Philosopher, mentor of Plato and Xenophon
Socrates: "I have examined your position and determined your utterances to be mere brain-farts."
Socrates: "If you want to know your own soul, you must talk to other people."
Socrates: "From the time when I began to understand spoken words [I] have never left off seeking
after and learning every ... thing that I could."
[Asked if he was not embarrassed to still be studying in his old age:]
Socrates: "I would be more embarrassed to be ignorant in my old age."
Cicero: "It was Socrates who brought philosophy
down from the heavens and onto the earth."
Thomas McEvilly: "The aim of the Socratic ... dialectic is to awaken people from their
dogmatic slumbers into intellectual curiosity."
Leonardo da Vinci
Inventor and painter
[Last sentence of a mathematical theorem in his notebook:]
Da Vinci: "Perche la minesstra si fredda."
("Whatever - the soup is getting cold.")
Da Vinci: "People of accomplishment rarely sit back and let things happen to them. They go out in the
world and happen to things."
Da Vinci: "It is a great fault in painters to repeat the same movements, the same faces
and [the same] manners. [Why they do so] has often been a source of wonder to
Da Vinci: "A man ... should not be loath to hear every opinion ... and consider whether he
who blames has good grounds to blame you, and if you think that he has, amend your ways; and if not ... show him by reasoning where his mistake lies."
Sigmund Freud: "My book on Leonardo
is the only beautiful thing I have ever written."
Inventor and politician
Franklin: "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for dinner."
Franklin: "I was charmed by the Socratic
method [and] practised it continually, and grew very artful and expert in drawing people ... into concessions [and]
obtaining victories that [I did not] always deserve."
Thomas Jefferson: "It was one of the [things] which
... made Franklin [so] amiable: If he was urged to announce an opinion, he did it rather by asking
questions, as if for information, or by suggesting doubts."
Richard Brookheiser: "Franklin was America's minister
to France and the star of the diplomatic corps, but he [was] lazy, high-living and careless about
corruption. ... [But then again] perhaps those qualities made him the perfect minister to France."
Keirsey & son identify Franklin as ENTP.
Feynman: "I have approximate answers and possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty ...
but I'm not absolutely sure of anything."
Feynman: "On the many occasions when I play the bongo drums, the introducer never
seems to find it necessary to mention that I also do theoretical physics."
Feynman: "You don't have to be responsible for the world that you're in."
Feynman: "In this age of specialization men who thoroughly know one field are often incompetent
to discuss another. The great problems ...
have for this reason been discussed less and less in public. When we look at the past great debates on these
subjects we feel jealous of those times, for we should have liked the excitement of such argument."
Stephen Hawking: "Quantum theories can be formulated in
many different ways, but what is probably the most [accessible] description was given by Feynman."
Keirsey & son identify Feynman as ENTP.
Philosopher and author, mentor of Frederick the Great
[On his deathbed, asked by a priest to renounce the Devil:]
Voltaire: "Now now, my good man. This is no time for making enemies."
Voltaire: "Almost everything is imitation."
Voltaire: "To hold a pen is to be at war."
Voltaire: "It is dangerous to be right in matters where established men are wrong."
Voltaire: "Clever tyrants are never punished."
Voltaire: "The Quran
is an unintelligible book, each page of which makes common sense shudder."
Mathematician and inventor
Pascal: "It is far better to know something about everything than to know all about one thing."
Pascal: "When we wish ... to show another that he errs ... notice from
what side he views the matter, for on that side it is usually true, and admit that truth to him, but reveal to
him the side on which it is false. He will then be satisfied with that, for he sees that he was not mistaken, but that he
only failed to see all sides."
Pascal: "I have got friends among all parties."
Pascal: "Nothing is so insufferable to man as to be completely at rest ... without diversion, without study."
Albert Beguin: "[Pascal's work is characterized by] the haste with which he throws himself into it,
the suddenness with which he takes up something new, and the restless impatience that makes him abandon a study as
soon as he has advanced the first principles."
Philosopher and historian, author of 'The Prince'
Machiavelli: "Man must wear one face in public and another in private."
Machiavelli: "Anyone who studies present and ancient affairs will easily see how
in all cities and all peoples there still exist, and have always existed, the same patterns."
Machiavelli: "Occasionally words must serve to veil the facts. But let this
happen in such a way that no one become aware of it."
Machiavelli: "It is necessary to be a fox to discover snares and a lion to terrify wolves.
Those who rely simply on the lion do not understand."
Nietzsche: "[Machiavelli presents] the most serious events in a
boisterous ... tempo of the gallop, and [with] the best, wantonest humor."
Philosopher and historian
Hume: "I have written on all sorts of subjects and yet I have no enemies, except indeed
all the Whigs, all the Tories and all the Christians."
Hume: "I cannot but consider myself as a kind of resident or ambassador from the
dominions of learning to those of conversation."
Hume: "Rousseau has not reflected very much. He has mostly felt."
Roderick Graham: "Hume was [at once] a philosopher [and a] darling of the Paris salons."
Le Chevalier Ramsay: "[Hume is not] capable of [concentrated] attention. ... He seems
[to] spin thoughts out of [his] own brain without any regard for religion or tradition." [Upon
meeting Hume around 1734.]
John Stuart Mill
Mill: "If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, and only one person were
of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he,
if he had the power, would be justified in silencing all mankind."
Mill: "I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to
say that stupid people are generally Conservative."
Mill: "Stupidity is much the same all the world over. A stupid person's notions and feelings
may confidently be inferred from those which prevail in the circle by which the person is surrounded."
Mill: "The first intellectual operation in which I arrived at any proficiency, was
dissecting a bad argument, and finding in what part the fallacy lay."
Mill: "[As a boy] I was disputatious, and did not scruple to give direct contradictions to
things which I heard said."
Burke: "The first [emotion] in the human mind is curiosity. ... Curiosity blends itself more
or less with all our passions."
Burke: "Curiosity ... has an appetite which is very sharp, but very easily satisfied; and it
has always an appearance of giddiness, restlessness, and anxiety."
