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Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 204 of the 1978 collection, edited by Eric Mack, of Auberon Herbert’s essays, The Right and Wrong of Compulsion by the State; specifically, it’s from Herbert’s brilliant May 1894 Contemporary Review essay, “The Ethics of Dynamite”:

Moreover, if the majority is the chosen vessel of power, if it is the instrument of human redemption, if rightly it holds the minority in the hollow of its hand, still, as a matter of fact, it is hardly ever the majority that does govern.  Majorities are great, sluggish, inert bodies, made to be tricked and captured by enterprising spirits, and necessarily moved and directed by minorities within themselves.  Moreover, the tendency of modern governments is more and more to fall under the rule of these active groups, one group fetching and carrying for another group, on condition that it shall be fetched and carried for in its own turn.


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