John Greene > John's Quotes

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  • #1
    Thomas Jefferson
    “I predict future happiness for Americans, if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”
    Thomas Jefferson

  • #2
    Thomas Jefferson
    “I sincerely believe that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies, and that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.”
    Thomas Jefferson

  • #3
    John Stuart Mill
    “Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing.”
    John Stuart Mill, Inaugural Address Delivered to the University of St Andrews, 2/1/1867

  • #4
    Thomas Jefferson
    “History, in general, only informs us what bad government is.”
    Thomas Jefferson, Letters of Thomas Jefferson

  • #5
    Thomas Jefferson
    “The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. ... What country before ever existed a century and half without a rebellion? And what country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.”
    Thomas Jefferson, Letters of Thomas Jefferson

  • #6
    Thomas Jefferson
    “The equal rights of man, and the happiness of every individual, are now acknowledged to be the only legitimate objects of government.”
    Thomas Jefferson, Letters of Thomas Jefferson

  • #7
    Thomas Jefferson
    “Here was buried Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of American Independence, of the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom, and Father of the University of Virginia.

    [Epitaph, upon his instructions to erect a 'a plain die or cube ... surmounted by an Obelisk' with 'the following inscription, and not a word more…because by these, as testimonials that I have lived, I wish most to be remembered.' It omits that he had been President of the United States, a position of political power and prestige, and celebrates his involvement in the creation of the means of inspiration and instruction by which many human lives have been liberated from oppression and ignorance]”
    Thomas Jefferson

  • #8
    Thomas Jefferson
    “What a stupendous, what an incomprehensible machine is man! Who can endure toil, famine, stripes, imprisonment and death itself in vindication of his own liberty, and the next moment . . . inflict on his fellow men a bondage, one hour of which is fraught with more misery than ages of that which he rose in rebellion to oppose.”
    Thomas Jefferson, Letters of Thomas Jefferson

  • #9
    Thomas Jefferson
    “The hocus-pocus phantasm of a God like another Cerberus, with one body and three heads, had its birth and growth in the blood of thousands and thousands of martyrs... In fact, the Athanasian paradox that one is three, and three but one, is so incomprehensible to the human mind, that no candid man can say he has any idea of it, and how can he believe what presents no idea? He who thinks he does, only deceives himself. He proves, also, that man, once surrendering his reason, has no remaining guard against absurdities the most monstrous, and like a ship without a rudder, is the sport of every wind. With such persons, gullibility which they call faith, takes the helm from the hand of reason, and the mind becomes a wreck.

    [Letter to James Smith discussing Jefferson's hate of the doctrine of the Christian trinity, December 8 1822]”
    Thomas Jefferson, Letters of Thomas Jefferson



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