Quotations about   rationale

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Policies are judged by their consequences but crusades are judged by how good they make the crusaders feel.

Thomas Sowell (b. 1930) American economist and political commentator
Compassion vs. Guilt, and Other Essays (1987)
Added on 18-May-20 | Last updated 18-May-20
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I must intreat your patience — your gentle hearing. I am not going to question your opinions. I am not going to meddle with your belief. I am not going to dictate to you mine. All that I say is, examine; enquire. Look into the nature of things. Search out the ground of your opinions, the for and the against. Know why you believe, understand what you believe, and possess a reason for the faith that is in you.

Frances "Fanny" Wright (1795-1852) Scottish-American writer, lecturer, social reformer
A Course of Popular Lectures, Lecture 3 “Of the more Important Divisions and Essential Parts of Knowledge” (1829)
Added on 10-Apr-19 | Last updated 10-Apr-19
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“They thought they were doing it for the best,” said Windle. “People often do. It’s amazing, the things that seem a good idea at the time.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man, ch. 16 (1991)
Added on 24-Mar-19 | Last updated 24-Mar-19
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Historians have a word for Germans who joined the Nazi party, not because they hated Jews, but out of a hope for restored patriotism, or a sense of economic anxiety, or a hope to preserve their religious values, or dislike of their opponents, or raw political opportunism, or convenience, or ignorance, or greed.

That word is “Nazi.” Nobody cares about their motives any more.

They joined what they joined. They lent their support and their moral approval. And, in so doing, they bound themselves to everything that came after. Who cares any more what particular knot they used in the binding?

Andrew R. Moxon (contemp.) American writer, critic [a.k.a. Julius Goat]
Blogspot (16 Jan 2017)

Frequently mis-attributed to Twitter, where Moxxon also posts under his @JuliusGoat handle. The original Julius Goat Blogspot site is no longer online.
Added on 14-Nov-18 | Last updated 14-Nov-18
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So spake the Fiend, and with necessity,
The Tyrant’s plea, excus’d his devilish deeds.

John Milton (1608-1674) English poet
Paradise Lost, 4.383 (1667)
Added on 14-Dec-11 | Last updated 27-Jan-20
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Anger is never without an Argument, but seldom with a good one.

George Savile, Marquis of Halifax (1633-1695) English politician and essayist
“Of Anger,” Political, Moral, and Miscellaneous Thoughts and Reflections (1750)
Added on 27-May-08 | Last updated 30-Jan-20
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A man always has two reasons for what he does — a good one, and the real one.

John Pierpont "J. P." Morgan (1837-1913) American banker and financier

Quoted in Owen Wister, Roosevelt: The Story of a Friendship, p. 280 (1930). There's no record in Morgan's writings, and versions of the quote from others can be found in the early 1800s. See here for more details.

Sometimes given as "A man generally has two reasons for doing a thing: one that sounds good, and a real one."
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 7-Apr-20
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The function of the expert is not to be more right than other people, but to be wrong for more sophisticated reasons.

David Butler (b. 1924) British social scientist, psephologist
The Observer (1969)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 5-Sep-19
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