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Quotes About Government

Quotes tagged as "government" (showing 61-90 of 906)
Wendell Berry
“In a society in which nearly everybody is dominated by somebody else's mind or by a disembodied mind, it becomes increasingly difficult to learn the truth about the activities of governments and corporations, about the quality or value of products, or about the health of one's own place and economy.
In such a society, also, our private economies will depend less and less upon the private ownership of real, usable property, and more and more upon property that is institutional and abstract, beyond individual control, such as money, insurance policies, certificates of deposit, stocks, and shares. And as our private economies become more abstract, the mutual, free helps and pleasures of family and community life will be supplanted by a kind of displaced or placeless citizenship and by commerce with impersonal and self-interested suppliers...
Thus, although we are not slaves in name, and cannot be carried to market and sold as somebody else's legal chattels, we are free only within narrow limits. For all our talk about liberation and personal autonomy, there are few choices that we are free to make. What would be the point, for example, if a majority of our people decided to be self-employed?
The great enemy of freedom is the alignment of political power with wealth. This alignment destroys the commonwealth - that is, the natural wealth of localities and the local economies of household, neighborhood, and community - and so destroys democracy, of which the commonwealth is the foundation and practical means.”
Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

Honoré de Balzac
“Laws are spider webs through which the big flies pass and the little ones get caught.”
Honoré de Balzac

Jiddu Krishnamurti
“Governments want efficient technicians, not human beings, because human beings become dangerous to governments – and to organized religions as well. That is why governments and religious organizations seek to control education.”
Jiddu Krishnamurti, Education and the Significance of Life

Stieg Larsson
“Dear Government... I'm going to have a serious talk with you if I ever find anyone to talk to.”
Stieg Larsson, The Girl Who Played with Fire

Winston S. Churchill
“You see these dictators on their pedestals, surrounded by the bayonets of their soldiers and the truncheons of their police ... yet in their hearts there is unspoken fear. They are afraid of words and thoughts: words spoken abroad, thoughts stirring at home -- all the more powerful because forbidden -- terrify them. A little mouse of thought appears in the room, and even the mightiest potentates are thrown into panic.”
Winston S. Churchill, Blood, Sweat and Tears

Ron Paul
“When one gets in bed with government, one must expect the diseases it spreads.”
Ron Paul

Frank Herbert
“Empires do not suffer emptiness of purpose at the time of their creation. It is when they have become established that aims are lost and replaced by vague ritual.”
Frank Herbert, Dune Messiah

Edward R. Murrow
“We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it.”
Edward R. Murrow

Herbert Marcuse
“Free election of masters does not abolish the masters or the slaves.”
Herbert Marcuse

Jonah Goldberg
“If there is ever a fascist takeover in America, it will come not in the form of storm troopers kicking down doors but with lawyers and social workers saying. "I'm from the government and I'm here to help.”
Jonah Goldberg, Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left from Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning

Henry David Thoreau
“I heartily accept the motto, "That government is best which governs least"; and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically. Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which also I believe — "That government is best which governs not at all"; and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have. Government is at best but an expedient; but most governments are usually, and all governments are sometimes, inexpedient.”
Henry David Thoreau

Leo Tolstoy
“Writing laws is easy, but governing is difficult.”
Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace

Martin Luther King Jr.
“I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed, without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today – my own government.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

Albert Einstein
“The prestige of government has undoubtedly been lowered considerably by the Prohibition law. For nothing is more destructive of respect for the government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced”
Albert Einstein

Daniel Webster
“I apprehend no danger to our country from a foreign foe. Our destruction, should it come at all, will be from another quarter. From the inattention of the people to the concerns of their government, from their carelessness and negligence, I must confess that I do apprehend some danger. I fear that they may place too implicit a confidence in their public servants, and fail properly to scrutinize their conduct; that in this way they may be made the dupes of designing men, and become the instruments of their own undoing. Make them intelligent, and they will be vigilant; give them the means of detecting the wrong, and they will apply the remedy.”
Daniel Webster

Brandon Sanderson
“I froze, shocked. (And don't try to clam that you did anything different the first time a government bureaucrat pulled a gun on you.)”
Brandon Sanderson, Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians

Ronald Reagan
“Democracy is worth dying for, because it's the most deeply honorable form of government ever devised by man.”
Ronald Reagan

Jon Stewart
“To the people who are upset about their hard-earned tax money going to things they don’t like: welcome to the f*cking club. Reimburse me for the Iraq war and oil subsidies, and diaphragms are on me!”
Jon Stewart

“I have come to the conclusion that one useless man is a disgrace, that two become a lawfirm, and that three or more become a congress. -John Adams”
Sherman Edwards, 1776

Thomas Jefferson
“If once the people become inattentive to the public affairs, you and I, and Congress and Assemblies, Judges and Governors, shall all become wolves. It seems to be the law of our general nature, in spite of individual exceptions.”
Thomas Jefferson

