Friday, May 20, 2005

On This Day ...

On this day in 1806, dead political philosopher John Stuart Mill was born. His insight into various political, philisophical and economic issues has influenced many, and his work has stood the test of time. I identify with a significant amount of utilitarian thought (with emphasis on rule utilitarianism) to my views of policy. A few of his relevant quotes today:

War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.

A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.

He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that.

The most cogent reason for restricting the interference of government is the great evil of adding unnecessarily to its power.

The general tendency of things throughout the world is to render mediocrity the ascendant power among mankind.

The disease which inflicts bureaucracy and what they usually die from is routine.

The worth of the state, in the long run, is the worth of the individuals composing it.

The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant.
His most famous works include On Liberty, A System of Logic, Principles of Political Economy, Utilitarianism, The Subjection of Women and Autobigraphy. He got some things wrong along the way. He also got many things right, including the above.

Props to Woman Riding Four Wheeler, Fully Clothed, if that is her real name.

2 Comments:

At 2:17 AM, Anonymous Woman Riding 4-Wheeler, Fully Clothed said...

Now KJ,

What did you think my real name to be?...Scantily Clad Skank Cruising The Streets on an ATV ? Don't ask your friend, MRUN about it, though! He's got as many clues as he has clothes! (~;)

As for the "props": WOW! I'm verklempt. Who'd uh thunk it!

That reminds me, I need to call a Utilitarian about my electric meter. The last time a fuse blew at night, the Utilitarian that showed up by candle light was quite fine! (~;)

 
At 8:15 AM, Blogger KJ said...

If you think you're funny ...

you're right.

 

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