John Kenneth Galbraith

Quotations

Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it’s just the opposite.

Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.

Letter, March 2, 1962, to President Kennedy, 1969

Clearly the most unfortunate people are those who must do the same thing over and over again, every minute, or perhaps twenty to the minute. They deserve the shortest hours and the highest pay.

Made to Last (1964)

Wealth is not without its advantages and the case to the contrary, although it has often been made, has never proved widely persuasive.

The Affluent Society (1958)

I write with two things in mind. I want to be right with my fellow economists. After all, I’ve made my life as a professional economist, so I’m careful that my economics is as it should be. But I have long felt that there’s no economic proposition that can’t be stated in clear, accessible language. So I try to be right with my fellow economists, but I try to have an audience of any interested, intelligent person.

If all else fails immortality can always be assured by adequate error.

Money: Whence It Came, Where It Went

In all life one should comfort the afflicted, but verily, also, one should afflict the comfortable, and especially when they are comfortably, contentedly, even happily wrong.

London Guardian, July 29, 1989

In the autumn of 1929 the mightiest of Americans were, for a brief time, revealed as human beings.

The Great Crash