Venereal: From Venus, the goddess of love, this word refers to the reality of desire. With the rise of Protestantism and science, the word disease was tacked on in a revealing combination of categorization and moralizing. Which disease? The disease of love.— John Ralston Saul
The most belligerent John Ralston Saul quotes that are proven to give you inner joy
Ten geographers who think the world is flat will tend to reinforce each other's errors ... Only a sailor can set them straight.
Money is not real. It is a conscious agreement on measuring value.
The acceptance of corporatism causes us to deny and undermine the legitimacy of the individual as citizen in a democracy. The result of such a denial is a growing imbalance which leads to our adoration of self-interest and our denial of the public good.
The void in our society has been produced by the absence of values.
.. we have no widespread belief in the value of participation. The rational system has made us fear standing out in any serious way.
The recession is over." This phrase has been used twice a year since 1973 by government leaders throughout the West. Its meaning is unclear. See: Depression.
Pessimism: A valuable protection against quackery.
Unregulated competition is a naive metaphor for anarchy.
Everyone has an equal right to inequality.
All the lessons of psychiatry, psychology, social work, indeed culture, have taught us over the last hundred years that it is the acceptance of differences, not the search for similarities which enables people to relate to each other in their personal or family lives.
A foreigner is an individual who is considered either comic or sinister.
When the victim of a disaster - preferably natural but sometimes political -the foreigner may also be pitied from a distance for a short period of time.
If allowed to run free of the social system, capitalism will attempt to corrupt and undermine democracy, which is after all not a natural state.
Democracy is the only system capable of reflecting the humanist premise of equilibrium or balance. The key to its secret is the involvement of the citizen.
Freedom - an occupied space which must be reoccupied every day.
The Age of Reason has turned out to be the Age of Structure;
a time when, in the absence of purpose, the drive for power as a value in itself has become the principal indicator of social approval. And the winning of power has become the measure of social merit.
Anglo Saxons: To blame for everything.
World class is a phrase used by provincial cities and second-rate entertainment events, as well as a wide variety of insecure individuals, to assert that they are not provincial or second-rate, thereby confirming that they are.
If economists were doctors, they would today be mired in malpractice suits.
A Big Mac - the communion wafer of consumption.
Dictionary - opinion expressed as truth in alphabetical order.
Happy family: The existence and maintenance of [this] is thought to make a politician fit for public office. According to this theory, the public are less concerned by whether or not they are effectively represented than by the need to be assured that the penises and vaginas of public officials are only used in legally sanctioned circumstances.
Armaments; extremely useful for fighting wars, a deadweight in any civil economy.
Humanism: an exaltation of freedom, but one limited by our need to exercise it as an integral part of nature and society.
There is something silly about grown men and women striving to reduce their vision of themselves and of civilization to bean counting.
Canada is either an idea or it does not exist.
It is either an intellectual undertaking or it is little more than a resource-rich vacuum lying in the buffer zone just north of a great empire.
Faith: The opposite of dogmatism.
If individuals do not occupy their legitimate position, then it will be occupied by a god or a king or a coalition of interest groups. If citizens do not exercise the powers confered by their legitimacy, others will do so. (I - The Great Leap Backwards)
Panic: A highly underrated capacity thanks to which individuals are able to indicate clearly that something is wrong. Given their head, most humans panic with great dignity and imagination. This can be called democratic expression or practical common sense.
Bankers - pillars of society who are going to hell if there is a God and He has been accurately quoted.
Nothing is absolute, with the debatable exceptions of this statement and death.
The citizen's job is to be rude - to pierce the comfort of professional intercourse by boorish expressions of doubt.
The undoubted sign of a society well under control or in decline is that language has ceased to be a means of communication and has become instead a shield for those who master it.
In the humanist ideal, the mainstream is where interesting debate, the generating of new ideas and creativity take place. In rational society this mainstream is considered uncontrollable and is therefore made marginal. The centre ground is occupied instead by structures and courtiers.
Our belief in salvation through the market is very much in the Utopian tradition. The economists and managers are the servants of God. Like the medieval scholastics, their only job is to uncover the divine plan. They could never create or stop it. At most they might aspire to small alterations.
Dictionary: Opinion presented as truth in alphabetical order.
Capitalism was reasonably content under Hitler, happy under Mussolini, very happy under Franco and delirious under General Pinochet.
Only when God was said to have died did various leaders, professions and sectors risk pushing themselves forward as successors.
Happy Hour: a depressing comment on the rest of the day and a victory for the most limited Dionysian view of human nature.
Simplicity is no longer presented as a virtue.
The value of complex and difficult language has been preached with such insistence that the public has begun to believe the lack of clarity must be a sign of artistic talent.
Myrmecophaga jubata: The anteater. The existence of this predator demonstrates that thinking 71 percent of the time, as ants do, won't prevent you from being eaten. Thinking less than that, as humans do, will almost guarantee it.
It is undoubtedly easier to believe in absolutes, follow blindly, mouth received wisdom. But that is self-betrayal.
We all need a bit of self-delusion. It gets us over the difficult spots.
In a society of ideological believers, nothing is more ridiculous than the individual who doubts and does not conform.
Either God is alive, in which case he'll deal with us as he sees fit.
Or he is dead, in which case he was never alive, it being unlikely that he died of old age.
Marx was fortunate to have been born eighty years before Walt Disney.
Disney also promised a child's paradise and unlike Marx, delivered on his promise.
Wordsmiths who serve established power.
..castrate the public imagination by subjecting language to a complexity which renders it private. Elitism is always their aim.
We are the raison d'être of the entire system.
We are also the employers of those in public office and in the public service. Why should we accept from them a discourse which suggests contempt for us and for the democratic system?
Of course, corporations and governments have a right to something for their money. They pay the wages. But they don't have the ethical right to literally purchase the copyright of a citizen's potential contribution to society. In a democracy they should not have the legal right to silence the quasi-totality of the functioning élite in order to satisfy a managerial taste for control and secrecy.
After all, in both languages we were dealing in large measure not with English and French, but with Scots and Irish, Bretons and Normans ... There could be no more eloquent illustration of the colonial mind-set than a bunch of Celts and Vikings in a distant northern territory insulting each other as les Anglais and the French as if they were the descendants of the people who had subjected and ruined them.
The transnational corporations and the money markets have declared the era of human-designed regulations over. Now the market must reign. Because few people in the business community are paid to think about phrases such as "Western civilization," they don't seem to realize that they are proposing the arbitrary denial of 2,500 years of human experience.