August 13th, 2008


norsk bonde, yiddishe kopf

Thorstein Veblen
The Intellectual Pre-eminence of Jews in Modern Europe

Edwin B. Child, Thorstein Veblen, 1934, Yale University Art Gallery

Among all the clamorous projects of national self-determination which surround the return of peace, the proposal of the Zionists is notable for sobriety, good will, and a poise of self-assurance. More confidently and perspicuously than all the others, the Zionists propose a rehabilitation of their national integrity under a régime of live and let live, “with charity for all, with malice toward none.” Yet it is always a project for withdrawal upon themselves, a scheme of national demarcation between Jew and gentile; indeed, it is a scheme of territorial demarcation and national frontiers of the conventional sort, within which Jews and Jewish traits, traditions, and aspirations are to find scope and breathing space for a home-bred culture and a free unfolding of all that is best and most characteristic in the endowment of the race. There runs through it all a dominant bias of isolation and inbreeding, and a confident persuasion that this isolation and inbreeding will bring great and good results for all concerned. The Zionists aspire to bring to full fruition all that massive endowment of spiritual and intellectual capacities of which their people have given evidence throughout their troubled history, and not least during these concluding centuries of their exile.
    The whole project has an idyllic and engaging air. And any disinterested bystander will be greatly moved to wish them godspeed. Collapse ) It is a sufficiently difficult choice between a life of complacent futility at home and a thankless quest of unprofitable knowledge abroad. It is, after all, a matter of the drift of circumstance; and behind that lies a question of taste, about which there is no disputing.
—First published in Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 34, No. 1, (March, 1919), pp. 33-42.

thorstein veblen on the propaganda of the faith

Official Seal of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples
Writers who discuss these matters have not directed attention to the Propaganda of the Faith as an object-lesson in sales-publicity, its theory and practice, its ways and means, its benefits and its possibilities of gain. Yet it is altogether the most notable enterprise of the kind. The Propaganda of the Faith is quite the largest, oldest, most magnificent, most unabashed, and most lucrative enterprise in sales-publicity in all Christendom. Much is to be learned from it as regards media and suitable methods of approach, as well as due perseverance, tact, and effrontery. Collapse )—Thorstein Veblen, Note to Chapter XI, Manufactures and Salesmanship, in Absentee Ownership—Business Enterprise in Recent Times: The Case of America (B.W. Heubsch, 1923)