#WealthofTweets: Book 5.1

education role of government austrian economics public goods east india company administration of justice joint stock companies national defense militias teach wealth of nations infrastructure public choice public education roads

Of the Expences of the Sovereign or Commonwealth

Sarah Skwire and Janet Bufton for @AdamSmithWorks

20 Feb • 27 tweets • adamsmithworks/status/1363140308796657668

Today we start the last book of #AdamSmith's #WealthOfNations. Allons-y! #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Book Five of #WealthOfNations is all about the duties of the sovereign and how to pay for them. In this first part of chapter 1, we’re talking about the cost of defense. (V.i.a) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The sovereign's duty to protect the country can only be done through military force, but how you get the money to pay for that military varies according to time, place, and circumstance. (V.i.a.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

In a hunter/gatherer society, everyone is always already a warrior, and since there isn’t really a sovereign or nation, no expense is required to maintain defense. Much the same is true of shepherding cultures. (V.i.a.2) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Armies of hunters are limited in size to a few hundred men (as they have to sustain themselves through the available game). Shepherds can muster larger forces because they bring their sustenance in the form of flocks. (V.i.a.3–5) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

#AdamSmith thinks wars among Indigenous American populations are contemptible because they’re small, but large invading cultures like the Tartars are impressive & dreadful.We SmithTweeters boldly support smaller & fewer wars. (V.i.a.5) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Farmers are also prepared for soldiering as a result of their daily labor. If the fighting can happen after planting and before harvest, farmers can usually afford to join the fight. So a farming culture is also fairly inexpensive to defend. (V.i.a.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Once you move away from these forms of society, though, the increasing sophistication of manufactures and war make it impossible for professional soldiers to support themselves. (V.i.a.8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Leave your fields for a bit? Crops keep growing. Leave your loom? There's no loom-fairy to do your weaving. With no weaving, you don’t make money.(We know there's no field-fairy, work with us.)If you want soldiers, you have to pay them. (V.i.a.9) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Plus, wars are way longer now. Extended campaigns instead of stand-alone skirmishes mean there’s really no way for soldiers to maintain another trade. The more developed a society, the fewer inhabitants are willing or able to go to war. (V.i.a.10–11) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

In the ancient world, learning to be a soldier was a standard part of becoming educated. But as the art of war becomes more sophisticated, it becomes a specialty. (V.i.a.12–15) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(We, the SmithTweeters, never quite know what to make of Smith’s claim that war is “certainly the noblest of all arts.” Does he mean it? Is he being ironic? Is he questioning what it means for something to be “noble?”) (V.i.a.14) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

When soldiering becomes a specialty the government can either force people to learn how to be soldiers or treat soldiering as a profession.The first gives you a militia, the second, a standing army. (V.i.a.16–19) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The invention of firearms means that the fitness and skill level of individual soldiers is no longer as important. Instead of skill, you need regularity, order, and obedience in your soldiers. (V.i.a.20-21) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith notes, with confidence that a militia is always going to be inferior to a well- disciplined and well-exercised standing army.*American SmithTweeting contingent whistles Yankee Doodle in upstart colonial* (V.i.a.23–25) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Oh, okay. The colonials get some props from Smith a little later. If the war with Britain drags out long enough they may become a match for the standing army. (V.i.a.27–28) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

That said, standing armies are just irresistibly superior unless militias are engaged in such long campaigns that they equalize. (V.i.a.27–28) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And now...a brief history of standing armies. There were a lot of them. (V.i.a.29–38) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

When one nation develops a standing army, other nations must follow suit for their own protection. (V.i.a.37) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Oh, hey, here’s that “savage nations” thread. Just in case that's something you might be thinking about right now as Smith carefully explains that only standing armies can protect against barbarian invasions... (V.i.a.39–40) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets...

And equally carefully explains that you need a standing army in order to civilize barbarians and establish the law of the sovereign with “irresistible force.” (V.i.a.40) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Lots of people argue that standing armies are dangerous to liberty. That can be true. But if the king is the general, the nobility are the chief officers, and the commanders support the civil authority, a standing army isn’t a threat. (V.i.a.41) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(Does anyone else think that’s a whole pile of conditions that need to be met before a standing army isn’t a concern? Especially given the references to Caesar and Cromwell? Maybe it’s just us…) (V.i.a.41) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

On the other hand, says Smith, a standing army can give a sovereign a sense of security that means he doesn’t have to crack down as hard on the people as he would otherwise. So, weirdly, a standing army can→more liberty. (V.i.a.41) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The duty of maintaining national defense gets more expensive as society becomes wealthier and war becomes more complicated. Cannons cost more than javelins. (V.i.a.43) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

