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galen  ·  470 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The 23rd Semi-Occasional Quote Thread

    For it is one of the greatest mistakes made by the new -- or as they like to call themselves, modern -- statesmen that the people (the 'nation') share their own passionate interest in world politics. The people in no way lives by world politics, and is thereby agreeably distinguishable from politicians. The people lives by the land, which it works, by the trade which it exercises and by the craft which it understands. (It nevertheless votes at free elections, dies in wars and pays taxes to the Ministry of Finance.) Anyway, this is the way things were in Count Morstin's village of Lopatyny, and the whole of the World War and the complete redrawing of the map of Europe had not altered the opinions of the people of Lopatyny.

Joseph Roth, The Bust of the Emperor