A Morality Quiz

Below are several classic quotes on the nature of right and wrong. One of them was uttered by Fitzroy Salesman on undercover tapes made by the FBI. Match the quote with the right speaker (answers come after the jump).

1. "Nobody thinks in terms of human beings. Governments don't. Why should we? They talk about the people... I talk about the suckers... it's the same thing. They have their five-year plans; so have I. What do you believe in?"

2. "The ideals which have lighted me on my way and time after time given me new courage to face life cheerfully have been Truth, Goodness, and Beauty... The ordinary objects of human endeavor -- property, outward success, luxury -- have always seemed to me contemptible."

3. "Cowardice asks the question, 'Is it safe?' Expediency asks the question, 'Is it politic?' Vanity asks the question, 'Is it popular?' But conscience asks the question, 'Is it right?' And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because one's conscience tells one that it is right." 

4. "In the United States, doing good has come to be, like patriotism, a favorite device of persons with something to sell."

5. "I'm not interested in what is wrong or right because wrong or right can be perceived, depending on who you ask. It's a perception. My greatest concern is what works... There's no right or wrong in the world."

6. "When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That's my religion."



A. Abraham Lincoln

B. Fitzroy Salesman

C. Martin Luther King Jr.

D. H.L. Mencken

E. Orson Welles

F. Albert Einstein


1. E, 2. F, 3. C, 4. D, 5. B, 6. A

Federal court documents show that Salesman uttered his "There is no right or wrong in the world" quote on July 28, 2007, after allegedly accepting a $3,000 bribe from an undercover FBI agent for helping to secure construction projects in Miramar, where he was an elected commissioner at the time.

At the end of his philosophical discourse during the course of accepting a bribe, Salesman added, "We're not talking about going out and murdering a little child."  

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