„The social group which the city represents is so strong that it draws men into sin which is hardly personal to them, but from which they cannot dissociate themselves even if they so desire. Individual virtues are engulfed by the sin of the city.“

—  Jacques Ellul, p. 67
Jacques Ellul photo
Jacques Ellul1
1912 - 1994

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„And gods in guise of strangers from afar in every form do roam our cities, marking the sin and righteousness of men.“

—  Homér Ancient Greek epic poet, author of the Iliad and the Odyssey 750
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„A system of opinions which, being founded on a system of accepted values, determines the attitudes and behavior of men with respect to desired objectives of development of the society, social group or individual.“

—  Adam Schaff Polish Marxist philosopher and theorist 1913 - 2006
Adam Schaff (1967), "Functional Definition, Ideology, and the Problem of the 'fin du siècle' of Ideology." L’Homme et la Société, April-June 1967. pp. 49-61; p. 50

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„Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains.“

—  Thomas Jefferson 3rd President of the United States of America 1743 - 1826
Context: Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains. In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own. It is easier to acquire them, and to effect this, they have perverted the best religion ever preached to man into mystery and jargon, unintelligible to all mankind, and therefore the safer engine for their purposes. With the lawyers it is a new thing. They have, in the mother country, been generally the primest supporters of the free principles of their constitution. But there, too, they have changed. Letter to Horatio G. Spafford (17 March 1814)

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„In cities men cannot be prevented from concerting together, and from awakening a mutual excitement which prompts sudden and passionate resolutions. Cities may be looked upon as large assemblies, of which all the inhabitants are members; their populace exercises a prodigious influence upon the magistrates, and frequently executes its own wishes without their intervention.“

—  Alexis De Tocqueville French political thinker and historian 1805 - 1859
Variant translation: In towns it is impossible to prevent men from assembling, getting excited together and forming sudden passionate resolves. Towns are like great meeting houses with all the inhabitants as members. In them the people wield immense influence over their magistrates and often carry their desires into execution without intermediaries. Chapter XVII.

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„Men are punished by their sins, not for them.“

—  Elbert Hubbard, Love, Life and Work
Context: If you err it is not for me to punish you. We are punished by our sins not for them. p. 12 in The Note Book, Kessinger Publishing (reprint 1998)