25 Sep 2011

Short Quotations


From Claire Berlinski:

[During the Korean War,] the North Koreans were shocked that Americans with our critical-thinking, multiple-perspective stuff were the easiest to brainwash? Pretty much 180 degrees from what they expected. The opposite end of the scale? The Turks. They were totally impossible to turn. Their perspective was: “I’m a Turk, you’re my enemy, if I had a pointy stick, I’d kill you right now.”


“Socialists,” said the Senior Usher, “can never leave anything alone. That’s the trouble. They start with one or two things that badly need reforming, and jolly good luck to them. But then it gets to be a habit. They can’t stop. And that’s what’ll do them in. As Macauley has it, we can make shift to live under a debauchee or even a tyrant; but to to be ruled by a busybody is more than human nature can bear.”

— Simon Raven in Fielding Gray (1967).


James Delingpole
: A Conservative friend of mine has a favorite exasperated phrase for our political class: “There just aren’t enough bullets.”

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It was a great advantage when tyranny had one head and one neck; but what axe will relieve us from the tyranny of the majority? Foreign conquest was an evil; but it commonly took only our flocks and herds and left ourselves in liberty.

The Ethics of Democracy by F.J. Stimson. Scribner’s Magazine (1887)


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