Tuesday, July 27, 2004

most men live lives of quiet desperation

for whatever reason (call me a sad fuck) I've been stuck with that phrase hovering on the edge of my mind all day, wondering where it came from, vaguely (mis)remembering it as the introduction to a really good film, or something. so curiosity finally won out, and I checked it out. and it is, of course, a quote from one of Henry David Thoreau's essays, as is this - from his 1849 essay, 'Resistance to Civil Government':

I HEARTILY accept the motto,—"That government is best which governs least"; and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically. Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which also I believe,—"That government is best which governs not at all"; and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have.

*waves order papers in the air and bellows "hear hear!"*

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