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He is in a sure state of happiness who has a sure prospect that in all parts of his existence he shall have all things he desires. . . All men of reflection, from the age of Socrates, have sufficiently proved that the truest, most constant, and lively pleasure, the happiest enjoyment of life, consists in kind affections to our fellow creatures.
As nature has implanted in every man a desire of his own happiness, and many tender affections towards others. . . and granted to each one some understanding and active powers, with a natural impulse to exercise them for the purposes of these affections; ‘tis plain each one has a natural right to exert his power, according to his own judgement and inclination, for these purposes, in all such industry, labor, or amusements, as are not hurtful to others in their persons or goods.
–Francis Hutcheson, Essay on the Nature and Conduct of the Passions and Affections and Illustrations upon the Moral Sense (1728)
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
Estimated cost of the environmental damage caused each year by the world’s 3,000 largest companies:
Two thirds of U.S. teenagers experience uncontrollable rage.
Beekeepers began extracting 1 million honeybees living beneath the siding of a house in New York State.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”