"The rub is that the pursuit of happiness, as an end in itself, tends
automatically, and widely, to be replaced by the pursuit of pleasure with
a consequent general softening of the fibers of will, intelligence, spirit."
Whittaker Chambers
[Jay Vivian Chambers] (aka David Whittaker) (1901-1961) American writer, editor. A Communist party member and Soviet spy, he later renounced communism and became an outspoken opponent.
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Reader comments about this quote:
I like it, great perspective
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
    The dilemma is one of short term vs. long term. Pleasure being short term and happiness long term. All work and no play makes us dull. All play and no work makes us dull.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
     -- jim k, austin      
     -- RBESRQ      
     -- warren, olathe      
    Miserable people tend to pursue pleasure instead of happiness because they've lost sight of what they want and need. Society in the last half century has become characterized by a softened will, intelligence, and spirit because people have bought the lie of happiness through consumption that is pedaled to us in commercials and media propaganda.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    Alexis de Toqueville on soft tyranny: "The will of a man is not shattered, but softened, bent, guided: men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained by it from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies the people..." The same can be said for slavery to pleasure.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    reformed commies have a place, but not here.
     -- Jim Birsen, Middddleburgh     
    Nice distinction between happiness and pleasure.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    To the sane individual the strengthening of the will, intelligence, and spirit is what the pursuit of happiness is all about. Strengthening these "fibers"and observing their development gives us the basis to form the foundation of our productiveness and guiding principles to that product, a fully fledged adult human being.
     -- Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown     
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