Newton: "I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies, but not the madness of people."
[Addressing a critic:]
[Speaking about his work on mechanics:]
John Maynard Keynes: "Newton was not the first of the age of reason. He was the last of the magicians."
Philosopher, student of Hegel
Marx: "Philosophers have hitherto only interpreted the world in various ways; the point is to change it."
Marx: "[I do not] care one straw for popularity."
Marx: "[My] chief characteristic [is] singleness of purpose [and my] idea of happiness [is] to fight."
Marx: "It is a bad thing to perform menial duties ... to fight with pinpricks, instead of clubs."
Ayn Rand: "Karl Marx [was] the most consistent translator of the altruist morality into practical action."
Ludwig von Mises: "All the sophisticated syllogisms ... cannot conceal [that] Marx was a prophet communicating [a] revelation."
Author of 'Atlas Shrugged' and radical capitalist
Rand: "While animals survive by adjusting themselves to their background, man survives by adjusting his background to himself."
Rand: "Love is not self-sacrifice, but the assertion of your own needs and values. It is for your own happiness that you need the person you love."
Rand: "I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine."
Kelley L. Ross: "Few writers convey an irresistible ferocity of convictions as Rand does."
Nietzsche: "What is good? All that heightens the feeling of power, power itself in man. What is bad? All that proceeds from weakness."
Nietzsche: "Active, successful natures shun the dictum 'know thyself' and follow the commandment: 'Will thyself.'"
Nietzsche: "Not all men ought to be free. There are many who threw off their final worth when they threw off their bondage."
CEO of Facebook
Zuckerberg: "[I'm] going to change the world."
Zuckerberg: "I think that the next five years are going to be characterized by widespread acknowledgement by [others] ... that [my way] is the way that stuff should be and will be better."
[Asked about users who are dissatisfied with Facebook's privacy options:]
Sheryl Sandberg: "He is shy and introverted and he often does not seem very warm to people who don't know him."
[On his first impression of Zuckerberg:]
Peter Thiel: "Yahoo tried to buy Facebook for $1 billion. ... Many people thought Mark was crazy for not selling. But he always had a plan and a vision."
Founder of SpaceX and Tesla Motors, founder of PayPal along with Peter Thiel
Musk: "My career has been focused on finding practical, effective solutions to real-world problems."
Musk: "[I started SpaceX because] if we're not on a path of ... expanding to the stars, then what we're effectively saying is [that] we're going to consign ourselves to Earth until an extinction event wipes us out."
[His brother:] "Elon's psyche is tied up in the idea of changing the world."
Jon Stewart [to Musk:] "I am astonished at your entrepreneurial spirit, your tenacity, and your ability to get things done."
Steve Jurvetson: "I don't think I've ever seen an entrepreneur with so much resolve."
Fischer: "Most people are sheep, and they need the support of others."
[On why he quit school at age 16:]
Fischer: "Nobody has single-handedly done more for the U.S. image than me. ... [Before I came along] the U.S. had an image of a football country, baseball country, but nobody thought of it as an intellectual country. I turned all that around single-handedly."
Boris Spassky: "[He is] absolutely not social. He is not adaptable to everybody's standards of life. He ... is unwilling to compromise."
Garry Kasparov: "Fischer had no one besides himself to draw him up to the heights he reached. ... I regard him as a mythological [creature] of sorts."
Unusually for INTJs, Fischer also has Antisocial traits.
Tesla: "My ideas have revolutionized the industries of the United States."
Tesla: "The ... development of man [has as its] ultimate purpose the complete mastery of mind over the material world."
Tesla: "The world was not prepared for [my work]. It was too far ahead of time, but ... in the end [it will be] a triumphal success."
Tesla: "If Edison had a needle to find in a haystack, he would proceed at once with ... diligence ... to examine straw after straw. ... I was a sorry witness of such doings, knowing that a little theory and calculation would have saved him 90% of his labor."
John Stone: "[Everyone] misunderstood Tesla. ... He did dream [but he made] his dreams come true. [He had] visions but they were of a real future, not an imaginary one. ... [We must] admit [he] was a prophet."
Hawking: "My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe."
Hawking: "I regard [my version of quantum physics] as self-evidently correct."
Hawking: "I don't believe that the ultimate theory will come by steady work along existing lines."
Hawking: "For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then [we] unleashed the power of our imagination."
