Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Quotes: Decisive Moments. Democracy. Depression. Destiny. Difficulty.

The idea in bold-face print is a summary of the quote. The number after the topic is the page on which the quote was found.

Decisive Moments in History
Decisive moments in history 47 People celebrate a memorable event in the streets. "This is the nature of Thomson’s homer: it makes people want to be in the streets, joined with others, telling others what happened, those few who haven’t heard—comparing facts and states of mind." DeLillo, Underworld.

Democracy 150 In politics, religion and art the American citizen chooses the best. "In politics and religion this Sane Citizen [of America] is the canniest man on earth; and in the arts he invariably has a natural taste which makes him pick out the best, every time." Lewis, Babbitt.

Democracy 311 The American democracy does not imply equality in wealth, but does include sameness in every other aspect of culture. "...and all of them perceived that American Democracy did not imply any equality of wealth, but did demand a wholesome sameness of thought, dress, painting, morals and vocabulary." Lewis, Babbitt.

Democracy 785 People don't want the same things, but they do want the same choices as everybody else. "…not that people want the same things, necessarily, but that they want the same range of choices." DeLillo, Underworld.

Democracy 476 No group in America can set goals for the whole. "…no group, however politically potent it may seem, can independently set goals for the whole." Toffler, Future Shock.

Democracy 477 You deal with minorities in America by making them partners in the system. "…the best way to deal with angry or recalcitrant minorities is to open the system further, bringing them into it as full partners, permitting them to participate in social goal-setting, rather than attempting to ostracize or isolate them." Toffler, Future Shock.

Democracy 477 If people affected do not participate in setting the goal, they will not participate in carrying it out. "…in politics, in industry, in education, goals set without the participation of those affected will be increasingly hard to execute." Toffler, Future Shock.

Depression 186 "I was once thrown out of a mental hospital for depressing the other patients." Oscar Levant. Portable Curmudgeon.

Destiny 804 People who have not found their places in the world. "…all mortals who, from whatever cause, have lost, or never found, their proper places in the world." Hawthorne: “The Procession of Life”

Destiny 806 The person who knew he was apt for something, but could never figure out what it was. "…the dreamer, who, all his life long, has cherished the idea that he was peculiarly apt for something, but never could determine what it was…." Hawthorne: “The Procession of Life”

Difficulty 222 Artists use obscurity to hide the meaninglessness of their art. "Difficulty is a coin the learned make use of, like jugglers, to conceal the inanity of their art…." Montaigne. 1580-8. Gross, ed. Oxford Book of Aphorisms.

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