Daily Philosophy

“There are mean states also in the sphere of feelings and emotions. Modesty is not a virtue, but the modest man too is praised. Here too one person is called intermediate and another excessive – like the shy man who is overawed at anything. The man who feels too little shame or none at all is shameless, and the intermediate man is modest. Righteous indignation is a mean between envy and spite, and they are all concerned with feelings of pain and pleasure at the experiences of our neighbors. The man who feels righteous indignation is distressed at instances of undeserved good fortune, but the envious man goes further and is distressed at any good fortune, while the spiteful man is so far from feeling distress that he actually rejoices.” – Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics

“The English language has the advantage of possessing two separate words for these two different aspects of labor. Labor which creates use-values and is qualitatively determined is called ‘work’ as opposed to ‘labor’; labor which creates value and is only measured quantitatively is called ‘labor’, as opposed to ‘work’.” – Karl Marx, Capital

“Thus, the coward, the rash man and the courageous man are all concerned with the same things but differ in their attitudes towards them. The two former show excess and deficiency, but the other has the right disposition and observes the mean. Rash people are impetuous, eager before the danger arrives but shifty when it is actually present; whereas courageous ones are keen at the time of action but calm beforehand.” – Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics

“Until philosophers are kings, or the kings and princes of this world have the spirit and power of philosophy, and political greatness and wisdom meet in one, and those commoner natures who pursue either to the exclusion of the other are compelled to stand aside, cities will never have rest from their evils – no, nor the human race, as I believe – and then only will this our State have a possibility of life and behold the light of day.” – Plato, The Republic

“We have seen how money is changed into capital; how through capital surplus-value is made, and from surplus-value more capital. But the accumulation of capital presupposes surplus-value; surplus-value presupposes capitalistic production; capitalistic production presupposes the pre-existence of considerable masses of capital and of labor power in the hands of producers of commodities. The whole movement, therefore, seems to turn in a vicious circle, out of which we can only get by supposing a primitive accumulation (previous accumulation of Adam Smith) preceding capitalistic accumulation; an accumulation not the result of the capitalistic mode of production, but its starting point.” – Karl Marx, Capital

“Hard-won, self-acquired, self-earned property! Do you mean the property of the petty artisan and of the small peasant, a form of property that preceded the bourgeois form? There is no need to abolish that; the development of industry has to a great extent already destroyed it and is still destroying it daily.” – Karl Marx, The Communist Manifesto

“What I preach then is, to a certain extent, the revolt of life against science, or rather against the government of science, not to destroy science – that would be high treason to humanity – but to remand it to its place so that it can never leave it again. Until now all human history has been only a perpetual and bloody immolation of millions of poor human beings in honor of some pitiless abstraction – God, country, power of State, national honor, historical rights, judicial rights, political liberty, public welfare. Such has been up today the natural, spontaneous, and inevitable movement of human societies. We cannot undo it; we must submit to it so far as the past is concerned, as we submit to all-natural fatalities. We must believe that that was the only possible way to educate the human race. For we must not deceive ourselves: even in attributing the larger part to the Machiavellian wiles of the governing classes, we have to recognize that no minority would have been powerful enough to impose all these horrible sacrifices upon the masses if there had not been in the masses themselves a dizzy spontaneous movement which pushed them on to continual self-sacrifice, now to one, now to another of these devouring abstractions, the vampires of history, ever nourished upon human blood.” – Michael Bakunin, God and the State

“No one can doubt that this world will someday be exposed to the severest struggles for the existence of mankind. In the end only the urge for self-preservation can conquer. Beneath its so-called humanity, the expression of a mixture of stupidity, cowardice, and know-it-all conceit, will melt like snow in the March sun. Mankind has grown great in eternal struggle, and only in eternal peace does it perish.” – Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf

Published by jim

Curator of things...

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