This means that, unlike in ancient times, it’s now easier for developed and wealthy nations to defend themselves. That’s good, Smith says, for preserving and extending civilization. (V.i.a.44) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(We, the SmithTweeters, are not military historians. But we’re pretty sure that a lot of what Smith says here doesn’t hold up throughout the 20th century... Anyone want to help us out with that before we come back tomorrow to talk about justice?) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Yesterday #AdamSmith outlined the first duty of the sovereign—protecting the nation from attack. The second duty of the sovereign is protecting individuals from each other aka administering justice. (V.i.b.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Just as defense gets more complicated and expensive as societies develop, so does the process of administering justice. (V.i.b.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

In nations of hunters, where there is little private property, there’s little need for complex justice. We may do violence to each other out of anger or other passions, but we really don’t give in to that very often. (V.i.b.2) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith isn’t giving us a story that’s idyllic OR one that’s a war of all against all. There’s less stuff to fight over in nations with less property, so there’s less fighting. (V.i.b.2) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Add more stuff and you get more conflict and more temptation to exercise our greed and laziness by taking stuff we didn’t work for. (V.i.b.2) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Because we all want to keep all the stuff we have, but we are all outnumbered by people who want to take the stuff we have, we need a justice system. And introducing a justice system means that you’re introducing hierarchy. (V.i.b.3) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(Smith says hierarchy or subordination gradually grows up over time as a natural adjunct to the growth of property. And okay, public choice hadn’t been invented yet, but Smith knew that power is really good at preserving itself.) (V.i.b.3) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

We seem naturally attracted to certain kinds of qualities in leaders: personal qualities of body, mind, and spirit; age and experience; wealth; family background. (V.i.b.4–8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Personal qualities are a little too subjective to make them a convenient thing on which to base a hierarchy.
(Besides, the bathing suit competition just gets awkward.) Age is less subjective.
(But equally awkward in a bikini) (V.i.b.5–6) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Wealth is the greatest influence on hierarchy in less developed countries because the differences in fortune are so great and there’s not a lot to buy with your wealth other than the loyalty of others. (V.i.b.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Once there’s stuff to shop for, we’d rather go to Target than maintain bands of loyal retainers. Heck, even Canadian Tire. (V.i.b.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

This doesn’t mean wealth has no influence in developed societies. (#CaptainObvious: It does.)

In fact, the excessive influence of wealth is the “constant complaint” in any society with any inequality. (V.i.b.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

But, Smith says, this is the price we pay for not having universal poverty. Once anyone gets wealth, inequality develops and some people have undue influence. (That’s why it’s important to enable everyone to get better off.) (V.i.b.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Superiority of birth is a kind of hierarchy that arises only in developed nations because it comes from inequality of fortune over generations. All families are equally ancient, but not all families are equally anciently wealthy. (V.i.b.8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

We just don’t respect new authority like we do established authority. (We ❤ the word “upstart.” Does anyone else think Smith is thinking of #Shakespeare being called an “upstart crow” by a jealous fellow playwright? Just us?) (V.i.b.8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

It’s not clear whether Smith is praising a hierarchy of birth or just describing it. He’s pretty clear that illustrious families are not illustrious entirely because of the “inheritance of wisdom and virtue”, though. (V.i.b.9) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

This means that, really, judicial authority is gained by some combination of birth and fortune. #TLDR: You don’t get judicial authority until you have property that people want to protect. (V.i.b.12) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

So public choice wasn’t a thing yet, but Smith isn’t an idiot: “The rich, in particular, are necessarily interested to support that order of things which can alone secure them in the possession of their advantages.” (V.i.b.12) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

That means that civil government is “instituted for the defense of the rich against the poor” or the defense of those who have property against those who have none. (V.i.b.12) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Beyond that, instead of costing the sovereign anything, administering justice was—for a long time—a source of revenue! People who want justice are always willing to pay for it. (Especially if they get to define it, too.) (V.i.b.13) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And beyond even that, the administration of justice (can we put "justice" in scare quotes yet?) become subservient to the collection of revenue. That produced gross abuses. (So if you’re getting mad, Smith is right there with you.) (V.i.b.14) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Wealthy people who applied for "justice" “with a large present in hand” got something more than justice, while those with less to offer as a “present” got less than justice. Delays were engineered in order to get more “presents.” (V.i.b14) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Do you want a Magna Carta? Because this is how you get a Magna Carta. (V.i.b.14) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And who the heck was going to call the sovereign to account? Smith might have quoted Lady #Macbeth, “What need we fear who knows it, when none can call our power to account?” #WeWarnedYouWeHaveALitDegree (V.i.b.15– 16) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Once you move from tribute to taxes, and once judges start to get salaries, you can start to talk about administering justice for free, and you can remove some abuses. (V.i.b.17) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

