"Totalitarianism spells simplification:
an enormous reduction in the variety
of aims, motives, interests, human types,
and, above all, in the categories and units of power."
Eric Hoffer
(1902-1983) American author, philosopher, awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom
The Ordeal of Change, 1964
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Reader comments about this quote:
Hoffer was the "stevedor-philosopher" -- enormously worthwhile reading. This is just another one of his unique ideas -- Totalitarianism is successful because it simplifies everything. "Do it this way or else."
 -- Senoir Reek, Corozal, Belize, Central America     
  • 3
    The catagories and units of power? What power,I ask. The only true power is Personel Power. That which resides inside each of us. All other human powers are spawn from the application of Personel power and are therefore secondary.
     -- KS., Queensbury,NY.     
  • 3
    That's a start to one list defining totalitarianism.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 1
    The attempt to roll everything into 'One' inevitably results in the elimination of any 'abnormalities' that vary from the rule -- the 'radical fringe' becomes ever larger and encompassing, and thus becomes the focus for war. It is 'groupism' in which the masses are herded into the largest blocs of power possible, which can only be done by appealing to the basest of urges. Elections then become populist, class struggles for power. What are the primary rallying cries? Race, sex, religion & poverty. You can't get anywhere politically if you aren't on the 'right' side of these. Which party is for the black, female, Muslim refugee? Which is for the white, male, Christian, entrepreneur? But a gay Conservative doesn't get much pull, nor a Christian black woman. Democrat Jews are finding themselves outside their once-supportive group because they don't fit the current 'profile.'
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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