Found Words – The West Wing

I promise this will be the last “West Wing” quote for a while, but this one hit home because of all the changes in the political landscape the last few years.

DONNA

So he cripped Kant. Isn't that what you're suppose to do?

 

JOSH

It comes from a 193-page book called "A Critique of Practical Reason." It's

about metaphysica and

epistemology. Tomba's impressively boiled it down to two-thirds of one

page. Give me another one.

 

DONNA

"Look outside the cave."

 

JOSH

Right. That's from an old paperback called "The Republic" by Plato. Lucky

Tomba's been able to

fit on fortune cookie so it suits the attention span of the Republican

nominee. Here he quotes

Robert Frost. "Good fences make good neighbors." Did he talk about that?

 

DONNA

Yeah.

 

JOSH

What did he say?

 

DONNA

Basically, that if you stay within your personal space, you'll end up getting

along with everyone.

 

JOSH

You had to study modern poetry.

 

DONNA

Yes.

 

JOSH

Is that what Frost meant?

 

DONNA

No, he meant that boundries are what alienate us from each other.

 

JOSH

Why did he say "Good fences make good neighbors?"

 

DONNA

He was being ironic, but I still don't see...

 

JOSH

What does this remind you of? "I believe in hope, not fear." "I'm a leader,

not a politician."

"It's time for an American leader." "America's earned a change." "I before

'E' except after 'C'!"

It's the fortune-cookie candidacy! These are important thinkers, and

understanding them can be

very useful and it's not ever going to happen at a four-hour seminar. When

the President's got

an embassy surrounded in Haiti, or a keyhole photograph of a heavy water

reactor, or any of the

fifty life-and-death matters that walk across his desk every day, I don't

know if he's thinking

about Immanuel Kant or not. I doubt it, but if he does, I am comforted at

least in my certainty

that he is doing his best to reach for all of it and not just the McNuggets. Is

it possible we

would be willing to require any less of the person sitting in that chair? The

low road?
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