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Bonus Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 25 of Eamonn Butler’s 2021 monograph, An Introduction to Democracy (original emphasis; citation omitted; ellipses original to Butler):

But since government does have coercive power, there remains the threat that those in the majority could use that power against others. Indeed, given that human beings are self-interested, we should presume that they would. ‘In contriving a system of government’, warned the eighteenth-century Scottish philosopher David Hume, ‘every man ought to be supposed a knave, and to have no other end … than private interest’.

DBx: Indeed so. Yet Hume’s recommended supposition is heeded, it seems, by not five in every hundred people. The typical person supposes that government officials belonging to that person’s favorite political party are public-spirited, incorruptible superheroes with superhuman powers. The political beliefs, sentiments, and suppositions of most people – including (indeed, especially) those of heavily credentialed intellectuals – are infantile.

Pictured here is David Hume (1711-1776).

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