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Doris Lessing

That is what learning is. You suddenly understand something you’ve understood all your life, but in a new way. Doris Lessing, The Four-Gated City (1969)






Iris Murdoch

We know that the real lesson to be taught is that the human person is precious and unique; but we seem unable to set it forth except in terms of ideology and abstraction Iris Murdoch, Sartre: Romantic Rationalist (1953), Ch. 10, p. 148 (concluding sentence)






Auberon Herbert

“The nature of man is indivisible; you cannot cut him across, and give one share of him to the state and leave the other for himself.” Auberon Herbert, The Right and Wrong of Compulsion by the State (1885)






Philip E. Tetlock

Partisans across the opinion spectrum are vulnerable to occasional bouts of ideologically induced insanity. Philip Tetlock, in Stewart Brand, The SALT Summaries (Long Now Press, 2011), p. 128.






Iris Murdoch

The cry of equality pulls everyone down. Iris Murdoch, as quoted in The Observer, September 13, 1987






Auberon Herbert

“A man can only learn when he is free to act.” Auberon Herbert, The Right and Wrong of Compulsion by the State (1885)






Michael Ruhlman

[W]e don’t really have stores that sell only groceries, shelf-stable products, anymore. Most stores sell a variety of shelf-stable and perishable goods. So most stores should be considered, technically, supermarkets. But there is a warmth to the term grocery store that encourages one to embrace it and hold on to






Jean-Baptiste Say

A tax can never be favorable to the public welfare, except by the good use that is made of its proceeds. J.-B. Say, A Treatise On Political Economy (Fourth Edition) (1832), Chapter XVII, Section I, p. 168






Michael Ruhlman

We tend to use grocery stores without thinking about them, or if we do think about them, it’s with mild annoyance, the thought of shopping itself a chore. What we rarely reflect on is what a luxury it is to be able to buy an extraordinary variety and quantity of






Henrik Ibsen

“You should never wear your best trousers when you go out to fight for freedom and truth.” Henrik Ibsen, An Enemy of the People (1882), Dr. Stockmann, Act V






Ambrose Bierce

Conservative, n. A statesman enamored of existing evils, as opposed to a Liberal, who wants to replace them with others. Cynic, n. A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be. Hence the custom among the Scythians of plucking out a cynic’s eyes






John H. Cochrane

Any time economists start telling you to pass complex regulations to enforce morality, run in the opposite direction. The Obama administration had something with the idea of ‘science-based’ policy. At least let’s get the cause and effect science right before we start making moral claims. John H. Cochrane, “NoahLogic,” The






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