Sunday, October 17, 2010


A system of established auTHOrity can be characterized by the disproportion of the results obtained with the personal authority of the men who operate it. Indeed, I shall have occasion to note that the AUThority required to work one's way up within the system is not only much less than that which would be necessary for direct compliance, but also may be different in kind. A system of well-established authority can be run by men of mediocre authorITY: indeed, I would be tempted to stress that it requires such men, because its multiplier effect is so great as to make it very dangerous in the hands of a man with huge personal autHORrity. It is therefore not unreasonable that there should be a tendency to recruit, into anciently established systems of aUTHority, individuals with decreasing ability to move people on their own account. But in time this slowly rots the collective authORIty of the system, while on the other hand competing AuthotiTY rears its head outside the system: these combined phenomena finally result in a violent change.