Burke: "We are creatures designed for contemplation as well as action."
Burke: "It is not what a lawyer tells me I may do; but what humanity, reason, and justice tell me I ought to do."
Burke: "Let [people's] experience of life ... be what it may. The arrogance of age must submit to
be taught by youth."
Steven Pinker: "Burkean conservatism [is] a fine application of reason."
Popper: "One should always be willing to carry on the discussion in the opponent's terminology."
Popper: "For me, both philosophy and science lose all their attraction when they give up
[straightforwardness]. Specialization may be a great temptation for the scientist. For the philosopher it is the mortal sin."
Popper: "[My preferred society] society is one in which men have learned to be ...
critical of taboos, and to base decisions on the authority of their own intelligence."
Popper: "The 'lofty depth' that Hegel ascribes to himself
is an unmixed metaphor that works out to flatness."
Paul Johnson: "When Popper visited Cambridge, Wittgenstein
got into argument with him where, in the heat of the moment, Wittgenstein had pointed at a firepoker at Popper
to underline his point."
[Wittgenstein: "Give me an example of a moral rule?!"]
Popper: "Thou shalt not threaten visiting lecturers with pokers!"
Philosopher and mathematician, mentor of Wittgenstein
Russell: "Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric."
Russell: "Marx was driven to change the world and I should say
that my goal is the very opposite. My goal is to understand."
Russell: "This world is not something in which certainty is possible ... and therefore you
must learn to act on things which you still very much doubt."
Russell: "Hitler is an outcome of Rousseau."
Thomas Sowell: "[Russell was subject to] wide mood swings [and]
sought sweeping and dramatic 'solutions.'"
Julian Baggini: "Russell brought philosophy down to earth, with clarity and wit."
Ayn Rand: "Hume was merely the
Bertrand Russell of his time."
Physicist, student of Niels Bohr
Heisenberg: "We have to remember that what we observe is not nature herself, but nature exposed
to our method of questioning."
Heisenberg: "In general, scientific progress calls for no more than the absorption and
elaboration of new ideas - and this is a call most scientists are happy to heed."
Heisenberg: "Modern physics takes a definite stand against Democritus and for Plato."
Heisenberg: "The physicist ... has to speak about his results also to non-physicists who will
not be satisfied unless some explanation is given in plain language. [But] even for the physicist the description in
plain language will be the criterion of the degree of understanding that has been reached."
John von Neumann
Mathematician and inventor of game theory
Von Neumann: "Truth is much too complicated to allow anything but approximations."
Von Neumann: "The whole [cosmos] seems to function without any direction, without
any reference to usefulness, and without any desire to do things which are useful."
[Von Neumann's wife:] "His most characteristic trait was his boundless curiosity about
everything and anything, his compulsive ambition to know, to understand any problem."
[Von Neumann's wife:] "Anything that would tickle his curiosity, he could not leave alone."
George Dyson: "Von Neumann was able to communicate with anyone, translate their problems ... into
mathematics, find a solution, and translate this back into their language, bringing the results down to earth."
Zeno of Elea
Greek philosopher, student of Parmenides
[Speaking of his famous paradoxes:]
Zeno: "Some try to mock Parmenides' assumption of stillness by
arguing that it leads to absurd results. I pay them back in kind by demonstrating
that their assumption of motion ... is even more absurd."
Zeno: "Socrates has an excellent grasp of the point of my work."
Robin Waterfield: "For Zeno there are no sacred cows. He demands that we think
about all our assumptions, whether they are derived from common sense or from authority."
Bertrand Russell: "Zeno's paradoxes are immeasurably subtle and profound."
Diogenes Laertius: "[Zeno was] skilled to argue both sides of any question
- [he was a] universal critic."
Greg Morgenson: "[In an argument] Zeno had a light touch and a flair for the absurd."
Greek philosopher, mentor of Parmenides
Xenophanes: "If an act is blameworthy it is blameworthy no matter who the perpetrayor; god or man."
Xenophanes: "All knowledge of this world is but an interwowen web of guesses."
Xenophanes: "Gods have certainty; humans must learn from inference."
[Empedocles: "It is impossible to find a wise man."]
Xenophanes: "Naturally - for it takes a wise man to recognize a wise man."
Karl Popper: "I think that Xenophanes came closest to anticipating
the ideas of the European Enlightenment."
Proclus: "Xenophanes published strange satires against all philosophers and poets because of a certain
mean-spiritedness that he had."
Nietzsche: "[Unlike] Heraclitus and
Plato who withdrew into solitude, Xenophanes sought out the public and scorned them."
Catherine the Great
Empress of Russia
Catherine: "Fortune is not as blind as people imagine. It is often the result of a long series
of precise and well-chosen steps that precede events and are not perceived by the common herd."
Catherine: "I [am] horribly curious."
Catherine: "One should argue without anger or passion."
[On her childhood:]
Catherine: "There was no boy more daring than I."
Markus Cruse: "There is no one Catherine. ... Any synthesis of Catherine ... remains
incomplete. [In her memoirs] Catherine herself is elusive [even though] her pleasant, direct tone invites us to
see her as honest and sincere."
Founder of Apple along with Steve Jobs
Wozniak: "Everything's changing, everything's dynamic. ... You get this idea, and you
get another idea, and this doesn't work out and you have to replace it with something else."
Wozniak: "My friend Allen Baum ... said, 'Look, you can start Apple [without getting] into
management and [still] get rich.' ... As soon as he said it ... that really freed me up. ... I didn't want
to start a company. ... I wasn't going to tell other people how to do things."
Wozniak: "All the best things that I did at Apple came from ... not
having done it before, ever. Every single thing that we came out with that was really great, I'd never once
done that thing in my life."
Wozniak: "Creative things have to sell to get acknowledged. ...
Steve Jobs didn't really set the direction of my ... designs
but he did the more important part of turning them into a product that would [sell]."
Wozniak: "[Steve Jobs] always saw a way to make a quick buck off
my designs. ... The lofty talk came much further down the line."
