Lewis, Thoreau, River Tam, and Politics
I mentioned this to a co-worker earlier this week. It reminded her of this saying of Thoreau:
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
This sentiment is echoed by River Tam in the movie Serenity:
If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life ...
Teacher: So with so many social and medical advancements we can bring to the Independents why would they fight so hard against us?
River: We meddle.
River: People don't like to be meddled with. We tell them what to do, what to think. Don't run, don't walk. We're in their homes and in their heads and we haven't the right.
Unfortunately, having turned away from the Heavenly Shepherd, we look to a supposedly omnicompetent, hopefully benevolent government to take care of us. Professing to be wise, we have become fools...