Bastiat Parties

Frédéric Bastiat, French economist, legislator, and writer who was a champion of private property, free markets, and limited government is more relevant today than ever before due to the reality that we live in a complex, interrelated global economy which is becoming more interrelated and complex every day. Hence, to survive in this new economy and to preserve our individual and economic liberties, we all need to understand the free market principles which Bastiat espoused.

Purpose: To assist with understanding Bastiat’s What Is Seen and What Is Not Seen using the systems thinking tools of behavior over time (BOT) graphs and causal loop diagrams (CLDs). In this way, you learn more easily the free market ideas of Bastiat and gain the necessary tools to articulate free market dynamics.


1st Monthly Meeting:       The Broken Window

2nd Monthly Meeting:       The Demobilization

3rd Monthly Meeting:       Taxes

4th Monthly Meeting:       Theaters and Fine Arts

5th Monthly Meeting:       Public Works

6th Monthly Meeting:       The Middlemen

7th Monthly Meeting:       Restraint of Trade

8th Monthly Meeting:       Machines

9th Monthly Meeting:       Credit

10th Monthly Meeting:     Algeria

11th Monthly Meeting:     Thrift and Luxury

12th Monthly Meeting:     The Right to Employment and the Right to Profit

Required Materials:

  • Reber, Michael. What Is Seen and What Is NOT Seen: Fun Systems Thinking Activities with Frédéric Bastiat. Publishing.
  • Whiteboard and Implements
  • Food & Beverages


Getting Started

  • Form a study group using Reber’s activity book.
  • Make a time to meet once a month and cover only one topic per meeting.
  • Read the Bastiat material and do Hands-On Activity 1 (the Bastiat activity) in the activity book prior to meeting.
  • Prepare news clips for Hands-On Activity 2 in the activity book and share them with group on meeting day.

On Meeting Day

  • Go over Hands-On Activity 1 together.
  • Do Hands-On Activity 2 together. Each group member shares one or two news stories.
  • Practice debating the topic by performing a role-play. One member is a free market defender and another member is a socialist. Other members watch and learn.

Share Your Bastiat Party Experiences Below by Leaving a Comment.


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