Advertisement

Men of Little Faith Facing the Modern State: The Country Party Ideology in Great Britain

  • Ivan JankovicEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter examines the “country party” theory in England and argues that it was not backward-looking and conservative as historians often claim, but rather exemplified a strong transatlantic liberal current of thought. This current is nowadays difficult to conceptualize because it rejects political modernization (centralization), while accepting the laissez-faire economics, modern Lockean individual liberty as well as cultural modernization. By concentrating mostly on their economic writings, the chapter demonstrates that Cato, Bolingbroke, Swift, and other country party thinkers essentially were indistinguishable from Adam Smith and David Hume in their renunciations of mercantilism, public debt, subsidies for corporations, and credit-paper induced false “prosperity.” What had been portrayed as their resistance to modern commerce, appears actually as their resistance to mercantilism. By using the British country party as a case study, we began to additionally flesh out in this chapter the contours of an alternative paradigm called “decoupled modernization,” which posits that political modernity in the form of a “fiscal-military state” devoted to mercantilism, must be divorced from economic, social, and cultural modernity which should be tied instead to older, medieval institutions of localism and federalism.

References

  1. Anderson, G. M., & Tollison, R. D. (1982). Adam Smith’s Analysis of Joint-Stock Companies. Journal of Political Economy, 90(6), 1237–1256.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ashcraft, R. (1980). Revolutionary Politics and Locke’s Two Treatises of Government: Radicalism and Lockean Political Theory. Political Theory, 8: 429–486.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bailyn, B. (1967). The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Bolingbroke Viscount of. (1752). Letters on the Study and Use of History. London: A. Millar.Google Scholar
  5. Bolingbroke Viscount of. (1754). Disquisitions Upon Party. London: R. Franklin.Google Scholar
  6. Brewer, J. (1989). The Sinews of Power: War, Money and the English State, 1688–1783. London: Unwin Hyman.Google Scholar
  7. Calhoun, J. C. (1992). Selected Writings and Speeches (L. Cheek, Ed.). New York: Regnery Publishing.Google Scholar
  8. Devanny, J., Jr. (2001). ‘A Loathing of Public Debt, Taxes and Excises’: The Political Economy of John Randolph of Roanoke. The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, 109(4), 387–416.Google Scholar
  9. Dworetz, S. (1990). The Unvarnished Doctrine: Locke, Liberalism and American Revolution. Durham and London: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Edling, M. (2003). A Revolution in Favor of Government: Origins of the U.S. Constitution and the Making of the American State. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  11. Friedman, M., & Schwartz, A. (1963). A Monetary History of the United States 1867–1960. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Harling, P., & Mandler, P. (1993). From Fiscal-Military to Laissez-faire State. Journal of British Studies, 44–70.Google Scholar
  13. Hayek, F. (1944). The Road to Serfdom. London: Routledge Press.Google Scholar
  14. Heckscher, E. (1955). Mercantilism (Vol. 2). New York and London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  15. Huerta de Soto, J. (2006). Money, Bank Credit and the Economic Cycles (3rd ed.). Alabama: Ludwig von Mises Institute.Google Scholar
  16. Hume, D. (1994). Political Essays (K. Haackonssen, Ed.) London: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Huyler, J. (1995). Locke in America: The Moral Philosophy of the Founding Era. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas.Google Scholar
  18. Jacobsen, D. L. (Ed.). (1965). The English Libertarian Heritage. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund.Google Scholar
  19. Kramnick, I. (1992). Bolingbroke and His Circle. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  20. McDonald, F. (1976). The Presidency of Thomas Jefferson. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas.Google Scholar
  21. McDonald, F. (1985). Novus Ordo Seclorum. Lawrence, KS: University of Kansas Press.Google Scholar
  22. O’Brien, P. (1988). The Political Economy of British Taxation, 1688–1810. Economic History Review, 41 (2nd series), 1–32.Google Scholar
  23. Pocock, J. G. A. (1975). The Machiavellian Moment. Florentine Political thought and the Atlantic Republican Tradition. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  24. Parker, G. (1975). The Gospel of Opposition: A Study in the 18th Century Anglo-American Ideology. Ph.D. Dissertation, Wayne State University.Google Scholar
  25. Prak, M. (2005). The Dutch Republic in the Seventeenth Century: The Golden Age. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Price, J. L. (1998). The Dutch Republic in the Seventeenth Century. New York: Macmillan Education.Google Scholar
  27. Quincy, J. (1774). Observations on the Boston Port Bill. Boston, MA: Edes and Gill.Google Scholar
  28. Rothbard, M. (1995). Classical Economics: An Austrian Perspective on the History of Economic Thought. Auburn, Alabama: Ludwig von Mises Institute.Google Scholar
  29. Smith, A. ([1776] 1907). An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations. London: Methuen & Co., Ltd.Google Scholar
  30. Taylor, J. (1814). An Inquiry into the Principles and Policy of the Government of the United States. Fredericksburg, VA: Green and Cady.Google Scholar
  31. Tilly, C. (1990). Coercion, Capital and European States, AD 990-1990. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  32. Trenchard, J. & Gordon, T. ([1724] 1995). Cato’s Letters, volume II, Indianapolis: Liberty Fund.Google Scholar
  33. Trenchard, J. & Gordon, T. ([1727] 1995a). Cato’s Letters, or Essays on Liberty, Civil and Religious, and Other Important Subjects. Four volumes in Two (Vol. 1), edited and annotated by Ronald Hamowy. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund.Google Scholar
  34. Trenchard, J. & Gordon, T. ([1727] 1995b). Cato’s Letters, or Essays on Liberty, Civil and Religious, and Other Important Subjects. Four volumes in Two (Vol. 4), edited and annotated by Ronald Hamowy. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund.Google Scholar
  35. Van Buren, M. (1867). Inquiry into the Origin and Course of Political Parties in the United States (A. Van Buren & J. Van Buren, Eds.). New York: Hurd and Houghton.Google Scholar
  36. Wennerlind C. (2011). Casualties of Credit. The English Financial Revolution, 1620–1720. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  37. Wood, G. S. (1969). The Creation of the American Republic 1776–1787. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  38. Zuckert, M. (1996). Natural Rights Republic. Notre Damme: University of Notre Damme Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of MaryBismarckUSA

Personalised recommendations