"When people put their ballots in the boxes, they are, by that act, inoculated against the feeling that the government is not theirs. They then accept, in some measure, that its errors are their errors, its aberrations their aberrations, that any revolt will be against them. It's a remarkably shrewd and rather conservative arrangement when one thinks of it."
John Kenneth Galbraith
(1908-2006) Canadian-born economist, Harvard professor
The Age Of Uncertainty (1977), Chapter 12, p. 330.
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Reader comments about this quote:
Perhaps in concept, but few voters seem to take responsibility for the corrupt actions of their elected representatives.
 -- E Archer, NYC     
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    We get the government that we, the people, deserve .
     -- jim k, Austin     
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    It is indeed - I wish they are that intelligent!
     -- robert, somewhere inthe USA     
    Mr. Galbraith was an intractable exponent of Keynesianism and of unconstrained Statism.

    By disposition, he was disdainful of Republican government, possessing, as he did, a mandarin's notion of governance.

    Underlying his quoted observation is a profound contempt for the Common Man.
     -- Patrick Henry, Red Hill     
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    A far too subtle concept for most of those in government to grasp much less put into operation. They can be devious, even supremely manipulative, using human desire and greed against the populace's own; but that expression is not the same as "you voted for them, what they do is your fault." Or, be careful what your ask for, you just might get it.
     -- John Shuttleworth, New York City     
    False. The errors are by the gatekeepers, ie politicians. No one is a single issue voter. It doesn't exist, and no reason what so ever to assume it is their abberation.To assume otherwise is to find a general of an army completely innocent of battle he lost. I agree with Patrick, Galbrath is some elitist not in touch with true democractic ideals.
     -- Don Lee, Reno     
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