Tuesday, September 05, 2017


The Price of Power

Louis J. Halle (1910-1998), Spring in Washington (1947; rpt. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1957), pp. 17-18:
To me the bicycle is in many ways a more satisfactory invention than the automobile. It is consonant with the independence of man because it works under his own power entirely. There is no combustion of some petroleum product from Venezuela to set the pedals going. Purely mechanical instruments like watches and bicycles are to be preferred to engines that depend on the purchase of power from foreign sources. You can be more independent, and therefore more of a man, in a sailing vessel than in a power-driven boat. In the former you can still keep going if the national or international economy breaks down. You need not trouble yourself about legislative enactments for the exchange of goods and services, about international treaty arrangements for which your life is hostage. The price of power, on the other hand, is enslavement.


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