5 Reasons Why Good Intentions Don’t Count

Every time you believe in your good intentions Bono gets a little piece of your soul

1. If you’ve ever opened a crap present, and someone says ‘It’s the thought that counts’ and you secretly thought ‘No it isn’t! I’d much rather have a good present!’ then you know we should be suspicious of good intentions. Good intentions have crap effects. Often.

2. Your good intentions frequently serve the purpose of making you feel good. By having good intentions the point you have established – beyond any doubt whatsover – is that you are the sort of person who has good intentions. Well, you’ve established it in your mind anyway. But let’s be honest, most people have good intentions in some way or other. They’re really nothing special. Sorry.

3. Look, I know this is scraping through the bottom of the barrel of rhetoric before I’ve even got to point five but I’m going to say it anyway: Hitler probably had good intentions. In fact, no probably about it. He wanted to elevate his people and give them better lives. You aren’t Hitler (Yet – careful now!) but do you really feel sure there are no dodgy ideas and perceptions in your mind distorting your thinking?

4. The structures within which you live and operate will twist your intentions to their own ends. They always do. You can’t ever entirely calculate the effects of your actions, even when you’ve done them. But that’s no excuse for charging ahead borne along purely on the conviction that your intentions are good so it must be worth doing. We should at least try to take account of how our intentions will be interpreted, used, and distorted.

5. Good intentions without thinking through the context in which you perform them, without attempting to work out the reason for the failures that have gone before you, without wondering what the price of failure would be, are lazy as well as egotistical. It’s not that good intentions don’t count at all, it’s that good intentions alone don’t count. Stop being so fucking lazy. (If you are not lazy and not convinced of the inherent worth of your good intentions please forgive this minor rudeness – it was well-intentioned.)

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5 Responses to 5 Reasons Why Good Intentions Don’t Count

  1. Tim says:

    I have bad intentions but good things keep happening! Help!?!

  2. agent z says:

    Have you ever read the Master and Margarita? It starts with a Goethe quote:

    “… who are you, then?
    I am part of that power
    which eternally wills evil
    and eternally works good.”

    It seems you might be this power Tim.

  3. Getting down to earth on what i don’t like about this Govenment and the previous both run around with the bank of England both had are bought by Rothchild
    Mandelson is part of the agenda of total control of the world and he would sell his grandmother to do as he told by Rothchilds.
    Eu laws passed in Europe and we as the public have no say
    Get rid of the EU no good for the UK
    Bring real democracy back

  4. agent j says:

    I had a brief struggle with myself about whether to allow (very) thinly veiled anti-semitism on my blog, but on balance I think it’s best to leave the post.

    I will make the point though: the Jews are not to blame Norman. Nor is any one person or family. It’s a system in which some people benefit at the expense of the many, but actually those people who benefit quite substantially number in the hundreds of thousands. They’ve got a good system going.

    • Tim says:

      In my opinion Norman Kennedy is not a real person. I believe him to be a spam bot. I think it must be a spambot that posts vaguely frothing stuff onto what it considers to be vaguely right-leaning blogs. I think it must have matched some keywords in your blog that lead it to this action. The evidence I have for this is: (1) the lack of direct relevance of his post to your article and (2) the content of the website linked to from his name. Maybe I am just to paranoid…

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