A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library. ~Shelby Foote

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Moderation

Alexander Hamilton was an egotistical and abrasive person from all of the accounts I've read. He was also flippin' brilliant. Came across this quote from him over at Andrew Sullivan's blog. DOBA:
So numerous indeed and so powerful are the causes which serve to give a false bias to the judgment, that we, upon many occasions, see wise and good men on the wrong as well as on the right side of questions of the first magnitude to society. This circumstance, if duly attended to, would furnish a lesson of moderation to those who are ever so much persuaded of their being in the right in any controversy. And a further reason for caution, in this respect, might be drawn from the reflection that we are not always sure that those who advocate the truth are influenced by purer principles than their antagonists. Ambition, avarice, personal animosity, party opposition, and many other motives not more laudable than these, are apt to operate as well upon those who support as those who oppose the right side of a question. Were there not even these inducements to moderation, nothing could be more ill-judged than that intolerant spirit which has, at all times, characterized political parties. For in politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword. Heresies in either can rarely be cured by persecution.
Yeah. What he said. Want more? I got you moderation right here:

That's Aristotle right there, boys and girls. Toga and all.

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