Where are we in Tytler’s historical cycle?
“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury. From that moment on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most money from the public treasury, with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world’s great civilizations has been two hundred years. These nations have progressed through the following sequence: from bondage to spiritual faith, from spiritual faith to great courage, from courage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to selfishness, from selfishness to complacency from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependency, from dependency back to bondage.” – Alexander Tytler, 18th century historian and jurist
Dr. MoneyWise says: I always keep in mind Alexander Tytler’s historical cycle. I estimate that we are now somewhere between the “apathy” and “dependency” stages with “dependency” – if the recent bailouts and rescue plans are any indicator – now seen by policymakers as a permanent fixture in the American economy. History is replete with examples of a rapid debasement of the currency accompanying the latter stages of Tytler’s cycle and that is why I own gold.
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