He was also able to witness the popularity of foreign merchandises imported from the colonies such as tobacco and cotton. This gave him the material he needed for the ideas he later had. Adam did very well in school and won a scholarship to study at Oxford. However, he was not fond of the school. He was very critical of it. He says that incentives must be created by the students for their teachers. He didn’t connect with the lessons and the teaching style of the teachers. He also did not improve of the needs of the students.
Smith began is intellectual career when he was asked to lecture at Edinburgh in English and the philosophy of law. Afterwards, he went to the University of Glasgow, where he taught logic, moral philosophy, literature, and public policy. It was his lecturing that provided the foundation for much of his later work. After much traveling and tutoring students, Smith went back to Kirkland. This was when he started his book, The Wealth of Nations, which he devoted all of his time towards. He worked on it from 1773 to 1 776, and when it was finished, it met immediate success. Graveside. Mom). The book offers descriptions of what builds nation’s wealth and is today an essential work in economics. The book reflects the beginning of the industrial revolution and touches upon the topics on the division of labor, productivity, and free markets (wick/ the_wealth_of_nations). In Smiths time period, people saw national wealth in terms of a countries stock of gold and silver. Importing goods was seen as damaging because it meant that the wealth they had must be given up to pay for the goods.
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They favored exporting goods because they usually got things in return. Smith disagreed. He believed importing was just as good as exporting. He said that nobody would trade if they expected to lose from it. The buyer profits, and so does the seller. He thought imports are just as valuable to us as our exports are to others. Smith said that trade increases our prosperity just as much as agriculture and manufacturing does. Like said before, the nation thought its wealth was based on its quantity of gold and silver, but what it’s really based on is its total production and commerce.
Today, that is known as gross national product (admits. Org). After Smith published The Wealth of Nations, he was appointed to be the Commissioner of Customs. The position gave him huge political power and enabled him to put many of his ideas into action. He became an important voice on other issues, including trade restrictions on Ireland (graveside. Com). He had a strong belief in competition, and called it “the markers invisible hand. ” He therefore opposed any government intervention into business affairs.
He said that trade restrictions, minimum wage laws, and production regulation were all harmful to a nation’s economic health. Because of his beliefs, he made a new policy. The policy was called laissez-fairer. This laissez-fairer policy of a non- intervening government remained popular throughout the Victorian Era and still plays an important part in our present-day economic policy. Capitalists supported Smith’s policies and they suggested that child labor laws, maximum working hours, and factory health codes caused a violation Of their rights.
Smith, though, was not an apologist for the capitalist class. He favored anti-monopoly laws, and his support of competition remained firm because it encouraged economic growth which he felt would benefit all members of society. He said that as long as markets grew, a demand for labor would increase and it would prevent business owners from exploiting their workers. However, he failed to realize that the process of arbitration would mess up the labor market. His optimism about economic growth seemed to ignore the possibility that capitalists might take the benefits of expansion (Victorianism. Org).
The exact meaning of Laissez-fairer is it’s “an economic environment in which transactions between private parties are free from riffs, government subsidies, and enforced monopolies, with only enough government regulations sufficient to protect property rights against theft and aggression. ” Laissez-fairer is a French word which translates to “let them do,” “let it be,” “let them do as well,” or “leave it alone. ” It was a political as well as an economic doctrine. The function of the state was to maintain order and security and to avoid interference with initiative of a person to pursue his or her own desired goals.