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Age
Engrave this Quote An important antidote to American democracy is American gerontocracy. The positions of eminence and authority in Congress are allotted in accordance with length of service, regardless of quality. Superficial observers have long criticized the United States for making a fetish of youth. This is unfair. Uniquely among modern organs of public and private administration, its national legislature rewards senility.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Beauty
Engrave this Quote There is certainly no absolute standard of beauty. That precisely is what makes its pursuit so interesting.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Boredom
Engrave this Quote No society ever seems to have succumbed to boredom. Man has developed an obvious capacity for surviving the pompous reiteration of the commonplace.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Business
Engrave this Quote The great dialectic in our time is not, as anciently and by some still supposed, between capital and labor; it is between economic enterprise and the state.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Choice
Engrave this Quote In the choice between changing one's mind and proving there's no need to do so, most people get busy on the proof.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
City Life, Cities
Engrave this Quote The Metropolis should have been aborted long before it became New York, London or Tokyo.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Class
Engrave this Quote The traveler to the United States will do well to prepare himself for the class-consciousness of the natives. This differs from the already familiar English version in being more extreme and based more firmly on the conviction that the class to which the speaker belongs is inherently superior to all others.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Committee
Engrave this Quote Meetings are indispensable when you don't want to do anything.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Engrave this Quote Meetings are a great trap. Soon you find yourself trying to get agreement and then the people who disagree come to think they have a right to be persuaded. However, they are indispensable when you don't want to do anything.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Communism
Engrave this Quote Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Consumerism
Engrave this Quote The individual serves the industrial system not by supplying it with savings and the resulting capital; he serves it by consuming its products.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith, The New Industrial State 1967
Control
Engrave this Quote We now in the United States have more security guards for the rich than we have police services for the poor districts. If you're looking for personal security, far better to move to the suburbs than to pay taxes in New York.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Crime
Engrave this Quote The man who is admired for the ingenuity of his larceny is almost always rediscovering some earlier form of fraud. The basic forms are all known, have all been practiced. The manners of capitalism improve. The morals may not.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Criticism
Engrave this Quote In all life one should comfort the afflicted, but verily, also, one should afflict the comfortable, and especially when they are comfortably, contentedly, even happily wrong.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith, "London Guardian", July 8, 1989
Engrave this Quote Much literary criticism comes from people for whom extreme specialization is a cover for either grave cerebral inadequacy or terminal laziness, the latter being a much cherished aspect of academic freedom.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Democracy
Engrave this Quote When people put their ballots in the boxes, they are, by that act, inoculated against the feeling that the government is not theirs. They then accept, in some measure, that its errors are their errors, its aberrations their aberrations, that any revolt will be against them. It's a remarkably shrewd and rather conservative arrangement when one thinks of it.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Diplomacy
Engrave this Quote There are a few ironclad rules of diplomancy but to one there is no exception. When an official reports that talks were useful, it can safely be concluded that nothing was accomplished.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Economics
Engrave this Quote Few can believe that suffering, especially by others, is in vain. Anything that is disagreeable must surely have beneficial economic effects.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Engrave this Quote In economics the majority is always wrong.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Engrave this Quote In economics, hope and faith coexist with great scientific pretension and also a deep desire for respectability.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Engrave this Quote In the usual (though certainly not in every) public decision on economic policy, the choice is between courses that are almost equally good or equally bad. It is the narrowest decisions that are most ardently debated. If the world is lucky enough to enjoy peace, it may even one day make the discovery, to the horror of doctrinaire free-enterprisers and doctrinaire planners alike, that what is called capitalism and what is called socialism are both capable of working quite well.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Food
Engrave this Quote More die in the United States from too much food that from too little.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Government
Engrave this Quote It would be foolish to suggest that government is a good custodian of aesthetic goals. But, there is no alternative to the state.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Engrave this Quote The contented and economically comfortable have a very discriminating view of government. Nobody is ever indignant about bailing out failed banks and failed savings and loans associations. But when taxes must be paid for the lower middle class and poor, the government assumes an aspect of wickedness.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith
Guilt
Engrave this Quote Total physical and mental inertia are highly agreeable, much more so than we allow ourselves to imagine. A beach not only permits such inertia but enforces it, thus neatly eliminating all problems of guilt. It is now the only place in our overly active world that does.
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-John Kenneth Galbraith

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