kind has created instruments that can spiral events beyond control. It may seem
ironic that politics, so often despised, offers a hope that is also realistic. But perhaps it is not so strange. Politics, to repeat Max Weber's observation, is the striving for power and the using of power in the service of a cause. As he insisted,
some kind of faith must always be present.
And politics does not always fail. In these crisis years since World War II,
someone else remarked, the only thing that has stood between the world and
disaster is a thin red line of people practicing politics.
3 What was true of politics
in the past may also be true in the future.
Karl W. Deutsch, Political Community and the North Atlantic Area: International
Organization in the Light of Historical Experience ( Princeton: 1957).
See, for example, the story about the outstanding Soviet physicist, Aleksei
Abrikosov, who came from Russia to work at the Argonne National Laboratories near Chicago. Sergei Leskov, "America's Soviet Scientists", The New York Times, 15 July 1993,
The remark was made by Warner S. Schilling. My thanks go to him not only for
letting me use the quote, but for letting me tamper with it slightly. What he originally
said was that all that has stood between the world and disaster is a thin red line of politicians.