Economist, anarchist and libertarian
Rothbard: "The problem [with Adam Smith] is that he originated nothing that was true, and that whatever he originated was wrong."
Rothbard: "John Stuart Mill was the quintessence of soft rather than hardcore, a woolly minded man of mush."
Rothbard: "There is one good thing about Marx: he was not a Keynesian."
[Keynes: "In the long run we are all dead."]
Rothbard: "Keynes is dead, and we're all living in the long run."
Peter Kurrild-Klitgaard: "[He wrote in] clear prose, even when writing about very complex
matters. How can a world that has the writings of Rothbard have so many who think highly of
Foucault, Zizek and the post-modernists?"
John Palmer: "Austrian economics is Platonism for economists."
U.S. presidential candidate (R) and author
Gingrich: "I'm not a natural leader. I'm too intellectual; I'm too abstract; I think too much."
Gingrich: "Elected people aren't all that smart."
Gingrich: "If I'm going to be president, we're going to make mistakes. You can't have change on the level I want and not make mistakes."
Gingrich: "I read 'Men Who Hate Women and the Women Who Love Them'
and I found frightening pieces that related to [myself]."
Gingrich: "[During his campaign] I think Obama worked very hard at being a person
who is normal, reasonable, moderate, bipartisan, transparent, accommodating - none of which was true. ... He was being
the person he needed to be in order to [win]. ...
He was authentically dishonest."
David Gergen: "Gingrich [is] one of the smartest, most creative figures in politics. [But
he is also] a bomb thrower who can be bombastic, erratic and an intellectual bully."
U.S. President (D) and author, married to Michelle Obama
[Asked why he wrote his Nobel Peace Prize speech himself:]
Obama: "I wanted to make an argument that didn't allow either side to feel too comfortable."
Obama: "[As an adolescent I was] arguing all the time, usually about me failing to abide by ...
petty and arbitrary rules. I found that I could generally win these arguments."
Obama: "There are some things about being president that I still have difficulty doing. For example,
faking emotion. Because I feel it is an insult to the people I'm dealing with."
Obama: "My wife makes fun of how routinized I've become. It's not my
natural state. ... But at some point in my life I overcompensated."
Joe Biden: "[Obama] is an intellectual. ... He's not a moralizer."
U.S. Secretary of State (R)
Kissinger: "We tend to think that a problem is either
economic or political or military. ... It is hard for us to understand that we have to be able to do military,
political, economic and psychological things, all simultaneously."
[Speaking of George H.W. Bush:]
Kissinger: "He is ... soft and not sophisticated."
[His first mentor:] "He would squeeze me for my ideas the way one would squeeze a sponge."
Time Magazine: "The Kissinger wit can always be counted on."
Walter Isaacson: "Kissinger's furtive style and chameleon instincts make capturing his true colors difficult."
Dictator of Communist China
Mao: "The party elite is a bunch of zombies with a slave mentality. I want them to have more courage and
Mao: "My father wanted me to read the classics [and] I debated him on his own ground, by quoting them.
... Against his charge that I was lazy I [quoted
from the classics] that older people should do more work than younger ones and [pointed out] that my father was over three times as
old as myself. I declared that when I was his age I would be much more energetic!"
Li Zhisui: "Mao was always in search of the new, the untested, the untried, both in his private life
and in the affairs of the nation."
Li Zhisui: "[Mao was interested in history and he] used the stories of China's past both to
understand and to manipulate the present."
Timothy Cheek: "The stories [about Mao] do not match. ... Indeed, it is [a] theme: There are multiple
Maos, and to settle on one dominant image is to distort the whole."
President of Iran
Ahmadinejad: "[I like] talking and listening with a calm manner and a logical reasoning."
Ahmadinejad: "I am worried at the thought that [progress] would be sacrificed for the stagnant
mentality, action-dodging and conservatism of some people."
Ahmadinejad: "What have the Zionists done ... that the U.S. administration [feels]
obliged to blindly support [them]? Is it not because they have imposed themselves on ... the banking,
financial, cultural and media sectors?"
Cambridge University Study: "[Ahmadinejad is] a personality of a different intellectual caliber,
erudition ... and world outlook than [his predecessors]."
Cambridge University Study: "[He presents] ideas drawn from a curiously mixed bag."
Host of 'The Daily Show'
Stewart: "[My comedy is] irreverent [so] that people not
take their dogma too seriously."
Stewart: "I'm a comedian first. My comedy is informed by an ideological background. ...
But that's not [my] primary motivating force."
College teammate: "Everybody
was always a little afraid of messing with Jon because he was so quick-witted."
Eileen Katz: "Jon is best when he's playing off people or situations."
Host of 'The Colbert Report' where he plays a satirical character inspired by Bill O'Reilly
Colbert: "I have a healthy disrespect for authority."
Colbert: "I think one of my strengths [is] my ability to serve other people's ideas.
I'm proud of my ability to understand what somebody else is trying to do."
Colbert: "Sometimes I really just want my natural curiosity to
run wild with the guest. It kills me that I can't know more about what they're
Colbert: "Jon Stewart deconstructs the news. He's ironic and
detached. I falsely construct the news and am ironically attached."
Talk show host
Maher: "We need more people speaking out. This country is not overrun with rebels and
free thinkers. It's overrun with sheep and conformists."
Maher: "I do think the patriotic thing to do is to critique my country.
How else do you make a country better but by pointing out its flaws?"
Maher: "Curious people are interesting people; I wonder why that is?"
Sacha Baron Cohen
Comedian also known as Borat and Ali G, cousin of Simon Baron-Cohen
Baron Cohen: "[Borat is not a joke] on Kazahkstan. The joke is on the people who can believe
that the Kazahkstan I describe can exist."
Baron Cohen: "I had the choice of either pursuing my studies
and doing a PhD or doing something that was a bit more fun, so I decided that
rather than sit alone in a library, I'd try and make people laugh."
Filmmaker and member of Monty Python
Gilliam: "I don't think I'm cynical. I'm skeptical."
Gilliam: "I like the idea of ... discovering new things all the time."