Hawking: "Philosophy is dead. Scientists have become the bearers of the torch of discovery in our quest for knowledge."
Hawking: "[Kant's works are] very obscure."
Kip Thorne: "He is the most stubborn man I know. ... It was clear very early on that he was a genius, but his popular appeal came as a surprise."
Nash: "Don't ... depend on current fashion or ... popular opinion."
Nash: "[When I am] thinking rationally ... in the style that is characteristic of scientists ... this is not entirely a matter of joy."
Nash: "[One] could think of Zarathustra as simply a madman. ... But without his 'madness' [he would] have been only another of the ... billions of human individuals who have lived and then been forgotten."
Sylvia Nasar: "Even as a student, his indifference to others' skepticism, doubt, and ridicule was awesome."
Sylvia Nasar: "Nash acquired his knowledge [not] from studying ... but by [seeing the] truth for himself. ... Einstein once chided him for wishing to amend relativity theory without studying physics."
John Maynard Keynes
Keynes: "The country does not need an iron-cast economic doctrine as long as it has me."
Keynes: "Words ought to be a little wild, for they are the assault of thoughts on the unthinking."
Keynes: "[Hayek's work] is an extraordinary example of how, starting with a mistake, a remorseless logician can end up in bedlam."
Roy Harrod: "Keynes [spoke] on a great range of topics, on some of which he was thoroughly an expert, but on others [he had] derived his views from the few pages of a book at which he had happened to glance. The air of authority was the same in both cases."
John Mackey: "Keynes was such a brilliant and fascinating guy that he hypnotized [a] whole generation of economists."
Economist and left-wing pundit
Krugman: "[I] have been right about everything."
Krugman: "People who disagree with me are always wrong. And not just wrong, they're often knaves or fools."
Krugman: "Coming up with a good idea, with an insight into the way the world works that is really new and that you really believe in, is a deeply satisfying experience."
Krugman: "The intellectually insecure ... have created for themselves [an] alternative intellectual history in which John Maynard Keynes was a fraud."
Krugman: "[To follow my recommendations] requires a level of intellectual flexibility that not many people are going to show."
Dateline Magazine: "Paul Krugman [has] virtually become the leader of the opposition in America, an unusual position for an academic economist."
Adams: "Thanks to God that he gave me stubbornness when I know I am right."
Adams: "Nineteen twentieths of [mankind is] opaque and unenlightened. Intimacy with most people will make you acquainted with vices and errors and follies enough to make you despise them."
Adams: "Politeness, delicacy [and] decency ... are but three different names for hypocrisy, chicanery, and cowardice."
Benjamin Rush: "He saw the whole of a subject at a glance, and ... was equally fearless of men and of the consequences of [the] bold assertion of his opinion. ... He was a stranger to dissimulation."
Science fiction writer and science writer
Asimov: "Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do."
Asimov: "Never let your sense of morals get in the way of doing what's right."
Asimov: "[People think] a scientist is cold ... and uses only his reason; he argues carefully step by step, and needs no imagination. That is all wrong. ... The true scientist is quite imaginative as well as rational, and sometimes leaps to solutions where reason can follow only slowly."
Asimov: "I [never tried] to hide my superior mentality. I demonstrated it every day ... and I never ... thought of being 'modest' about the matter."
Hitchens: "Those who are determined to be 'offended' will discover a provocation somewhere. We cannot possibly adjust enough to please the fanatics, and it is degrading to make the attempt."
Hitchens: "Distrust compassion; prefer dignity for yourself and others."
Hitchens: "[George W. Bush] is unusually incurious, abnormally unintelligent, amazingly inarticulate ... and apparently quite proud of all these things."
June Thomas: "His obituaries were particularly refreshing, because he refused to moderate his opinion of the subject simply because he or she had died."
Mencken: "If ever a man is to achieve anything like dignity, it can happen only if superior men are given absolute freedom to think what they want to think and say what they want to say."
Mencken: "People constantly speak of 'the government' doing this or that, as they might speak of God doing it. But the government is really nothing but a group of men, and usually they are very inferior men."
[In his obituary of Franklin D. Roosevelt:]
Murray Rothbard: "He [was] supremely 'inner-directed' with no inner shame or quaking at going against the judgment of the herd."
Theologian and Protestant reformer
Luther: "Faith without deeds is dead."
Luther: "I shall not have my teaching judged by any man. ... Since I am certain of it, I shall be the judge."
