Canute The Optimist?

I’m not sure that King Canute was being an optimist when he commanded the tide not to rise and dampen his feet: in fact, he was being a pessimist and proving to his people that he was not infallible, and that the tide would not obey his command. He has become legendary because of that bit of wisdom. We could do with that wisdom today: to know the limits our power and when to exercise our optimism. We complain about immigration, and our legislators bulldoze half-empty

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