Gilliam: "It's not that ['Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas'] is pro- or anti-drugs. The movie is just showing
you both [sides], giving you the whole experience. Then you can decide for yourself."
Gilliam: "There's a side of me that's trying to compete with Lucas and Spielberg
- I don't usually admit this publicly. ... They only go so far, and their view of the world is rather
Comedian and member of Monty Python
Cleese: "[Looking back on my education] I started to get angry. I thought: 'Why was I given this rubbish?
This tenth-rate series of platitutes?'"
Cleese: "[My] message is: 'Work it out for yourselves, you're all individuals, and don't do what people
tell you to do.'"
Cleese: "[Monty Python is a critique of] closed systems of thought. ... Systems by which, whatever evidence is given to a person, he merely adapts it. ... Once you have ...
an idea [where] no contrary evidence can come in, I think it is very dangerous."
Cleese's critique of closed systems of thought is the same as that of Karl Popper.
Robert Downey Jr.
Downey: "I think I've been lucky, because my frequent appearances on
Court TV have brought [my fame] to another level than 'just the actor guy.'"
Comedian also known as Mr. Bean
Atkinson: "[For me] freedom of speech reigns just below the right to sustain life itself."
Atkinson: "The storms that surround Twitter and Facebook comments [show] ... how appallingly prickly and intolerant
society has become of even the mildest adverse comment."
Atkinson: "I have a performing inclination."
Phil Trentham: "[Atkinson's series 'Blackadder' is] without doubt the best British comedy since Monty Python."
[Asked why his films have no plot:]
Fellini: "Life itself has no plot!"
Fellini: "I need order around me because I am a transgressor."
Fellini: "Reading Jung freed me from my guilt and inferiority [which
stemmed from] my inability to organize."
Fellini: "[Freud] forces us to think, [Jung]
permits us to imagine, to dream."
Stanley Kubrick: "[Fellini's] interviews are very amusing. He
just makes jokes and says preposterous things that you know he can't possibly mean."
Martin Scorsese: "[Fellini] expanded our way of seeing and completely changed the way we experience [film]."
I have not known before interests me more than everything I have seen in my life."
Lagerfeld: "I prefer to do all my work in the evening ... and [then] send everything [in]. I'm
not [even] there in the studio. ... My work is very conceptual."
Lagerfeld: "I read 10 [books] at the same time. My favorite ... is Spinoza,
but I have superficial books too, and magazines. ... I want
to know everything. I want to see everything."
Actor and awards show host
[On his job as a high school substitute teacher:]
Crystal: "I taught everything from English to auto shop. I'd be at the front of a class saying,
'Listen, I don't know anything about science, but these two guys walk into a bar...'"
[When asked if he was funny as a kid:]
Crystal: "I could always improvise."
Actor and awards show host
Fry: "Seriousness is no more a guarantee of truth ... than humor is a guarantee of superficiality."
Fry: "I like to wake up each morning and not know what I think, that I may reinvent myself in some way."
Fry: "I have always felt unable to ... become part of the tribe. ... I have always sniped or joked from the sidelines."
Fry: "Incuriosity is the oddest and most foolish failing there is."
Neil Patrick Harris
Actor and awards show host
Harris: "I think it's important ... to not just use your same tricks over and over."
Harris: "I enjoy darker sardonic wit more than knock-knock jokes."
Harris: "I'm like a plate-spinner, you know? I've got a lot of little plates that I'm trying to
keep spinning at the same time."
Unusually for ENTPs, Harris also has Dependent traits.
David Hyde Pierce
Hyde Pierce: "Never believe anything that anyone tells you. ... It's not as cynical as it
sounds; it's just that people always say something for a reason ... [so] you can't take things at face value."
Hyde Pierce: "I'm pretty good ... on my feet with a live audience, and I enjoy that
Hyde Pierce: "I can vividly recall telling a joke in second grade and realizing it was funnier if
I didn't laugh. I've been deadpan ever since."
The Independent: "Much of the success of 'Frasier' ... must be attributed to the on-screen
chemistry binding Kelsey Grammer to his co-star David Hyde Pierce as Niles."
Hanks: "I always had plenty of friends and lots of stuff to do, because I aggressively made those things happen."
Hanks: "I was never intimidated by change."
Hanks: "I try to do what I call the three E's - educate, entertain, and enlighten. ... If you don't entertain, no one will show up."
Hanks' notion of making things happen is the same as that of Leonardo da Vinci.
Hanks' notion of the necessity of entertaining is the same as that of Maddox.
Grant: "[Because] most actors really love acting, that blinds them to the fact that the
[film they're making] is pretentious nonsense [or] commercial schlock. And because I rather hate acting,
my eyes [see] something different."
Grant: "I cling to the fantasy that I could have done something more creative, like writing
a book. But ... I don't have the discipline."
Grant: "A lot of people end up in jobs that aren't perhaps their absolute, true calling."
Anderson: "[In school] I was ... busy talking, insulting teachers and generally playing the clown."
Anderson: "I'm a more spontaneous person [than my X-Files character]. I laugh. I'm crass. I'm raunchy!"
[Asked if she ever had sexual tension with David Duchovny:]
Anderson: "I think everybody has sexual tension with David. *wink*"
Actress, sister of Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen
Olsen: "It's good to have a conversation about two different opinions. Always
having multiple opinions is a good thing, because then you can have a conversation and learn something from
the conversation. The scary thing is when people don't have an opinion."
Olsen: "My favorite types of playwrights all ... play with ambiguity and not having all
the answers in their stories."
Olsen: "[As a kid] I really loved ... Michelle
Pfeiffer. I was completely in love with her."
Olsen: "I loved the way Josh Radnor writes. There is a style
to it and it's intelligent and funny."
Actress, dated Edward Norton
Hayek: "I keep waiting to meet a man who has more balls than I do."
Oprah: "You need only a few moments in Salma's presence
to discover she's a woman set on defining herself - try to contain her in a box, and she'll lift off
the lid, rise up, and just soar away every single time."
Oprah: "During every moment of our conversation, I found
myself wanting to high-five her! Her candor, her honesty, her boldness, her fire - it all made me want
to be more truthful with myself."
