Quote mongers--I need your help

I’m trying to find a quote that I heard in an undergraduate English class in the mid-80s. The gist of the quote is that fraud is a form of force.

It was attributed to John Hospers, and goes “Fraud is the . . . . . that truth gives to force.”

Can anyone help with a source, or the complete quote?

Hobbes, Leviathan.

“Force, and fraud, are in war the two cardinal virtues.”

If “John Hospers” has a different quote, he certainly based it upon/stole it from Hobbes.

“John Hospers” is a libertarian philosopher, assuming that term is not an oxymoron. (Is Lib lurking? :eek: )

A Google search shows that force and fraud are buzzwords that turn up frequently in his works and and in general libertarian parlance.


I didn’t find any version of the OP’s quote, though.

And the person who uttered the quote was a libertarian who was lecturing about libertarianism, so at the time I believed the quote could have come from Hospers.

Yes. Exactly. Some libertarians claim that regulation of fraud is justified because fraud is a form of force.