by the frugality of others, the conduct of every prodigal, by feeding the idle with the bread of the industrious, tends not only to beggar himself, but to impoverish his country.

- Adam Smith – The Wealth of Nations, 1776


(Now if we could just put all this in terms that could easily be understood today and put it into the hands of the vast majority of the youth during their education, we might be able to change the world.)ATJ


866. (8-10-2010) The effects of misconduct are often the same as those of prodigality. Every injudicious and unsuccessful project in agriculture, mines, fisheries, trade, or manufactures, tends in the same manner to diminish the funds destined for the maintenance of productive labour [sic]. In every such project, though the capital is consumed by productive hands only yet, as by the injudicious manner in which they are employed they do not reproduce the full value of their consumption, there must always be some diminution in what would otherwise have been the productive funds of the society.

- Adam Smith – The Wealth of Nations, 1776


869. (8-12-2010) This frugality and good conduct, however, is upon most occasions, it appears from experience, sufficient to compensate, not only the private prodigality and misconduct of individuals, but the public extravagance of government. The uniform, constant, and uninterrupted effort of every man to better his condition, the principle from which public and national, as well as private opulence is originally derived, is frequently powerful enough to maintain the natural progress of things towards improvement, in spite both of the extravagance of government and of the greatest errors of administration. Like the unknown principle of animal life (the immune system)ATJ, it frequently restores health and vigour [sic] to the constitution, in spite, not only of the disease, but of the absurd prescriptions of the doctor.

- Adam Smith – The Wealth of Nations, 1776

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