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Albert Einstein "Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom." ~ Albert Einstein "Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom." ~ Albert Einstein Adlai Stevenson "My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular." ~ Adlai Stevenson Vanya Cohen "When there's a single thief, it's robbery. When there are a thousand thieves, it's taxation." ~Vanya Cohen H.L. Mencken "Demagogue: One who preaches doctrines he knows to be untrue to men he knows to be idiots." ~ H.L. Mencken "A professional politician is a professionally dishonorable man. In order to get anywhere near high office he has to make so many compromises and submit to so many humiliations that he becomes indistinguishable from a streetwalker." ~ H.L. Mencken "The truly civilized man is always skeptical and tolerant, in this field as in all others. His culture is based on 'I am not too sure'." ~ H.L. Mencken "All human progress, even in morals, has been the work of men who have doubted the current moral values, not of men who have whooped them up and tried to enforce them." ~ H.L. Mencken "Moral certainty is always a sign of cultural inferiority. The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong." ~ H.L. Mencken "The chief difference between free capitalism and State socialism seems to be this: that under the former a man pursues his own advantage openly, frankly and honestly, whereas under the latter he does so hypocritically and under false pretenses." ~ H.L. Mencken "The highfalutin aims of democracy, whether real or imaginary, are always assumed to be identical with its achievements. This, of course, is sheer hallucination. Not one of those aims, not even the aim of giving every adult a vote, has been realized. It has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good." ~ H.L. Mencken "My old suggestion that public offices be filled by drawing lots, as a jury box is filled, was probably more intelligent than I suspected. It has been criticized on the ground that selecting a man at random would probably produce some extremely bad State governors....But I incline to believe that it would be best to choose members of the Legislature quite at random. No matter how stupid they were, they could not be more stupid than the average legislator under the present system. Certainly, they'd be measurably more honest, taking one with another. Finally, there would be the great advantage that all of them had got their jobs unwillingly, and were eager, not to spin out their sessions endlessly, but to get home as soon as possible." ~ H.L. Mencken "The only guarantee of the Bill of Rights which continues to have any force and effect is the one prohibiting quartering troops on citizens in time of peace. All the rest have been disposed of by judicial interpretation and legislative whittling." ~ H.L. Mencken "No professional politician is ever actually in favor of public economy. It is his implacable enemy, and he knows it. All professional politicians are dedicated wholeheartedly to waste and corruption. They are the enemies of every decent man." ~ H.L. Mencken "The main thing that every political campaign in the United States demonstrates is that the politicians of all parties, despite their superficial enmities, are really members of one great brotherhood. Their principal, and indeed their sole, object is to collar public office, with all the privileges and profits that go therewith. They achieve this collaring by buying votes with other people's money." ~ H.L. Mencken "The art of government is the exclusive possession of quacks and frauds. It has been so since the earliest days, and it will probably remain so until the end of time." ~ H.L. Mencken "There has been no organized effort to keep government down since Jefferson's day. Ever since then the American people have been bolstering up its powers and giving it more and more jurisdiction over their affairs. They pay for that folly in increased taxes and diminished liberties." ~ H.L. Mencken "Government, like any other organism, refuses to acquiesce in its own extinction. This refusal, of course, involves the resistance to any effort to diminish its powers and prerogatives." ~ H.L. Mencken "It is impossible to imagine the universe run by a wise, just and omnipotent God, but it is quite easy to imagine it run by a board of gods. If such a board actually exists it operates precisely like the board of a corporation that is losing money." ~ H.L. Mencken "The art of government is the exclusive possession of quacks and frauds. It has been so since the earliest days, and it will probably remain so until the end of time." ~ H.L. Mencken "We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart." ~ H.L. Mencken "Sunday — A day given over by Americans to wishing that they themselves were dead and in Heaven, and that their neighbors were dead and in Hell." ~ H.L. Mencken "Democracy is the art of running the circus from the monkey cage." ~ H.L. Mencken "Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats." ~ H.L. Mencken "The most costly of all follies is to believe passionately in the palpably not true. It is the chief occupation of mankind." ~ H.L. Mencken "If ever a man is to achieve anything