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James Fallows

American journalist
Successful societies — those which progress economically and politically and can control the terms on which they deal with the outside world — succeed because they have found ways to match individual self-interest to the collective good.

James Fallows (born 2 August 1949) is an American print and radio journalist who has been associated with The Atlantic Monthly for many years and has written eight books. He was also one of Nader's Raiders at Public Citizen and Jimmy Carter's chief speechwriter for the first two years of his presidency.

QuotesEdit

 
Americans who know nothing else about firearms are all too familiar with the name AR-15. It’s the semi-automatic weapon that murderers have used in many of the most notorious and highest-casualty gun killings of recent years…
 
A little bullet pays off so much in wound ballistics. That is what people who choose these weapons know.
  • In the long run, a society's strength depends on the way that ordinary people voluntarily behave. Ordinary people matter because there are so many of them. Voluntary behavior matters because it is hard to supervise everyone all the time. … Successful societies — those which progress economically and politically and can control the terms on which they deal with the outside world — succeed because they have found ways to match individual self-interest to the collective good. The behavior that helps each person will, as a cumulative ethos, help the society as a whole.
    • More Like Us : Making America Great Again (1989), p. 13
  • Japan gets the most of ordinary people by organizing them to adapt and succeed. America, by getting out of their way so that they can adjust individually, allows them to succeed. It is not that Japan has no individualists and America no organizations, but the thrusts of the societies are different. Japan has distorted its economy and depressed its living standard in order to keep its job structure and social values as steady as possible. At the government's direction, the entire economy has tried to flex almost as one, in response to the ever-changing world. The country often seems like a family that becomes more tightly bound together when it must withstand war, emigration, or some other upheaval. America's strength is the opposite: it opens its doors and brings the world's disorder in. It tolerates social change that would tear most other countries apart. The openness encourages Americans to adapt as individuals rather than as a group.
    • More Like Us : Making America Great Again (1989), ch. 3
  • A little bullet pays off so much in wound ballistics. That is what people who choose these weapons know.
    • "Why the AR-15 Is So Lethal", The Atlantic (7 November 2017)

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