Is Reality Optional?: And Other Essays

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Hoover Institution Press, 1993 - Political Science - 192 pages

"Quotes from the book"

"Much of the social history of the Western world, over the past three decades, has been a history of replacing what worked with what sounded good. In area after area crime, education, housing, race relations the situation has gotten worse after the bright new theories were put into operation. The amazing thing is that this history of failure and disaster has neither discouraged the social engineers nor discredited them."
"Some things must be done on faith, but the most dangerous kind of faith is that which masquerades as 'science.' As the pretense of science has replaced commonsense experience, we have abandoned many old-fashioned practices that worked in favor of high-sounding innovations that have led to disaster."
"The assumption that spending more of the taxpayers' money will make things better has survived all kinds of evidence that it has made things worse. The black family which survived slavery, discrimination, poverty, wars, and depressions began to come apart as the federal government moved in with its well-financed programs to 'help.'"
"Worst of all, guilt has so furtively stolen into many hearts and minds that people feel apologetic about being civilized, educated, and productive when others are barbaric, uneducated, and parasitic. When civilization apologizes to barbarism, something has gone very wrong at a very fundamental level.""

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Indias Economy
Rich and Poor Statistics
The Century of the Intellectual

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About the author (1993)

Thomas Sowell is the Rose and Milton Friedman Senior Fellow on Public Policy at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. Among his published works are Basic Economics, Late Talking Children, and Race and Culture. He has also published in both academic journals and the popular media including Newsweek, Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, and 150 newspapers that carry his nationally syndicated column.

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