Authoritarian Opposites

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Wherever there is a man who exercises authority, there is a man who resists authority.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)

James Monroe and Political Finances

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JAMES MONROE FIRST INAUGURAL ADDRESS TUESDAY, MARCH 4, 1817

The Executive is charged officially in the Departments under it with the disbursement of the public money, and is responsible for the faithful application of it to the purposes for which it is raised. The Legislature is the watchful guardian over the public purse. It is its duty to see that the disbursement has been honestly made. To meet the requisite responsibility every facility should be afforded to the Executive to enable it to bring the public agents intrusted with the public money strictly and promptly to account. Nothing should be presumed against them; but if, with the requisite facilities, the public money is suffered to lie long and uselessly in their hands, they will not be the only defaulters, nor will the demoralizing effect be confined to them. It will evince a relaxation and want of tone in the Administration which will be felt by the whole community.

United States Presidents’ Inaugural Speeches by United States. Presidents.

 

Punishments Create Crimes

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As one reads history, not in the expurgated editions written for school-boys and passmen, but in the original authorities of each time, one is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted; and a community is infinitely more brutalised by the habitual employment of punishment, than it is by the occurrence of crime.  It obviously follows that the more punishment is inflicted the more crime is produced…The less punishment, the less crime.  When there is no punishment at all, crime will either cease to exist, or, if it occurs, will be treated by physicians as a very distressing form of dementia, to be cured by care and kindness.  For what are called criminals nowadays are not criminals at all.  Starvation, and not sin, is the parent of modern crime.  That indeed is the reason why our criminals are, as a class, so absolutely uninteresting from any psychological point of view.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)

Bonds of Sympathy or Love

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“Who can tell what metals the gods use in forging the subtle bond which we call sympathy, which we might as well call love.”

The Awakening and Selected Short Stories by Kate Chopin

Conformity and Freedom

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There are as many perfections as there are imperfect men.  And while to the claims of charity a man may yield and yet be free, to the claims of conformity no man may yield and remain free at all.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)

Misery of Poverty

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There is only one class in the community that thinks more about money than the rich, and that is the poor.  The poor can think of nothing else.  That is the misery of being poor.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)

Know thyself Be thyself

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‘Know thyself’ was written over the portal of the antique world.  Over the portal of the new world, ‘Be thyself’ shall be written.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)

Heroic Liar

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An injurious truth has no merit over an injurious lie. Neither should ever be uttered. The man who speaks an injurious truth lest his soul be not saved if he do otherwise, should reflect that that sort of a soul is not strictly worth saving. The man who tells a lie to help a poor devil out of trouble, is one of whom the angels doubtless say, “Lo, here is an heroic soul who casts his own welfare in jeopardy to succor his neighbor’s; let us exalt this magnanimous liar.””

On the Decay of the Art of Lying by Mark Twain

Note: See the review.

Searching for Utopia

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A map of the world that does not include Utopia is not worth even glancing at, for it leaves out the one country at which Humanity is always landing.  And when Humanity lands there, it looks out, and, seeing a better country, sets sail.  Progress is the realisation of Utopias.”

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)

Human Perfection

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The true perfection of man lies, not in what man has, but in what man is.

The Soul of Man Under Socialism by Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wild)