Luther: "As to my always conducting discussions with ardor ... [I am simply] overpowered by the force of truth when ... compelled to the discussion."
Marcus Wengstrom: "There is something sublime about him dragging popes and kings into his intellectual wrestling ring and handling them with the roughness of a miner's son."
[Unnamed eyewitness:] "[He is] a little too insolent in his reproaches and more caustic than is prudent for an innovator in religion." [Upon meeting Luther around 1519.]
Philosopher, mentor of Marx
Hegel: "[I] want to restore the human race to its full totality."
Hegel: "It is easier to discover a deficiency in individuals ... than to see their real import or value."
Hegel: "[My thought] is by its nature something esoteric, neither made for the mob nor capable of being prepared for the mob."
Hegel: "What is rational is actual and what is actual is rational."
Hegel: "Heraclitus is the one who ... first grasped Being. ... The origin of philosophy is to be dated from Heraclitus."
Isaak von Sinclair [in a personal letter to Hegel:] "You are guided more by your gift of synthesis than by calm analysis."
Greek philosopher - "The Dark One"
Heraclitus: "One man is worth ten thousand if he is extraordinary."
Heraclitus: "Most men have sated themselves like cattle. ... Greater men are allotted greater destinies."
Constantine J. Vamvacas: "[Heraclitus'] meanings are not crystallized but inhere in integral images and visions, grasped as an indissoluble whole."
Eva Brann: "If Heraclitus was a physicist, he, like Newton, was at the same time also a mystic."
Friedrich Nietzsche: "[Heraclitus had] the highest form of pride [stemming] from a certainty of belief in the truth as grasped by himself alone."
Sartre: "As far as men are concerned, it is not what they are that interests me but what they can become."
Sartre: "You are nothing else but what you live. ... A man is no more than a series of undertakings [and] the sum of the organization that constitutes these undertakings."
Simone de Beauvoir: "The ... dogged tenacity of his perceptions grasped the very essence of things."
Simone de Beauvoir: "[Sartre] knew what he wanted to do. ... His self-confidence obviously stemmed from so unshakeable a determination that one day, in one way or another [his work] would bear fruit."
Dictator of the Soviet Union, mentor of Stalin
Lenin: "Trust is good. Control is better."
Lenin: "Thought is by its nature capable of giving, and does give, absolute truth."
Nina Tumarkin: "Lenin was a very ... bossy, self-centered, competent and smart child."
Leon Trotsky: "[Lenin] was irrevocably controlled by one ... idea: the goal. He was probably the most extreme utilitarian ... history has produced."
Hans Mortensen: "[Those] who did not share Lenin's interpretation [of Marx] were showered in insults and abuse and pronounced to be absolutely worthless. He would break even with his closest friends if they did not share his vision entirely."
Terrorist and manifesto-writer
Breivik: "It's human nature to be selfish, to seek admiration. ... We strive to be as perfect as we can be."
Breivik: "I sound quite self-righteous at times and I don't like admitting it when I'm wrong."
Breivik: "I have a relatively inflated ego, with a constant need to feed on an intellectual level."
Breivik: "I've generally been perceived as quite arrogant ... [because] I do not care ... for creating or preserving social relationships."
Breivik: "I do not accept or acknowledge many of the established 'social rules'. I view them as irrelevant noise."
"The Unabomber" - terrorist and manifesto-writer
Kaczynski: "Art forms that appeal to [leftists] tend to focus on ... defeat and despair ... as if there were no hope of accomplishing anything through rational calculation."
Kaczynski: "The leftist is anti-individualistic ... He is not the sort of person who has an inner sense of confidence in his own ability to solve his own problems and satisfy his own needs."
Kaczynski: "It is obvious that [leftists] are not cool-headed logicians systematically analyzing the foundations of knowledge. They are deeply involved emotionally in their attack on truth and reality."
The Telegraph: "[Anders Breivik plagiarized] almost a dozen key passages from [Kaczynski's] manifesto, only [replacing] particular words such as 'leftist' with 'cultural Marxist.'"
Murderer, arsonist and musician
Vikernes: "If you imagine a thing happening in your head, you will make it happen - that is, if your willpower is strong enough."
Vikernes: "I [have] nothing but contempt for the braindead 'sex, drugs and rock and roll' attitude of the other [musicians]. ... [They just want] to become famous, to make money and to get laid - and not to change the world."
