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May 4, 2013

Top 10 quotes from The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress

I am not much into reading science fiction but I just finished reading Robert A. Heinlein's The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress. Considered one of the greatest modern science fiction and a libertarian classic, the book is  about a lunar colony's revolt against oppressive rule from Earth.The book is said to have popularized the phrase "There ain't no such thing as a free lunch" (TANSTAAFL) and inspired countless readers to become libertarians.

Below are the quotes from the book that I liked most. (In no particular order)

1. “There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him.” 

2. "Must be a yearning deep in human heart to stop other people from doing as they please. Rules, laws — always for other fellow. A murky part of us, something we had before we came down out of trees, and failed to shuck when we stood up. Because not one of those people said: "Please pass this so that I won't be able to do something I know I should stop." Nyet, tovarishchee, was always something they hated to see neighbors doing. Stop them "for their own good" — not because speaker claimed to be harmed by it.”

3. “Nothing uses up alcohol faster than political argument.”

4. “I will accept any rules that you feel necessary to your freedom. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.” 

5. "Revolution is an art that I pursue rather than a goal I expect to achieve. Nor is this a source of dismay; a lost cause can be as spiritually satisfying as a victory."

6. "More than six people cannot agree on anything, three is better — and one is perfect for a job that one can do. This is why parliamentary bodies all through history, when they accomplished anything, owed it to a few strong men who dominated the rest."

7.  "In terms of morals, there is no such thing as 'state.' Just men. Individuals. Each responsible for his own acts."

8. "The chronic sickness of representative government, the disgruntled minority which feels — correctly! — that it has been disenfranchised."

9. "Seems to be a deep instinct in human beings for making everything compulsory that isn't forbidden."

10. "Limiting the freedom of news 'just a little bit' is in the same category with the classic example 'a little bit pregnant."

And this one too (lol),

11.  “Don't explain computers to laymen. Simpler to explain sex to a virgin.”

What are yours? Share in the comments below.