like dignity, it can happen only if superior men are given absolute freedom to think what they want to think and say what they want to say." ~ H.L. Mencken "I believe in only one thing and that thing is human liberty." ~ H.L. Mencken "Public opinion, in its raw state, gushes out in the immemorial form of the mob's fear. It is piped into central factories, and there it is flavoured and coloured and put into cans." ~ H.L. Mencken "When A annoys or injures B on the pretense of saving or improving X, A is a scoundrel." ~ H.L. Mencken "[Referring to FDR] If he became convinced tomorrow that coming out for cannibalism would get him the votes he needs so sorely, he would begin fattening a missionary in the White House yard come Wednesday." ~ H.L. Mencken "The typical lawmaker of today is a man wholly devoid of principle — a mere counter in a grotesque and knavish game. If the right pressure could be applied to him, he would be cheerfully in favor of polygamy, astrology or cannibalism." ~ H.L. Mencken "The truth, indeed, is something that mankind, for some mysterious reason, instinctively dislikes. Every man who tries to tell it is unpopular, and even when, by the sheer strength of his case, he prevails, he is put down as a scoundrel." ~ H.L. Mencken "Q: If you find so much that is unworthy of reverence in the United States, then why do you live here? A: Why do men go to zoos?" ~ H.L. Mencken "What is any political campaign save a concerted effort to turn out a set of politicians who are admittedly bad and put in a set who are thought to be better. The former assumption, I believe is always sound; the latter is just as certainly false. For if experience teaches us anything at all it teaches us this: that a good politician, under democracy, is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar." ~ H.L. Mencken "[The average man] is not actually happy when free; he is uncomfortable, a bit alarmed, and intolerably lonely. Liberty is not a thing for the great masses of men. It is the exclusive possession of a small and disreputable minority, like knowledge, courage and honor. It takes a special sort of man to understand and enjoy liberty — and he is usually an outlaw in democratic societies." ~ H.L. Mencken "The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth." ~ H.L. Mencken "If, after I depart this vale, you ever remember me and have thought to please my ghost, forgive some sinner and wink your eye at some homely girl." ~ H.L. Mencken "To be happy one must be (a) well fed, unhounded by sordid cares, at ease in Zion, (b) full of a comfortable feeling of superiority to the masses of one's fellow men, and (c) delicately and unceasingly amused according to one's taste. It is my contention that, if this definition be accepted, there is no country in the world wherein a man constituted as I am — a man of my peculiar weakness, vanities, appetites, and aversions — can be so happy as he can be in the United States." ~ H.L. Mencken "To sum up: 1. The cosmos is a gigantic fly-wheel making 10,000 revolutions a minute. 2. Man is a sick fly taking a dizzy ride on it. 3. Religion is the theory that the wheel was designed and set spinning to give him the ride." ~ H.L. Mencken "It is [a politician's] business to get and hold his job at all costs. If he can hold it by lying, he will hold it by lying; if lying peters out, he will try to hold it by embracing new truths. His ear is ever close to the ground." ~ H.L. Mencken "As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron." ~ H.L. Mencken "When a candidate for public office faces the voters he does not face men of sense; he faces a mob of men whose chief distinguishing mark is the fact that they are quite incapable of weighing ideas, or even of comprehending any save the most elemental — men whose whole thinking is done in terms of emotion, and whose dominant emotion is dread of what they cannot understand. So confronted, the candidate must either bark with the pack or be lost... All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre...." ~ H.L. Mencken "All government, of course, is against liberty." ~ H.L. Mencken Bertrand Russell "There is no nonsense so arrant that it cannot be made the creed of the vast majority by adequate governmental action." ~ Bertrand Russell E.B. White "The time not to become a father is eighteen years before a war." ~ E.B. White Georg Christoph Lichtenber "Perhaps in time the so-called Dark Ages will be thought of as including our own." ~ Georg Christoph Lichtenber David Galland "...the very idea that some faceless government functionary can walk into my house, or my office, at any time and on any pretense and require me to spend my time and resources assisting him in going over my books so that he may demand more money from me money that will then flow through the machine to be used to purposes I find personally abhorrent -- is a truly warped and disturbing concept." ~ David Galland Charles Bukowski "The difference between a democracy and a dictatorship is that in a democracy you vote first and take orders later; in a dictatorship you don't have to waste your time voting." ~Charles Bukowski Henry Miller "Living apart and at peace with myself, I came to realize more vividly the meaning of the doctrine of acceptance. To refrain from giving advice, to refrain from meddling in the affairs of others, to refrain, even though the motives be the highest, from tampering with another's way of life - so simple, yet so difficult for an active spirit. Hands off!" ~ Henry Miller C.P. Snow "When you think of the long and gloomy history of man, you will find more hideous crimes have been committed in the name of obedience than have ever been committed in the name of rebellion." ~ C.P. Snow Ralph Waldo Emerson "The desire of gold is not for gold. It is for the means of freedom and benefit." