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"The NSA didn’t build a massive Internet eavesdropping system from scratch. It noticed that the corporate world was already eavesdropping on every Internet user - surveillance is the business model of the Internet, after all - and simply got copies for itself."

- Bruce Schneier, 2013

"It is clear that, in the saint’s opinion, the destruction of synagogues should not be punished in any way. This is an example of the manner in which, as soon as it acquired power, the Church began to stimulate anti-Semitism"

- Bertrand Russell, the History of Western Philosophy

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"To see what is in front of one’s nose is a constant struggle."

- Orwell

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“The sway of alcohol over mankind is unquestionably due to its power to stimulate the mystical faculties of human nature, usually crushed to earth by the cold facts and dry criticisms of the sober hour.”

- William James

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"Each of us is in reality an abiding psychical entity far more extensive than he knows—an individuality which can never express itself completely through any corporeal manifestation. The Self manifests through the organism; but there is always some part of the Self unmanifested; and always, as it seems, some power of organic expression in abeyance or reserve."

- Frederic Myers

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"It’s the same each time with progress. First they ignore you, then they say you’re mad, then dangerous, then there’s a pause and then you can’t find anyone who disagrees with you."

- Tony Benn

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“When that ineffable compound of depression, sadness (these two are not the same), anxiety, self-hatred, sense of failure and fear for the future begins to steal over you, start telling yourself that what you have is a hangover. You are not sickening for anything, you have not suffered a minor brain lesion, you are not all that bad at your job, your family and friends are not leagued in a conspiracy of barely maintained silence about what a shit you are, you have not come at last to see life as it really is.”

- Kingsley Amis

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"If there is a single trait in our character that has set us apart from other nations, it is our determination to limit the authority of those who rule over us".

- Billy Bragg

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"…we can see how great an antagonism may naturally arise between the healthy-minded way of viewing life and the way that takes all this experience of evil as something essential. To this latter way, the morbid-minded way, as we might call it, healthy-mindedness pure and simple seems unspeakably blind and shallow. To the healthy-minded way, on the other hand, the way of the sick soul seems unmanly and diseased. With their grubbing in rat-holes instead of living in the light; with their manufacture of fears, and preoccupation with every unwholesome kind of misery, there is something almost obscene about these children of wrath and cravers of a second birth…

"[W]hat are we to say of this quarrel? It seems to me that we are bound to say that morbid-mindedness ranges over the wider scale of experience, and that its survey is the one that overlaps. The method of averting one’s attention from evil, and living simply in the light of good is splendid as long as it will work. It will work with many persons; it will work far more generally than most of us are ready to suppose; and within the sphere of its successful operation there is nothing to be said against it as a religious solution. But it breaks down impotently as soon as melancholy comes; and even though one be quite free from melancholy one’s self, there is no doubt that healthy-mindedness is inadequate as a philosophical doctrine, because the evil facts which it refuses positively to account for are a genuine portion of reality; and they may after all be the best key to life’s significance, and possibly the only openers of our eyes to the deepest levels of truth…"

- William James

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"Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it."

- Roald Dahl

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“Lose your mind and come to your senses.”

- Frederick S. Perls

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"A crescendo of observation opened my eyes to the significance of such conflicts. What first struck me most forcibly was the blindness of patients toward obvious contradictions within themselves. When I pointed these out they became elusive and seemed to lose interest. After repeated experiences of this kind I realized that the elusiveness expressed a profound aversion to tackling these contradictions. Finally, panic reactions in response to a sudden recognition of a conflict showed me I was working with dynamite. Patients had good reason to shy away from these conflicts: they dreaded their power to tear them to pieces.

Then I began to recognize the amazing amount of energy and intelligence that was invested in more or less desperate efforts to “solve” the conflicts or, more pre¬cisely, to deny their existence and create an artificial harmony. I saw the four major attempts at solution in about the order in which they are presented in this book. The initial attempt was to eclipse part of the con¬flict and raise its opposite to predominance. The second was to “move away from” people. The function of neu¬rotic detachment now appeared in a new light. Detach¬ment was part of the basic conflict—that is, one of the original conflicting attitudes toward others; but it also represented an attempt at solution, since maintaining an emotional distance between the self and others set the conflict out of operation. The third attempt was very different in kind. Instead of moving away from others, the neurotic moved away from himself. His whole actual self became somewhat unreal to him and he created in its place an idealized image of himself in which the conflicting parts were so transfigured that they no longer appeared as conflicts but as various as¬pects of a rich personality. This concept helped to clar¬ify many neurotic problems which hitherto were be¬yond the reach of our understanding and hence of our therapy. It also put two of the neurotic trends which had previously resisted integration into their proper setting. The need for perfection now appeared as an endeavor to measure up to this idealized image; the craving for admiration could be seen as the patient’s need to have outside affirmation that he really was his idealized image. And the farther the image was removed from reality the more insatiable this latter need would logically be. Of all the attempts at solution the idealized image is probably the most important by reason of its far-reaching effect on the whole personality. But in turn it generates a new inner rift, and hence calls for further patchwork. The fourth attempt at solution seeks pri¬marily to do away with this rift, though it helps as well to spirit away all other conflicts. Through what I call externalization, inner processes are experienced as going on outside the self. If the idealized image means taking a step away from the actual self, externalization repre¬sents a still more radical divorce. It again creates new conflicts, or rather greatly augments the original con¬flict—that between the self and the outside world.

I have called these the four major attempts at solu¬tion, partly because they seem to operate regularly in all neuroses—though in varying degree—and partly be¬cause they bring about incisive changes in the personal¬ity. But they are by no means the only ones. Others of less general significance include such strategies as arbi¬trary Tightness, whose main function is to quell all inner doubts; rigid self-control, which holds together a torn individual by sheer will power; and cynicism, which, in disparaging all values, eliminates conflicts in regard to ideals.”

- Karen Horney, Our Inner Conflicts, 1945

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"Decide what you want or ought to do with the day, then always do it at exactly the same moment every day, and passion will give you no trouble."

- W.H. Auden

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"NSA surveillance goes beyond Orwell’s imagination."

- Alan Rusbridger, 2013