Thursday, March 8, 2007

Perspectives on Ideas March 8, 2007

403 ...every action admits of being outdone. Emerson, Circles.

406 The continual effort to raise himself above himself, to work a pitch above his last height.... Emerson, Circles.

61 Jocasta: How can a man have scruples when it’s only Chance that’s king? Sophocles. Oedipus the King.

176 The power to change is both creative and destructive. Eiseley, The Star Thrower

104 Falkland: When it is not necessary to change, it is necessary not to change. Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

110 [Kennedy believed that]...change took place more often by accommodation than by annihilation. Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

400 JFK: “Let it be clear that this administration recognizes the value of dissent and daring—that we greet healthy controversy as the hallmark of healthy change.” Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

540 “It is sometimes easier to build a million-ton steel plant,” as Kusum Nair wrote of the Indian experience,”…than to change a man’s outlook on such matters as the use of irrigation water, fertilizers and contraceptives.” Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

542 [Galbraith on financial assistance to underdeveloped countries]: A dollar or rupee invested in the intellectual improvement of human beings…will regularly bring a greater increase in national income than a dollar or a rupee devoted to railways, dams, machine tools or other tangible goods.” Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

548 Changing the direction of an agency while it continues its day-to-day operations is one of the hardest tricks in government. Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

651 Kennedy used to quote Jefferson: “Great innovations should not be forced on slender majorities.” Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

651 [Kennedy] knew that if he sent up a message and a bill, there would be debate and hearings; Congress would begin to accustom itself to new ideas; legislation would be revised to meet legitimate objections…public support would consolidate and by 1964 or 1965 the bill would be passed. Schlesinger, A Thousand Days

3 Some kind of widespread enthusiasm or excitement is apparently needed for the realization of vast and rapid change…. Hoffer, The True Believer

4 Peter the Great…failed in his chief purpose…to turn Russia into a Western nation…and the reason he failed was that he did not infuse the Russian masses with some soul-stirring enthusiasm. Hoffer, The True Believer

8 The men who rush into undertakings of vast change usually feel they are in possession of some irresistible power. Hoffer, The True Believer

11 Finally, they must be wholly ignorant of the difficulties involved in their vast undertaking. Hoffer, The True Believer

65 Human beings never welcome the news that something they have long cherished is untrue: they almost always reply to that news by reviling its promulgator. Mencken, Minority Report.

826 The English power resides also in their dislike of change. Emerson, English Traits.

862 The new age brings new qualities into request…. Emerson, English Traits.

107 Publius: the plan is bad that never can be changed. Montaigne, Selected Essays.

252 Lincoln: I have not allowed myself to forget that the abolition of the slave-trade by Great Britain was agitated a hundred years before it was a final success; that the measure had its open fire-eating opponents; its stealthy “don’t-care” opponents; its dollar and cent opponents; its inferior race opponents; its Negro equality opponents; and its religion and good order opponents. Sandburg, Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years.

425 And you won’t find them [women] changing methods merely/ To have a change and wouldn’t Athens yet/ Boast the serene…power/ If she had kept to projects proved quite sound/ Instead of any faddy substitute. Aristophanes, Ecclesiazusae.

438 Blepyros: We’ve one steadfast principle, I have observed;/ New things are good, old things are bad. Aristophanes, Ecclesiazusae.

218 Hierocles: Can you tutor the crab to advance straight forward?/ You will never be able to smooth the spines of the hedgehog. Aristophanes, Peace.

No comments:

Post a Comment