Bicycle Diaries: The longshoreman & the Oxford don

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9.10.07

The longshoreman & the Oxford don

Berlin & Hoffer

Isaiah Berlin
1909-1997
Those who have ever valued liberty for its own sake believed that to be free to choose, and not to be chosen for, is an inalienable ingredient in what makes human beings human.

But to manipulate men, to propel them towards goals which you-the-social-reformers see, but they may not, is to deny their human essence, to treat them as objects without wills of their own, and therefore to degrade them.
Eric Hoffer
1902-1983
The basic test of freedom is perhaps less in what we are free to do than in what we are free not to do. People unfit for freedom - who cannot do much with it - are hungry for power. The desire for freedom is an attribute of a "have" type of self. It says: leave me alone and I shall grow, learn, and realize my capacities. The desire for power is basically an attribute of a "have not" type of self.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Jason said...

Thanks for this. I link to you just about every day over at Rocbike.com.

Jason

9/10/07 15:48  
Blogger Da' Square Wheelman, said...

You're quite welcome. Good to know I'm not the only one obsessing over more than gear ratios and frame configurations %)

9/10/07 16:21  

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