Old Dead Guys Weren’t Always Right
I know it has happened to you. You’ve been in the middle of a conversation or a debate on some issue, and someone has dropped an old dead guy quote on you and then smiled that smug smile as if to say, ‘Well, Spinoza said it, so it must be correct.
Yessiree, if some old dead guy said it, it must be a fact, no need to argue further. In fact, the older the ‘wisdom’, the better eh?
Why am I bringing up the reputed wisdom of old, dead guys? Because I stumbled across a quote today that was just so wrong that I had to start writing about it before I had even finished my first cup of coffee.
If you look to the right, under the “Quote of the Day” heading, you’ll see my RSS feed for, well, the daily quote. Today, Sunday, the 22nd, it was a quote from St. Augustine,
“The purpose of all wars, is peace”.
The absurdity of that quote forced me to swallow, in a hasty manner, the aforementioned, unfinished, but quite hot, beverage. This hasty swallowing led to much sputtering, coughing and spewing of this same beverage, which resulted in a premature cleaning of my very cluttered, but still useable desk.
Yes, the purpose of all wars is peace. That makes so much sense to me now that I know some, revered, dead saint said it. Forget religious or ideological differences, forget ego, or something as base as greed. The purpose of all wars is peace. And the early bird gets the worm.
What do early worms get…
And yes I wondered about the context of that quote, I also wondered whether he was trying to be humorous. Were saints allowed to have a sense of humor?