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Candlemakers' petition

Candlemakers' petition

The Candlemakers' petition is a well known satire of protectionism written and published in 1845 by the French economist Frédéric Bastiat as part of his Economic Sophisms. In the Candlemakers' petition, the candlemakers and industrialists from other parts of the lighting industry petition the Chamber of Deputies of the French July Monarchy (1830–1848) to protect their trade from the unfair competition of a foreign power: the Sun.

In their petition, the candlemakers cite several economic 'advantages' that might be had from blocking out the Sun, by increasing consumption of products: tallow, leading to the increased production of meat, wool, hides, etc; vegetable oil, leading to the increased production of poppies, olives, and rapeseed; resinous trees, leading to more bees, hence crop pollination; whale oil, leading to a larger merchant navy that would boost France's prestige and standing.

The candlemakers also cite the same example that Bastiat does at other points in Economic Sophisms: that of similar oranges grown in Paris and Lisbon.

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