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Jon Gabriel, writing about the failure of the Biden administration and of senior bureaucrats to predict the reactions of the populace to their Covid policies, cited Dostoyevsky: “men still are men and not the keys of a piano”…which reminded me of something George Eliot wrote, back in 1866:
Fancy what a game of chess would be if all the chessman had passions and intellects, more or less small and cunning; if you were not only uncertain about your adversary’s men, but a little uncertain also about your own . . . You would be especially likely to be beaten if you depended arrogantly on your mathematical imagination, and regarded your passionate pieces with contempt. Yet this imaginary chess is easy compared with a game man has to play against his fellow-men with other fellow-men for instruments.