Michael Mandelbaum - Quotes

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While analogies are useful, however, they can also be misleading. They smuggle in assumptions that can be wrong. ---->>>

First of all, the world criticizes American foreign policy because Americans criticize American foreign policy. We shouldn't be surprised about that. Criticizing government is a God-given right - at least in democracies. ---->>>

The great thing about baseball is the causality is easy to determine and it always falls on the shoulders of one person. So there is absolute responsibility. That's why baseball is psychologically the cruelest sport and why it really requires psychological resources to play baseball - because you have to learn to live with failure. ---->>>

Football is controlled violence, but it is violence, which people have loved to watch since the gladiatorial contests in ancient Rome. ---->>>

Societies raise their grandest monuments to what their cultures value most highly. As the tallest buildings in a city noted for tall buildings, the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center were certainly monumental. ---->>>

Read the news section of the newspaper and there is confusion and uncertainty, a world buffeted by large forces people neither understand nor control. But turn to the sports section and it's all different. ---->>>

The values, the programs, the formula, the determination, and the patriotism responsible for America's past success are still here to be tapped. ---->>>

Words matter, especially words defining complicated political arrangements, because they shape perceptions of the events of the past, attitudes toward policies being carried out in the present, and expectations about desirable directions for the future. ---->>>

All policy is a matter of gains and losses, upsides and downsides. ---->>>

If architecture is, as is sometimes said, music set in concrete, then football and basketball may be said to be creativity embodied in team sports. ---->>>

Let me remind you all that the first task of American foreign policy is to reduce threats to the United States. ---->>>

One thing worse than an America that is too strong, the world will learn, is an America that is too weak. ---->>>

The American empire will not disappear... because America does not have an empire. ---->>>

After all, the past is our only real guide to the future, and historical analogies are instruments for distilling and organizing the past and converting it to a map by which we can navigate. ---->>>

Economic growth is necessary to keep the promise - enormously important to individual Americans - that each generation will have the opportunity to become more prosperous than the preceding one, the popular term for which is 'the American dream.' ---->>>

Inequality of any kind, once considered a normal, natural part of human existence, came to be seen in the course of the twentieth century as increasingly illegitimate. ---->>>

The amount of military force necessary to provide reassurance depends on how dangerous people think the world is. And that I think ultimately depends upon the kinds of government that hold sway in major countries. ---->>>

The attacks of September 11, 2001, were spectacular, riveting, grim, costly and searing. The shock that they caused reverberated throughout the world. What happened in New York and Washington and Pennsylvania ended the lives of thousands of people and changed the lives of many more. But they did not change the world. ---->>>

The United States will continue to be number one, and I do not see any country or group of countries taking the United States' place in providing global public goods that underpin security and prosperity. The United States functions as the world's de facto government. ---->>>

To call the American role in the world imperial was, for many who did so, a way of asserting that the United States was misusing its power beyond its borders and, in so doing, subverting its founding political principles within them. ---->>>

American foreign policy, for all its shortcomings, has underpinned political stability around the world. ---->>>

The government can give citizens opportunity and it's their responsibility to take advantage of it. ---->>>

The cardinal sin in sports, what could really wreck it, is not cheating to win, which has gone on forever, but cheating to lose. That threatens a fundamental aspect of sports' appeal, which is their spontaneity. If games are fixed, they're no different from movies; they're scripted. ---->>>

Great wars can only be fought by great powers. ---->>>

The American political system is so porous, it's so open, it's so frustrating for those who are trying to make policy. ---->>>

The less oil the world uses, the less important the region that has so much of it becomes. ---->>>

The main division in the world is between democratic and undemocratic countries. ---->>>

The United States doesn't do what it does in the world for altruistic reasons. Nobody set out to be the world's government. ---->>>

The war on terror, I believe, will be waged by effective intelligence and police work and cruise missiles. ---->>>

The windfall of great riches can, if mismanaged, make things worse, not better, for the recipients. ---->>>

The world needs a strong America. ---->>>

In my experience, it's not just that serious books get a hearing on comedy shows. But serious books get a serious hearing, as well as a funny one, on comedy shows. ---->>>

In truth, every American administration since that of Franklin D. Roosevelt has maintained close ties with the Saudi rulers, and for a single, simple reason: oil. ---->>>

American influence in the world is certainly considerable, but the United States does not control, directly or indirectly, the politics and economics of other societies, as empires have always done, save for a few special cases that turn out to be the exceptions that prove the rule. ---->>>

American power confers benefits on most inhabitants of the planet, even on many who dislike it and some who actively oppose it, because the United States plays a major, constructive, and historically unprecedented role in the world. ---->>>

Certainly, protecting oppressed people, stopping ethnic conflict and promoting responsible governance are worthy goals. But none is as important for American security and prosperity as keeping the peace in the Middle East, Europe and East Asia. ---->>>

In the past when a country became as powerful as the United States, other countries would band together to clip its wings. But that isn't happening now and I don't think it's not going to happen, because other countries are not threatened by us, and they secretly appreciate the services that we provide, even if they don't usually say so. ---->>>

In the past, a blow to the international system's strongest power would have been welcomed by its rivals. In the wake of September 11, however, every significant government in the world declared its support for the United States. ---->>>

The attacks of September 11 persuaded many Americans that what might seem to be obscure or distant potential threats can very quickly materialize and it therefore makes sense to attend to them even before they become urgent. ---->>>

The United States contributes to peace in both by serving as a buffer between and among regional powers that, while not preparing for armed conflict, do not fully trust one another. ---->>>

The United States plays, for the most part, a constructive global role, and to the extent that that role shrinks, other countries, even those most critical of what America does abroad, will suffer. ---->>>

Biography

Nationality: American
Born: 09-23, 1946
Birthplace:
Die:
Occupation: Author
Website:

Michael Mandelbaum (born 1946) is the Christian A. Herter Professor and Director of the American Foreign Policy program at the Johns Hopkins University, School of Advanced International Studies. He has written 10 books on American foreign policy and the edited 12 more. He most recently co-authored That Used to Be Us: How America Fell Behind in the World It Invented and How We Can Come Back with The New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman (wikipedia)