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In the totality of human history across all cultures and ages, the wise have always said generally the same thing, and the idiots, namely, the immeasurable majority, have always also done the same, namely just the opposite; and nothing we do will ever change this. And this is why Voltaire writes: nous laisserons ce monde-ci aussi sot et aussi méchant que nous l’avons trouvé en y arrivant.
–Arthur Schopenhauer, Aphorismen zur Lebensweisheit (1850) in: Schopenhauers sämtliche Werke in fünf Bänden, vol. 4, p. 374 (Insel ed.)(S.H. transl.)
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