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...or trying to solve, the question, we must take notice of this remarkable difference, and explain it, too, or else we may be sure our principles are utterly incomplete, and perhaps altogether unsound. But what then is that solution, or what are the principles which tend towards it? Three laws, or approximate laws, may, I think, be laid down, with only one of which I can deal in this paper, but all three of which it will be best to state, that it may be seen what I am aiming at.
First.In every particular state of the world, those nations which are strongest tend to prevail over the others; and in certain marked peculiarities the strongest tend to be the best.Secondly. Within every particular nation the type or types of character then and there most attractive tend to prevail; and, the most attractive, though with exceptions, is what we call the best character. Thirdly. Neither of these competitions is in most historic conditions intensified by extrinsic forces, but in some conditions, such as those now prevailing in the most influential part of the world, both are so intensified.
These are the sort of doctrines with which, under the name... Bagehot, Walter
Excerpt from Physics and Politics, or, Thoughts on the application of the principles of "natural selection" and "inheritance" to political society · This quote is about nations · Search on Google Books to find all references and sources for this quotation.
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