ideas the ancient past

Ranging to justice

Think­ing about the var­i­ous clus­ter­cuss­es in the world, and read­ing William James, I came across this opti­mistic notion: 

Secret ret­ri­bu­tions are always restor­ing the lev­el, when dis­turbed, of divine jus­tice. It is impos­si­ble to tilt the beam. All the tyrants and pro­pri­etors and monop­o­lists of the world in vain set their shoul­ders to heave the bar. Set­tles forever­more the pon­der­ous equa­tor to its lines, and man and mote, and star and sun, must range to it, or be pul­ver­ized by the recoil.

It's a quote from Emer­son, deliv­ered in a lec­ture on the divine in the mid-19th cen­tu­ry. You got­ta won­der if he'd recon­sid­er his posi­tion if he saw the world today.