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Posts Tagged ‘On Politics’

Things will probably come our alright, but sometimes it takes strong nerves just to watch.
   —  Hedley Donovan
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On This Day In:
2015 Lonely Teardrops
2014 Pleasurable Law
2013 Room For Justice
In The Minds Of Others
2012 Extinction, n.
2011 Snap!

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In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.
  ―  Friedrich Nietzsche
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On This Day In:
2015 Remembering Oklahoma City
2014 Who Was That Masked Man?
2013 Enemy Mine
2012 Strengthen Me
2011 Service, Please
2010 The Church In Crisis…

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The most fundamental problem of politics is not the control of wickedness but the limitation of righteousness.
To seek to achieve [American values] by military occupation in a part of the world where they had no historical roots, imbued the American endeavor in Iraq with a Sisyphean quality.
Long ago, in youth, I was brash enough to think myself able to pronounce on ‘The Meaning of History‘.  I now know that history’s meaning is a matter to be discovered, not declared.
  —  Henry Kissinger
The three quotes are from the article “The Lion in Winter
Written by Walter Isaacson
In Time Magazine, September 22, 2014
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On This Day In:
2014 Be R-E-L-E-V-A-N-T
2013 Lacking
2012 So Small A Thing
2011 Is Your Time Valuable?

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The new generation, having inherited world mastery, had no time or inclination to defend it; that readiness for war which had characterized the Roman landowner disappeared now that ownership was concentrated in a few families and a proletariat without stake in the country filled the slums of Rome.
    —  Will Durant
From his book: “The History of Civilization:  Caesar and Christ
[A cautionary note to the 1%…  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2014 Always More Productive
2013 Is Not
2012 Loosely Translated
2011 Your Opinions Are Not My Facts

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Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the citizens.  They fall, when the wise are banished from the public councils, because they dare to be honest, and the profligate are rewarded, because they flatter the people in order to betray them.
  —  Joseph Story
Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States
[Found at one of the many blogs I follow:  http://jrbenjamin.com/
The specific post / page is at: http://jrbenjamin.com/2015/01/26/americas-threat-from-within/
Please visit the original site if you have a moment to spare…   —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2014 Each Moment
2013 Conversation
2012 4 Down, 11 Done (At Last)
I’m Not Afraid
2011 Who’s Risk Is It, Anyway?

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Let us never be afraid to engage, and if ever the day comes that we are; perhaps it’s time to reevaluate our positions.
[Found on one of the blogs I follow:   http://culturemonk.com/
The quote is from the specific post at:   http://culturemonk.com/2014/09/22/afraid-to-engage-really/
Please visit the original site if you have a chance.  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2014 Ask Any Follower
2013 Cornered Or Surrounded?
2012 Escape
2011 Achievement
Not Unreasonable Enough

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First the Dominant Minority attempts to hold by force — against all right and reason — a position of inherited privilege which it has ceased to merit; and then the Proletariat repays injustice with resentment, fear with hate, and violence with violence when it executes its acts of secession.  Yet the whole movement ends in positive acts of creation — and this on the part of all the actors in the tragedy of disintegration.  The Dominant Minority creates a universal state, the Internal Proletariat a universal church, and the External Proletariat a bevy of barbarian war-bands.
     —  Arnold J. Toynbee
From his book: “A Study of History
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On This Day In:
2014 One Thing Is Clear
2013 Corrections
See Greatness
2012 Gemutlichkeit
2011 Back On The Asphalt
It Is Just Not The Same

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“My country, right or wrong,” is a thing that no patriot would think of saying except in a desperate case.  It is like saying, “My mother, drunk or sober.”
   —  G. K. Chesterton
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On This Day In:
2013 Accepting Beauty
2012 Transitional Choice To Ride The Wave
2011 Freedom Isn’t Always Perfect
Just That Simple

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You ask of me: “Why change?
I can only answer: “Why not?
I do not demand change for its own sake, or even for my own sake;  I demand it for the sake of those who must follow.  For the sake of those who hunger for food or thirst for knowledge.  For the old, the tired, the broken, and the breaking.  For all those in need of change — I demand it.
I demand change because in these times, to stand still is to fall behind.  I demand change because I am here, and speaking, and you are there, and listening.  I demand change because if a culture can change, it can survive, it can advance.  And advance is progress.  Above all else, I demand progress.  I demand it!
  -–    KMAB
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On This Day In:
2013 Pen In Hand
Word Up!
2012 Disturbing
Trying To Keep Up
2011 Unreliable And Selective
2010 Adult-Onset Athlete

