From Priorities to Goals

"From Priorities to Goals," The Public Interest, Summer 1971.


Controversies over matters of political philosophy, since they are controversies over fundamental beliefs, are exceedingly dangerous for any nation. They certainly ought not to happen too often, for they then make civilized political life very difficult to sustain. But they ought to—they inevitably will—arise occasionally. We seem to be living through such a moment right now; and the first thing to do is consciously to face up to this critical fact and make it manifest in all its implications. We must go behind the smaller questions in order to contemplate the larger answers they tacitly demand.

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