But let’s not kid ourselves, justice isn’t free anywhere. You have to pay lawyers or they won’t perform well, for starters. (V.i.b.18) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Judges don’t have to be paid as much because the job gets them so much respect. (V.i.b.19) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith has a plan for rolling all court costs into a single fee, paid in advance, distributed to judges after the case is decided. This is based on how they were doing it in France, so here’s one time when Smith praises France. Take note! (V.i.b.20) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And now...a brief history of the courts of England: There were a lot of them. (V.i.b.21) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

We love how Smith suggests that a stamp duty might help defray court costs and then instantly starts to troubleshoot it because he knows how people do. Temptation inspires corruption, folks. (V.i.b.22) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

But no matter how we fund the administration of justice, the sovereign shouldn’t fund it. There should be another way—rents, interest from a fund, something. (V.i.b.23) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Administration of justice must be separate from the sovereign. Otherwise the sovereign won’t have time to do anything else and we sacrifice justice to political expediency. [We, the SmithTweeters, would have put the second part first.] (V.i.b.24–25) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

We cannot and must not sacrifice justice to political expediency and political interests because the liberty of every individual depends on impartially administered justice. (Man, do we love this part.) (V.i.b.25) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

A separate and independent judiciary is a basic requirement for the individual to feel secure in the possession of every right which belongs to him. #AdamSmith out. SmithTweeters out.

How can we follow that? Find out tomorrow! (V.i.b.25) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

BUT WHAT ABOUT THE ROADS? Yes, #AdamSmith says sovereigns should also maintain public institutions and public works that are good for society but that people won’t pay for on their own. (V.i.c.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And yes, this category of expenses includes education, about which more later. We promise. (V.i.c.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The first kind of public works Smith is concerned with are the kind that facilitate commerce in general. Like ROADS. (V.i.d.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

These projects should be funded through tolls rather than taxes. That way you pay to maintain what you use. That’s fair. (V.i.d.2–5) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Plus, if you charge a higher toll for fancy and heavy rich-people-carriages, their vanity is made into something useful to the poor. (V.i.d.2–5) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(Bonus fancy and heavy rich-people-carriage content for #JaneAusten fans.) jasnanorcal.org/inkwell/ink9

Paying for roads this way—based on use and traffic—means you only get roads, bridges, etc. where they are really useful for commerce. You can’t just throw them up willy nilly to enhance the scenery. (V.i.d.6)#SmithTweets

It’s even better if the maintenance of canals, along with the profits from the tolls, are in private hands. They canals will be better taken care of. (V.i.d.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

But you can’t do that for roads. Canals become useless if neglected, but badly maintained roads are still passable and could still collect tolls. This means the owners of roads could ignore their responsibility and still profit. That’s bad. (V.i.d.8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

How does Smith know this? Because it’s going on all over Great Britain. (Complaining about potholes is apparently not just a 21st century sport.) (V.i.d.9)  #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Lots of people think tolls are so profitable they could make a huge contribution to the revenue of the country. Smith doesn't think this sounds accurate or practical. (V.i.d.10) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

First, this would inevitably increase the costs of tolls, and increase them quickly. That's just how government works. (V.i.d.12) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Secondly, that tax on carriages by weight? That’s fair if the taxes are going to repair the roads, but not fair if they’re going to spend the money in other ways. And it would raise cost of bulky goods as well.(V.i.d.13) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Last, how are you supposed to make sure that the government bothers to fix the roads with the toll money? They could charge high tolls, neglect the roads, and the people would have no recourse. (V.i.d.14) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And now...a brief survey of roads around the world: There are lots. They have potholes.(V.i.d.16–17) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

It’s better to have roads and other public works maintained at a local or provincial level rather than at a national level whenever possible. And that means tax money would be kept local as well. (V.i.d.18) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Again, Smith isn’t an idiot. He knows there's plenty of abuse and neglect of public works at the local level, but unlike national abuses they’re limited in their extent. (Edinburgh can't ruin the roads in Kirkcaldy.) (V.i.d.18) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Up until now we’ve been talking about public works that support commerce in general, but there are also public works that support particular kinds of commerce. (V.i.e.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Oh, hey, barbarous and uncivilized nations again. #Sigh (V.i.e.2)#WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Trading with nations that are inclined to violence means the need for special protections. These can be paid for with taxes, a fine on traders who choose to trade there, or a duty on the goods they trade. (V.i.e.3) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

