He considered Guy Francon an impractical idealist; he was not restrained by an Classic dogma; he was much more skillful and liberal: he built anything.
"Well, I’ve always heard, from everybody, that he’s a sort of saint, the one pure idealist, utterly incorruptible and…"
When he came to New York, he was preceded by a small, private fame; a few trickles of rumor had seeped down from Harvard about an unusual person named Ellsworth Toohey; a few people, among the extreme intellectuals and the extremely wealthy, heard these rumors and promptly forgot what they heard, but remembered the name; it remained in their minds with a vague connotation of such things as brilliance, courage, idealism.
And Ellsworth’s a man of culture, an idealist, not a dirty radical off a soapbox, he’s so friendly and witty, and what an erudition!—a man who jokes all the time is not a man of violence—Ellsworth didn’t mean this, he didn’t know what it would lead to, he loves people, I’d stake my shirt on Ellsworth Toohey.
…know where you’re wrong, but it doesn’t sound right to me, because Ellsworth Toohey—now don’t misunderstand me, I don’t agree with Toohey’s political views at all, I know he’s a radical, but on the other hand you’ve got to admit that he’s a great idealist with a heart as big as a house—well, Ellsworth Toohey said…" These were the millionaires, the bankers, the industrialists, the businessmen who could not understand why the world was going to hell, as they moaned in all their luncheon…