X.X The Philosophy of Freaks X.X – Conflict and Comfort

~ The Difficult Crossing by Rene Magritte


Retreat, retreat,

Drop your swords and run;

Our foe is near,

Our choice is clear,

Get outa here,

Hurray for fear,

We’re done,

Run away, run away,

If you run away

You live to run away another day.

~ Mel Brooks, Retreat, song from To Be of Not to Be, 1984.


On ideas and arguments:

  1. You don’t have to agree with me, but it’s quicker.
  2. My opinions may have changed but not the fact that I’m right.[1]
  3. I can stand brute force, but brute reason is unreasonable. There is something unfair about its uses. It is hitting below the intellect.[2]
  4. I dislike arguments of any kind. They are always vulgar and often convincing.[3]
  5. I like talking to a brick wall, it’s the only thing in the world that never contradicts me.[4]

On the merits or questionable behavior:

  1. All these post-Watergate liberals forget that assassination was once a healthy alternative to war. There is only one justification for assassination: to save lives, lots of lives. One life to save many.[5]
  2. Assassination is the extreme form of censorship.[6]
  3. We kill people who kill people to show that killing people is wrong.
  4. You can get a lot more done with a kind word and a gun than with a kind word alone.[7]
  5. If you want to make enemies, try to change something.[8]


General definitions:

  1. Coward, noun. One who, in perilous emergency, thinks with his legs.[9]
  2. An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile hoping it will eat him last.[10]


On dealing with your enemies:

  1. Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names.[11]
  2. Love your enemies – it’ll drive them nuts.
  3. Nothing is so exhausting as indecision and nothing is so futile.[12]
  4. Our insignificance is often the cause of our safety.[13]


On war, warfare and the army:

  1. All murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.[14]
  2. Join the Army, see the world, meet interesting people – and kill them.[15]
  3. A prisoner of war is a man who tries to kill you and fails, and then ask you not to kill him.[16]

[1] Attributed to Ashleigh Brilliant.

[2] Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891.

[3] Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest, 1895.

[4] Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere’s Fan, 1892.

[5] Attributed to Miles Copeland, former CIA officer.

[6] George Bernard Shaw, The Rejected Statement, 1916.

[7] Attributed to Al Capone, 1889 – 1947, American gangster.

[8] Attributed to Woodrow Wilson.

[9] Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary, 1911.

[10] Attributed to Winston Churchill.

[11] Attributed to John F. Kennedy.

[12] Bertrand Russell, The Conquest of Happiness, 1930.

[13] Attributed to Aesop.

[14] Attributed to Voltaire.

[15] Pacifist badge, 1978.

[16] Winston Churchill, quoted in the Observer, 1952.

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