Friday, October 30, 2009

Quotes from A E van Vogt's novel "The Wizard of Linn"

I collect come quotes from this novel here.


  1. "A man who cannot protect the empire cannot hold his office."
  2. "it is possible to reach the heights of power in any state, however governed, without stabbing a single person in the back."
  3. "A man succeeds or fails to the extent that he can understand and control the unrelenting drives of others of his kind."
  4. "I reject the notion that one or two men are indispensable to the human race, even if they have managed by political cunning to convince a large following that the group can obtain power through them."
  5. "In every great objective the leader must start from the beginning, first evoking the emotional attitude necessary to success."
  6. "it is the oldest reality of military history that a bridgehead can always be established and held for a time. And no one has ever figured out a method of preventing an enemy from landing somewhere on a planet."
  7. "No planet can be defended. All planets can be attacked; everybody is vulnerable—and this time, here on one of their home planets, we have the least to lose."
  8. "no officer could actually be liked for himself alone—the average soldier simply didn't have the opportunity to find out much about the real character of his commander.

    So it must be something else. He watched and listened, and finally selected a number of coarse jests which poked fun at authority. Simply by telling one or two of them, he changed the attitude toward him of most of the soldiers who heard his pep talks. According to reports, he came to be regarded as a good fellow. He wasn't, but that made no difference. The so-called humor was a magic key to their good will."
  9. "men eager to switch their allegiance now that they were certain there was someone to whom they could switch it."
  10. "It's good that men forget their heroes and their gods. If they didn't, life would be drab indeed for the newborn."
Related: Stories of A E van Vogt.