Category Archives: History

Liberté Égalité Fraternité


For Hugo, the single guarantee of inviolable peace was the normal state of work, that is the exchange, the offer and the demand, the production and the consumption, the vast common effort, the attraction of industries, the circulation of ideas, the human flux and reflux. Indeed, this confidence in the rationality of the market, in what Adam Smith called the invisible hand, this certainty that economic freedom engenders or consolidates civic freedoms are typically Anglo-Saxon. They are not part of the French tradition, although France had its own brilliant defenders, especially in the encyclopaedic movement of the 18th century with Quesnay and Turgot. But we should remember that the Former Regime was extremely directive: today, each time the French State launches great initiatives in order to stimulate the economy, we speak of Colbertism. Read more of this post

Hugo’s Dream of Unification


We can notice these days, following the 60th anniversary of the United Nations, that Hugo primarily justifies the idea of a Union of European states by the need to preserve peace, as the ONU Charter did in 1946; Europe should first be a space without war, its genius should imagine nonviolent solutions for unavoidable litigation. Read more of this post

The Peace Congress of Paris, August 1849


This great idea of Europe, Hugo publicly expressed for the first time in the opening discourse at the first Peace Congress, held in Paris, 21st of August 1849. These Peace Congresses were a privileged context for Hugo’s reflection on Europe; he will have the occasion to come back to this theme in his speeches for the Peace Congress of Lausanne (1869) and that of Lugano (1872). Read more of this post

All that glisters…


All that glisters is not gold… [The merchant of Venice — Act 2 Scene 7]

Finding an article that included a simple link to cryptocurrency in support of my linking sixteenth century Spanish bullion to modern mercantilism and the desire of a sovereign power to maintain authority over what is now its fiat money was difficult. I eventually concluded that I had write my own. Debasement of the currency is the inevitable result of abandoning a monetary standard¹ that limits the money supply (or commodity money), giving credence to Keynesian economics and Modern Monetary Theory (MMT)². Read more of this post

Cryptocurrency bubbles and money


This week on Facebook: Debasement of the coinage was rare in Greek history with the notable exception of Dionysius of Syracuse. The Byzantine economy was assumed to have a sound fiscal policy but in the eleventh century emperor Michael VII earned the nickname “Parapinaces” or “minus a quarter”, because the gold nomisma was debased by that amount but little is made of the continuous debasement of the Roman denarius, The enforced sale of the monasteries failed to solve King Henry VIII’s  financial problems, earning him the nickname ‘old copper nose’ during his great debasement. In a fiat money world debasement by fiscal policy is the norm and has perhaps in part (if not entirely) accounting for the intended use of cryptocurrency as fiat. Read more of this post

In Praise of Forgetting


This week on Facebook: I was going to use an article on David Rieff’s book/essay In Praise of Forgetting: Historical Memory and Its Ironies in my post on forgetfulness but decided against its inclusion. What I did find interesting though were the reviews of Rieff’s short work received (it is clearly an essay rather than a book). There is — to my mind — a significance in the references to historic memories that the authors selectively chose to include in their reviews and in those that they did not mention. Particularly the impact that their education had in fostering historical memory and the contemporary ironies it creates. Read more of this post

The Journal


The gun crew of SMS Nürnberg were relaxing, Franz was ignoring their idle banter using the moment’s respite to write in his journal: St Quentin Bay, November 24, 1914. Having finished coaling we are ready to round the Horn. The admiral has told the squadron that he would not make light of their situation, with the navies of the world allied against them a difficult task lay ahead. He and the captains would use their best endeavours to lead them safely home, if not for Christmas then the new year… . Read more of this post

Helicopter Money


This week on Facebook: Sees me return to economics, yet more history and the despair of an old man who — like all old men before me — thinks that the world is going to hell in a handcart. My first instinct was to ignore articles on helicopter money as it being something that I was incapable of having an influence on (which is true) and finding myself totally confused by the rationales offered by economists and politicians. Nevertheless, the notion of helicopter money made me think of some historic precedents that I believe are valid allusions to its use. Read more of this post

1666 and all that!


This week on Facebook: Last week saw the 350th anniversary of The Great Fire Of London, which broke out on the 2nd of September 1666.  It has since been dwarfed  — at least in scale — by subsequent man made wartime infernos, but this was time when cities like London were potential fire traps.
Read more of this post

The Siege


“So William, I beat you again!”

“Perhaps you should not brag so Georgina, when we are wed I may beat as often as I like.”

She hotly replied, “No man will ever beat me William Young, husband or not!”

Watching him as he unstrung his bow and started walking towards her, she immediately regretted her sharp-tongued reply. She remembered vividly her parents announcing her betrothal to him, the feeling of elation, the love for him. A feeling she had held from the very first moment they met, each time she looked at him love welled up inside her, so much that she thought her heart would burst.

As he approached her he said, “You are closer to the butt than me.”

“But always a better shot,” she replied. Read more of this post

The Land Is Ours

a Landrights campaign for Britain

The Bulletin

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TCWG Short Stories

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The Real Economy

Blogs and stuff from Ed Conway

Public Law for Everyone

Professor Mark Elliott

Bleda

Am I my Brothers keeper?

The Land Is Ours

a Landrights campaign for Britain

The Bulletin

This site was created for members and friends of My Telegraph blog site, but anyone is welcome to comment, and thereafter apply to become an author.

TCWG Short Stories

Join our monthly competition and share story ideas...

The Real Economy

Blogs and stuff from Ed Conway

Public Law for Everyone

Professor Mark Elliott

Bleda

Am I my Brothers keeper?

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