Friday, May 06, 2022

Quotes of Note: Isaac Asimov, "Foundation and Empire" II

Quotes of note from Foundation and Empire by Isaac Asimov:

(Page numbers gleaned from the 32nd printing of the 1966 Avon mass-market paperback.)

"[T]here were three classes. first, there were the many who knew little and we're very confident... ... Then there were those who knew a little more and were less confident. ... Lastly, there were the very few who knew considerable and we're not confident at all." (pp. 128, 129, and 131) 

"It isn't a gut-beating when you stay where you fought, and the gut-beater leaves in a hurry." (p. 128) 

"Wars don't just start by themselves... ." (p. 129) 

"[S]o far there's been more drinking than thinking, and more wooing than doing... ." (p. 133) 

"More often than not, good players are idiots otherwise." (p. 138) 

"Divided action plays into the hands of the enemy." (p. 146) 

"What isn't dangerous?" (p. 155) 

"You're all the stirring my mother-complex can stand." (p. 155) 

"Beliefs can't be shaken short of a major shock... ." (p. 157) 

"My profession has resulted in just a bit of independent thinking." (p. 158) 

"The plutocrats have always been against us." (p. 160) 

"A thorough alarm system outside meant few guards within." (p. 168) 

"[L]eave heroics for the fools who are impressed by it." (p. 169) 

"Visitors ... are a convenient thing to have." (p. 184) 

"[T]he mistiness of distance hides the truth." (p. 184) 

"Nothing you ask is idle... ." (p. 184) 

"[T]he friend of a conqueror is but the last victim... ." (p. 185) 

"[B]oasts are wind and deeds are hard." (p. 185) 

"[S]omehow I thought emperors were greater and wiser than ordinary men." (p. 187)

"[I]n war or disaster, when industry breaks down, the people starve." (p. 196) 

"[H]uman reaction to stimuli would remain constant." (p. 206) 

"I forget sometimes ... who my friends are." (p. 211) 

"[P]sycho-history worked best where the individual working units -- human beings -- had no knowledge of what was coming, and could therefore react naturally to all situations." (p. 211-212) 

[P]sycho-history could predict only probabilities, and not certainties. There was always a margin of error, and as time passed that margin increases in geometric progression." (p. 212) 

"If a strong man can lift five hundred pounds, it does not mean that he is eager to do so continuously." (p. 220) 

"Intuition or insight for hunch-tendency ... can be treated as an emotion." (p. 221) 

"The human mind works at low efficiency. Twenty per cent is the figure usually given." (p. 221) 

No comments: