Historians of ideas have, frequently, misunderstood the founders of liberalism. Often, they say that authors like Adam Smith or Turgot are inconsistent in their adherence to a supposed .principle of state non-intervention., since they find that those classic authors defend many examples of public intervention in the economy. But the truth is that none of the great economists, whether French or British, have ever professed such an absurd principle as that of non-intervention. They have, however, defended vigorously other rival principles, such as the state.s defence of natural rights, public utility or laisser-faire, which should not be confused with non-intervention
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