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John Stuart Mill

Master Philosophy

The man

John Mill

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thoughts

The face

John Mill photo

The background

The life

  • 1806Born
  • 1843Publication - A System of Logic
  • 1859Publication - On Liberty
  • 1863Publication - Utilitarianism
  • 1873Died
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The thought of
asd
on 04 Sep 2013

The thought of
asd
on 09 Sep 2013

Click on the user name, the availability of the items you want.http://bradpitt123.skyrock.com/3184480381-The-size-of-ThL-W300.html

The Reading List

Quotes

"It is questionable if all the mechanical inventions yet made have lightened the day's toil of any human being. "
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The thought of
ROGER
on 06 Aug 2011

An untypically pessimistic quote from Mill. A man, an engineer who was a contemporary, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, made the point that he installed steam powered donkey engines to raise the anchors on the “Great Britain” because “It would have been too much work for the seamen to do so with man-powered capstans”. Even though she was steam powered, she still carried masts and sails though. Brunel was a realist!

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"As for charity, it is a matter in which the immediate effect on the persons directly concerned, and the ultimate consequence to the general good, are apt to be at complete war with one another. "
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The thought of
ROGER
on 19 Jul 2011

Profound, and, sadly, very true!
    I have heard a more modern and extreme version, which says that saving the people in the Horn of Africa from starvation now, merely speeds up the ultimate over-population of the Planet and impending doom for mankind in general.
Malthus touched the edges of that kind of thinking in his theories on population growth, but he was objective about it, at least!

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"A party of order or stability, and a party of progress or reform, are both necessary elements of a healthy state of political life."
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The thought of
ROGER
on 28 Sep 2011

Just so long as the mutual distrust and hostility between the two does not produce chaotic results and instability. John Mill didn’t mention that, but then he had not seen the situation which has arisen in Britain since the end of the Second World War!

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"That so few now dare to be eccentric, marks the chief danger of the time."
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"I have learned to seek my happiness by limiting my desires, rather than in attempting to satisfy them. "
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"In all intellectual debates, both sides tend to be correct in what they affirm, and wrong in what they deny. "
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"I am not aware that any community has a right to force another to be civilized."
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"Actions are right in proportion as they tend to promote happiness; wrong as they tend to produce the reverse of happiness. By happiness is intended pleasure and the absence of pain. "
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"Men might as well be imprisoned, as excluded from the means of earning their bread."
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"The amount of eccentricity in a society has generally been proportional to the amount of genius, mental vigor, and moral courage it contained. That so few now dare to be eccentric marks the chief danger of the time. "
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The thought of
ROGER
on 08 Jul 2011

I read John Stuart Mills’ work, “On Liberty” (which I believe is still in print), at College, fifty years ago. He made a lot of sense then, and looking back over the intervening years, I think he is even more relevant now! He was warning about “Big Brother”, and Governmental control of the populace, a long time before George Orwell wrote “Animal Farm” and “1984”.

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"A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury."
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The thought of
ROGER
on 10 Jul 2011

He was good at putting people on guilt trips, wasn’t he? If you hurt someone, you are guilty. If you don’t stop someone ELSE hurting them, you are still guilty.
It is just as well he wasn’t a Member of the Judiciary!

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"As long as justice and injustice have not terminated their ever renewing fight for ascendancy in the affairs of mankind, human beings must be willing, when need is, to do battle for the one against the other. "
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"The general tendency of things throughout the world is to render mediocrity the ascendant power among mankind. "
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The thought of
ROGER
on 16 Jul 2011

John Stuart Mlll was an incisive observer, for sure, and ahead of his time.  More recently, and in translation from the French, Prof Hugues Leroux expressed it in a more modern idiom:-  “It is easier to level down than to level up”.
It is more simple to suppress one mans’ new ideas and beliefs, than to convert a whole population to them, and mediocrity thus becomes the norm. Sad, isn’t it?

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"Originality is the one thing which unoriginal minds cannot feel the use of. "
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"All good things which exist are the fruits of originality."
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"All action is for the sake of some end; and rules of action, it seems natural to suppose, must take their whole character and color from the end to which they are subservient."
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The thought of
ROGER
on 03 Aug 2011

Except, perhaps, when the action is not governed by rules, or such rules as exist are ignored? The Rules of War, and the Geneva Convention, seek to govern the more dreadful consequences of conflict. Certain tyrannical Arab dynasties seem not to accept that any end is desirable, except the preservation of their own dominance. John Stuart Mill was perhaps fortunate that he did not live in the present time.

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"Life has a certain flavor for those who have fought and risked all that the sheltered and protected can never experience. "
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"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. "
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"A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself. "
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