You get companies like the East India Co. (spoiler: Smith's no fan) when merchants convince the state to let them take on the duty of the sovereign to oversee trade in a particular location. They start out useful, end up harmful. (V.i.e.4–5) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

There are two kinds of these foreign trading companies: regulated and joint stock. Neither is great, but Smith has a particular dislike for the joint stock company in foreign trade. (V.i.e.7–40) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Regulated companies are companies made up of people engaged in trading. They use apprenticeships, membership fees, and lobbying for burdensome regulation to keep competition to a minimum. (V.i.e.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

They’re not great, but Smith saves his ire for the joint stock companies. Dorothy Parker would have said “Regulated companies are just plain terrible, but joint stock companies are fancy terrible. They’re terrible with raisins in it." (V.i.e.15–40) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Joint stock companies allow people to shrug off responsibility and make it too easy to admit new people who don’t know the business. Company directors are generally “adventurers” rather than experienced traders. (V.i.e.15–18) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And THIS is how you end up with things like the South Sea Company. (V.i.e.15–18)#WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Anyone else having a hard time having sympathy for the decline and fall of the Royal African Company’s forays into the slave trade? Evil AND incompetent. Here’s a solid discussion of Smith on Slavery. (V.i.e.19–20)  #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Basically, the history of this kind of trading company is a history of slavery, incompetence, greed, and irresponsibility. Smith is NOT here for it, as demonstrated by his 6.5 page, single paragraph takedown of the East India Company. (V.i.e.26) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Companies like these produce “bad stewards and bad sovereigns” and offer people “either the pleasure of wasting or the profit of embezzling whatever surplus might remain” after the stock dividends are paid. (V.i.e.26–27) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

It’s all the worse when the company is given the right to take over the forts and garrisons in the places where they trade. That means they end up with the right to make war, which they do “unjustly, capriciously, and cruelly.” (V.i.e.28) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

It might make sense to give some advantage to merchants who open new lines of trade at their own risk and expense. But letting that advantage stay in place forever is a disaster. It supports negligence and corruption. (V.i.e.30) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

[Can we just take a minute here? We, the SmithTweeters, have long been on record saying that people who love free markets should be the strongest critics of people who corrupt them and use them to oppress. This is why we are on TeamSmith.] #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

[It is, in fact, why we are tweeting #WealthOfNations, because we think it's incredibly important that people realize this kind of critique is part of Smith's economic arguments.] #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith will allow that it’s possible to have a functioning and not-evil joint stock company for businesses like banking and insurance, as well as for a few engineering enterprises. That’s because the rules are so clear cut. (V.i.e.32–39) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

But aside from those very few exceptions, joint stock companies are a disaster, and they fail at everything except causing harm. (V.i.e.40) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

#TLDR: Joint stock companies? Smith hates ‘em. (V.i.e) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

#AdamSmith isn’t just interested in educating kids. He knows we need #LifeLongLearning and #AdultEducation. He doesn't mean university courses for adults, but rather “preparation for a better world to come.” (He means church.) (V.i.g.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

So we need to know how to best fund the clergy who provide this kind of education. Direct payments from their hearers? Tax? Tithe? Salary? (V.i.g.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Just as with other educators, clergy will be more zealous and hard working when they are paid directly by hearers rather than being guaranteed an income. This is why newer religions are so lively. (V.i.g.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Established clergy become, like tenured faculty, gentlemen of learning and leisure, so when a “popular and bold, though perhaps stupid and ignorant” new set of religious enthusiasts crop up, the established clergy can’t outargue them.(V.i.g.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Their only recourse to drive out the new sect is to call on the government to persecute and destroy them. This is pretty much the history of world religion in a paragraph. (V.i.g.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The old, established ways may be more learned, they may write better. They may even be right (though Smith certainly doesn’t commit one way or another). But they do not know how to gain followers. Maybe they should try Twitter? (V.i.g.1) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The Catholic church solves this at the level of parish clergy and mendicant orders, as they rely more on direct contributions, or as Smith says “No plunder, no pay.” (V.i.g.2) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

#AdamSmith now just straight up quotes four full paragraphs of #DavidHume. Probably because he couldn't just title this section “Hume was right.” Not that Hume would have objected if he had. (V.i.g.3–6) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

What Hume and Smith argue here is that while direct payments to clergy from their hearers produces a more zealous, hard working clergy, this is the exact opposite of what the legislators should want. (V.i.g.6) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

