Quotes: The Social Darwinist

"This survival of the fittest, which I have here sought to express in mechanical terms, is that which Mr. Darwin has called 'natural selection', or the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life."
Herbert Spencer, The Principles of Biology

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    Anime and Manga 

"If you're strong, you live; if you're weak, you die."
Makoto Shishio, Rurouni Kenshin

"The weak wear the chains, and the strong wield the whip!"

"The world lies. Thou shalt not commit murder, thou shalt not bear false witness, thou shalt not cheat, thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife: all of these are lies! Mere illusion, nothing more. They don't want to be killed. They don't want to be robbed. Using the twin lies of justice and morality, the weak are endeavoring to protect themselves. But the first truth is that the strong devour the weak. So let us feed, upon people, upon wealth, upon riches and power. We of Brittania shall feast upon the raw flesh of the world itself. We must crush this deception and bring forth the truth. All hail Brittania!"
Charles zi Brittania, Code Geass

"Today I am giving the student council a fresh start! All students have the right to attack all other students! Secret meetings, scheming, backstabbing, anything goes! Seven days from now, reach the schoolyard alive, and then use your strength to lay claim on your social standing once again! This shall be Honnouji Academy's first naturals election!"
Satsuki Kiryuin, Kill la Kill

    Fanfiction 

"...And the weak were cast out into the desert. The unfit, the ugly, the frail, the sick, the elderly. Raids were conducted throughout the kingdom, searching for those who might ‘bring down’ the strength of Sanctuary. The land was no longer a haven, instead being a place of fear. And the Malaiki was succeeded by his son, Shujaa. Only more pain and suffering were brought to the lands. He began the greatest abomination the kingdom has ever known: he passed a law that forbade the practice of any religion. Believers were tortured as a public spectacle, made to suffer untold agony, many of them dying from their thirst or their wounds. Those that survived were cast into the desert along with the others, believing that they would only weaken the kingdom."
Sanctuary, a Lion King fanfic by Kovukono

"I Loathe This Entire World. Filled With Cowards And Fools. Ruled By The Pathetic Wills Of Ponies Who Cannot See Beyond Their Own Petty Wants. A Kingdom Of Friendship? They Will Never Achieve Such A Thing. All They Are Destined For Is To Be Ruled By The Strongest Hoof, Or Ground To Dust Beneath Mine."
Nightmare Umbra, Harmony Theory

    Film — Animated 

"Come on, you've read Charles Darwin. It's called Survival of the Fittest. We're just helping to speed it to its logical conclusion."
Commander Rourke, Atlantis The Lost Empire

"Gentlemen, there comes a time in the evolution of a colony when the strong are meant to rise above the weak. Now is that time. Below us right now, the weak elements of the colony are being washed away."
General Mandible, Antz

Neera: Kron, we've never gone this far without water. If we keep going like this, we'll lose half the herd.
Kron: Then we'll save the half that deserves to live.

    Film — Live-action 

Ash: You still don't understand what you're dealing with, do you? The perfect organism. Its structural perfection is matched only by its hostility.
Lambert: You admire it.
Ash: I admire its purity. A survivor. Unclouded by conscience, remorse, or delusions of morality.
Alien (1979)

Marley: The world is on the verge of new and great changes, Mr. Scrooge. Some of them, of necessity, will be violent. Do you agree?
Scrooge: I think the world is becoming a very hard and cruel place, Mr. Marley. One must steel oneself to survive it, and not be crushed under with the weak and infirm.
Marley: I think we have a great deal in common, Mr. Scrooge.
A Christmas Carol (1951 film)

"The jigsaw piece that I cut from my subjects was only ever meant to be a symbol that that subject was missing something. A vital piece of the human puzzle. The survival instinct."
Jigsaw, Saw II

"I refuse to believe that so modern and civilized a young man as you seem to be harbors romantic ideas about the value of human life... Life is for the strong, to be lived by the strong, and, if needs be, taken by the strong. The weak of the world were put here to give the strong pleasure. I am strong. Why should I not use my gift? If I wish to hunt, why should I not? I hunt the scum of the earth: sailors from tramp ships, lassars, blacks, Chinese, whites, mongrels. A thoroughbred horse or hound is worth more than a score of them."
General Zaroff, The Most Dangerous Game

    Literature 

"People with weaknesses get killed by the people who lack them. Notice I'm not dead."
Kerrigan, Sword of Darkness (Lords of Avalon #1)

"The first thing you got to understand is that all this uplift and flipflop and settlement-work and recreation is nothing in God’s world but the entering wedge for socialism. The sooner a man learns he isn’t going to be coddled, and he needn’t expect a lot of free grub and, uh, all these free classes and flipflop and doodads for his kids unless he earns ‘em, why, the sooner he’ll get on the job and produce—produce—produce! That’s what the country needs, and not all this fancy stuff that just enfeebles the will-power of the working man and gives his kids a lot of notions above their class."
Sinclair Lewis, Babbitt

