Martin Weiss > Martin's Quotes

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  • #1
    Robert Frost
    “Only where love and need are one,
    And the work is play for mortal stakes
    Is the deed ever truly done
    For Heaven and the future's sakes”
    Robert Frost

  • #2
    Edward Abbey
    “Better a cruel truth than a comfortable delusion.”
    Edward Abbey

  • #3
    Edward Abbey
    “One final paragraph of advice: do not burn yourselves out. Be as I am - a reluctant enthusiast....a part-time crusader, a half-hearted fanatic. Save the other half of yourselves and your lives for pleasure and adventure. It is not enough to fight for the land; it is even more important to enjoy it. While you can. While it’s still here. So get out there and hunt and fish and mess around with your friends, ramble out yonder and explore the forests, climb the mountains, bag the peaks, run the rivers, breathe deep of that yet sweet and lucid air, sit quietly for a while and contemplate the precious stillness, the lovely, mysterious, and awesome space. Enjoy yourselves, keep your brain in your head and your head firmly attached to the body, the body active and alive, and I promise you this much; I promise you this one sweet victory over our enemies, over those desk-bound men and women with their hearts in a safe deposit box, and their eyes hypnotized by desk calculators. I promise you this; You will outlive the bastards.”
    Edward Abbey

  • #4
    Edward Abbey
    “Society is like a stew. If you don't stir it up every once in a while then a layer of scum floats to the top.”
    Edward Abbey

  • #5
    Edward Abbey
    “Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. A civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.”
    Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire

  • #6
    Edward Abbey
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Edward Abbey

  • #7
    Edward Abbey
    “Freedom begins between the ears.”
    Edward Abbey

  • #8
    Edward Abbey
    “Our 'neoconservatives' are neither new nor conservative, but old as Babylon and evil as Hell.”
    Edward Abbey

  • #9
    Will Durant
    “In progressive societies the concentration[of wealth] may reach a point where the strength of number in the many poor rivals the strength of ability in the few rich; then the unstable equilibrium generates a critical situation, which history has diversely met by legislation redistributing wealth or by revolution distributing poverty.”
    Will Durant, The Lessons of History

  • #10
    Will Durant
    “Perhaps the cause of our contemporary pessimism is our tendency to view history as a turbulent stream of conflicts – between individuals in economic life, between groups in politics, between creeds in religion, between states in war. This is the more dramatic side of history; it captures the eye of the historian and the interest of the reader. But if we turn from that Mississippi of strife, hot with hate and dark with blood, to look upon the banks of the stream, we find quieter but more inspiring scenes: women rearing children, men building homes, peasants drawing food from the soil, artisans making the conveniences of life, statesmen sometimes organizing peace instead of war, teachers forming savages into citizens, musicians taming our hearts with harmony and rhythm, scientists patiently accumulating knowledge, philosophers groping for truth, saints suggesting the wisdom of love. History has been too often a picture of the bloody stream. The history of civilization is a record of what happened on the banks.”
    Will Durant

  • #11
    Will Durant
    “We frolic in our emancipation from theology, but have we developed a natural ethic—a moral code independent of religion—strong enough to keep our instincts of acquisition, pugnacity, and sex from debasing our civilization into a mire of greed, crime, and promiscuity? Have we really outgrown intolerance, or merely transferred it from religious to national, ideological, or racial hostilities?”
    Will Durant, The Lessons of History

  • #12
    Will Durant
    “If race or class war divides us into hostile camps, changing political argument into blind hate, one side or the other may overturn the hustings with the rule of the sword. If our economy of freedom fails to distribute wealth as ably as it has created it, the road to dictatorship will be open to any man who can persuasively promise security to all; and a martial government, under whatever charming phrases, will engulf the democratic world.”
    Will Durant, The Lessons of History

  • #13
    Will Durant
    “We conclude that the concentration of wealth is natural and inevitable, and is periodically alleviated by violent or peaceable partial redistribution. In this view all economic history is the slow heartbeat of the social organism, a vast systole and diastole of concentrating wealth and compulsive recirculation.”
    Will Durant, The Lessons of History

  • #14
    Thucydides
    “The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it.”
    Thucydides

  • #15
    Thucydides
    “Most people, in fact, will not take the trouble in finding out the truth, but are much more inclined to accept the first story they hear.”
    Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War

  • #16
    “Of all manifestations of power, restraint impresses men the most.”
    F. B. Jevons, A History of Greek Literature: From the Earliest Period to the Death of Demosthenes

