Thursday, January 22, 2009

Eric Hoffer

Interesting insight in this article by Thomas Sowell, here’s a sample:

Hoffer said: "The less justified a man is in claiming excellence for his own self, the more ready he is to claim all excellence for his nation, his religion, his race or his holy cause."
People who are fulfilled in their own lives and careers are not the ones attracted to mass movements: "A man is likely to mind his own business when it is worth minding," Hoffer said. "When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people's business."

What Hoffer was describing was the political busybody, the zealot for a cause — the "true believer," who filled the ranks of ideological movements that created the totalitarian tyrannies of the 20th century.

Well, I wonder who those people who mind other people's business might be? I declare the comment section open.

Here's a further quote by Hoffer: “Those in possession of absolute power can not only prophesy and make their prophecies come true, but they can also lie and make their lies come true.”


Paul said...

Well no arguing with his opinions. I hope to see a reduction in the number of self opinionated bastards not that people have to concentrate more on eating and staying warm. Fingers cross the climate church gets kicked to the kerb for good now as well.

You do have an eclectic reading list Neal.

bascule said...

“... but they can also lie and make their lies come true.”

How apt! Those shameless fuckers at the beeb have got some answering to do over this.

Neal Asher said...

Yeah, I saw that, Bascule, but resolving not to rant here so much I've tried to ignore it. Typical, though - they'll even edit the new president's speech just to promote the AGW message.