That’s because “in every religion except the true” (whatever THAT means) a zealous clergy promotes superstition, folly, and delusion because they need constant novelty to attract new followers. (V.i.g.6) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith agrees with all that, but *disagrees* with Hume's conclusion. Hume thinks subsidizing a single state religion will "bribe their indolence", and because it's so dominant will render religion generally lazy and harmless.  #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith's worry about the state privileging a single religion over others is that it will marry faction and fanaticism—unprivileged religions will continue to be zealous and also push for changes in the regime. (V.i.g.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Violent religious controversy and violent political faction go together. You can't unscramble that egg. (V.i.g.7) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

If you could, and if you could get rid of established state religions, you could safely have a lot of small sects, none of which would have any undue influence, and you’d have a more moderate populace and clergy. (V.i.g.8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

If things go really well, says Smith, flourishing small sects without the privilege of political clout could even produce one of the great Enlightenment dreams: “a pure and natural religion, free from...absurdity, imposture, or fanaticism.”(V.i.g.8) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Even if you don't get that ideal result, you do get sects that aren't large and powerful enough to disturb the peace, and that’s a win all around. (V.i.g.9) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(We, the SmithTweeters, think this section of #WealthOfNations should be taught at least as often as Locke’s Letter on Toleration. It’s possible we’re biased. But we think @jtlevy might agree.) (V.i.g.8–9) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

The common people, says Smith, are morally strict. People of fashion are libertines. (V.i.g.10) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

This is because levity and wanton behavior costs a lot. It can ruin a commoner in a week. People of fashion can keep it up for years. (V.i.g.10) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

[Look, we KNOW we should be rooting for the morally upright commoners. But the people of fashion just sound like so much more fun...] (V.i.g.10) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

This difference in class morality is why new religions originate among the common people. (V.i.g.11) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

An aristocrat is what he is, wherever he goes (pace Harry Windsor). A commoner, however, who comes to a great city, has no notoriety but also no supervision. Joining a small sect may save them from bad behavior they'd undertake otherwise. (V.i.g.12) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Sects can become too morally rigid and disagreeably anti-social. This can be addressed with public education and public diversions like museums, music, and plays, which help keep us from being gloomy. (V.i.g.14–15) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

#AdamSmith isn’t generally thought of as a guy who likes a good party, but he understands why we don’t only want but also need festivity and joy. Smith’s not gloomy, and SmithTweeters don’t need to be either! (V.i.g.15) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

More argument against Hume: If you don’t have an established state religion, the sovereign doesn’t have to worry about the clergy. But when you do, the clergy has to be policed, and they form a strong interest group to be dealt with. (V.i.g.16–17) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

An established religion means the sovereign has to worry about the doctrines that are taught and their effect on public peace. But it means he has little influence over them other than by “fears and expectations” he can inspire in clergy. (V.i.g.18) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

But if the sovereign comes down too hard on the clergy, they gain followers by being persecuted and martyred. And though govts should use positive incentives, they always seem to choose to use negative ones. (V.i.g.19) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

This is particularly true of the French. Did you know that Smith doesn’t like the French? (V.i.g.19) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And now...a brief history of religion in Europe: It’s eventful. (Smith is not very nice to the Catholic church.) (V.i.g.20–38) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Smith is a fan of the presbyteries and their small benefices, because that structure prevents power grabs, encourages a modest, moral clergy, and converts people without violence—even when this becomes the established state religion. (V.i.g.38) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

When the church is too wealthy and powerful, they drain men of learning from the universities, and the universities get dumber.

Like in France. (V.i.g.39) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

One more thing against established churches: When they are supported by required tithes, the state loses revenue that could go to national defense. (V.i.g.41) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

(#AdamSmith now pauses the invention of modern economics in order to chair the church budget committee meeting. Moving on...We'll see you tomorrow!) (V.i.g.41) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

Sovereigns are fancy, and they need revenue to support their fanciness. This is the entirety of part four of this chapter. (V.i.h.1–3) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

In conclusion, all these expenses in Book V Chapter 1—defense, justice, public works, education, religion, fancy sovereigns—are for the benefit of society as a whole so society should help pay for them. (V.i.i.1–6) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

When possible, it is good to find ways to make these things also help pay for themselves, though. You can’t ever expect them to cover all those costs, though. (V.i.i.1–6) #WealthOfTweets #SmithTweets

And this takes us to the subject of the next chapter: 𝐓𝐀𝐗𝐄𝐒! (We can barely contain our excitement! OMG!!!1111eleven!!!!BBQ!!!

See also the AdamSmithWorks Reading Guide for this chapter.