Obélix and company
Obélix and company are the twenty-third album of the series of Cartoon Astérix the Gallic of Rene Goscinny (scenario) and Albert Uderzo (drawing), prépublié in 1976 in the weekly magazine Nouvel Observateur then published in album in 1976.
original Pulling: 1 ' 350 ' 000 specimens
SynopsisA young person ambitious Romain, Caius Absurd, suggests with César trying to corrupt the Gallic ones which resists to him (still and always) since it is impossible to overcome them militarily. Having received freehand, Saugrenus imagines to buy the menhirs that Obélix transports sempiternally on its back since the commencement of the series. Quickly covered of gold by the Romain, who wants always more menhirs, Obélix is obliged to engage assistants, to pay hunters etc… and becomes the economic engine of the village. At the end of a certain time, half of the made village of the menhirs and other half nourish it.
However, César being alarmed at the expenditure the Absurd ones, this one undertakes to resell the menhirs with the Romain public thanks to an extraordinary advertizing campaign. Of needle and thread, a gigantic economic crisis and social shakes entire the Romain Empire…
WinkCaius Saugrenus, which leaves the " New School of Affranchis" , is a caricature of the Enarques, often shown of all the evils in France. Uderzo gave besides him the features of Jacques Chirac (Vauban promotion) then young Prime Minister of France.
This cartoon is sometimes used as case study (simplified) in class of economy of first cycle, for her analysis of the intervention of the State, and the denunciation of the economies mono-product . The album present with address advantages and disadvantages of the intervention of the State in the economy. By the means of the order of menhirs the whole of the activity of the village is stimulated. One observes the description of many economic phenomena.
The initial orders of the State, cause the use of Obélix, then of its hunters, the woman of Agecanonix…
The menhir, object useless par excellence (would nowadays, nobody try to sell something of useless completion ) does not have a price, (“that costs how much? - Ben I do not know… ”). But Saugrenus arbitrarily will give of them him one, which moreover will go up quickly. Seeing the profits carried out by Obélix, from many inhabitants of the village will give up their productions respective and useful (fish shop, forging mill, etc) in order to devote itself to the menhir, sector whose future is only one illusion maintained by the State and who does not bring anything to the company. The savings in many countries make in the same way (Egypt, Rome, Greece, Phénicie…). In fact, many liberals estimate that any intervention of the State, because it modifies artificially the relevance of the Prix, diverts the Factors of production of their optimal allowance.
In Rome, the need is felt to sell menhirs. Here concerned the Marketing, presented like a scientific method which can returns make sell anything, in particular on the basis of social law like the Snob effect (" what makes jealous the voisins"). The whole without neglecting the derivative products.
The final failure of this strategy marketing causes the ruin of the State (César in fact). Absurd thus tries to put an end to the assistances granted to the industry of the menhir. The result is the great final brawl. Thus in economy the law of Wagner explains why the State cannot reconsider the assistances which it granted, often regarded as Social skills, without causing the anger of the street.
In Rome, César is resigned to devaluate Sesterce in order to limit the national debts, contracted following the great crisis of the menhir. Inflation is often seen by the liberals like the essential result of the policies of revival of the State.
From a more general point of view, the album is critical with respect to the Keynésianisme, and of the Capitalisme as a whole, illustrating the “disenchantment of the world” (max Weber) which they cause.
- Jacques Chirac (Caius Absurd)
- Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy (duet of legionaries)
- Pierre Tchernia (a legionary)
- Rene Goscinny (a legionary)
- Albert Uderzo (a legionary)
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