"You have the courage to tell the masses what no politician told them: you are inferior and all the improvements in your conditions which you simply take for granted you owe to the effort of men who are better than you."
from Corey Robin, HT Brad DeLong
Granted, Robin is writing in Keynes's old rag.
So I don't like litigating whole lives from snippets of quotes, but these are awfully crazy quotes. It's one thing to praise Mussolini for getting the trains to run on time. Lots of people didn't but lots of people did. It's another thing entirely to call him the savior of Europe for bashing the heads of communists. That's not skirting around the edges. That's actually celebrating (if not personally embracing) what was really, really bad about Mussolini.
It's one thing to express a preference for aristocratic life and culture, like Keynes did. It's another to simply think of "the masses" that they are inferior and owe their position to their betters.
I don't want to completely litigate the guy from these sorts of quotes, but honestly - shouldn't they at least color our view of him? He's been called "the last night of liberalism". Then why does he always come across as so damned illiberal?