There is a decivilizing bug somewhere at work;

unconsciously persons of

stern worth, by not resenting and resisting the small indignities of the times,
are preparing themselves for the eventual acceptance of what they themselves
know they don’t want.

Harper's Magazine (October 1938); quoted in Scott Elledge, E.B. White:
A Biography (New York: Norton, 1984), ch. X: Mr Tilley's Departure (p. 209)