Daily Philosophy

“We have now said enough to show that moral virtue is a mean, and in what sense it is so: that it is a mean between two vices, one of excess and the other of deficiency, and that it is such because it aims at hitting the mean point in feelings and actions. For this reason, it is a difficult business to be good; because in any given case it is difficult to find the mid-point – for instance, not everyone can find the center of a circle; only the man who knows how. So too it is easy to get angry – anyone can do that – or to give and spend money; but to feel or act towards the right person to the right extent at the right time for the right reason in the right way – that is not easy, and it is not everyone that can do it. Hence to do these things well is a rare, laudable and fine achievement.” – Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics

“The laboring class gaining at one stroke the five thousand millions, or thereabouts, now taken in the form of interest from the ten thousand millions which it produces, plus five thousand millions which this same interest deprives it of by destroying the demand for labor, plus five thousand millions which the parasites, cut off from a living, would then be compelled to produce, the national production would be doubled and the welfare of the laborer increased fourfold. And you, sir, whom the worship of interest does not prevent from lifting your thoughts to another world – what say you to this improvement of affairs here below? Do you see now that it is not the multiplication of capital which decreases interest, but, on the contrary, that it is the decrease of interest which multiplies capital?” – Benjamin Tucker, Instead of a Book

“The laboring man votes for his Fetish, the Democratic party, and the farmer votes for his Fetish, the Republican party, and the result is that both are handed over as captives to the corruptionists and monopolists, whichever side wins. Mark this: the laborers and the people never win!” – Benjamin Tucker, Instead of a Book

“But to obtain a right training for goodness from an early age is a hard thing, unless one has been brought up under right laws. For a temperate and hardy way of life is not a pleasant thing to most people, especially when they are young. For this reason, upbringing and occupations should be regulated by law, because they will cease to be irksome when they have become habitual. But presumably it is not enough to have received the right upbringing and supervision in youth; they must keep on observing their regimen and accustoming themselves to it even after they are grown up; so we shall need laws to regulate these activities too, and indeed generally to cover the whole of life; for most people are readier to submit to compulsion and punishment than to argument and fine ideals. This is why some people think that although legislators ought to encourage people to goodness and appeal to their finer feelings, in the hope that those who have had a decent training in their habits will respond, they ought also to inflict chastisement and penalties on any who disobey through deficiency of character, and to deport the incorrigible altogether. For they hold that while the good man, whose life is related to a fine ideal, will listen to reason, the bad one whose object is pleasure must be controlled by pain, like a beast of burden. This is also why they say that the pains inflicted should be those that are most contrary to the favored pleasures.” – Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics

“The health officers, the industrial inquiry commissioners, the factory inspectors, all repeat, repeatedly, that it is both necessary for the workers to have these 500 cubic feet, and impossible to impose this rule on capital. They are declaring that consumption and the other pulmonary diseases of the workers are conditions necessary to the existence of capital.” – Karl Marx, Capital

“I have always maintained that liberty is of greater importance than wealth – in other words, that man derives more happiness from freedom than from luxury – and this is true; but there is another sense in which wealth, or, rather, property, is of greater importance than liberty. Man has but little to gain from liberty unless that liberty includes the liberty to control what he produces.” – Benjamin Tucker, Instead of a Book

“It is the characteristic of privilege and of every privileged position to kill the mind and heart of men. The privileged man, whether politically or economically, is a man depraved in mind and heart. That is a social law which admits of no exception and is as applicable to entire nations as to classes, corporations, and individuals. It is the law of equality, the supreme condition of liberty and humanity. The principal object of this treatise is precisely to demonstrate this truth in all the manifestations of human life.” – Michael Bakunin, God and the State

“And is not their humanity to the condemned in some cases quite charming? Have you not observed how, in a democracy, many persons, although they have been sentenced to death or exile, just stay where they are and walk about the world – the gentlemen parades like a hero, and nobody sees or cares?” – Plato, The Republic

Published by jim

Curator of things...

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