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson "Man exists for his own sake and not to add a laborer to the State." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson "In dealing with the State, we ought to remember that its institutions are not aboriginal, though they existed before we were born; that they are not superior to the citizen; that every one of them was once the act of a single man; every law and usage was a man's expedient to meet a particular case; that they all are imitable, all alterable; we may make as good; we may make better." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson "Liberty is a slow fruit." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson Lord Acton "At all times sincere friends of freedom have been rare, and its triumphs have been due to minorities...." ~ Lord Acton John Adams "Nip the shoots of arbitrary power in the bud, is the only maxim which can ever preserve the liberties of any people." ~ John Adams "The jaws of power are always open to devour, and her arm is always stretched out, if possible, to destroy the freedom of thinking, speaking, and writing." ~ John Adams "Human nature itself is evermore an advocate for liberty. There is also in human nature a resentment of injury, and indignation against wrong. A love of truth and a veneration of virtue. These amiable passions, are the "latent spark"... If the people are capable of understanding, seeing and feeling the differences between true and false, right and wrong, virtue and vice, to what better principle can the friends of mankind apply than to the sense of this difference?" ~ John Adams "You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments: rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws...." ~ John Adams "There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty." ~ John Adams John Quincy Adams "The laws of man may bind him in chains or may put him to death, but they never can make him wise, virtuous, or happy." ~ John Quincy Adams Samuel Adams "No people will tamely surrender their Liberties, nor can any be easily subdued, when knowledge is diffused and Virtue is preserved. On the Contrary, when People are universally ignorant, and debauched in their Manners, they will sink under their own weight without the Aid of foreign Invaders." ~ Samuel Adams "The liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil Constitution, are worth defending at all hazards; and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors: they purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense of treasure and blood, and transmitted them to us with care and diligence. It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men." ~ Samuel Adams "A general dissolution of the principles and manners will more surely overthrow the liberties of America than the whole force of the common enemy.... While the people are virtuous they cannot be subdued; but once they lose their virtue, they will be ready to surrender their liberties to the first external or internal invader..." ~ Samuel Adams "It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds." ~ Samuel Adams "Among the natural rights of the colonists are these: first, a right to life; secondly, to liberty; thirdly to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can." ~ Samuel Adams "The liberties of our country...are worth defending at all hazards; it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors. They purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense of treasure and blood. It will bring a mark of everlasting infamy on the present generation – enlightened as it is – if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them by the artifices of designing men." ~ Samuel Adams Joseph Addison "A day, an hour, of virtuous liberty Is worth a whole eternity in bondage." ~ Joseph Addison Mortimer Adler "Freedom is the emancipation from the arbitrary rule of other men." ~ Mortimer Adler Aeschylus "Death is better, a milder fate than tyranny." ~ Aeschylus Donald Alexander "We now have so many regulations that everyone is guilty of some violation." ~ Donald Alexander Dante Alighieri "For what is liberty but the unhampered translation of will into act?" ~ Dante Alighieri "Mankind is at its best when it is most free." ~ Dante Alighieri Florence Allen "Liberty cannot be caged into a charter or handed on ready-made to the next generation. Each generation must recreate liberty for its own times. Whether or not we establish freedom rests with ourselves." ~ Florence Allen ACLU "Liberty is always unfinished business." ~ American Civil Liberties Union Margaret Atwood "The use of 'religion' as an excuse to repress the freedom