I'm sure that most of you know the famous saying, "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." I'm also pretty sure that a large percent of you who know the saying also know that it was the famous 19th century liberal (we would nowadays call him a classical liberal or a libertarian), Lord Acton, who said it.It's smart enough to be pointed out by Aretae, so get reading.
What I found striking, when I went and looked for the quote, is the line that comes directly after. In fact, it's so striking that, when it's relevant, I use it in speeches and in interviews. The immediate next line is this: "Great men are almost always bad men."
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Cream rises to the top
So does scum. Aretae points us to the fact that Lord Acton's famous quote is much more interesting than I'd thought: