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The Growth of Thought

As Affecting the Progress of Society

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Published: 1851
Language: English
Wordcount: 16,803 / 57 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 42.1
LoC Category: J
Downloads: 621
Added to site: 2006.04.19
mnybks.net#: 13352
Genre: Politics
Excerpt

ttempt to raise a scientific term so much above its received sense, I use another word, and say, Policy must begin with the admission, that self-love is the mightiest mover of human conduct; and not a self-love enlightened, deep, calculating, directed to the sources of fullest contentment; but following the groveling estimate, that riches, power, office, ease, being the object of envy or admiration, are the chief goods of life.

Every business man admits, that his security for men's conduct must be found in their self-interest. He admits thus much practically, so for as his own business is concerned; the exceptions being so rare, as not to justify neglect of the general rule. Yet, neither business men nor politicians grasp the principle clearly, nor consequently apply it consistently. And he who would make a new application of it, is met with charges of great uncharitableness.

This backwardness to generalize a rule, found so necessary practically to be followed, may be resolved into that flatteri

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