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Insipid Common Sense

Submitted by on January 12, 2010 – 10:04 pmOne Comment

I am reading Tournament of Shadows – a history of Russia, England, India and the “Great Game” for empire in Central Asia.   I just came across this quote and fancied it too good not to share.   This is Lord Salsibury’s advice to an increasingly alarmist Viceroy in India:

I think you listen too much to the soldiers.  No lesson seems to be so deeply inculcated  by the experience of life as that your should never trust experts.  If you believe the doctors nothing is wholesome: if you believe the theologians, nothing is innocent: if you believe the soldiers, nothing is safe.  They all require to have their strong wine diluted by a very large admixture of insipid common sense.

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