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Quotes of the Day: Good and Evil in Las Vegas

 

“There is no good and evil, there is only power and those too weak to seek it.” ― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

I have no idea whether J.K. Rowling believes this or not. It may very well be that she does not and uses this quote to illustrate the flawed nature of one of her fictional characters. There are people that do exist who seek power, from common criminals to despots. Despots rationalize their action’s as they impose their will under the guise of seeking the common good. Common criminals rationalize their action’s in seeking their own good. There is something contradictory about the phrase the common good, to be common means it has to be good for all. There have been millions that have been murdered throughout history under the banner of the “The Common Good.”

“A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most.” ― George Bernard Shaw

The shooter in Las Vegas fed the evil dog. Regardless of his reasons he planned and carried out an act that he knew was evil. The fact that he hid his plan tells he knew what he was doing was evil. He committed an act that was incomprehensible to many of us, but there is a difference between rationalization and reason.

Rationalizations are being used now to blame inanimate objects. Evil will disappear if these objects disappear. Reason tells us that there will always be those that choose to feed the evil dog. Failure to listen to, or use reason means that we have lost our way. We have lost our way because one must admit that there is good and there is evil, and that we must judge, not rationalize away an individual’s actions.

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There are 16 comments.

  1. Member

    Doug Watt: It may very well be that she does not and uses this quote to illustrate the flawed nature of one of her fictional characters.

    This is the case. The character saying that was very flawed and one of the bad guys of the series.

    Doug Watt: There have been millions that have been murdered throughout history under the banner of the; “The Common Good”

    Interestingly, that was also one of her themes in the series, although that bad guy used the phrase, “The Greater Good.”

    Doug Watt: The shooter in Las Vegas fed the evil dog.

    Only the finest cuts of meat, too.

    • #1
    • October 6, 2017 at 9:32 am
    • 5 likes
  2. Member

    And we still have ten open dates for October in our Quote of the Day Series:

    https://ricochet.com/456811/quote-of-the-day-october-schedule-and-sign-up-sheet/

    • #2
    • October 6, 2017 at 9:35 am
    • Like
  3. Member

    “We no longer have a compelling answer to that age-old question, ‘why not?'” – Pat Buchanan

    • #3
    • October 6, 2017 at 9:52 am
    • 4 likes
  4. Thatcher

    Jung noted the human shadow extends all the way to Hell. He meant it. Hell can be right her on Earth, and it drives people to do the most damage they can.

    • #4
    • October 6, 2017 at 10:01 am
    • 9 likes
  5. Member

    Doug Watt: The shooter in Las Vegas fed the evil dog.

    There is a lot of truth to this.

    We make choices as to what we pay attention to and care about. We do feed our minds and hearts, and we choose what to feed them. I couldn’t agree more.

    This point was brought home to me vividly in a book I read years ago that contained interviews with some very successful chief executive officers. Every single one of them looked for good in the world around them. Some of them would read the Bible or other inspirational works before they went to sleep at night. They did not wait for inspiration to come to them. They went looking for it.

    • #5
    • October 6, 2017 at 10:18 am
    • 7 likes
  6. Member
    Doug Watt Post author

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Doug Watt: It may very well be that she does not and uses this quote to illustrate the flawed nature of one of her fictional characters.

    This is the case. The character saying that was very flawed and one of the bad guys of the series.

    Doug Watt: There have been millions that have been murdered throughout history under the banner of the; “The Common Good”

    Interestingly, that was also one of her themes in the series, although that bad guy used the phrase, “The Greater Good.”

    Doug Watt: The shooter in Las Vegas fed the evil dog.

    Only the finest cuts of meat, too.

    The proper response to the phrase “the common good”, or the “greater good” should always be; Good for whom? The mantra of we need to change gun laws even if it means saving just one life always leaves out the fact that those changes may cost an innocent person their life because they were unable to defend themselves.

    • #6
    • October 6, 2017 at 11:13 am
    • 3 likes
  7. Member

    Doug Watt:A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most.

    ― George Bernard Shaw

    Isn’t it strange (well, not so much) that a Native American elder, long ago enough for Shaw to be writing about it, comprehends life more clearly than so many modern psychologists?

    • #7
    • October 6, 2017 at 2:38 pm
    • 5 likes
  8. Member
    Doug Watt Post author

    Quietpi (View Comment):

    Doug Watt:A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time. When asked which dog wins, he reflected for a moment and replied, The one I feed the most.