INTJs in popular culture
Cameron: "People call me a perfectionist, but I'm not. I'm a rightist. I do something until it's right."
The Independent: "He is notorious on set for his uncompromising and dictatorial manner."
Kate Winslet [on 'Titanic']: "He's a genius in terms of his vision, a maniac in terms of getting what he wants."
Sigourney Weaver [on 'Aliens']: "He really does want us to risk our lives and limbs for the shot."
Linda Hamilton [on 'Terminator']: "James Cameron is definitely on the side of the machines."
Crowe: "People accuse me of being arrogant all the time. I'm not arrogant, I'm focused."
Crowe: "I want to do movies that have a strong sense of purpose."
Daily Mail: "It is clear that Crowe is someone who says and does exactly what he wants."
Paul Giamatti: "[He has] a distinct vision for the movies that he is a part of - and the nearly unprecedented power to will them into being."
U.S. Governor (R) and actor
Schwarzenegger: "I think anything we do, you need an enormous ego to do that. ... The ego has to be satisfied."
Schwarzenegger: "Normal people can be happy with a regular life. I was different. I felt there was more to life than just plodding through an average existence."
Schwarzenegger: "My relationship to power and authority is that I'm all for it. ... Ninety-five percent of the people in the world need to be told what to do and how to behave."
Schwarzenegger: "I consider myself an expert in looking into a particular idea or goal and then going after it without anything else in mind."
Rapper, married to Beyonce
Jay-Z: "[I adopt a] technique and style to make sure that [I reach] as many people as possible without losing [my] basic integrity."
Jay-Z: "For me hustling is the ultimate metaphor for ... the struggle to win and to make sense of it all."
Jay-Z: "It's hard to beat the entertainment value of people ... dying to be insulted, running around looking for a bullet to get in front of."
Zack O'Malley: "People who've spent time with Jay-Z ... note his expansive intellectual curiosity."
Foster: "I always play strong [characters]. ... I'm not sure I know how to play weak. I really don't know how."
Foster: "If I fail, at least I will have failed my way."
Foster: "[As a child I thought that acting is] a dumb job. Somebody else writes something and then you repeat it. How dumb is that?"
Foster: "Normal is not something to aspire to, it's something to get away from."
David Fincher: "The characters that she's played are indicative of a very feisty intelligence."
Mel Gibson: "[She is] strong, honest [and has a] complexity that I would never presume to decipher."
Stiles: "I tend to gravitate toward the more powerful roles. As opposed to the doe-eyed girl who bats her eyelashes ... because that makes me want to vomit."
Stiles: "People confuse bluntness with bitchiness."
Stiles: "I [am] very heady and intellectual and that's kind of contrary to what makes a good actor."
Stiles: "I have these abstract ideas and then lose track of myself. I ... go on and on."
The Guardian: "One thing is clear when you're talking to Stiles: She knows her mind. ... You get the feeling that ... she doesn't suffer fools gladly."
Olsen: "I've always been [both] a business and creative person. That's the way my brain works."
Olsen: "[I am a] perfectionist. ... If [I] step away, it stops working. I know it sounds controlling, but that's how it has to be."
Olsen: "It's important to stay true to yourself in order to be a successful leader in anything. [Don't] conform to what others [are] doing."
Marie Claire Magazine: "Ashley's voice ... slices through the chatter like steel. At 21, she is ... remarkably clear and focused ... not at all the type to be talked into things."
Marie Claire Magazine: "[She comes across as] very much the master of her own fate."
Waters: "I know I can be an oppressive personality because I bubble with ... schemes, and in a way it [is] easier for [others] simply to go along with me."
Waters: "I'm perfectly happy being a leader."
Waters: "I'm not ... comfortable [improvising]. ... I don't really have that skill. ... I'm more into writing, thinking [and] producing."
Official Pink Floyd Bio: "Roger Waters drove the project and the [other band members] ceded their vision to his increasingly personal direction."
Firth: "[I am] a person who is inclined to overthink."
Firth: "Normal people just aren't very interesting."
Firth: "[As an actor] it's frustrating playing someone stupider than you."
Firth: "Dancing and singing [take] me very far out of my comfort zone."
Elle Magazine: "[He is] gravely passionate over serious issues."
The Guardian: "He emits a slow-burning magnetism that reveals itself in stages."