„It has often been said that power corrupts. But it is perhaps equally important to realize that weakness, too, corrupts. Power corrupts the few, while weakness corrupts the many. Hatred, malice, rudeness, intolerance, and suspicion are the faults of weakness.“

Quelle: The Ordeal of Change (1963), Ch. 2: "The Awakening of Asia" This passage uses phrases from his earlier work The Passionate State Of Mind, and Other Aphorisms (1955)
Kontext: It has often been said that power corrupts. But it is perhaps equally important to realize that weakness, too, corrupts. Power corrupts the few, while weakness corrupts the many. Hatred, malice, rudeness, intolerance, and suspicion are the faults of weakness. The resentment of the weak does not spring from any injustice done to them but from the sense of inadequacy and impotence. We cannot win the weak by sharing our wealth with them. They feel our generosity as oppression. St. Vincent De Paul cautioned his disciples to deport themselves so that the poor "will forgive them the bread you give them."

Übernommen aus Wikiquote. Letzte Aktualisierung 3. Juni 2021. Geschichte
Eric Hoffer Foto
Eric Hoffer1
US-amerikanischer sozialkritischer Philosoph und Autor 1898 - 1983

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Lupe Fiasco Foto
John Steinbeck Foto

„Power does not corrupt. Fear corrupts… perhaps the fear of a loss of power.“

—  John Steinbeck, buch The Short Reign of Pippin IV

The Short Reign of Pippin IV (1957), p. 102

Frank Herbert Foto

„It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible.“

—  Frank Herbert American writer 1920 - 1986

Quelle: General sources, Chapterhouse Dune (1985)
Kontext: All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible. Such people have a tendency to become drunk on violence, a condition to which they are quickly addicted.

Chuck Palahniuk Foto
Kim Stanley Robinson Foto

„It was not power that corrupted people, but fools who corrupted power.“

—  Kim Stanley Robinson, buch Green Mars

Nadia Chernyshevski
Green Mars (1993)

John Dalberg-Acton, 1st Baron Acton Foto

„Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.“

—  John Dalberg-Acton, 1st Baron Acton British politician and historian 1834 - 1902

Letter http://oll.libertyfund.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1407&Itemid=283 to Mandell Creighton (5 April 1887), published in Historical Essays and Studies, by John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton (1907), edited by John Neville Figgis and Reginald Vere Laurence, Appendix, p. 504; also in Essays on Freedom and Power (1972)
Paraphrased variant: All power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
Kontext: I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men, with a favorable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption it is the other way against holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority: still more when you superadd the tendency or the certainty of corruption by authority. There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it. That is the point at which the negation of Catholicism and the negation of Liberalism meet and keep high festival, and the end learns to justify the means.

David Brin Foto

„It is said that power corrupts, but actually it's more true that power attracts the corruptible. The sane are usually attracted by other things than power.“

—  David Brin, buch The Postman

Quelle: The Postman (1985), Section 3, “Cincinnatus”, Chapter 14 (p. 267)
Variant: It is said that power corrupts, but actually it’s more true that power attracts the corruptible. The sane are usually attracted by other things than power.
As quoted in Values of the Wise: Humanity's Highest Aspirations (2004) by Jason Merchey, p. 120
This is very similar to the expression by Frank Herbert in Chapterhouse: Dune (1985): "All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible. Such people have a tendency to become drunk on violence, a condition to which they are quickly addicted."
Kontext: It’s said that “power corrupts,” but actually it’s more true that power attracts the corruptible. The sane are usually attracted by other things than power. When they do act, they think of it as service, which has limits. The tyrant, though, seeks mastery, for which he is insatiable, implacable.

Aung San Suu Kyi Foto

„It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it.“

—  Aung San Suu Kyi, buch Freedom from Fear

Quelle: Freedom from Fear (1991)
Kontext: It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it. Most Burmese are familiar with the four a-gati, the four kinds of corruption. Chanda-gati, corruption induced by desire, is deviation from the right path in pursuit of bribes or for the sake of those one loves. Dosa-gati is taking the wrong path to spite those against whom one bears ill will, and moga-gati is aberration due to ignorance. But perhaps the worst of the four is bhaya-gati, for not only does bhaya, fear, stifle and slowly destroy all sense of right and wrong, it so often lies at the root of the other three kinds of corruption. Just as chanda-gati, when not the result of sheer avarice, can be caused by fear of want or fear of losing the goodwill of those one loves, so fear of being surpassed, humiliated or injured in some way can provide the impetus for ill will. And it would be difficult to dispel ignorance unless there is freedom to pursue the truth unfettered by fear. With so close a relationship between fear and corruption it is little wonder that in any society where fear is rife corruption in all forms becomes deeply entrenched.

