absurdities

Genes make enzymes, and enzymes control the rates of chemical processes. Genes do not make novelty seeking or any other complex and overt behavior. Predisposition via a long chain of complex chemical reactions, mediated through a more complex series of life's circumstances, does not equal identification or even causation.

But it is an easy thing for men to be deceived by the specious name of liberty; and, for want of judgment to distinguish, mistake that for their private inheritance and birthright which is the right of the public only.

The law is more easily understood by few than many words. For all words are subject to ambiguity, and therefore multiplication of words in the body of the law is multiplication of ambiguity. Besides, it seems to imply (by too much diligence) that whosoever can evade the words is without the compass of the law.

I think it is a duty in those entrusted with the administration of their affairs to conform themselves to the decided choice of their constituents.

Man was destined for society. His morality, therefore, was to be formed to this object. He was endowed with a sense of right and wrong, merely relative to this. This sense is as much a part of his nature, as the sense of hearing, seeing, feeling; it is the true foundation of morality.

No instance exists of a person’s writing two languages perfectly. That will always appear to be his native language which was most familiar to him in his youth.

I am concerned… with the “good” people, the right-thinking people, who stick to principle all right except where it conflicts with the chance to make a fast buck. It seems to me that there are very dangerous ambiguities about our democracy in its actual present condition. I wonder to what extent our ideals are now a front for organized selfishness and systematic irresponsibility… Some Americans are not too far from the law of the jungle. If our affluent society ever breaks down, what are we going to have left?

I will no longer wound myself with the thoughts and questions that have surrounded me like thorns: that is a penance You do not ask of me.

It is a kind of pride to insist that none of our prayers should ever be petitions for our own needs: for this is only another subtle way of trying to put ourselves on the same plane as God – acting as if we had no needs, as if we were not creatures, not dependent on Him and dependent, by His will, on material things, too.

Our character is what God and cats know of us.

The Bible is a book that has been read more and examined less than any book that ever existed.

Build your house on granite. By granite I mean your nature that you are torturing to death, the love in your child's body, your wife's dream of love, your own dream of life when you were sixteen. Exchange your illusions for a bit of truth. Throw out your politicians and diplomats! Take your destiny into your own hands and build your life on rock. Forget about your neighbor and look inside yourself! Your neighbor, too, will be grateful. Tell you're fellow workers all over the world that you're no longer willing to work for death but only for life. Instead of flocking to executions and shouting hurrah, hurrah, make a law for the protection of human life and its blessings. Such a law will be part of the granite foundation your house rests on. Protect your small children's love against the assaults of lascivious, frustrated men and women. Stop the mouth of the malignant old maid; expose her publicly or send her to a reform school instead of young people who are longing for love. Don;t try to outdo your exploiter in exploitation if you have a chance to become a boss. Throw away your swallowtails and top hat, and stop applying for a license to embrace your woman. Join forces with your kind in all countries; they are like you, for better or worse. Let your child grow up as nature (or 'God') intended. Don't try to improve on nature. Learn to understand it and protect it. Go to the library instead of the prize fight, go to foreign countries rather than to Coney Island. And first and foremost, think straight, trust the quiet inner voice inside you that tells you what to do. You hold your life in your hands, don't entrust it to anyone else, least of all to your chosen leaders. BE YOURSELF! Any number of great men have told you that.

But every little difference may become a big one if it is insisted on.

Anyone who seeks to destroy the passions instead of controlling them is trying to play the angel.

Ask a toad what is beauty? ... a female with two great round eyes coming out of her little head, a large flat mouth, a yellow belly and a brown back.

Those who have affirmed self-love to be the basis of all our sentiments and actions are much in the right. There is no occasion to demonstrate that men have a face; as little need is there of proving to them that they are actuated by self-love.

There is a natural disposition with us to judge an author's personal character by the character of his works. We find it difficult to understand the common antithesis of a good writer and a bad man.