All for ourselves and nothing for other people seems, in every age of the world, to have been the vile maxim of the masters of mankind.
What may at first occur on this head, is, that as nothing can be contrary to truth or reason, except what has a reference to it, and as the judgments of our understanding only have this reference, it must follow, that passions can be contrary to reason only so far as they are accompany'd with some judgment or opinion. According to this principle, which is so obvious and natural, `tis only in two senses, that any affection can be call'd unreasonable. First, When a passion, such as hope or fear, grief or joy, despair or security, is founded on the supposition or the existence of objects, which really do not exist. Secondly, When in exerting any passion in action, we chuse means insufficient for the design'd end, and deceive ourselves in our judgment of causes and effects. Where a passion is neither founded on false suppositions, nor chuses means insufficient for the end, the understanding can neither justify nor condemn it. `Tis not contrary to reason to prefer the destruction of the whole world to the scratching of my finger. `Tis not contrary to reason for me to chuse my total ruin, to prevent the least uneasiness of an Indian or person wholly unknown to me. `Tis as little contrary to reason to prefer even my own acknowledge'd lesser good to my greater, and have a more ardent affection for the former than the latter. A trivial good may, from certain circumstances, produce a desire superior to what arises from the greatest and most valuable enjoyment; nor is there any thing more extraordinary in this, than in mechanics to see one pound weight raise up a hundred by the advantage of its situation. In short, a passion must be accompany'd with some false judgment. in order to its being unreasonable; and even then `tis not the passion, properly speaking, which is unreasonable, but the judgment.
The action is best that secures the greatest happiness for the greatest number.
The most natural beauty in the world is honesty and moral truth. For all beauty is truth. True features make the beauty of the face; true proportions, the beauty of architecture; true measures, the beauty of harmony and music.
What is tolerance? -- it is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly -- that is the first law of nature.
Success has ruined many a man.
What more can we require? Nothing but time.
"I can't remember [of a good regulation]. Regulation of transport, regulation of agriculture-- agriculture is a, zoning is z. You know, you go from a to z, they are all bad. There were so many studies, and the result was quite universal: The effects were bad", in Reason, january 1997 (read online)
Wanton killing of innocent civilians is terrorism, not a war against terrorism.
The evolution of the capitalist style of life could be easily -- and perhaps most tellingly -- described in terms of the genesis of the modern Lounge Suit.
Joseph A Schumpeter
Men make their own history, but they do not make it as they please; they do not make it under self-selected circumstances, but under circumstances existing already, given and transmitted from the past. The tradition of all dead generations weighs like a nightmare on the brains of the living.
"Rising interest rates have been advertised for so long and in so many places that anyone who has not appropriately hedged this position by now obviously is desirous of losing money." - Novermber 2004 in a speech in Frankfurt
"I belong to the don't-know school of economics."
Whether you wind up with a nest egg or a goose egg depends on the kind of chick you married
Wall Street Journal
The social kiss is an exchange of insincerity between two combatants on the field of social advancement. It places hygiene before affection and condescension before all else.