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Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 163 of Philipp Blom’s 2010 book, A Wicked Company; here Blom is describing the thought of, and quoting, Thiry d’Holbach:

Infantilized and deformed by a constant diet of falsehood, human beings are “amused with marvelous chimeras.”

DBx: Holbach’s remark was directed at conventional religion. Yet I believe that it applies with even stronger force to the dogmatic belief held by many people in the power of the state to perform miracles – the power of state officials to know what mortals cannot know, to achieve what mortals cannot achieve, to transcend the realities of scarcity and human nature in order to create heaven on earth.

This conceit in the ability of human beings invested with state power is fatal, yet it persists. So many people – smart and not-so-smart people; well-educated and poorly educated people; rich and poor people; men and women; people of all ethnicities and nationalities – embrace this childish dogma, one as dangerous as it is ridiculous.