Conservatives and libertarians disinterested in being crushed by today’s left ought to ponder the following very carefully.
Incentives structured to encourage the few merely give freer rein to those already relatively unburdened by boundaries; over time these incentives reinforce precisely the problem about which Tocqueville worried, namely, that the many become mortally frustrated with the gnawing sense of their relative impotence. The democratic age conspires to yield this habit of thinking anyway; social and economic policy that does not seek a remedy for it ultimately produces precisely the kind of malaise it is intended to inoculate against[.] (Joshua Mitchell, The Fragility of Freedom, p. 147)
But the slide into soft despotism that Tocqueville feared was equally soft. We must prevent a rupture.