I have been reading a famous speech of Robert A. Oppenheimer, given in 1945 to the Association of Los Alamos Scientists.  Oppenheimer had played a central role in the development of nuclear weapons.  His speech is one of the most tortuously reasoned documents of its kind that I have read.  However, it is revealing.

 

Some of the boldest and most entertaining writers are also some of the most dangerously careless, misleading, or even wicked:  Bacon, Machiavelli, and Nietzsche, for example.  Perhaps this is why St. Paul resolves to forgo the use of “lofty words” or rhetorical tricks and flourishes, depending on God alone to persuade. 

 

Although we speak of rule by the people, the people cannot rule by themselves.  At most, rule by the people means rule by that faction of the elite that enjoys the support of the majority of the people.

True, elites cannot rule without some compliance on the part of the people.  On the other hand, popular compliance can be manipulated.

 

Whether you think the Supreme Court's decision in the so-called gay marriage case Obergefell v. Hodges was right or wrong, it could not be what it is said to be.

 

Contract

Adapted, with appreciation, from a version by Professor James Pesta,
Department of English, University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh

 

Mr. Trump's notorious character flaws have had the unfortunate side effect of predisposing many people to believe not only what can honestly be said against him, but any sort of smear whatsoever.