Friday, January 02, 2009

"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act."

The quote is by George Orwell and is cited in an interesting post by Michael Novak on the FirstThings magazine web site.
Because if there is no truth, no argument is possible in the light of evidence. Under a regime that spouts lies, there is no way to protest in the name of truth. Where truth doesn’t count, conversation is empty. Where truth doesn’t count, persuasion can be no more than seduction or intimidation. Power rules. Put another way, when power, wealth, and position threaten to tyrannize, people must be able to appeal to truth. Only when truth is cherished as an imperative does civilization becomes possible. Only then can human beings enter into rational conversation with one another. For civilization is constituted by conversation. Barbarians bully; civilized people persuade.

January 22 is coming...

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