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December 5, 2013

The history of mankind has been to rule and to be ruled.

For reasons that you and I will never understand,
there exists in some people an insatiable desire to tell other people what to do; to bend others to their will. I suspect that every single one of those hearts is filled with a dread, a genuine horror, at the wasteland of their own emptiness, and so the bombast and the narcissism and the arrogance; the legions of fainting faithful and the roar of the applause; the reflections, the logos, the insertion of themselves into every event in history; the mind-numbing obsession with power – all of these, I think, are just shovels full of coal being pitched into the bottomless furnace of their own self-hatred. From Shards | Bill Whittle

Posted by gerardvanderleun at December 5, 2013 10:15 AM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

Your Say

I've said it again and again:

There are more people who want power than there are people who deserve power.

Posted by: Don Rodrigo at December 5, 2013 11:07 AM

Anyone who wants power doesn't deserve it.

Posted by: mushroom at December 5, 2013 12:14 PM

Anyone who wants power doesn't deserve it.

No argument there. We wouldn't have to "Go Gault" if politicians would "Go Cincinnatus."

Posted by: Don Rodrigo at December 5, 2013 2:34 PM

Hoffer, (as in Eric) and more Hoffer:

"The great crimes of the twentieth century were committed not by money-grubbing capitalists but by dedicated idealists. Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler were contemptuous of money. The passage from the nineteenth to the twentieth century has been a passage from considerations of money to considerations of power. How naive the cliche that money is the root of evil!"

"Absolute power corrupts even when exercised for humane purposes. The benevolent despot who sees himself as a shepherd of the people still demands from others the submissiveness of sheep."

Posted by: Harry at December 5, 2013 4:24 PM

These people are like Peter Pan. " I don't want to grow up". There is a utopia.

( As the Sultan says, "they feel everything can be solved by putting a coexist sticker on their bumper."

Posted by: grace at December 5, 2013 5:07 PM

I'll tell you another:

I can't find the citation, but I distinctly remember Adlai Stevenson delivering the opinion (in the '50s, yet) that the very desire to become president should be sufficient grounds for disqualification.

Imagine what folks made of that, if you can. P.J. O'Rourke may not be aware of it, but that was the root of "Don't vote, it just encourages the bastards."

Posted by: Rob De Witt at December 5, 2013 5:57 PM

Yes, and the American voters took Stevenson at his word and twice disqualified him from achieving his desire.

Power exercised for "humane" purposes is often worse than that exercised for the blatant aggrandizement of the tyrant. It's for our own good, doncha know.

Posted by: waltj at December 5, 2013 7:05 PM

For Your Own Good, aptly enough, is the title of a work by the psychiatrist Alice Miller detailing the egregious child abuse perpetrated under the guise of humane child-rearing manuals in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Due to my own experiences and the insights provided by copious therapy, "For your own good" remains the most chilling phrase in the English language.

Posted by: Rob De Witt at December 5, 2013 10:54 PM

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