Ideas of Alexis de Tocqueville, by Theme

[French, 1805 - 1859, Born at Verneuil in France. Died at Cannes.]

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25. Society / A. State of Nature / 1. A People / b. The natural life
Wherever there is a small community, the association of the people is natural
25. Society / A. State of Nature / 1. A People / c. A unified people
The people are just individuals, and only present themselves as united to foreigners
25. Society / B. The State / 3. Constitutions
In America judges rule according to the Constitution, not the law
25. Society / B. The State / 5. Leaders / b. Monarchy
A monarchical family is always deeply concerned with the interests of the state
25. Society / B. The State / 5. Leaders / c. Despotism
Despots like to see their own regulations ignored, by themselves and their agents
25. Society / B. The State / 5. Leaders / d. Elites
Aristocracy is constituted by inherited landed property
25. Society / B. The State / 7. Changing the State / a. Centralisation
In Europe it is thought that local government is best handled centrally
25. Society / B. The State / 9. Population / a. State population
Vast empires are bad for well-being and freedom, though they may promote glory
People would be much happier and freer in small nations
25. Society / C. Social Justice / 3. Social Freedom / a. Slavery
Slavery undermines the morals and energy of a society
25. Society / C. Social Justice / 3. Social Freedom / c. Free speech
The liberty of the press is more valuable for what it prevents than what it promotes
25. Society / C. Social Justice / 4. Social Equality / a. Grounds of equality
It is admirable to elevate the humble to the level of the great, but the opposite is depraved
25. Society / C. Social Justice / 4. Social Equality / b. Political equality
Equality can only be established by equal rights for all (or no rights for anyone)
25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 5. Democracy / b. Consultation
An election, and its lead up time, are always a national crisis
25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 5. Democracy / d. Representative democracy
Universal suffrage is no guarantee of wise choices