Quotation by Irving Kristol

In a democracy, the will of the people is supreme. In a republic, it is not the will of the people but the rational consensus of the people—a rational consensus which is implicit in the term consent—which governs the people. That is to say, in a democracy, popular passion may rule—may, though it need not—but in a republic, popular passion is regarded as unfit to rule, and the precautions are taken to see that it is subdued rather than sovereign. In a democracy all politicians are, to some degree, demagogues: They appeal to people's prejudices and passions, they incite their expectations by making reckless promises, they endeavor to ingratiate themselves with the electorate in every possible way. In a republic, there are not supposed to be such politicians, only statesmen—sober, unglamorous, thoughtful men who are engaged in a kind of perpetual conversation with the citizenry.
Irving Kristol (b. 1920), U.S. editor, educator. "The American Revolution as a Successful Revolution," Reflections of a Neoconservative, Basic Books (1983).
Surprise me with a
The Columbia World of Quotations © 1996, Columbia University Press.
Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. Except as otherwise permitted by written agreement, the following are prohibited: copying substantial portions or the entirety of the work in machine readable form, making multiple printouts thereof, and other uses of the work inconsistent with U.S. and applicable foreign copyright and related laws.
Copyright ©  2015 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
About PRIVACY POLICY Terms Careers Contact Us Help