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Much of the social history of the Western world over the past three decades has involved replacing what worked with what sounded good. In area after area - crime, education, housing, race relations - the situation has gotten worse after the bright new theories were put into operation. The amazing thing is that this history of failure and disaster has neither discouraged the social engineers nor discredited them.
All of Western tradition, from the late bloom of the British Empire right through the early doom of Vietnam, dictates that you do something spectacular and irreversible whenever you find yourself in or whenever you impose yourself upon a wholly unfamiliar situation belonging to somebody else. Frequently it's your soul or your honor or your manhood, or democracy itself, at stake.
... Native annalists may look sadly back from the future on that period when we had the atomic bomb and the Russians didn't. Or when the Russians had aquired (through connivance and treachery of Westerns with warped minds) the atomic bomb - and yet still didn't have any stockpile of the weapons. That was the era when we might have destroyed Russia completely and not even skinned our elbows doing it.
I'm interested in the division that Judeo-Christianity has made between human nature and animal nature. None of the other great faiths in the world have got quite that division between us and them. None of the others has made this enormous division between birds and beasts who, as Darwin said, would have developed consciences if they'd had the chance, and us. I think it's one of the scars in Western Europe. I think it's one of the scars in our culture that we have too high an opinion of ourselves. We align ourselves with the angels instead of the higher primates.
2) We, on our part, would agree — upon the establishment of adequate arrangements through the United Nations to ensure the carrying out and continuation of these commitments — (a) to remove promptly the quarantine measures now in effect and (b) to give assurances against an invasion of Cuba. I am confident that other nations of the Western Hemisphere would be prepared to do likewise.
I cannot speak so confidently about the fighting qualities of the Eastern men, or what are called Yankees - not knowing myself particularly to whom the appellation belongs - but this I do know - if the Southerners think that man for man they are better than our Illinois men, or western men generally, they will discover themselves in a grievous mistake.
The Oriental philosophy approaches easily loftier themes than the modern aspires to; and no wonder if it sometimes prattle about them. It only assigns their due rank respectively to Action and Contemplation, or rather does full justice to the latter. Western philosophers have not conceived of the significance of Contemplation in their sense.
I do not think it can be questioned that sympathy is a genuine motive, and that some people at some times are made somewhat uncomfortable by the sufferings of some other people. It is sympathy that has produced the many humanitarian advances of the last hundred years. We are shocked when we hear stories of the ill-treatment of lunatics, and there are now quite a number of asylums in which they are not ill-treated. Prisoners in Western countries are not supposed to be tortured, and when they are, there is an outcry if the facts are discovered. We do not approve of treating orphans as they are treated in Oliver Twist.