Actress, dated Marilyn Manson
McGowan: "Why should I downplay myself to make someone else more comfortable?"
McGowan: "[When I was in school] the teachers didn't know what to do with me because I would
sit and argue with them and take up everybody's time."
McGowan: "[Howard Stern said to me:] 'I can see why Manson likes
you, but you're too much for me. You're just too much work.' And maybe he's right, but it's not like I'm trying
to be challenging. I just think people get used to a diet of beige and they can't handle it when something
shocking pink comes along."
McGowan: "I always thought I was more satanic than Manson."
Screenwriter and author of 'Candy Girl: A Year in the Life of an Unlikely Stripper'
Cody: "I'm a pretty blunt person. ... I don't get asked to participate in the female-centric
Hollywood events [because] I swing my dick around too much."
McLachlan: "I find it so fascinating ... why we behave the way we do [and] why we react to others the way we do."
McLachlan: "You [have to] take care of yourself because no one else is going to do it."
McLachlan: "Chrissie Hynde ... thought I was going to be all demure and sweet. ... I brought her
to her knees in front of everybody."
Dion: "You have to go ahead and pursue all the possible and impossible ideas you can."
Carl Wilson: "There's something endearingly gawky and weird about her."
Fab Magazine: "Celine Dion is nothing if not honest - probably too honest."
Georges-Hebert Germain: "She [is] direct, relaxed, warm and quick to laugh."
Unusually for ENTPs, Dion also has Dependent traits.
Host of 'Top Gear'
Clarkson: "I've always been prepared to say what some people consider to be the 'unsayable.'"
Clarkson: "I quite like the [media] hating me. ... It's like annoying a teacher.
Once they've shown signs of weakness you really can go for them."
(Siouxsie and the Banshees)
Sioux: "The Western way of singing is very predictable."
Sioux: "You can't consciously create something [like the punk movement]. It's a combination of chemistry, conditions,
the environment, everything."
Sioux: "[Punk has become] so diluted because there's nothing being generated that's new; it's just recycled."
Sioux: "Performing is a very addictive drug, and my system screams out when I don't take it for a while."
Sioux: "I like ... working in a more spontaneous environment."
Barnes: "A lot of the time you can finish [other] artists' sentences. That's obvious. That's obvious.
It's always obvious."
Barnes: "I didn't want to make anything obvious. I wanted to surprise the listener."
(The Mars Volta)
Bixler-Zavala: "I like ... a band shedding its skin every time there's a new record to be made. I wish more bands would do that."
[To a heckler in the audience:]
Bixler-Zavala: "You're a robot! You're a sheep! Me-e-e! Me-e-e! ... You watch TV way too much!"
Bixler-Zavala: "The [name] Volta is taken from a Federico Fellini
book about his films. [It means] a changing of scene, or a turnaround; a new scene to him is called Volta."
Hicks: "The worst kind of non-smokers are the ones that come up to you and cough.
That's pretty cruel, isn't it? Do you go up to cripples and dance too?"
Cartoonist famous for 'The Oatmeal'
Inman: "My favorite example of the wrong kind of criticism is when someone says, 'It doesn't feel right.'"
Inman: "Inspiration isn't something you can schedule, harness, or control."
Inman: "Nikola Tesla was the greatest geek who ever lived."
Inman: "The only thing Edison truly pioneered was douchebaggery."
Contrary to rumor,
Inman does not identify himself as an introvert.
Blogger famous for 'The Best Page in the Universe'
[Asked what his message is:]
Maddox: "The No. 1 thing is my resentment of ... group-think mentality."
Maddox: "When you're trying to send a message to someone, if you wrap it in humor it sticks a lot better.
It's like the sugar with the medicine. People remember things when they laugh."
Maddox: "I first started the site ... because I wanted to spite my dumbass friends for having stupid ideologies."
Maddox: "[Name] a famous invention made by a woman. Give up? That's because there are none. ... All
notable milestones of human achievement have come about because of men."
Maddox: "I've got pissing people off down to a science."
Maddox: "I get compared to Bill Hicks."
Maddox identifies himself as ENTP.
Maddox's results on a Jungian type test score him as ENTP.
Philosopher, author of 'Anarchy, State, and Utopia'
Nozick: "My temperament is to like interesting, new, bold ideas, and to try and generate them ... in contrast to those people whose main motivation
seems to be to exclude certain ideas. They seem to want to be thought police."
Nozick: "There was something startling about the ... non-initiation of force
principles that the [Ayn Rand followers] had, at the same time that they were diligently
acting as thought police."
Nozick: "I, too, seek an unreadable book: Urgent thoughts to grapple with in agitation and excitement,
revelations to be transformed by or to transform, a book incapable of being read ... a book, even, to bring reading to stop."
Nozick: "My great master was Socrates."
Foucault: "The work of an intellectual is to re-examine evidence and assumptions, to shake up
habitual ways of thinking, to dissipate conventional familiarities, to re-evaluate rules and institutions."
Foucault: "I don't feel that it is necessary to know exactly what I am. ... If
you knew when you began a book what you would say at the end, would you ... write it? The game is worthwhile
[only when] we don't know what will be the end."
Steven Olmsted: "Foucault idolized Nietzsche. But where Nietzsche
believed in a 'Will to Power', Foucault believed in a 'Will to Knowledge.'"
Zizek: "The only measure of true love is: You can insult the other."
Zizek: "Humanity is OK, but 99% of people are boring idiots."
Zizek: "What universities should do is not serve as experts to those in power who define
the problems. We should redefine and question the problems themselves. Is this the right perception of the problem?"
Zizek: "My publisher will kill me for saying this, but I don't really care about most of the stuff
that I've written about. Deep down, I only care about Hegel."
The Guardian: "[Is] Zizek a genius [or] the Borat of philosophy?"
Author of 'Sexual Personae'
Paglia: "All objects, all phases of culture are alive. They have voices. They speak of
their history and interrelatedness. And they are all talking at once!"
Paglia: "Overconcentration on any one point is a distortion."