of expression and to deny human rights is not confined to any country or time." ~ Margaret Atwood Mikhail Bakunin "Freedom, morality, and the human dignity of the individual consists precisely in this; that he does good not because he is forced to do so, but because he freely conceives it, wants it, and loves it." ~ Mikhail Bakunin "Freedom, morality, and the human dignity of the individual consists precisely in this; that he does good not because he is forced to do so, but because he freely conceives it, wants it, and loves it." ~ Mikhail Bakunin Bertrand Barere de Vieuzac "The tree of liberty could not grow were it not watered with the blood of tyrants." ~ Bertrand Barere de Vieuzac Alan Barth "Criticism and dissent are the indispensable antidote to major delusions." ~ Alan Barth Bruce Barton "What a curious phenomenon it is that you can get men to die for the liberty of the world who will not make the little sacrifice that is needed to free themselves from their own individual bondage." ~ Bruce Barton Frederic Bastiat "It is impossible to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this: the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder." ~ Frederic Bastiat "The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended." ~ Frederic Bastiat "Sometimes the law defends plunder and participates in it. Thus the beneficiaries are spared the shame and danger that their acts would otherwise involve..." ~ Frederic Bastiat "But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them and gives it to the other persons to whom it doesn't belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime. Then abolish that law without delay ... No legal plunder; this is the principle of justice, peace, order, stability, harmony and logic." ~ Frederic Bastiat "Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place." ~ Frederic Bastiat "By virtue of exchange, one man's prosperity is beneficial to all others." ~ Frederic Bastiat “Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.” ~ Frederic Bastiat Henry Ward Beecher "Liberty is the soul's right to breathe and, when it cannot take a long breath, laws are girdled too tight." ~ Henry Ward Beecher "Liberty is the soul's right to breathe and, when it cannot take a long breath, laws are girdled too tight." ~ Henry Ward Beecher Clive Bell "Only reason can convince us of those three fundamental truths without a recognition of which there can be no effective liberty: that what we believe is not necessarily true; that what we like is not necessarily good; and that all questions are open." ~ Clive Bell "Only reason can convince us of those three fundamental truths without a recognition of which there can be no effective liberty: that what we believe is not necessarily true; that what we like is not necessarily good; and that all questions are open." ~ Clive Bell Hilaire Belloc "Never could an increase of comfort or security be a sufficient good to be bought at the price of liberty." ~ Hilaire Belloc Alan Bloom "Freedom of the mind requires not only, or not even especially, the absence of legal constraints but the presence of alternative thoughts. The most successful tyranny is not the one that uses force to assure uniformity, but the one that removes awareness of other possibilities." ~ Alan Bloom William Borah "Without an unfettered press, without liberty of speech, all of the outward forms and structures of free institutions are a sham, a pretense -- the sheerest mockery. If the press is not free; if speech is not independent and untrammeled; if the mind is shackled or made impotent through fear, it makes no difference under what form of government you live, you are a subject and not a citizen." ~ William Borah James Bovard "The first step in saving our liberty is to realize how much we have already lost, how we lost it, and how we will continue to lose it unless fundamental political changes occur." ~ James Bovard Louis Brandeis "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the Government's purposes are beneficent....The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding." ~ Louis Brandeis "Fear of serious injury cannot alone justify suppression of free speech and assembly. Men feared witches and burned women. It is the function of speech to free men from the bondage of irrational fears." ~ Louis Brandeis Tom Braun "If you think we are free today, you know nothing about tyranny and even less about freedom." ~ Tom Braun Harry Browne "A welfare state is frightened of every poor person who tries to get in and every rich person who tries to get out." ~ Harry Browne Pearl S. Buck "None who have always been free can understand the terrible fascinating power of the hope of freedom to those who are not free." ~ Pearl S. Buck William F. Buckley, Jr. "We are so concerned to flatter the majority that we lose sight of how very often it is necessary, in order to preserve freedom for the minority, let alone for the individual, to face that majority down." ~ William F. Buckley, Jr. "All that is good is not embodied in the law; and all that is evil is not proscribed by the law." ~ William F. Buckley, Jr. Thomas Jefferson “Educate and inform the whole mass of the people... They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.” ~ Thomas Jefferson “Liberty is to the collective body, what health is to every individual body. Without health no pleasure can be tasted by man; without liberty, no happiness can be enjoyed by society.” ~ Thomas Jefferson “The liberty of speaking and writing guards our other liberties.” ~ Thomas Jefferson Voltaire "It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong." ~ Voltaire Benjamin Franklin “Sell not virtue to purchase wealth, nor liberty to purchase power.” ~ Benjamin Franklin “Where liberty is, there is my country.” ~ Benjamin Franklin Unknown “No man's life, liberty or property are safe while the legislature is in session.” ~ Unknown Thomas Paine “He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from opposition; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach himself.” ~ Thomas Paine “When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon.” ~ Thomas Paine Archibald MacLeish “There are those who will say that the liberation of humanity, the freedom of man and mind is nothing but a dream. They are right. It is the American Dream.” ~ Archibald MacLeish Josiah Warren “Liberty, then, is the sovereignty of the individual, and never shall man know liberty until each and every individual is acknowledged to be the only legitimate sovereign of his or her person, time, and property, each living and acting at his own cost.” ~ Josiah Warren Kahlil Gibran “Life without liberty is like a body without spirit.” ~ Kahlil Gibran Geoffrey Fisher “There is a sacred realm of privacy for every man and woman where he makes his choices and decisions-a realm of his own essential rights and liberties into which the law, generally speaking, must not intrude.” ~ Geoffrey Fisher Edmund Burke "When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one...." ~ Edmund Burke "Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little." ~ Edmund Burke "Among a people generally corrupt, liberty cannot long exist." ~ Edmund Burke "The greater the power the more dangerous the abuse." ~ Edmund Burke Sir Richard Francis Burton "Do what thy manhood bids thee do, From none but self expect applause: He noblest lives and noblest dies Who makes and keeps his self-made laws." ~ Sir Richard Francis Burton Lord Byron "Who would be free themselves must strike the blow." ~ Lord Byron "The wish, which ages have not yet subdued In man, to have no master save his mood." ~ Lord Byron John Cage "I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones." ~ John Cage Albert Camus "Freedom is not a reward or a decoration that is celebrated with champagne...Oh no! It's a...long distance race, quite solitary and very exhausting." ~ Albert Camus "Freedom is not a gift received from the State or leader, but a possession to be won every day by the effort of each and the union of all." ~ Albert Camus Cato "Whoever would overthrow the Liberty of a Nation, must begin by subduing Freedom of Speech...." ~ Cato "By Liberty I understand the Power which every Man has over his own Actions, and his Right to enjoy the Fruits of his Labour, Art, and Industry, as far as by it he hurts not the Society, or any Members of it, by taking from any Member, or by hindering him from enjoying what he himself enjoys. The Fruits of a Man's honest Industry are the just Rewards of it, ascertained to him by natural and eternal Equity, as is his Title to use them in the Manner which he thinks fit: And thus, with the above Limitations, every Man is sole Lord and Arbitrer of his own private Actions and Property." ~ Cato Carrie Chapman Catt "There are two kinds of restrictions on human liberty -- the restraint of law and that of custom. No written law has ever been more binding than unwritten custom supported by popular opinion." ~ Carrie Chapman Catt Cervantes "Liberty is one of the choicest gifts that heaven hath bestowed upon man, and exceeds in value all the treasures which the earth contains within its bosom, or the sea covers. Liberty, as well as honor, man ought to preserve at the hazard of his life, for without it life is insupportable." ~ Cervantes Edmund Chaffee "The majority of us are for free speech when it deals with subjects concerning which we have no intense feelings." ~ Edmund Chaffee William Ellery Channing "The cry has been that when war is declared, all opposition should therefore be hushed. A sentiment more unworthy of a free country could hardly be propagated. If the doctrine be admitted, rulers have only to declare war and they are screened at once from scrutiny." ~ William Ellery Channing "The spirit of liberty is not merely, as multitudes imagine, a jealousy of our own particular rights, but a respect for the rights of others, and an unwillingness that any man, whether high or low, should be wronged and trampled under foot." ~ William Ellery Channing John Jay Chapman "Attack another’s rights and you destroy your own." ~ John Jay Chapman Winston Churchill "The inherent vice of capitalism is the uneven division of blessings, while the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal division of misery." ~ Winston Churchill Marcus Tullius Cicero "Freedom suppressed and again regained bites with keener fangs than freedom never endangered." ~ Marcus Tullius Cicero Ramsey Clark "A right is not what someone