Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Quotes: Profession. Progress. Propaganda.

A collection of quotes on various topics. The sentence in bold face is a plain statement of the quote that follows.

In 100 people in the government, 2 are intelligent, 10 scoundrels and 88 poor fish, i.e., mindless bureaucrats.
Profession 221 In every 100 of the men composing [the government] there are two who are honest and intelligent, ten obvious scoundrels and 88 poor fish. Mencken, Minority Report.

Refuting other professionals is useless unless we sum up the productive ideas in every refutation.
Professional growth 462 Bergson: I believe that the time given to refutation in philosophy is usually time lost[;] of the many attacks directed by the many thinkers against each other, what now remains? Nothing, or assuredly very little[;] that which counts and endures is the modicum of positive truth which each contributes. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Bergson.

Medical professionals have seen the same situation many times, while being aware of variations.
Professionalism 86 [The medical specialist] is simply a man who has seen the situation now confronting him a great many times, and is familiar with its variations. Mencken, Minority Report.

If you put your affairs in the hands of a professional, don’t interfere with what he does.
Professionalism 124 …if you place a matter in the hands of a professional man, you must in no way interfere in the progress of the business; you must repose implicit confidence in him. Dickens, Pickwick.

One in ten is master of his profession.
Professions 240 No more than one man in ten…is really master of the trade he practices. Mencken, Minority Report.

Few generals can be trusted with the lives of men, very few doctors are skillful at diagnosis and treatment, and very few educators understand the material they teach.
Professions 240 Very few generals are fit to be trusted with the lives of their troops, very few medical men are expert at diagnosis and treatment, and very few pedagogues really know anything about the things they presume to teach. Mencken, Minority Report.

In Colonial America, progress meant growth and expansion.
Progress 155 The [colonial] American situation made it natural to identify progress with growth and expansion. Boorstin, The Americans: Colonial Experience

Hegel: A progression from diversity to unity, from unity to diversity to unity, and so on.
Progress 296 Hegel: …in each there is a dialectical progression from unity through diversity to diversity-in-unity. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Hegel.

Don’t make the assumption that what existed earlier was simpler.
Progress 394 Spencer was too quick to assume that what was earlier in time was simpler in structure; he underrated the complexity of protoplasm, and the intelligence of primitive man. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Herbert Spencer.

Progress costs in human happiness.
Progress 139 Progress…is almost always attained at the cost of human happiness. Mencken, Minority Report.

In working to achieve progress we are adding burdens to future generations.
Progress 1050 It is the iron rule in our days, to require an object and a purpose in life…makes us all parts of a complicated scheme of progress, which can only result in our arrival at a colder and drearier region than we were born in…insists upon everybody’s adding somewhat…to an accomplished pile of usefulness, of which the only use will be, to burden our posterity with even heavier thoughts and more inordinate labor than our own. Hawthorne, The Marble Faun.

National Socialists in Germany learned to use easily remembered phrases and slogans, repetition, simple symbolism to stir up irrational and subconscious emotions and a simplified view of the enemy.
Propaganda 150 …modern techniques of mass propaganda…it [NSDAP] learned to clothe its vague theories in terse and easily remembered phrases and slogans, to implant facts by suggestive repetition, to stir up irrational, subconscious emotions by means of simple symbolism and to direct the dynamic of the movement toward pithy notions of the enemy. Bracher, The German Dictatorship

Reduce propaganda to the lowest intellect.
Propaganda 151 Hitler on propaganda in Mein Kampf: “Every propaganda must be popular and adjust its intellectual level to the receptivity of the most limited person among those to whom it addresses itself….” Bracher, The German Dictatorship

Propaganda [like hypnosis] cannot influence people if they are unwilling to accept it.
Propaganda 109 The truth seems to be that propaganda on its own cannot force its way into unwilling minds; neither can it inculcate something wholly new; nor can it keep people persuaded once they have ceased to believe. Hoffer, The True Believer

Propaganda does not instill opinions; justifies opinions already in the minds of those who accept it.
Propaganda 109 …rather than instill opinion it [propaganda] articulates and justifies opinions already present in the minds of its recipients. Hoffer, The True Believer

Propaganda justifies those who use it rather than persuades others.
Propaganda 111 Propaganda thus serves more to justify ourselves than to convince others. Hoffer, The True Believer

Hitler felt that propaganda and tight organization were the keys to success.
Propaganda organization success 97 Everything Hitler said made it clear that to him, mass psychological propaganda and a taut organization were the most vital presuppositions for political success. Bracher, The German Dictatorship.

No comments:

Post a Comment