 

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When you have no basis for an argument, abuse the plaintiff.
  —  Cicero
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On This Day In:
2013 Reasons
2012 American Libertarianism
2011 The Goal

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The death of democracy is not likely to be an assassination from ambush.  It will be a slow extinction from apathy, indifference and undernourishment.
  —  Robert Maynard Hutchins
[Tomorrow is the last day to register to vote for the California state primary in June.   —   KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2013 Ripples From The Water’s Edge
Because I Was Alone
2012 POI vs Reality
Dear And Sacred
2011 Chilled Again

 

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There is a pattern here; in fact, pretty much the same story can be told about energy policy, environmental policy, health care policy, education policy, and so on.  In each case the officials making policy within the Bush administration have a history of highly radical views, which should suggest that the administration itself has radical goals.  But in each case the administration has reassured moderates by pretending otherwise —  by offering rationales for its policy that don’t seem all that radical.  And in each case moderates have followed a strategy of appeasement, trying to meet the administration halfway while downplaying both the radicalism of its policies and the trail of broken promises.  The young Kissinger had it right: people who have been accustomed to stability can’t bring themselves to believe what is happening when faced with a revolutionary power, and are therefore ineffective in opposing it.
I should admit at this point that I am not entirely sure why this is happening — why we are now faced with such a radical challenge to our political and social system.  Rich people did very well in the 1990s; why this hatred of anything that looks remotely like income redistribution?  Corporations have flourished; why this urge to strip away modest environmental regulation?  Churches of all denominations have prospered; why this attack on the separation of church and state?  American power and influence have never been greater; why this drive to destroy our alliances and embark on military adventures?  Nonetheless, it’s increasingly clear that the right wants to do all these things.
  —  Paul Krugman
From his book: “The Great Unraveling
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On This Day In:
2013 Embrace Serendipity
2012 Your Order, Please
2011 Well Enough Anyway

 

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Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause.  I had hoped that liberal and enlightened thought would have reconciled the Christians so that their [not our?] religious fights would not endanger the peace of Society.
   —  George Washington,
First President of the United States in a letter to Letter to Sir Edward Newenham, June 22, 1792
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On This Day In:
2013 Is Not
2012 Loosely Translated
2011 Your Opinions Are Not My Facts

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The science of government it is my duty to study…  I must study politics and war, that our sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.  Our sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry and porcelain.
    —  John Adams
[Writing to his wife, Abigail Adams,
From a letter sent from Paris on May 12th, 1780
Found on a blog I follow: The Bully Pulpit
Located at: http://jrbenjamin.com/
The specific post is:   http://jrbenjamin.com/2014/03/03/the-sovereign-subject/
  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2013 Two For One
2012 Seen And Heard
2011 The Hazards And Vicissitudes Of Life

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Gordon S. Wood, in his 1992 book, “The Radicalism of the American Revolution,” states that, by the 1790’s only about 10% of the American population regularly attended religious services to quote just one statistic.  Not exactly an indication of a wholehearted national commitment to Christianity!  It is a matter of simple historical fact that the United States was not founded as, nor was it ever intended to be, a Christian nation.  That there were strong, long-lasting Christian influences involved in the nation’s earliest history, due to the Puritan settlements and those of other religious persons escaping European persecution, cannot be denied.  But that is a long way from saying that colonial leaders, by the time of the outbreak of the Revolution, were intending to form a nation founded on specifically Christian principles and doctrine.
We Christians do ourselves no favor by bending history to suit our prejudices or to accommodate wishful thinking.  Rather than continue to cling to a “Moral Majority”-style fantasy that says America is a Christian nation that needs to be “taken back” from secular unbelief (we can’t “take back” what we never had), it would be much healthier for us Christians to face reality, holding to what Jesus himself said in the Gospels: that Christians should never be surprised at the hostility with which the gospel would be greeted by the world, because most people would fail to believe in him, thereby strongly implying that, in every age and country, Christianity would always be a minority faith.
  —  Rev. Richard T. Zuelch
Letter to the Editor
Los Angeles Times
14 August 1995
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On This Day In:
2013 Windows Or Doors
2012 All Rise
2011 Vote Weight

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