Bastiat thought the modern bureaucratic and regulatory State of his day was based on a mixture of outright violence and coercion on the one hand, and trickery and fallacies (sophisms) on the other. The violence and coercion came from the taxes, tariffs, and regulations, which were imposed on taxpayers, traders, and producers; the ideological dimension that maintained the current class of plunderers came from a new set of “political” and “economic sophisms” that confused, misled, and tricked a new generation of “dupes” into supporting the system. The science of political economy, according to Bastiat, was to be the means by which the economic sophisms of the present would be exposed, rebutted, and finally overturned, thus depriving the current plundering class of its livelihood and power.

Sadly true in 1850, it is still true, even more so. Can science and wisdom free us from the current plundering class (which includes the young Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who was tending bar (with a degree from Boston College) when she ran for Congress; how long before she is a US-1%er)?

I don’t think there is enough wisdom. Some blame schools. I blame government (which runs the schools, partly with the intent to make conformist, rulable voters).

Fundamentally a law is the threat to send guys with guns if you act in disharmony with the law. All laws are coercive. Coercion is evil. Therefore, the only rational justification for a law is that it is preventing a far graver evil. Coercing children to government schools (or indoctrination centers, or prisons) is evil and unjustifiable. Schooling thwarts learning. Children will learn if we let them. Compulsory government schooling is thus doubly evil.

What will free us from the state is technology. Technology will provide a more secure means for protecting individual freedoms, and when that is attainable by the majority, “majority rule” will be no more.

Source: Frédéric Bastiat: Liberty’s Masterful Storyteller – Foundation for Economic Education