Thursday, September 02, 2004

Boat Captain and the World of Yesterday

From O'Brian's The Fortune of War (p. 134), Dr. Stephen Maturin's comments on the merits of monarchy.

Man is a deeply illogical being, and must be ruled illogically. Whatever that frigid prig Bentham may say, there are innumerable motives that have nothing to do with utility. In good utilitarian logic a man does not sell all his goods to go crusading, nor does he build cathedrals; still less does he write verse. There are countless pieties without a name that find their focus in a crown. It is as well, I grant you, that the family should have worn it beyond the memory of man; for your recent creations do not answer -- they are nothing in comparison of your priest-king, whose merit is irrelevant, whose place cannot be disputed, nor made the subject of a recurring vote.

Squirrels cooked in madiera, indeed.

  • Currently drinking: Russian caravan blend