Single Idea 19627

[catalogued under 25. Society / B. The State / 5. Leaders / a. Autocracy]

Full Idea

Opportunists have saved nations; heroes have ruined them.

Gist of Idea

Opportunists can save a nation, and heroes can ruin it


E.M. Cioran (A Short History of Decay [1949], 1 'Defense')

Book Reference

Cioran,E.M.: 'A Short History of Decay', ed/tr. Howard,Richard [Penguin 2010], p.93

A Reaction

Siegfried smashes the staff of Wotan. Napoleon looks like a hero, but he increasingly looks like the single most disastrous figure ever to have emerged in Europe. It took the Germans till 1940 to avenge what he did.