Paglia: "Life is not a tragedy but a comedy. .... Nature is
always pulling the rug out from under our pompous ideals."
Paglia: "The girls I see on campuses are often innocuous, with completely homogenized personalities."
Paglia: "I have never once found a sentence in all of Foucault that interested me ...
The man is a bastard."
Paglia: "Sartre is high literature."
Paglia: "[Due to Rousseau] liberal idealism [was] canceled
by violence, barbarism, disillusionment and cynicism."
Keirsey & son identify Paglia as ENTP.
Philosopher and economist, author of 'Economic Facts and Fallacies'
Sowell: "It takes considerable knowledge just to realize the extent of your own ignorance."
Sowell: "One of the painful signs of years of dumbed-down education is how many people
are unable to make a coherent argument. They can vent their emotions, question other people's motives,
make bold assertions, repeat slogans - anything except reason."
Sowell: "Conserving something just because it's there has no appeal for me."
Sowell: "Coolidge read both Latin and Greek, and read
Dante in the original Italian. ... It was said that the taciturn Coolidge could be
silent in five different languages."
Myron Weiner: "One finishes reading Sowell awed with his ability to bring together so
much material in such a readable fashion."
Historian, author of 'The Ascent of Money', married to Ayaan Hirsi Ali
Ferguson: "If a majority of people subscribe to a particular view, it pays to
question it. It pays to think: maybe this is wrong."
Ferguson: "I think that it is important to be gregarious and that friendships are not just
a leisure pursuit [but that] one does better work if one has a circle of friends that is active."
Ferguson: "The kind of performance I usually do [is] a cross between an academic
lecture and stand-up [comedy]."
Science popularizer and author of 'The Blank Slate',
student of Noam Chomsky
Pinker: "[To understand the past] we need to discern patterns."
Pinker: "[There is a] universality of reason. ... If I want you to take me seriously, I can't act
as if my interests are special because I'm me and you're not."
Pinker: "To condemn much is to understand little."
Pinker: "I grew up with the belief that God made the Jews as a light unto the nations and made
the Gentiles because someone had to buy retail."
Richard Dawkins: "What a magnificent thinker and writer he is."
Pinker identifies himself as INT.
Pinker's Big Five scores correspond to NFJ.
Science popularizer and author of 'The Rational Optimist'
Ridley: "To understand is to perceive patterns."
Ridley: "A true scientist is bored by knowledge. It is the assault on ignorance that
motivates him. ... The forest is more interesting than the clearing."
Ridley: "[Steven Pinker's 'The Blank Slate']
is the best book on human nature that I or anyone else will ever read."
Angela M. Hay: "[Ridley] tells how patent trolls who collect patents and then sue people
who are not paying royalties on them are like cattle owners on the Rhine who collected tolls from passing
boats. This is an example of [his] broad thinking."
Philosopher, author of 'Breaking the Spell'
Dennett: "The eye contains a big flaw: The retina is inside-out. No designer would make
such a clumsy arrangement, and this is just one of the hundreds of accidents frozen in evolutionary history
that confirm the mindlessness of the process."
Dennett: "The Christians have been giving more and more ground: The Earth is no longer the
center of the universe, and nor was it created in seven days. In 1000 years, the Christians will be claiming:
'It is the final proof of God's omnipotence, that he does not even have to exist!'"
George Bernard Shaw
Playwright and journalist
Shaw: "Few people think more than two or three times a year; I have made an international
reputation for myself by thinking once or twice a week."
Shaw: "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying
to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
Shaw: "The quality of a play is the quality of its ideas."
Shaw: "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
Diderot: "A work [such as mine] demands more intellectual daring than is ...
found in ages of pusillanimous taste."
Diderot: "All things must be examined, debated, investigated, without exception and
without regard for anyone's feelings."
Diderot: "When [the philosopher] has no reason to judge, he knows how to live
in suspension of judgment."
Alexis de Tocqueville
Philosopher and author of 'Democracy in America'
Tocqueville: "History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies."
Tocqueville: "Men ... look on every new theory as a danger, every innovation as a toilsome
trouble ... and ... they may absolutely refuse to move at all."
Tocqueville: "Muhammad ... put into the Koran not only religious
doctrines, but political maxims, criminal and civil laws, and scientific theories. ... That alone ... is enough to
show that Islam will not be able to hold its power long in ages of enlightenment and democracy."
Peter K. Minski: "In 1859, Tocqueville predicted that the democratic order would gradually be
replaced by a 'big state'-solution which would deprive man of his free enterprise. That courtesy and manners would
give way to informal forms of conduct. That freedom would be replaced by politically engineered equality. That in the
future, the United States and Russia would vie for global dominance."
Unusually for ENTPs, Tocqueville also has
Feminist and author
Steinem: "Life is not [about] controlling what happens to us, but using what happens to us."
Steinem: "If you're cynical, you're defeated for openers, [but] it's good to be skeptical."
Steinem: "[When I worked] at The Ladies' Home Journal [the editor] was so convinced that I was nothing
like its readers (whom he described as 'mental defectives with curlers in their hair') that he used to hand me a manuscript
and say, 'Pretend you're a woman and read this.'"
U.S. Supreme Court Justice
Kagan: "What could be more fun than to engage with [highly intelligent people] and to be challenged
by them and to try and persuade them?"
Kagan: "On almost every issue I'm open to being persuaded that I'm wrong."
Kagan: "I'm in favor of good ideas coming from wherever you can get them."
Arlen Specter: "[She has] shown a really admirable sense of humor."
Author of 'Quiet: The Power of Introverts'
Cain: "I'm insatiably curious about human nature."
Cain: "I'm constitutionally opposed to following rules for their own sake."
Cain: "[I] love knowledge for its own sake, not necessarily as a blueprint to action."
[Asked why she wrote her book:]
Cain: "For the same reason that Betty Friedan published 'The Feminine Mystique'
in 1963. Introverts are to extroverts what women were to men at that time - second-class citizens with gigantic amounts of untapped talent."
Cain identifies herself as INFP.