Abraham Lincoln
“Allow the President to invade a neighboring nation, whenever he shall deem it necessary to repel an invasion and you allow him to do so whenever he may choose to say he deems it necessary for such purpose -- and you allow him to make war at pleasure. . . . If, today, he should choose to say he thinks it necessary to invade Canada to prevent the British from invading us, how could you stop him? You may say to him, 'I see no probability of the British invading us'; but he will say to you, 'Be silent; I see it, if you don't.”
Abraham Lincoln

John le Carré
“By repetition, each lie becomes an irreversible fact upon which other lies are constructed.”
John le Carré

John Stuart Mill
“It still remains unrecognised, that to bring a child into existence without a fair prospect of being able, not only to provide food for its body, but instruction and training for its mind, is a moral crime, both against the unfortunate offspring and against society; and that if the parent does not fulfil this obligation, the State ought to see it fulfilled, at the charge, as far as possible, of the parent.”
John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

Jarod Kintz
“Broke is a relative term, like sister, cousin, or Uncle Sam.
”
Jarod Kintz, This Book Title is Invisible

Margaret Atwood
“That was when they suspended the Constitution. They said it would be temporary. There wasn't even any rioting in the streets. People stayed home at night, watching television, looking for some direction. There wasn't even an enemy you could put your finger on.”
Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale

John Adams
“It was the general opinion of ancient nations, that the divinity alone was adequate to the important office of giving laws to men... and modern nations, in the consecrations of kings, and in several superstitious chimeras of divine rights in princes and nobles, are nearly unanimous in preserving remnants of it... Is the jealousy of power, and the envy of superiority, so strong in all men, that no considerations of public or private utility are sufficient to engage their submission to rules for their own happiness? Or is the disposition to imposture so prevalent in men of experience, that their private views of ambition and avarice can be accomplished only by artifice? — … There is nothing in which mankind have been more unanimous; yet nothing can be inferred from it more than this, that the multitude have always been credulous, and the few artful. The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature: and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. Although the detail of the formation of the American governments is at present little known or regarded either in Europe or America, it may hereafter become an object of curiosity. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had any interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the inspiration of heaven, any more than those at work upon ships or houses, or labouring in merchandize or agriculture: it will for ever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses. As Copley painted Chatham, West, Wolf, and Trumbull, Warren and Montgomery; as Dwight, Barlow, Trumbull, and Humphries composed their verse, and Belknap and Ramzay history; as Godfrey invented his quadrant, and Rittenhouse his planetarium; as Boylston practised inoculation, and Franklin electricity; as Paine exposed the mistakes of Raynal, and Jefferson those of Buffon, so unphilosophically borrowed from the Recherches Philosophiques sur les Américains those despicable dreams of de Pauw — neither the people, nor their conventions, committees, or sub-committees, considered legislation in any other light than ordinary arts and sciences, only as of more importance. Called without expectation, and compelled without previous inclination, though undoubtedly at the best period of time both for England and America, to erect suddenly new systems of laws for their future government, they adopted the method of a wise architect, in erecting a new palace for the residence of his sovereign. They determined to consult Vitruvius, Palladio, and all other writers of reputation in the art; to examine the most celebrated buildings, whether they remain entire or in ruins; compare these with the principles of writers; and enquire how far both the theories and models were founded in nature, or created by fancy: and, when this should be done, as far as their circumstances would allow, to adopt the advantages, and reject the inconveniences, of all. Unembarrassed by attachments to noble families, hereditary lines and successions, or any considerations of royal blood, even the pious mystery of holy oil had no more influence than that other of holy water: the people universally were too enlightened to be imposed on by artifice; and their leaders, or more properly followers, were men of too much honour to attempt it. Thirteen governments thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favour of the rights of mankind.

[Preface to 'A Defence of the Constitutions of the United States of America', 1787]”
John Adams, A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America

John Stuart Mill
“To think that because those who wield power in society wield in the end that of government, therefore it is of no use to attempt to influence the constitution of the government by acting on opinion, is to forget that opinion is itself one of the greatest active social forces. One person with a belief is a social power equal to ninety-nine who have only interests.”
John Stuart Mill, Considerations on Representative Government

Jarod Kintz
“Love is like a corn-dog popsicle, and I’m on the Most Wanted list. Unfortunately it’s by the government, specifically the FDA, and not by women.”
Jarod Kintz, Love quotes for the ages. Specifically ages 18-81.

Jarod Kintz
“Who was it that said, “Men are but wheat, and the government is the bread”? Ah yes, that was my grandfather, who shouted that shortly before hurling a loaf of bread at President Hoover during the great depression.”
Jarod Kintz, American Association for the Advancement of Aardvarks Presents: Dear Natalie

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