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Jean-Baptiste Say (1767 – 1832)


French economist and businessman.
Jean-Baptiste Say
The luxury of ostentation affords a much less substantial and solid gratification, than the luxury of comfort, if I may be allowed the expression.
Say quotes
" capital cannot be more beneficially employed, then in strengthening and aiding the productive powers of nature."
Say
A science only advances with certainty, when the plan of inquiry and the object of our researches have been clearly defined; otherwise a small number of truths are loosely laid hold of, without their connexion being perceived, and numerous errors, without being enabled to detect their fallacy.




Say Jean-Baptiste quotes
When war becomes a trade, it benefits, like all other trades, from the division of labour.
Say Jean-Baptiste
"regulation is useful and proper, when aimed at the prevention of fraud or contrivance, manifestly injurious to other kinds of production, or to the public safety, and not at prescribing the nature of the products and the methods of fabrication."
Jean-Baptiste Say quotes
Still how unenlightened and ignorant are the very nations we term civilized!
Jean-Baptiste Say
Whence it is evident that the remedy must be adapted to the particular cause of the mischief; consequently, the cause must be ascertained, before the remedy is devised.
Say Jean-Baptiste quotes
Every individual, from the common mechanic, that works in wood or clay, to the prime minister that regulates with the dash of his pen the agriculture, the breeding of cattle, the mining, or the commerce of a nation, will perform his business the better, the better he understands the nature of things,and the more his understanding is enlightened.
Say
The celebrated Adam Smith was the first to point out the immense increase of production, and the superior perfection of products referable to this division of labour.
Say Jean-Baptiste
Labour, upon whichever of those operations it be bestowed, is productive, because it concurs in the creation of a product. Thus the labour of the philosopher, whether experimental or literary, is productive; the labour of the adventurer or master-manufacturer is productive, although he perform no actual manual work; the labour of every operative workman is productive, from the common day-labourer in agriculture, to the pilot that governs the motion of a ship.
Jean-Baptiste Say
The United States will have the honour of proving experimentally, that true policy goes hand in hand with moderation and humanity.




Jean-Baptiste Say quotes
But what must be the character of that policy, which aims at national prosperity through the impoverishment of a large proportion of the home producers, with a view to supply foreigners at a cheaper rate, and give them all the benifet of the national privation and self denial?
Jean-Baptiste Say
No human being has the faculty of originally creating matter, which is more than nature itself can do. But any one may avail himself of the agents offered him by nature, to invest matter with utility.
Say quotes
The haggardness of poverty is everywhere seen contrasted with the sleekness of wealth, the exhorted labour of some compensating for the idleness of others, wretched hovels by the side of stately colonnades, the rags of indigence blended with the ensigns of opulence; in a word, the most useless profusion in the midst of the most urgent wants.
Say Jean-Baptiste
Capital must work, as it were, in concert with industry; and this concurrence is what I call the productive agency of capital.
Say Jean-Baptiste quotes
If the community wish to have the benefit of more knowledge and intelligence in the labouring classes, it must dispense it at the public charge.
Jean-Baptiste Say
Dominion by land or sea will appear equally destitute of attraction, when it comes to be generally understood, that all its advantages rest with the rulers, and that the subjects at large derive no benefit whatever.
Jean-Baptiste Say quotes
The command of a large sum is a dangerous temptation to a national administration. Though accumulated at their expense, the people rarely, if ever profit by it: yet in point of fact, all value, and consequently, all wealth, originates with the people.
Jean-Baptiste Say
Some writers maintain arithmetic to be only the only sure guide in political economy; for my part, I see so many detestable systems built upon arithmetical statements, that I am rather inclined to regard that science as the instrument of national calamity.
Say Jean-Baptiste
The best scheme of finance is, to spend as little as possible; and the best tax is always the lightest.


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