„I have always said, that, without commerce... this island could not possibly continue to be great... but, it is the system of rendering every thing commercial; of making merchants and bankers into Lords; of making a set of fund-dealers the distributors of honours and rewards... it is this system that I reprobate.“

— William Cobbett, Political Register (11 January 1806), quoted in Karl W. Schweizer and John W. Osborne, Cobbett and His Times (Leicester: Leicester University Press, 1990), p. 15.
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William Cobbett
1763 - 1835
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Context: The system of banking we have both equally and ever reprobated. I contemplate it as a blot left in all our Constitutions, which, if not covered, will end in their destruction, which is already hit by the gamblers in corruption, and is sweeping away in its progress the fortunes and morals of our citizens. Funding I consider as limited, rightfully, to a redemption of the debt within the lives of a majority of the generation contracting it; every generation coming equally, by the laws of the Creator of the world, to the free possession of the earth he made for their subsistence, unincumbered by their predecessors, who, like them, were but tenants for life. Letter to John Taylor (28 May 1816) ME 15:18: The Writings of Thomas Jefferson "Memorial Edition" (20 Vols., 1903-04) edited by Andrew A. Lipscomb and Albert Ellery Bergh, Vol. 15, p. 18

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„If the system of perfect liberty to industry and commerce were the prevailing system of nations,“

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Context: If the system of perfect liberty to industry and commerce were the prevailing system of nations, the arguments which dissuade a country in the predicament of the United States, from the zealous pursuits of manufactures would doubtless have great force. (...) But the system which has been mentioned, is far from characterising the general policy of Nations. The prevalent one has been regulated by an opposite spirit. The consequence of it is, that the United States are to a certain extent in the situation of a country precluded from foreign Commerce. They can indeed, without difficulty obtain from abroad the manufactured supplies, of which they are in want; but they experience numerous and very injurious impediments to the emission and vent of their own commodities. (...) In such a position of things, the United States cannot exchange with Europe on equal terms, and the want of reciprocity would render them the victim of a system, which should induce them to confine their views to Agriculture and refrain from Manufactures. A constant and increasing necessity, on their part, for the commodities of Europe, and only a partial and occasional demand for their own, in return, could not but expose them to a state of impoverishment, compared with the opulence to which their political and natural advantages authorise them to aspire.

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„How can we design improvement in large systems without understanding the whole system, and if we the answer is that we cannot, how is it possible to understand the whole system?“

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