  • #17
    Herodotus
    “If anyone, no matter who, were given the opportunity of choosing from amongst all the nations in the world the set of beliefs which he thought best, he would inevitably—after careful considerations of their relative merits—choose that of his own country. Everyone without exception believes his own native customs, and the religion he was brought up in, to be the best.”
    Herodotus, The Histories

  • #18
    Herodotus
    “After all, no one is stupid enough to prefer war to peace; in peace sons bury their fathers and in war fathers bury their sons.”
    Herodotus
    tags: peace, war

  • #19
    Herodotus
    “Such was the number of the barbarians, that when they shot forth their arrows the sun would be darkened by their multitude." Dieneces, not at all frightened at these words, but making light of the Median numbers, answered "Our Trachinian friend brings us excellent tidings. If the Medes darken the sun, we shall have our fight in the shade.”
    Herodotus, The Histories

  • #20
    Herodotus
    “Force has no place where there is need of skill”
    Herodotus, Historiae 1-4

  • #21
    Herodotus
    “When the Many are rulers, it cannot but be that, again, knavery is bred in the state; but now the knaves do not grow to hate one another—they become fast friends. For they combine together to maladminister the public concerns. This goes on until one man takes charge of affairs for the Many and puts a stop to the knaves. As a result of this, he wins the admiration of the Many, and, being so admired, lo! you have your despot again;”
    Herodotus, The History

  • #22
    Herodotus
    “These Phoenicians who came with Cadmus and of whom the Gephyraeans were a part brought with them to Hellas, among many other kinds of learning, the alphabet, which had been unknown before this, I think, to the Greeks. As time went on the sound and the form of the letters were changed. At this time the Greeks who were settled around them were for the most part Ionians, and after being taught the letters by the Phoenicians, they used them with a few changes of form. In so doing, they gave to these characters the name of Phoenician, as was quite fair seeing that the Phoenicians had brought them into Greece.
    (5-58-59)”
    Herodotus, The Histories

  • #23
    Howard Zinn
    “Historically, the most terrible things - war, genocide, and slavery - have resulted not from disobedience, but from obedience.”
    Howard Zinn

  • #24
    Howard Zinn
    “Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience. Our problem is that people all over the world have obeyed the dictates of leaders…and millions have been killed because of this obedience…Our problem is that people are obedient allover the world in the face of poverty and starvation and stupidity, and war, and cruelty. Our problem is that people are obedient while the jails are full of petty thieves… (and) the grand thieves are running the country. That’s our problem.”
    Howard Zinn

  • #25
    Howard Zinn
    “History is important. If you don't know history it is as if you were born yesterday. And if you were born yesterday, anybody up there in a position of power can tell you anything, and you have no way of checking up on it.”
    Howard Zinn

  • #26
    Howard Zinn
    “We don't have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.”
    Howard Zinn

  • #27
    Howard Zinn
    “The challenge remains. On the other side are formidable forces: money, political power, the major media. On our side are the people of the world and a power greater than money or weapons: the truth.
    Truth has a power of its own. Art has a power of its own. That age-old lesson – that everything we do matters – is the meaning of the people’s struggle here in the United States and everywhere. A poem can inspire a movement. A pamphlet can spark a revolution. Civil disobedience can arouse people and provoke us to think, when we organize with one another, when we get involved, when we stand up and speak out together, we can create a power no government can suppress. We live in a beautiful country. But people who have no respect for human life, freedom, or justice have taken it over. It is now up to all of us to take it back.”
    Howard Zinn, A Power Governments Cannot Suppress

  • #28
    Howard Zinn
    “The cry of the poor is not always just, but if you don't listen to it, you will never know what justice is.”
    Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States

  • #29
    Howard Zinn
    “Nations are not communities and never have been. The history of any country, presented as the history of a family, conceals the fierce conflicts of interest (sometimes exploding, often repressed) between conquerors and conquered, masters and slaves, capitalists and workers, dominators and dominated in race and sex. And in such as world of conflict, a world of victims and executioners, it is the job of thinking people, as Albert Camus suggested, not to be on the side of the executioners.”
    Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States

  • #30
    Howard Zinn
    “The prisons in the United States had long been an extreme reflection of the American system itself: the stark life differences between rich and poor, the racism, the use of victims against one another, the lack of resources of the underclass to speak out, the endless "reforms" that changed little. Dostoevski once said: "The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons."

    It had long been true, and prisoners knew this better than anyone, that the poorer you were the more likely you were to end up in jail. This was not just because the poor committed more crimes. In fact, they did. The rich did not have to commit crimes to get what they wanted; the laws were on their side. But when the rich did commit crimes, they often were not prosecuted, and if they were they could get out on bail, hire clever lawyers, get better treatment from judges. Somehow, the jails ended up full of poor black people.”
    Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States



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