104. A nationalist ecology
1. Our traditional, monarchist, Catholic nationalism, stemming from a noble millenary civilisation, certainly does not abolish the free common life of families and of their spontaneous associations either. Rather, it acknowledges, guarantees and protects this life, and if necessary encourages and controls it, or arbitrates for the sake of peace. If the royal power requires to call everyone to the service of their country, sometimes to the extent of the greatest sacrifices, even if it has to remind them constantly of the supreme demands of the nation’s common good and above all of its security, nevertheless this initial good is no more than the external coating and highest guarantee of both the realities of domestic life and the thousands of forms of family prosperity, without which this initial good would be nothing.
The monarchy therefore recognises the priority, the immediate end-value and the autonomous action of families. Their very existence is the basis of the monarchy’s role and justifies its authority and its demands, including the most onerous. The immediate end of national politics is none other than domestic ecology itself ; national security must be assured for the sake of the prosperity of families.
2. Our nationalism has, however, learned from the harsh experience of the centuries and from the reasoning of our masters that, without the framework of the nation, without the protection and regulation of the State, and without the encouragement and solicitude of the Sovereign, the father of fathers amongst the kingdom’s families, freedom is but an empty concept, the begetter of anarchy and of inertial, and families can neither define the general ecological ideal nor determine the economic conditions of their prosperity. Prudence cannot be said to reign when political authority is lacking. Unlike the “ social doctrine of the Church ”, our Catholic ecology does not therefore separate the social question from the question of political institutions.
3. That which public authority does not create, it must however protect by guaranteeing and imposing political order, stability, independence and peace, both internal and external. “ Public safety ”, or national security, is the necessary condition for any real and stable family prosperity. That which he does not command, the Sovereign should however stimulate, codify, control and arbitrate. Thus State interventionism is not always a bad thing. The principle of provisional replacement is the necessary corollary to the principle of subsidiarity.
But, in its concern for the animation and perfecting of the material and spiritual life of families, it would not be good that sovereign public authority should come to dominate and rule this life entirely. Thus State liberalism has its own raison d’être. The ideal is that every family should maintain itself, grow and prosper spontaneously, habitually and happily, according to its own laws, under the distant and benevolent cover of the Church and the King.