Committee Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 221 quotes )
The problem with the contemplative life was that there was no end to contemplation, no fixed time limit after which thought had to be transformed into action. Contemplation was like sitting on a committee that seldom made recommendations and was ignored when it did, a committee that lacked even the authority to disband.
The difference between a good administrator and a bad one is about five heartbeats. Good administrators make immediate choices. […] They usually can be made to work. A bad administrator, on the other hand, hesitates, diddles around, asks for committees, for research and reports. Eventually, he acts in ways which create serious problems. […] “A bad administrator is more concerned with reports than with decisions. He wants the hard record which he can display as an excuse for his errors. […] Oh, they depend on verbal orders. They never lie about what they’ve done if their verbal orders cause problems, and they surround themselves with people able to act wisely on the basis of verbal orders. Often, the most important piece of information is that something has gone wrong. Bad administrators hide their mistakes until it’s too late to make corrections.
The opportunity was too perfect to miss. Harry crept silently around behind Malfoy, Crabbe, and Goyle, bent down, and scooped a large handful of mud out of the path.'We were just talking about your friend Hagrid,'Malfoy said to Ron. 'Just trying to imagine what he's saying to the Committee for the Disposal of Dangerous Creatures. D'you think he'll cry when they cut off his hippogriff's-'SPLAT.Malfoy's head jerked back as the mud hit him; his silverblond hair was suddenly dripping in muck.
Is that all, sir? Only we've got stuff to finish before our knocking-off time, you see, and if we stay late we have to make more money to pay our overtime, and if the lads is a bit tired we ends up earning the money faster'n we can make it, which leads to a bit of what I can only call a conundru?""You mean that if you do overtime you have to do more overtime to pay for it?" said Moist, still pondering how illogical logical thinking can be if a big enough committee is doing it."That's right, sir," said Shady. "And down that road madness lies.""It's a very short road," said Moist, nodding.
Of course we would all like to "believe" in something, like to assuage our private guilts in public causes, like to lose our tiresome selves; like, perhaps, to transform the white flag of defeat at home into the brave white banner of battle away from home. And of course it is all right to do that; that is how, immemorially, thing have gotten done. But I think it is all right only so long as we do not delude ourselves about what we are doing, and why. It is all right only so long as we remember that all the ad hoc committees, all the picket lines, all the brave signatures in The New York Times, all the tools of agitprop straight across the spectrum, do not confer upon anyone any ipso facto virtue. It is all right only so long as we recognize that the end may or may not be expedient, may or may not be a good idea, but in any case has nothing to do with "morality." Because when we start deceiving ourselves into thinking not that we want something or need something, not that it is a pragmatic necessity for us to have it, but that it is a moral imperative that we have it, then is when we join the fashionable madmen, and then is when the thin whine of hysteria is heard in the land, and then is when we are in bad trouble. And I suspect we are already there.
Reconciliation means that those who have been on the underside of history must see that there is a qualitative difference between repression and freedom. And for them, freedom translates into having a supply of clean water, having electricity on tap; being able to live in a decent home and have a good job; to be able to send your children to school and to have accessible health care. I mean, what's the point of having made this transition if the quality of life of these people is not enhanced and improved? If not, the vote is useless.'-archbishop Desmond Tutu, chair of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Committee, 2001
No matter how you care to define it, I do not identify with the local group. Planet, species, race, nation, state, religion, party, union, club, association, neighborhood improvement committee; I have no interest in any of it. I love and treasure individuals as I meet them, I loathe and despise the groups they identify with and belong to.
The cat joined the Re-education Committee and was very active in it for some days. She was seen one dag sitting on a roof and talking to some sparrows who were just out of her reach. She was telling them that all animals were now comrades and that any sparrow who chose could come and perch on her paw; but the sparrows kept their distance.
All I mean is that a board of directors is one or two ambitious men--and a lot of ballast. I mean that groups of men are vacuums. Great big empty nothings. They say we can't visualize a total nothing. Hell, sit at any committee meeting. The point is only who chooses to fill that nothing. It's a tough battle. The toughest. It's simple enough to fight any enemy, so long as he's there to be fought. But when he isn't. . .
But in a society with no central motivation, so far adrift and puzzled with itself that its President feels called upon to appoint a Committee on National Goals, a sense of alienation is likely to be very popular--especially among people young enough to shrug off the guilt they're suppose to feel for deviating from a goal or purpose they never understood in the first place. Let the old people wallow in the shame of having failed. The laws they made to preserve a myth are no longer pertinent; the so called American Way begins to seem like a dike made of cheap cement, with many more leaks than the law has fingers to plug. America has been breeding mass anomie since the end of World War II. It is not a political thing, but the sense of new realities, or urgency, anger and sometimes desperation in a society where even the highest authorities seem to be grasping at straws.
I owe all my originality, such as it is, to my determination not to be a literary man. Instead of belonging to a literary club I belong to a municipal council. Instead of drinking and discussing authors and reviews, I sit on committees with capable practical greengrocers and bootmakers... Keep away from books and from men who get their ideas from books, and your own books will always be fresh.