We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

“Politics is all very well in its place, that place being very much on the periphery of life.”

Tim Worstall, who has had an impressive year on his own blog, and seems to have quite marvellously upset one of the main figures of the Guardian’s columnists.


8 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • That reminds me of a quote attributed to Ayn Rand: “I am only concerned with politics so I may see the day when I don’t have to be concerned with politics.”

  • People who accuse others of “subverting democracy” when their actual only sin is “saying something I disagree with” do make me roll my eyes somewhat.

  • Paul Marks

    Sadly when government does not mess the population about many people seem to what it to.

    I am not talking about lies – for example when some leftist on the B.B.C. blames the poverty of Liberia on lack of government interevention (no I am not making that example up). I am talking about decent places where statism increased without any crises reason – and seemingly with the consent of the majority.

    At the start of the 20th century almost everyone in Iceland could read and write (often in more than one language) and there was no government school system. But then such a system was created (as far as I can tell simply because other lands had one) and lots of other statism came in as well.

    As late as the 1960’s there was no “Secial Security” system in Andorra – and far from being full of poverty, it had one of the lowest levels of poverty (including among the old) in the world. But the public supported the creation of such a system any way – as they later supported the introduction of sales tax.

    The Cayman Islands had no great Welfare State programs up to only a few years ago – but they do now.

    The present crises in Thailand leaves me cold because it is being faught between a political group that has introduced subsidized health care, and a group (the formally conservative Democratic party of Thailand) that now wants 100% government funding for health care.

    Sadly if one ignores politics it does not go away – government comes to dominate more and more, and with the full consent of the majority.

    This is due to the power of ideas – if the left controls ideas (via education and the media) then, sooner or later, they will get statism in every aspect of life.

  • Laird

    I’m not sure that Heinlein would have agreed, since he observed (in Stranger in a Strange Land) that politics is “barely less important than your own heartbeat.”

  • John

    ‘If there are degrees of evil, it is hard to say who is the more contemptible: the brute who assumes the right to force the mind of others or the moral degenerate who grants to others the right to force his mind. That is the moral absolute one does not leave open to debate. I do not grant the terms of reason to men who propose to deprive me of reason. I do not enter discussions with neighbors who think they can forbid me to think. I do not place my moral sanction upon a murderer’s wish to kill me. When a man attempts to deal with me by force, I answer him—by force.’ – John Galt, ‘Atlas Shrugged.’

  • Keep politics on the periphery of your life, and you will soon enough find that periphery defined by barbed wire.

  • “To suffer politics to become a cesspool, and then to avoid politics because it is a cesspool, is a double crime”
    — too lazy to look up attribution

  • Robert Speirs

    You may not be interested in politics, but politics is interested in you. And not just in Soviet Russia.