„Deception, in turn, suggests morality: the morality of deceiving people into thinking something is so when it is not. [... ] The moral principle is this: whoever attempts to tame a part of a wicked problem, but not the whole, is morally wrong.“

—  Charles West Churchman, p. 142 cited in: Rob Hundman (2010) Weerbarstig veranderen. p. 38
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Albert Einstein photo

„You are right in speaking of the moral foundations of science, but you cannot turn around and speak of the scientific foundations of morality.“

—  Albert Einstein German-born physicist and founder of the theory of relativity 1879 - 1955
Context: It has often been said, and certainly not without justification, that the man of science is a poor philosopher. Why then should it not be the right thing for the physicist to let the philosopher do the philosophizing? Such might indeed be the right thing to do at a time when the physicist believes he has at his disposal a rigid system of fundamental laws which are so well established that waves of doubt can't reach them; but it cannot be right at a time when the very foundations of physics itself have become problematic as they are now. At a time like the present, when experience forces us to seek a newer and more solid foundation, the physicist cannot simply surrender to the philosopher the critical contemplation of theoretical foundations; for he himself knows best and feels more surely where the shoe pinches. In looking for an new foundation, he must try to make clear in his own mind just how far the concepts which he uses are justified, and are necessities. "Physics and Reality" in the Journal of the Franklin Institute Vol. 221, Issue 3 (March 1936), Pages 349-382

Henry David Thoreau photo
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Leopold von Sacher-Masoch photo

„The moral of the tale is this: whoever allows himself to be whipped,
deserves to be whipped.“

—  Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, Venus in Furs
Context: "And the moral of the story?" I said to Severin when I put the manuscript down on the table. "That I was a donkey," he exclaimed without turning around, for he seemed to be embarrassed. "If only I had beaten her!" "A curious remedy," I exclaimed, "which might answer with your peasant-women-" "Oh, they are used to it," he replied eagerly, "but imagine the effect upon one of our delicate, nervous, hysterical ladies--" "But the moral?" "That woman, as nature has created her and as man is at present educating her, is his enemy. She can only be his slave or his despot, but never his companion. This she can become only when she has the same rights as he, and is his equal in education and work." "At present we have only the choice of being hammer or anvil, and I was the kind of donkey who let a woman make a slave of him, do you understand?" "The moral of the tale is this: whoever allows himself to be whipped, deserves to be whipped."

Nayef Al-Rodhan photo
John Mearsheimer photo
Letitia Elizabeth Landon photo
Milton Friedman photo

„It's a moral problem that the government is making into criminals people, who may be doing something you and I don't approve of, but who are doing something that hurts nobody else.“

—  Milton Friedman American economist, statistician, and writer 1912 - 2006
Context: It's a moral problem that the government is making into criminals people, who may be doing something you and I don't approve of, but who are doing something that hurts nobody else. Most of the arrests for drugs are for possession by casual users. Now here's somebody who wants to smoke a marijuana cigarette. If he's caught, he goes to jail. Now is that moral? Is that proper? I think it's absolutely disgraceful that our government, supposed to be our government, should be in the position of converting people who are not harming others into criminals, of destroying their lives, putting them in jail. That's the issue to me. The economic issue comes in only for explaining why it has those effects. But the economic reasons are not the reasons.

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Roberto Mangabeira Unger photo
William Ewart Gladstone photo

„Nothing, that is morally wrong, can be politically right.“

—  William Ewart Gladstone British Liberal politician and prime minister of the United Kingdom 1809 - 1898
No citation to Gladstone found. Hannah More https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannah_More in 1837 in Hints Towards Forming the Character of a Young Princess https://books.google.com/books?id=lv5JAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA179&lpg=PA179&dq=%E2%80%9CNothing+that+is+morally+wrong+can+be+politically+right.%E2%80%9D&source=bl&ots=ne_BjY9onV&sig=8RyZJKi_o7AvvR3N9WcQUU5Q0TI&hl=en&sa=X&ei=84mhVIufIoahyASOrYCoAw&ved=0CEMQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=%E2%80%9CNothing%20that%20is%20morally%20wrong%20can%20be%20politically%20right.%E2%80%9D&f=false, The Works of Hannah More, Vol. 4, said the following on p. 179: "On the Whole, we need not hesitate to assert, that in the long course of events, nothing, that is morally wrong, can be politically right. Nothing, that is inequitable, can be finally successful."

Friedrich Nietzsche photo
Ayn Rand photo

„The cult of moral grayness is a revolt against moral values.“

—  Ayn Rand, The Virtue of Selfishness: A New Concept of Egoism

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Saul D. Alinsky photo

„Those who are most moral are farthest from the problem.“

—  Saul D. Alinsky, Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals

Donald Judd photo

„I think most of the art now is involved with a denial of any kind of absolute morality, or general morality.“

—  Donald Judd artist 1928 - 1994
Context: I think most of the art now is involved with a denial of any kind of absolute morality, or general morality. I think most of us in one way or another are involved in ideas of a fairly loose world, however it's expressed, whether obviously as in Chamberlain or just accidentally, or, oh, like Newman.

Henry David Thoreau photo

„All voting is a sort of gaming, like checkers or backgammon, with a slight moral tinge to it, a playing with right and wrong, with moral questions; and betting naturally accompanies it.“

—  Henry David Thoreau 1817-1862 American poet, essayist, naturalist, and abolitionist 1817 - 1862
Context: All voting is a sort of gaming, like checkers or backgammon, with a slight moral tinge to it, a playing with right and wrong, with moral questions; and betting naturally accompanies it. The character of the voters is not staked. I cast my vote, perchance, as I think right; but I am not vitally concerned that that right should prevail. I am willing to leave it to the majority. Its obligation, therefore, never exceeds that of expediency. Even voting for the right is doing nothing for it. It is only expressing to men feebly your desire that it should prevail. A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority. There is but little virtue in the action of masses of men. When the majority shall at length vote for the abolition of slavery, it will be because they are indifferent to slavery, or because there is but little slavery left to be abolished by their vote. They will then be the only slaves. Only his vote can hasten the abolition of slavery who asserts his own freedom by his vote.

„Turning the other cheek is a kind of moral jiu-jitsu.“

—  Gerald Stanley Lee Americna minister 1862 - 1944
Book IV, Chapter X.

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