"A chain is only as strong as its weakest link."
Asahina Tomiko, From the New World

"Weak bears should be killed before they weaken us all."
Shoteka, Seeker Bears

"Self-preservation is a man's first duty."
Philip Lombard, And Then There Were None

"There is no good and evil, only power and those too weak to seek it"
Voldemort, Harry Potter

    Live-action TV 

Doctor: He doesn't have to outrun the lion, only his friend. Then the lion catches up with his friend and eats him. The strong survive, the weak are killed. The law of the jungle.
Harvey: Oh, yeah. Very clever.
Doctor: Yes, very clever, if you don't mind losing your friend. But what happens when the next lion turns up? I think you'd better get your running shoes on, gentlemen.

Morden: It's like knocking over an anthill. Every new generation gets stronger. The anthill gets redesigned, made better.
Sheridan: So that's what the Shadows do. Come out every few thousand years and "kick over all the anthills": start wars, destroy entire races.
Justin: A few get lost along the way, yes, and that's unfortunate. I don't think it was ever easy, but you can't let that get in the way of the dream.
Morden: Think about it, Captain. Look at the long history of human struggle. Six thousand years of recorded wars, bloodshed, atrocities beyond all description. But look at what came out of all of that! We've gone to the stars, split the atom, written sonnets. We never would have come this far, if we hadn't been at each others' throats evolving our way up, inch by inch.
Babylon 5, "Z'ha'dum"

"Captain, although your abilities intrigue me, you are quite honestly inferior. Mentally, physically. In fact, I am surprised how little improvement there has been in human evolution. Oh, there has been technical advancement, but, how little man himself has changed. Yes, it appears we will do well in your century, Captain."
Khan Noonien Singh, Star Trek: The Original Series, "Space Seed"

"All is in ruins. A waste. As we welcomed the new world, I judged it fit for the strong alone to survive at the expense of the weak. I believed, wrongly, that those so chosen were the most deserving. After those who believed that the weak were fit only to be hunted ascended as rulers of the Forest, they turned on each other and begun to kill one another. [...] My remaining subjects are the strongest in Femushinmu history...and the most foolish. They have no hope of reviving our civilization. And what about your kind?"

    Music 

"I've seen an old man have a heart attack in Manhattan
Well, he just died while we just stood there lookin' at him
Ain't he cute?
I don't care about you!
Ohhhhhhhhh!
I don't care about you!"
Fear, "I Don't Care About You"

"Look out at your children
See their faces in golden rays
Don't kid yourself they belong to you
They're the start of the coming race
The Earth is a bitch, we've finished our news
Homo sapiens have outgrown their use
All the strangers came today
And it looks as though they're here to stay"
David Bowie, "Oh! You Pretty Things"

    Pro Wrestling 

Adapt... or Perish.
—Slogan of Evolution

    Tabletop Games 

"Those loyal to the shrunken corpse on Terra still cling to their own processes by which perhaps one in a hundred neophytes may survive to become a battle brother. The methods I have developed over the last millennia are more stringent, for we must be pure in our hatred and hard of heart, body and soul. Fewer than one in every thousand survive, and I strive each day to lengthen these odds still further."
Fabius Bile, Warhammer 40,000

    Video Games 

"I do not demand bootlicking from the higher mortal. I wish that he stand tall and forge for himself a path of greatness. You who are unwilling, you will do well to serve your masters - let yourself wear chains and serve a higher purpose, and be grateful. But if you count yourself a superior mortal, stand tall! Yet know that I will not be there to raise you up. You must raise yourself up, on your own terms. You must make yourself great, as I have forged superiority for myself."
The Book of Roark, Lusternia

"That's right everybody, it's that time of year again: Happy Birthday. You know the rules, everybody at the government-mandated maximum age needs to report to an ethnological redundancy associate toute suite. Lookin' through your files here...the following is a complete list of employees who need to snuff it: [ahem] Dorothy Russell, Age 98. End of list. Sorry about that, Dorothy. You had a good ninety-seven years, time to stop hoggin' all the resources. Leave some nutrient paste for the rest of us, why don't you. Cave Johnson—age fifty-one—we're done here."
Cave Johnson

"Trouble is caused by unemployment, and unemployment comes from poor economic performance and lazy people. If you had job, would you steal a car? Of course not! And if you had a high-rise condo, a mistress, and a seat on the board, would you run around graffitiing your name all over town and making a nuisance of yourself, spinning on your back, and poppin' and lockin'? Not a hope. It's simple: If you don't have a job, starve. Get out of my constituency—by force if necessary—and starve."
Congressman Alex Shrub, Pressing Issues (GTA Radio)

"Natural selection leaves the survivors STRONGER and BETTER! Humans have escaped this winnowing for FAR TOO LONG."
Albert Wesker, Resident Evil 5

"Weak. He's weak. You're strong. Crush him."

