Monday, 17 August 2009

My quote of the day

Fritz Lang wrote in 1947: "Wishes" and "needs" are not one and the same thing. The people may seem to wish for "sugar," but they need "sustenance," and they will not in the long run thank the man who sickens them with lollipops and then excuses himself by saying, "It's what you wanted."

He was writing about film, but the general message seems appropriate to governance as well - in particular the loan-fuelled boom which finally collapsed last year.

(The source is a preface which Lang wrote for a proposed book of articles on silent cinema which the late HAV Bulleid was hoping to publish after the war. Sadly, paper rationing prevented it then, but the collection has now appeared in electronic form, thanks to Kevin Brownlow, on the silentsaregolden website.)

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