The vast majority of the developing countries have emerged recently from the incubus of colonialism, which has in many ways fractured and distorted their cultural self perceptions. Development will not happen without a re-assertation of identity
-- Dr. Shashi Tharoor, The Elephant, the tiger and the cell phone.
The majority can never replace the man. The majority represents not only ignorance, but also cowardice. And just as a hundred blockheads cannot equal one man of wisdom, so a hundred poltroons are incapable of any political line of action that requires mental strength and fortitude
-- Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf.
The aspect that made the most striking impression on me and gave me grounds for serious reflection was the manifest lack of any individual responsibility in the representative body. The Parliament passes some act or decree that may have the most devastating consequences, yet nobody bears the responsibility for it. Nobody can be called to account for it. For surely, one cannot say that a government discharges its responsibility when it retires after having brought about a catastrophe
-- Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf.
Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of life's longing for itself. They came through you, but not from you. You may have given them your love, but not your thoughts; for they have their own thoughts
-- Khalil Gibran, mentioned in The Wings of Fire by Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam.
The term soft power was coined by Harvard's Joseph Nye to describe the extraordinary strengths of the United States that went well beyond American military dominance. Nye argued that, 'power is the ability to alter the behavior of others to get what you want, and there are three ways to do that: coercion (sticks), payments (carrots) and attraction (soft power). If you are able to attract others, you can economize on the sticks and carrots.'
-- Dr. Shashi Tharoor in Pax Indica
Soft power is credible when there is hard power behind it; that is why the United States has been able to make so much of its soft power. For example, to counter terrorism, there is no substitute for hard power. Hard power without soft power stirs up resentments and enmities; soft power without hard power is a confession of weakness. Yet hard power tends to work better domestically than internationally: an autocratic state is nor concerned about having a 'better story' to tell its own people, but without one, it has little with which to purchase the goodwill of the rest of the world.
-- Shashi Tharoor in Pax Indica
The law of the Garbage Truck
One day I hopped in a taxi and we took off for the airport.
We were driving in the right lane when suddenly a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, skidded, and missed the other car by just inches! The driver of the other car whipped his head around and started yelling at us. My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was really friendly. So I asked, ‘Why did you just do that? This guy almost ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!’
This is when my taxi driver taught me what I now call, ‘The Law of the Garbage Truck.’
He explained that many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it, and sometimes they’ll dump it on you. Don’t take it personally. Just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. Don’t take their garbage and spread it to other people at work, at home, or on the streets.
The bottom line is that successful people do not let garbage trucks take over their day.
Life’s too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, so Love the people who treat you right. Pray for the ones who don’t. Life is ten percent what you make it and ninety percent how you take it!
Have a blessed, garbage-free day.
-- David J. Pollay in The Law of the Garbage Truck