Marilyn vos Savant
Columnist with record-high IQ
Savant: "Be able to defend your arguments in a rational way. Otherwise, all you have is an opinion."
Savant: "If we don't keep our reasoning skills honed, we draw mistaken conclusions."
[On Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize:]
Savant: "When the rest of the world is this happy with our president, it can't be a good thing."
Vos Savant identifies herself as an introvert.
Founder of Napster and founding president of Facebook
Parker: "Remaining open to a large number of different possibilities I think is important, and [so is] being able to adapt."
Parker: "[I'm] a twisted half-breed: a rational-aesthete."
Forbes: "Parker is a human accelerant, an idea catalyst who, when combined with the right people, has fueled some of
the most disruptive companies of the last two decades."
David Kirkpatrick: "He likes to talk, rapidly, intensely, and he likes to talk about ideas."
David Kirkpatrick: "A voracious reader with a deep fascination with politics, the self-taught Parker may pepper an analysis of
current trends with a reference to ... the men who wrote the U.S. Constitution. And ... he will eagerly
describe his theory on the history of media since Gutenberg."
Author of 'Fight Club'
Palahniuk: "My goal is to [charm] people into considering their world in a different way."
Palahniuk: "[In my work I try] to be clever and seduce people by entertaining them."
Palahniuk: "There's a big difference between 'not caring' or 'being nihilistic' about a topic and simply
not being enrolled by the drama presented by other people."
Palahniuk: "Just because my characters choose not to react in standard, socially
appropriate ways, that does not mean they don't care."
Conservative political writer
Steyn: "You shouldn't become so ideological you can't see the comedy in your own side."
Steyn: "The 'experts' of the Western world are slower to turn around than an ocean liner."
Steyn: "Often what's nuttiest [about Muslim propaganda] is that it's completely illogical: in the spring
of 2002, I met many Arabs who believed simultaneously that (a) September 11 was pulled off by the Mossad and (b) it
was a great victory for the Muslim people."
Steyn: "[Obama] sees the entire world as a great supporting cast in
the Barack Obama show. His self-absorption and narcissism is incredible."
Steyn: "Multiculturalism is fraud. Most adherents to the idea that all cultures are equal don't want to
live in anything but an advanced Western society."
Barbara Kay: "[He writes with] quicksilver intelligence and merry iconoclasm."
Economist and libertarian, author of 'The Myth of the Rational Voter'
Caplan: "I often delve into subjects purely out of curiosity, as I have since my teens."
Caplan: "[My colleagues and I] argue non-stop, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Once we agree,
it is time to change the subject."
Caplan: "[After reading Ayn Rand as a teenager] I did ... what I call
'trying on her ideas for size.' When opportunity presented itself - or when I cornered my parents or friends or
teachers or random fellow students - I played devil's advocate."
Caplan: "Perhaps the greatest truth about human nature that you do not find in the typical
economics textbook is that people are sheep."
Philosopher, libertarian and former anarchist,
author of 'In Defense of Global Capitalism'
Norberg: "The entrepreneur is the hero of our world. We do not really need the Frodos, the
Luke Skywalkers, and the Buffy the Vampire Slayers."
Norberg's results on a Jungian type test score him as INTP.
Economist, anarchist and libertarian, son of Milton Friedman
Friedman: "[I once witnessed someone say] 'You shouldn't contradict your elders.' ... That particular statement
struck me as heresy, almost insanity. If your elders aren't right, of course you should contradict them!"
Friedman: "Ayn Rand [uses] passionate oratory to obscure a shift in [her] argument."
Philosopher and French minister of education
Ferry: "French philosophy is nothing but the hyperbolic repetition of German philosophy:
Foucault is the exaggeration of Nietzsche,
Derrida is the exaggeration of Heidegger, Bourdieu is the exaggeration of
Marx, and Lacan is the exaggeration of Freud."
Ferry: "What is a government ministry these days? - A glorified press agency! I would rather play some songs on my guitar."
Physicist and author of 'The Beginning of Infinity'
Deutsch: "Kuhn's theory suffers from a fatal flaw. It explains
the succession from one paradigm to another in ... psychological terms, rather than [looking at] the objective
merit of the rival explanations."
Deutsch: "Mathematical knowledge may [be] wonderfully explanatory ... but it cannot be certain."
Deutsch: "As I understand it, the claim is that the less you use homeopathy, the better it works. Sounds plausible to me."
Deutsch: "At least Popper achieved one thing: 'Inductivist' is now a term of abuse."
Deutsch: "I [always] hated memorizing facts."
Matthew Paris: "[Deutsch] merits comparison with Bertrand Russell."
Historian and author of 'Radical Enlightenment'
Israel: "It may be true that many, or even most, people remain untroubled by 'bad arguments'
but there are always some individuals ... for whom intellectual consistency matters - and this applies especially
to those [people] aspiring to change everything."
Journalist and author on social issues
Malik: "It is the freedom to blaspheme, to transgress, to move beyond the pale, that is at
the heart of all intellectual endeavor. ... In any society that is not uniform, grey and homogeneous, there
are bound to be clashes of viewpoints."
Malik: "Tony Blair has often been called a man without a shadow
but he is in fact more of a shadow without a man."
Malik: "Tariq Ramadan [is] a shallow thinker taken far too
seriously [and trading in] pseudo-intellectualism."
Malik: "[Ramadan's] book ['Developing a Philosophy of Pluralism']
is comparable to [Dan Brown's] 'The Da Vinci Code', but at least 'The Da Vinci Code'
did not claim to solve the problems of pluralism."
Critic of Intelligent Design, author of 'Only a Theory'
Miller: "All scientists enjoy interpreting their discoveries to the public."
Miller: "America has become the greatest scientific nation in the world, largely because the optimistic
and iconoclastic character of science is a perfect fit for the open and vigorous social temperament of American society."
Miller: "Augustine made me realize that even in the
fifth century A.D. there lived people who had the same ... difficulties with authority that I had."
