Gallant hero of romantic film, who has just killed his equally gallant antagonist in a duel: ‘Was I wrong, father?’ Father (Yul Brynner): ‘You were both wrong; and you were both right, too.’
David Hume, speaking of moral sceptics, once said ‘And as reasoning is not the source, whence either disputant derives his tenets; it is in vain to expect, that any logic, which speaks not to the affections, will ever engage him to embrace sounder opinions‘. I am guilty of an inconsistency of some kind in quoting the above passage from Hume with approval for, though everything Hume wrote ought to be quoted with approval, it is inconsistent to approve of advice, and then immediately to disregard it. I am also guilty of an inconsistency of another kind. Once upon a time I myself defended a version of moral scepticism, but I can say in mitigation of this deplorable act that my tongue was partly in my cheek at the time, which is where one's tongue should be on the occasion of addressing the Joint Session of the Mind Association and the Aristotelian Society.