Frank Herbert Foto
George Bernard Shaw Foto

„Naked power has its limitations, since power is a generator of corruption and corruption in its turn tends to dilute the effectiveness of power.“

—  Pierre Stephen Robert Payne British lecturer, novelist, historian, poet and biographer 1911 - 1983

The Corruptions of Our Time, p. 248
The Corrupt Society - From Ancient Greece To Present-Day America (1975)

René Préval Foto

„The drug trade does not function well with a strong state, or a healthy state. It tries to corrupt the police force, it tries to corrupt the judiciary, and the executive. And drug trafficking thrives in a weak state.“

—  René Préval President of Haiti 1943 - 2017

President Bush Welcomes President Preval of Haiti to the White House http://georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov/news/releases/2007/05/20070508-5.html#

Carl Sagan Foto

„They were well educated. Products of the European Enlightenment, they were students of history. They knew human fallibility and weakness and corruptibility.“

—  Carl Sagan American astrophysicist, cosmologist, author and science educator 1934 - 1996

Quelle: The Demon-Haunted World : Science as a Candle in the Dark (1995), Ch. 25 : Real Patriots Ask Questions
Kontext: When we consider the founders of our nation: Jefferson, Washington, Samuel and John Adams, Madison and Monroe, Benjamin Franklin, Tom Paine and many others; we have before us a list of at least ten and maybe even dozens of great political leaders. They were well educated. Products of the European Enlightenment, they were students of history. They knew human fallibility and weakness and corruptibility. They were fluent in the English language. They wrote their own speeches. They were realistic and practical, and at the same time motivated by high principles. They were not checking the pollsters on what to think this week. They knew what to think. They were comfortable with long-term thinking, planning even further ahead than the next election. They were self-sufficient, not requiring careers as politicians or lobbyists to make a living. They were able to bring out the best in us. They were interested in and, at least two of them, fluent in science. They attempted to set a course for the United States into the far future — not so much by establishing laws as by setting limits on what kinds of laws could be passed. The Constitution and its Bill of Rights have done remarkably well, constituting, despite human weaknesses, a machine able, more often than not, to correct its own trajectory. At that time, there were only about two and a half million citizens of the United States. Today there are about a hundred times more. So if there were ten people of the caliber of Thomas Jefferson then, there ought to be 10 x 100 = 1,000 Thomas Jefferson's today. Where are they?

Studs Terkel Foto
Aung San Suu Kyi Foto

„It is not power that corrupts but fear.“

—  Aung San Suu Kyi State Counsellor of Myanmar and Leader of the National League for Democracy 1945

David Lee Roth Foto

„Somebody asked me the question not too long ago: 'Dave, do you think the music business has turned corrupt'. I said: 'Absolutely not - it has always been corrupt.“

—  David Lee Roth Rock vocalist; lead singer with Van Halen 1954

Brett Thomas (October 16, 1988) "Roth 'N' Roll: Flashy - But David's A Shrewd Businessman", The Sun-Herald, Section: News and Features, p. 25.

John Lehman Foto

„Power corrupts. Absolute power is kind of neat.“

—  John Lehman American banker and government official 1942

This quote is often misattributed to John Lehman, but it apparently was actually said by Donald Regan, President Reagan's chief of staff, to a 1987 Gridiron Dinner audience. http://www.johnflehman.com/books/books_makingwar_vulnerable.html
Misattributed

Mobutu Sésé Seko Foto

„It takes two to corrupt – the corrupted and the corrupter.“

—  Mobutu Sésé Seko President of Zaïre 1930 - 1997

Developments.org http://www.developments.org.uk/data/issue30/together-now.htm
Attributed

John Kenneth Galbraith Foto

„In the United States, though power corrupts, the expectation of power paralyzes.“

—  John Kenneth Galbraith American economist and diplomat 1908 - 2006

The United States (1971)

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