    ― George Bernard Shaw

    Isn’t it strange (well, not so much) that a Native American elder, long ago enough for Shaw to be writing about it, comprehends life more clearly than so many modern psychologists?

    It is a great quote, and yes he was far wiser than some people who if you laid them end to end until they circled the globe would still not be able to reach a conclusion.

    • #8
    • October 6, 2017 at 3:10 pm
    • 3 likes
  9. Member

    “There is no good and evil, there is only power and those too weak to seek it.”

    A good man told me once that power shifts, it doesn’t go away. If politicians take away guns, power shifts. When politicians enact concealed carry, power shifts the other way.

    Obamacare was a powershift from individuals to government.

    Trump’s election represented a wish/demand for a power shift.

    • #9
    • October 6, 2017 at 6:08 pm
    • 5 likes
  10. Member

    Originally said by HWMNBN, who it must said could have fed himself as much evil as he wished but would still have done less damage to others if he was a squib.

    • #10
    • October 6, 2017 at 7:17 pm
    • 3 likes
  11. Thatcher

    Hey, @zafar, are you afraid to say the name Voldemort? That’s who the quote is from, speaking out of the back of the head of Professor Quirrell, whose body he was sharing. Doug, I might have attributed the quote to Voldemort, the villain, instead of JK Rowling-it makes it sound like that is her thought.

    In relation to the incident in Las Vegas, psychopathology is thought to have a large genetic component, and Tom Riddle/Voldemort came from a family that had a very deep vein of madness, from Salazar Slytherin, down to the highly inbred Gaunt family.

    • #11
    • October 6, 2017 at 9:31 pm
    • 4 likes
  12. Member

    Shhhhhhh!

    *looks around nervously*

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    • #12
    • October 6, 2017 at 9:54 pm
    • 3 likes
  13. Member

    Isn’t it really Nietzsche speaking and doesn’t he have modernity on a feeding tube?

    • #13
    • October 7, 2017 at 3:50 am
    • 1 like
  14. Member

    I doubt that we will ever understand the motive of the shooter here, but if we are going to try then I think I know where we would have to start. Unless they are either crazy or insane, people who do evil things justify their actions to themselves. In my experience, such self-justification always involves some kind of sense of grievance. There have to be other elements at work, obviously, and not everyone who sees himself or herself as a victim goes all the way to mass murder. But people who do something that they know is wrong almost always have, as an element of their self-justification, the belief that they were wronged first. As Shakespeare wrote into Richard III’s soliloquy,

    “And therefore, — since I cannot prove a lover,
    To entertain these fair well-spoken days, —
    I am determined to prove a villain,
    And hate the idle pleasures of these days.”

    Richard justified his villainy based on the fact that his deformity prevented him from having a loving relationship. If we want to know what motivated the Las Vegas shooter, then we must start by figuring out where his sense of grievance, of victimhood, originated. That would be just a start, and not the whole story, but without that piece of the puzzle we will never have anything but rampant and meaningless speculation.

    An AP article (which I read in this morning’s Las Vegas Sun) gives the best insight I have seen into the personality of the shooter, and it clearly depicts a man with a chip on his shoulder all of the time. It doesn’t tell us where the chip originated, but it is a start.

    By the way, there are many bad things about the victim mentality. It makes people whiny. It makes people irresponsible. But worst of all, it makes people evil. Which is why it is so horrifying that victim mentality is being taught as the predominant mode of thought on college campuses almost everywhere.

    • #14
    • October 7, 2017 at 8:00 am
    • 3 likes
  15. Member

    Doug Watt: The shooter in Las Vegas fed the evil dog. Regardless of his reasons he planned and carried out an act that he knew was evil. The fact that he hid his plan tells he knew what he was doing was evil.

    • #15
    • October 7, 2017 at 9:16 am
    • Like
  16. Contributor

    Larry3435 (View Comment):
    [T]here are many bad things about the victim mentality. It makes people whiny. It makes people irresponsible. But worst of all, it makes people evil. Which is why it is so horrifying that victim mentality is being taught as the predominant mode of thought on college campuses almost everywhere.

    A sobering and, I think, correct observation.

    • #16
    • October 7, 2017 at 12:35 pm
    • 4 likes