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Entitlement

  • You youngsters nowadays think you're to begin with living well and working easy; you've no notion of running afoot before you get on horseback.

  • We are all of us born in moral stupidity, taking the world as an udder to feed our supreme selves.

  • ... when we start deceiving ourselves into thinking not that we want something or need something, not that it is a pragmatic necessity for us to have it, but that it is a moral imperative that we have it, then is when we join the fashionable madmen, and then is when the thin whine of hysteria is heard in the land, and then is when we are in bad trouble. And I suspect we are already there.

    • Joan Didion,
    • "On Morality," Slouching Towards Bethlehem ()
  • Never, never, never let yourself feel that anybody ought to do anything for you. Once you become a duty you also become a nuisance.

  • Do not feel entitled to anything you do not sweat or struggle for.

  • In every civilization, life grows easier. Men grow lazier in consequence. We have a picture of what happened to the individual Greek. (I cannot look at history, or at any human action, except as I look at the individual.) The Greeks had good food, good witty talk, pleasant dinner parties; and they were content. When the individual man had reached that condition in Athens, when the thought not of giving to the state but of what the state could give to him, Athens' freedom was doomed.

  • The whole message of American society — television — is you do not have to bear any discomfort.