Monday, December 13, 2010

A Europa connosco (1891, Ultimatum) ou o utilitarismo

"Salisbury believed that it was not his duty to protect the Braganza dynasty, even though he came under pressure from the Kaiser, the Prince of Wales and Queen Victoria to do just that. He believed that the Portuguese were "making the most of their weakness" and told Petre (EMBAIXADOR BRITÂNICO EM LISBOA) that his language "should be stiff and uncompromising", pointing out that the British government had to placate "a public opinion as exacting and powerful as their own". Salisbury's typical utilitarian attitude, understandably not shared by his royal correspondents, was that "if the Portuguese monarchy is so desperately weak that our demands will overthrow it, it is not worth saving".

Salisbury found the Portuguese the least satisfactory negotiators of any he had dealt with, for, as he told Morier, when pressed in argument, "instead of arguing back, they throw themselves on their backs and scream"."

(Andrew Roberts "Salisbury: A Victorian Titan", Londres, Phoenix, 1999)

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