Unusual Alliances (Part 1 of 2)

Amongst the multifaceted list of occupations, titles and achievements held by Benjamin Franklin, one of his most unique roles was the American ambassador to France.

In the year of his first visit, October of 1776, there were two dominant European superpowers: England and France. At the time, the two were diametrically opposed in nearly all ideologies. England had been a Protestant country for nearly a century, while France was strictly Catholic and maintained religious ties with Rome. Both had kings, but France practiced an absolute monarchy, while Britain (like the US) employed a type of democracy.

To many, it was peculiar that America would approach France with a proposal of an alliance; the British colonists had fought alongside England against France just over a decade earlier.

In language, religion and philosophy, the Americans had a much closer resemblance to Britain than to France. What was shared between the French and the Americans was their mutual animosity toward England?

France needed a method through which they could taunt the British, and the US needed a way to defend themselves from the bellicose tendencies of the British.

Upon his arrival in Paris, Franklin would immediately observe its 18th-century horrors. It was certainly not the ‘city of love’ for which it is fondly recognized today. Paris was plagued with abject poverty, and human filth filled the crooked streets (as they had not yet been redesigned by Napoleon for his army to walk through).

Franklin would then find himself in the magnificent mansions near the Tuileries Gardens (from which the poor were forbidden). He would view the elegant silk and satin fashions donned by the upper-class. He saw their intricately-designed wigs which covered their bald heads. At the same time in Versailles, King Louis XVI and his queen, Marie Antoinette, presided over a world of languid luxury.

Franklin–the physical manifestation of the democratic beliefs of the Americans–could have easily posed a threat to the French court but instead chose to ingratiate himself to the gentry.

The Scribe’s Thoughts:

Appearances and surface-level impressions are not always the most accurate indicators of character. When determining the business partners you will align yourself, consider not those who are most similar to you in appearance and ideology, but rather those who will assist you most in your long-term goals. Allies may be found in the most unlikely of places and may be born out of the implausible of situations. Those we surround ourselves with will determine our success infinitely more than our solitary actions will. As Benjamin said:

“No better relation than a prudent and faithful friend.”


Start your faithful friendship with Alta West Today!

Head Office Phone: 1-888-554-9075
Email: info@awcapital.ca
Office Address: #600, 11012 Macleod Trail SE, Calgary, AB, T2J 6A5

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George Botros
Chief Executive Officer

George Botros was appointed as CEO of Alta West Capital in April 2021. Prior to his role as CEO, George served as Alta West Capital’s CFO and CCO from 2014 to 2021. He has over 20 years in the lending business, participating in residential, commercial, mezzanine, and interim financing related activities.


George is also a Director of the funds Alta West administers. Prior to joining Alta West Capital, he managed Toro Financial Corporation which amalgamated with AWM Diversified MIC, an entity managed by AWC, in 2014. George was also a University Professor teaching Finance and Economics for University of Lethbridge.


George holds a Bachelor of Economics and an MBA.