"If you do not say a thing in an irritating way,
you may as well not say it at all
because people will not trouble themselves
about anything that does not trouble them."
by:
George Bernard Shaw
(1856-1950) Irish comic dramatist
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Reader comments about this quote:
Interesting. His observation regarding people is an accurate generalization but I'm not sure it justifies his idea. It would seem that people, in general, are more troubled by an irritating messenger than his message. __ Very nicely worded.
 -- A.WOODS, Gloucester     
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    In the context he seems to mean this I agree as trouble is a part of life and speech such as Shaw refers to exposes potential problems to those who might not otherwise see them or want to see them.
     -- Anon     
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    The only thing I want to hear from that Stalinist is his death-rattle.
     -- Bob, Eugene, OR     
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    In other words, socialists can and do succeed by being annoying. Since freedom lovers prefer not to be irritating, it is no surprise that freedom has lost ground. It is time for freedom lovers to be annoying to statists!
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    From the comments I see above about Shaw (who I am not at all familiar with) I am surprised he was quoted as saying the following: “A socialist is somebody who doesn't have anything, and is ready to divide it up equally among everybody.” - George Bernard Shaw. Did he have changed opinions over time?
     -- Doug, Broken Calif     
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    That had to be written for this blog. Trust Archer to bring politics into the discussion. Archer I think you meant Satirists - no Doug, the two were said for different reasons. GBS also said "Capitalism justified itself and was adopted as an economic principle on the express ground that it provides selfish motives for doing good, and that human beings will do nothing except for selfish motives." GBS really didn't care who you were. His comments on censorship are fun too.
     -- RBESRQ     
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    RBESRQ, Archer is right! Have you not read Mark Levine's no.1 bestselleing book yet? When you do you will know what a statist is!
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
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    "Freedom lovers prefer not to be irritating" what pure BS, goes along with Nixon's "silent majority". And the American Nazi Parties "we stand up for you decent, God fearing people" the ones with out a voice who do not wish to be irritating. Archer probably believes that propaganda about "things go better with Coke" also.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Leave it to Waffler to twist opposite meanings out of simple truth. Nazis were not freedom-loving, they were socialists, and were VERY irritating. Justice Louis Brandeis said, "The makers of the Constitution conferred, as against the government, the right to be let alone -- the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men." The thing about freedom is that the free man is responsible for himself and thus not in need of saving -- this goes against the statist creed of dependence upon government for everything and the liability of every person to pay interest on the debt to mankind. What a bunch of hogwash for out and out theft and slavery. Freedom lovers are irritated by social engineers because underneath the so-called compassion of the State, is the eternal sucking of the life blood from the people and putting it into the wealthiest class of the nation. The socialists that think government is compassionate should think again, for that lie is very irritating to those of us who endeavor to provide for ourselves despite the fact that the game is rigged against the middle and lower classes. The goal of statists everywhere is the destruction of the Common Man, the Common Law, and Liberty -- that my friend is tyrannical totalitarian rule whether we call it communism, fascism, capitalism, democracy, monarchy, or whatever -- it ain't Liberty and it ain't what America was and will ALWAYS be about.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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     -- Anonymous      
     
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