gives you; it's what no one can take from you." ~ Ramsey Clark W.K. Clifford "It is wrong always, everywhere and for everyone to believe anything upon insufficient evidence." ~ W.K. Clifford Charles Caleb Colton "Liberty will not descend to a people, a people must raise themselves to liberty; it is a blessing that must be earned before it can be enjoyed." ~ Charles Caleb Colton Henry Steele Commager "Freedom is not a luxury that we can indulge in when at last we have security and prosperity and enlightenment; it is, rather, antecedent to all of these, for without it we can have neither security nor prosperity nor enlightenment." ~ Henry Steele Commager Anthony Ashley Cooper "Reason and virtue alone can bestow liberty." ~ Anthony Ashley Cooper William Cowper 'Tis liberty alone that gives the flower Of fleeting life its lustre and perfume; And we are weeds without it. ~ William Cowper Oliver Cromwell "It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon the supposition he may abuse it." ~ Oliver Cromwell John Philpot Curran "It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become prey to the active. The conditions upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime...." ~ John Philpot Curran Czech proverb "The big thieves hang the little ones." ~ Czech proverb Voltarine de Cleyre "Make no laws whatever concerning speech, and speech will be free; so soon as you make a declaration on paper that speech shall be free, you will have a hundred lawyers proving that “freedom does not mean abuse, nor liberty license,” and they will define freedom out of existence." ~ Voltarine de Cleyre Bertrand de Jouvenel "A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves." ~ Bertrand de Jouvenel Etienne de la Boetie "It is incredible how as soon as a people become subject, it promptly falls into such complete forgetfulness of its freedom that it can hardly be roused to the point of regaining it, obeying so easily and willingly that one is led to say that this people has not so much lost its liberty as won its enslavement." ~ Etienne de la Boétie Salvador De Madariaga "He is free who knows how to keep in his own hands the power to decide at each step, the course of his life, and who lives in a society which does not block the exercise of that power." ~ Salvador De Madariaga Alexis de Tocqueville "All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it." ~ Alexis de Tocqueville Bill Bonner "Anyone who wants to vote probably shouldn’t be allowed to vote. Voting is the first step towards zombification – trying to get something without actually working for it." ~ Bill Bonner Rick Rule “What's interesting then is that every national government has some incentive to devalue [its currency] – to protect their own domestic economy and employment. Gold has no similar constituency for devaluation.” ~ Rick Rule Benjamin Disraeli "For you see, the world is governed by very different personages from what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes." ~ Benjamin Disraeli William O. Douglas "The right to be let alone is indeed the beginning of all freedom." ~ William O. Douglas "The privacy and dignity of our citizens [are] being whittled away by sometimes imperceptible steps. Taken individually, each step may be of little consequence. But when viewed as a whole, there begins to emerge a society quite unlike any we have seen -- a society in which government may intrude into the secret regions of a [person’s] life." ~ William O. Douglas "Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one unAmerican act that could most easily defeat us." ~ William O. Douglas "The function of free speech under our system of government is to invite dispute. It may indeed best serve its high purpose when it invites a condition of unrest, creates dissatisfaction with conditions as they are, or even stirs people to anger. Speech is often provocative and challenging. It may strike at prejudices and preconceptions and have profound unsettling effects as it passes for acceptance of an idea." ~ William O. Douglas Frederick Douglass "I know no class of my fellowmen, however just, enlightened, and humane, which can be wisely and safely trusted absolutely with the liberties of any other class." ~ Frederick Douglass "Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one’s thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist. That, of all rights, is the dread of tyrants. It is the right which they first of all strike down." ~ Frederick Douglass "To educate a man is to unfit him to be a slave." ~ Frederick Douglass "The whole history of the progress of human liberty shows that all concessions yet made to her august claims have been born of earnest struggle. If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters." ~ Frederick Douglass Jimmy Durante "Why doesn't everybody leave everybody else the hell alone?" ~ Jimmy Durante Edmund Spenser "What more felicity can fall to creature, than to enjoy delight with liberty." ~ Edmund Spenser Epictetus "He is free who lives as he wishes to live; who is neither subject to compulsion nor to hindrance, nor to force; whose movements to action are not impeded, whose desires attain their purpose, and who does not fall into that which he would avoid." ~ Epictetus