Critic of derivatives trading, author of 'Traders, Guns and Money'
Das: "It's silly to think that everybody in finance is 'evil' or engaged in fraud. ... [The problem] is 'groupthink.'"
Das: "The global economy is currently taking the 'botox'
cure. A flood of money from central banks and governments - 'financial botox'
- has temporarily covered up unresolved and deep-seated problems."
Maimonides: "[Man clings] to the opinions to which he has been accustomed from his youth; he likes them,
defends them, and shuns the opposite views. This is one of the causes which prevent men from finding truth."
Maimonides: "It is sometimes necessary to ... partly disclose [something which] must partly be
concealed. [But in doing so, one] must endeavor ... to prevent the reader from perceiving the [concealment]."
Leo Strauss: "Maimonides was a great man of the kind I would prefer to handle politics."
Maimonides' strategizing with the truth is the same as that of Machiavelli:
"Occasionally words must serve to veil the facts..."
Buddhist philosopher, 'the Socrates of Buddhism'
[Asked if there was anything that was the same from one moment to the next:]
Nagasena: "No! ... There is the universe it is all governed by change of things within the universe. That's all
there is. Change is the constant; 'things' are not."
Nagasena: "As Nagasena I am known [but] this word 'Nagasena' is just a ... a conceptual term
... a mere name. For no real person can here be apprehended."
Multi-field genius, half-cousin of Charles Darwin
[Speaking about Galton's book on tropical exploration:]
Charles Darwin: "I admire the spirit and style of your book. What labors and
dangers you have gone through: I can hardly fancy how you can have survived them."
Braudel: "Mountains are as a rule a world apart from civilizations. Their history is to have none, to
remain almost always on the fringe of the great waves of civilization. Even the longest and most persistent influences,
which may spread over great distances in the horizonal plane are but powerless to move vertically when faced with a mountain."
Walter E. Williams
Economist and libertarian, author of 'Race and Economics'
Williams: "I was summoned for jury duty [and] the attorney asked me whether I could obey
the judge's instructions. I answered, 'It all depends upon what those instructions are.' ... If I were on
a jury back in the 1850s, and a person was on trial for ... assisting a runaway slave, I would vote for
acquittal regardless of the judge's instructions [on the grounds] that slavery is unjust and any law supporting
it is unjust. ... I was [then] dismissed from jury duty."
Williams: "Making economics fun and understandable [is] a challenge I love."
Dan P. McAdams
Psychologist and author of 'The Person'
McAdams: "Most PhD programs ... are too focused, in my view. ... I have always had an interdisciplinary approach to things."
McAdams: "I came to psychology via Freud. ... I read 'Civilization and Its Discontents,'
and I was hooked by the beauty of Freud's prose and by the force of his ideas, even as I knew that the ideas could
not possibly be just right."
McAdams: "The best scholars and scientists are able to find passion for many different topics. [They are]
interested in more than themselves."
McAdams' Big Five self-assessment corresponds to NFJ.
Author of 'The Authenticity Hoax'
Potter: "Authenticity is one of those ... words - like community, family,
natural, and organic - that are only ever used in their positive sense ... and that tend
to be rhetorical trump cards."
Potter: "Is there anyone out there who does not consider him or herself to be an
'antihero of authenticity'? ... Living inauthentically is always something other people do."
Potter: "Everyday life [is] boring. Standing in line at the store, waiting for the bus,
sitting at stop lights - it's all dull as doing the dishes. Work is repetitious, unchallenging, and
unoriginal. ... Our friends bore us with the same old stories, our lover bores us with the same old moves."
Potter: "Stephen Colbert has become one of the most influential
political analysts in America."
Zen master, student of G.W. Nishijima, author of 'Hardcore Zen'
Warner: "You can't function in society if you don't involve yourself in the fictions
society accepts about time. But you do so with the understanding that you're playing a game."
J.H. van der Hoop
Van der Hoop: "[In using ideas from both] Freud and Jung
... I may be attacked by followers of both schools."
Van der Hoop: "[The questions that I raise] should be of interest to all who are not merely content to condemn
and ignore the point of view which they do not approve of."
Van der Hoop: "[Though I am primarily a Freudian] I was analyzed by
[Jung] over a period of six months."
Van der Hoop: "[The Thinking
function] puts into man's possession the sum-total of knowledge [of] the species, but it reduces his capacity
to work on things for himself, because he is no longer expected to make his own observations."
Van der Hoop: "[The man who relies on the Thinking
function] has to accept a ready-made body of objective knowledge."
Van der Hoop identifies himself as INTP.
Nazi mystic and author of 'The Lightning And The Sun'
Devi: "The majority of humanity, like liquids or doughy substances, takes the shape
of the receptacles that contain it, or the mark of the seal that has stamped it."
Devi: "People ... resemble each other in nullity. They think that everything testifies to their
independence and originality, yet, in fact, their reactions in similar circumstances are as identical."
Devi: "Any overestimation of oneself is a sign of stupidity."
Devi: "[Kant had] little imagination."
Devi: "Rousseau's life gives an
impression of inconsistency, not to say instability. Poet rather than thinker, he did not live his life, he
dreamed it. And above all, he did not live according to fixed principles."
'Man coach' and self-professed chauvinist, author of 'Men Are Better Than Women'
Masterson: "[My purpose is] to expose the clumsy feminist dogma of equality - which reeks
of desperation and failure at its core - and explore many theories and thoughts on the nature of men being better than women."
Masterson: "I do not hate women. I love women. I think women are special things that should be
treasured as such - appreciated like one values a classic car."
Masterson: "Like most great things invented ... [my site] was started by a man shooting
his mouth off and promising more than he could deliver."
- Versatile pattern-seekers
- Strongly linked to the Antisocial personality
- Somewhat linked to the Histrionic, Dependent and Hypomaniac personalities
- Jung called all ENPs "female" personalities, though ENTPs are in fact more common among men than among women
- Repress their Introverted Sensing function, meaning they "sweat the small stuff" sometimes with tragicomical results
- Amongst the types least likely to believe in a deity
More About ENTPs
While demographical data on Jungian type is unreliable, the following figures are commonly accepted as