Lemmings on parade

“‘The market’—like ‘dialectical materialism’—is just an abstraction: at once ultra-rational (its argument trumps all) and the acme of unreason (it is not open to question).  It has its true believers—mediocre thinkers by contrast with the founding fathers, but influential withal; its fellow travelers—who may privately doubt the claims of the dogma but see no alternative to preaching it; and its victims, many of whom in the US especially have dutifully swallowed the pill and proudly proclaim the virtues of a doctrine whose benefits they will never see.” – Tony Judt, “Captive Minds”

Souls on sale

“Something is profoundly wrong with the way we live today.  For thirty years we have made a virtue out of the pursuit of material self-interest: indeed, this very pursuit now constitutes whatever remains of our sense of collective purpose.  We know what things cost but have no idea what they are worth.  We no longer ask of a judicial ruling or a legislative act: Is it good?  Is it fair?  Is it just?  Is it right?  Will it help bring about a better society or a better world?  Those used to be the political questions, even if they invited no easy answers.” – Tony Judt, “Ill Fares the Land” (emphasis in original)

It’s–I dunno–sorta like, mebbe imho, roflmao–or maybe not, but whose to say?

“Shoddy prose today bespeaks intellectual insecurity: we speak and write badly because we don’t feel confident in what we think and are reluctant to assert it unambiguously (‘It’s only my opinion…’). Rather than suffering from the onset of ‘newspeak,’ we risk the rise of ‘nospeak.'” — Tony Judt, “Words”