5/21/2005

Quote of the Day

Leo Strauss responds to Marxist philosopher Alexandré Kojéve (previously Kochevnikoff, before he moved to Paris), who identifies the ideal world state as a homogeneous tyranny in which all citizens agree with each other, and with the tyrant, of their own free will:
[T]he Universal and Final Tyrant will [by definition] be an unwise man… To retain his power, he will be forced to suppress every activity which might lead people into doubt of the essential soundness of the universal and homogeneous state: he must suppress philosophy as an attempt to corrupt the young. In particular he must in the interest of the homogeneity of his universal state forbid every teaching, every suggestion, that there are politically relevant natural differences among men which cannot be abolished or neutralized by progressing scientific technology…. [T]his time, the cause of philosophy is lost from the start. For the Final Tyrant presents himself as a philosopher, as the highest philosophic authority, as the supreme exegete of the only true philosophy, as the executor and hangman authorized by the only true philosophy. He claims therefore that he persecutes not philosophy but false philosophers…. Kojéve would seem to be right although for the wrong reason: the coming of the universal and homogeneous state will be the end of philosophy on earth.
Leo Strauss, "Restatement on Xenophon's Hiero" in On Tyranny, pg. 210

Does this sound at all familiar? It should.

2 comments:

Asher Litwin said...

Brother, you should remember that you have at least one stupid reader (me) who has no clue what you are referring to with your subtle pointer. What should this remind me of? Subtlety is lost on me.

Mastiff said...

"Political Correctness," etc.