Tuesday 1 September 2020

Quotations, today from Americans

"Society is not an assemblage of naturally free individuals; it is a hierarchy of groups, beginning with the family." Robert Alexander Nisbet

(Hierarchy is natural, inevitable and praiseworthy, and equality is none of those things.)

“When people talk listen completely. Don’t be thinking what you’re going to say. Most people never listen. Nor do they observe. You should be able to go into a room and when you come out know everything that you saw there and not only that. If that room gave you any feeling you should know exactly what it was that gave you that feeling.” Ernest Hemingway, Across the River and into the Trees
"Only observe." Henry James
“With all due effort to avoid exaggerated pessimism and over-dramatization, I can see no salvation for the U.S. either in its external relations nor in the development of its life internally.” George Kennan, a typical passage in his diary written in 1978. 

"He [George Kennan] was absolutely not pleased by the events of the late 1980s. He thought Ronald Reagan was the most dangerous leader of the cold war, despite the fact that Reagan actually came close to implementing Kennan's recommendations from the late 1940s. The cold war ended as Kennan had predicted it would, but it was extremely difficult to get him to see this. When the Berlin wall finally came down and Germany finally reunified, he wrote in his diary that nothing good can come of this. The wall came down, he wrote, because of East German youths lusting after the fleshpots of West Berlin. He never accepted his own vindication." John Lewis Gaddis interviewed by The Economist. November 28,2011

1 comment:

  1. Biden's event yesterday in Pittsburgh