Sunday, December 15, 2013

Even a stopped clock is right once and a while.

"There is nothing so easy as to persuade people that they are poorly governed. Take happy and comfortable people and talk to them with art of the Evil One, and they can soon be made discontented with their government, with their rulers, with everything around them, and even with themselves. This is one of the weaknesses of human nature of which factious orators make use of to serve their purposes." Thomas Hutchinson
Thomas Hutchinson
Hutchinson was the scion of an old Massachusetts family who was the Governor of the Colony as the Revolutionary war was being created. He sided with the Parliament and King George, and was forced to end his days in England.

I recently came across this polling result:
An AP-GfK poll conducted last month found that Americans are suspicious of each other in everyday encounters. Less than one-third expressed a lot of trust in clerks who swipe their credit cards, drivers on the road, or people they meet when traveling.
 Americans' Trust in Government
As the graph shows, Americans have lost trust in government. A part of the loss in trust is probably due to the phenomenon noted by Hutchinson -- factious orators on television and radio are working to make us discontent with government, and lack of trust in it and ourselves follows.

1 comment:

John Daly said...

The title was badly chosen. Hutchinson seems to have been an intelligent and thoughtful man, who served his government well while his neighbors were in revolt against that government. I think he was quite right in the quotation I have cited.