William Howard Taft Quote

“Socialism proposes no adequate substitute for the motive of enlightened selfishness that today is at the basis of all human labor and effort, enterprise and new activity.”

~ William Howard Taft

Ratings and Comments

Anonymous, 91353

Well stated

Jim K, Austin

Taft was right on target with this quote.

Mike, Norwalk

Socialism does NOT offer any adequate substitute for the motive of selfishness or enlightened selflessness. Selfishness is NOT the basis of all human labor and effort (Jesus the Christ's, Gandhi's and other similar teachings are a testament to the noble labor of enlightened selflessness).

Mike, Norwalk

As an extra note, socialism is an epitome or prime example of selfishness - using other people's money for selfish purposes (until the money runs out).

Ronw13, Yachats Or

Selflessness is an effective behavior when at Liberty. It promotes peace rather than conflict. The ability to set affections on the above. Enlightened selfishness promotes greed and conflict. Socialism, crooks with an education that run in a crowd.

Ronw13, Oregon

The statement is very true, Authades, self-pleasing, arrogant: self-willed. Authades means self-pleasing and denotes one who, dominated by self-interest , and inconsiderate of others, arrogantly asserts his own will. He asserts his own rights, regardless of the rights of others. With no motive at all he is quick to act contrary to the feelings of others. It is required of the pious man to be "not self-willed, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, nor given to filthy lucre; But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate;." Titus 1:7,8. kjb. this the world lacks greatly. 

E Archer, NYC

The "motive of enlightened selfishness" perhaps refers to what Adam Smith so often espoused:

“How selfish soever man may be supposed, there are evidently some principles in his nature, which interest him in the fortune of others, and render their happiness necessary to him, though he derives nothing from it, except the pleasure of seeing it.”


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