"When did mankind lose touch with natural selection? No matter how inferior a human's genes are, that person is protected by laws, and can't be killed. Even those incapacitated in accidents or stricken with a serious illness are needlessly kept alive. What a drawn out, wasteful existence. It's this divorce from natural selection that has caused mankind to stop evolving."
Hans Davis, Metal Gear Ac!d

"I have a dream. That one day every person in this nation will control their own destiny. A nation of the truly free, dammit. A nation of action, not words, ruled by strength, not committee! Where the law changes to suit the individual, not the other way around. Where power and justice are back where they belong: in the hands of the people! Where every man is free to think - to act - for himself! Fuck all these limp-dick lawyers and chickenshit bureaucrats. Fuck this 24-hour Internet spew of trivia and celebrity bullshit! Fuck American pride! Fuck the media! FUCK ALL OF IT! America is diseased. Rotten to the core. There's no saving it - we need to pull it out by the roots. Wipe the slate clean. BURN IT DOWN! And from the ashes a new America will be born. Evolved, but untamed! The weak will be purged and the strongest will thrive - free to live as they see fit, they'll make America great again! ...In my new America, people will die and kill for what they BELIEVE! Not for money. not for oil! Not for what they're told is right. Every man will be free to fight his own wars!"
Senator Steven Armstrong, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance

"I have observed this world for thousand of years, since what you would call the ancient times... The human spirit was once beautiful. The strong ruled the people, while the people respected the strong, cursing their own weakness. It was thanks to the chaos of that ancient world that the spirits humans were made beautiful! But the foolish notion of "order" has caused the human spirit to wither and decay. "Order" is nothing but comfort of the weak! The weak only deserve the comfort of death!"

"Don't get me wrong, I see the logic, but it's kind of...animal logic. Still, you made your bed. Now you've gotta lie in it. If you're gonna be an animal, be an animal. Own it! The losers, the weak? Throw 'em away! That's how nature works, my friends - that's life at its most pure! You get me?"

    Web Original 

" The message is clear: in this new, dog-eat-dog world, that's all survivors are good for, the food and tools in their backpack.

So, what if it had turned out that guy was himself a badass zombie-killing machine? That'd come in pretty useful, right? Well, maybe they could tell by looking at him that wasn't the case (no visible weapons, not covered in enough zombie blood)...How many people do
you know who are truly worthless?"
Cracked, "Four Reasons The Walking Dead Hates Humans More Than Zombies"

    Western Animation 

Princess Bubblegum: You see this fat bee? It's gentle and makes the flower happy, and pollinated. They both get what they need and that's how leaders should be.
Goliad: No, Princess. Bee cares not for flower. If getting pollen hurts or kills flower, bee would not care. Bee is stronger than flower. Goliad is stronger than bee. Goliad is stronger than all.
Adventure Time, "Goliad"

    Real Life 

"The strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must."
Thucydides, the Melian dialog

"We must, if we are to be consistent, and if we're to have a real pedigree herd, mate the best of our men with the best of our women as often as possible, and the inferior men with the inferior women as seldom as possible, and bring up only the offspring of the best."
Plato, The Republic, Book V, Pt. VI

I against my brother, my brother and I against my cousins, then my cousins and I against strangers.
—Bedouin saying (probably overquoted by non-Bedouins)

"Let it be understood that we cannot go outside this alternative: liberty, inequality, survival of the fittest; not-liberty, equality, survival of the unfittest. The former carries society forward and favors all its best members; the latter carries society downwards and favors all its worst members."
William Graham Sumner

"The American Beauty Rose can be produced in the splendor and fragrance which bring cheer to its beholder only by sacrificing the early buds which grow up around it. This is not an evil tendency in business. It is merely the working-out of a law of nature and a law of God."
John D. Rockefeller, Address to Brown University students (1904)

"This disposition to admire, and almost to worship, the rich and the powerful, and to despise, or, at least, to neglect persons of poor and mean condition, though necessary both to establish and to maintain the distinction of ranks and the order of society, is, at the same time, the great and most universal cause of the corruption of our moral sentiments."
Adam Smith, "The Theory of Moral Sentiments"

"I found one day in school a boy of medium size ill-treating a smaller boy. I expostulated, but he replied: 'The bigs hit me, so I hit the babies; that's fair.' In these words he epitomized the history of the human race."
Bertrand Russell, Education and the Social Order

"It was inevitable, and in the highest degree desirable for the good of humanity at large, that the American people would ultimately crowd out the Mexicans... It was out for the question for [the Texans] to submit to the mastery of a weaker race."

