Making Nice

Feb. 26 1999 3:30 AM

Making Nice

What makes society civil?

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Civility is not one of the major virtues. It is not like courage or honesty. The friendly cooperation that characterizes civil societies is a pale shadow of the love that inspires great self-sacrifice. But to participate in societies that one perceives to be civil adds much to the pleasure of life.

Herbert Stein, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, was chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under Presidents Nixon and Ford. He died in September 1999.