Thursday, October 16, 2008

Two great, disturbing quotes

"A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years."

"Great nations rise and fall. The people go from bondage to spiritual truth, from spiritual truth to great courage, from courage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to selfishness, from selfishness to complacency, from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependence, from dependence back again to bondage."

(Authors unknown despite strong research efforts described here)


JR said...

Interesting. I know I've seen that quote before but couldn't recall where. Reading the research you linked tells me it was probably in P.J. O'Rourke's book.

Seems to me we're somewhere in the early apathy-to-dependence (socialist) phase. "Disturbing" is right.

Halfwise said...

Low voter turnout, outrage at trimming of arts funding, big spending on AGW symbolic gestures: sounds like apathy-to-dependence behaviour to me too. I have seen only one era where dependence on government was actively opposed by the electorate, that being Alberta in the early Klein years.