"Liquidate labor, liquidate stocks, liquidate farmers, liquidate real estate...it will purge the rottenness out of the system. High costs of living and high living will come down. People will work harder, live a more moral life. Values will be adjusted, and enterprising people will pick up from less competent people."
—Treasury Secretary Andrew W. Mellon advising President Hoover on how best to treat The Great Depression

"The stronger must dominate and not blend with the weaker, thus sacrificing his own greatness. Only the born weakling can view this as cruel... He who wants to live must fight, and he who does not want to fight in this world of eternal struggle does not deserve to live."

"I do not apologize for the takeover of the region by the Jews from the Palestinians in the same way I don't apologize for the takeover of America by the whites from the Red Indians or the takeover of Australia from the blacks. It is natural for a superior race to dominate an inferior one."

"We should cease to talk about vague and unreal objectives such as human rights, the raising of the living standards, and democratization. The day is not far off when we are going to have to deal in straight power concepts. The less we are then hampered by idealistic slogans, the better."
George Kennan

"The complacent, the self-indulgent, the soft societies are about to be swept away with the debris of history. Only the strong, only the industrious, only the determined, only the courageous, only the visionary who determine the real nature of our struggle can possibly survive."
John F. Kennedy, address to the American Society of Newspaper Editors, 4.20.61

"What is good?—Whatever augments the feeling of power, the will to power, power itself, in man.
What Is Evil?—Whatever springs from weakness.
What is happiness?—The feeling that power increases—that resistance is overcome. Not contentment, but more power; not peace at any price, but war; not virtue, but efficiency (virtue in the Renaissance sense, virtù, virtue free of moral acid).
The weak and the botched shall perish: first principle of our charity. And one should help them to it.
What is more harmful than any vice?—Practical sympathy for the botched and the weak— Christianity…"
The Antichrist by Friedrich Nietzsche

"When you have civilized men fighting savages, you support the civilized men, no matter who they are."

"When I feed the poor, they call me a saint, but when I ask why the poor are hungry, they call me a Communist."
Hélder Câmara

"The central question that emerges—and it is not a parliamentary question or a question that is answered by merely consulting a catalog of the rights of American citizens, born Equal—is whether the White community in the South is entitled to take such measures as are necessary to prevail, politically and culturally, in areas in which it does not predominate numerically? The sobering answer is Yes—the White community is so entitled because, for the time being, it is the advanced race."
William F. Buckley on the Civil Rights Movement, National Review (1975)

"I could never find two people who are perfectly equal: one will always be more valuable than the other. And many people, as a matter of fact, simply have no value."
Pentti Linkola, Can Life Prevail? A Radical Approach To The Environmental Crisis

"...America has always believed that those who have money are good people and those who lack it are bad people. At a deeper level, our conservatives are true Darwinians and think that the weak and the poor ought to die off, leaving the spoils to the fit. Certainly a do-gooder is the worst thing anyone can be, a societal pervert who would alter with government subsidy nature's harsh but necessary way with the weak."

"It consistently mistakes raw force for strength, and the rawer the force, the more reverent the posture of the mind before it... From almost any page of Atlas Shrugged, a voice can be heard, from painful necessity, commanding: 'To a gas chamber — go!'"

"Anyone who believes that the theory of evolution implies moral darwinism, and who also believes in the theory of gravity, has a moral duty to go jump off a cliff."
Ari Rahikkala

"The message is simple. You have a free choice: the labor market, the workhouse prison, death, or go somewhere else...It is returning to its origins today as the prospects for rollback improve, narrowing substantially the choices for the growing population who lack rights by doctrinal decision — termed 'science' or 'natural law.'"
Noam Chomsky, "On Humanism and Morality"

"It is not rare, even today, to hear Rwandans argue that a war is necessary to wipe our an excess of population and to bring numbers into line with the available land resources...the people whose children had to walk barefoot to school killed the people who could buy shoes for theirs."
James Diamond, Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Survive

"Look, it's terrible, I know, but weakness really, really bugs me, to the point that if there is a wounded bird on the sidewalk, I look at it and I go: 'I think I'll just kick it.'"

"In the past, humans hesitated when they took lives, even non-human lives. But society had changed, and they no longer felt that way. As humans grew stronger, I think that we became quite arrogant, losing the sorrow of 'we have no other choice.' I think that in the essence of human civilization, we have the desire to become rich without limit, by taking the lives of other creatures."


It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.