I have a few, these are in no particular order.
"Every man has a property in his own person. This nobody has a right to, but himself."
He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
Thomas Paine, Dissertation on First Principles of Government, Dec. 23, 1791
The Sun never shined on a cause of greater worth. (American Liberty)
Thomas Paine, Common Sense, 1776
If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.
Thomas Paine, The American Crisis, Dec. 19, 1776
A free people (claim) their rights as derived from the laws of nature, and not as the gift of their chief magistrate.
Thomas Jefferson, Rights of British America, 1774
Equal and exact justice to all men, of whatever persuasion, religious or political.
Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1801
If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.
Thomas Paine, The American Crisis, December 19, 1776
Americans have the right and advantage of being armed - unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.
James Madison, The Federalist Papers
"The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed."
Alexander Hamilton, The Federalist Papers
This one is probably my favorite:
The cause of America is in a great measure the cause of all mankind.
Thomas Paine, Common Sense, 1776
Add your favorite quotes,
How you doin'?
Adam, Garden of Eden, 0.1 seconds after eating apple.
I drank what?
When this war is over the Japanese language will be spoken only in hell.
Admiral Bill Halsey
"There comes a time when every man feels the urge to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and start slitting throats."
- H.L. Mencken
Does this count?
"Sometimes the law is helpless to act, even when it identifies the guilty. It follows, therefore, that sometimes it is necessary to act outside the law, to shame its inadequacy, to pursue a natural justice."
Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt. -- Abraham Lincoln
"A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines."
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
I come from a state that raises corn and cotton and cockleburrs and Democrats, and frothy eloquence neither convinces or satisfies me. I am from Missouri. You've got to show me. -- Willard D. Vandiver
"God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion. 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... And what country can preserve its liberties, if it's rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to the 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."
Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. – John Adams (1814)
Do not separate text from historical background. If you do, you will have perverted and subverted the Constitution, which can only end in a distorted, bastardized form of illegitimate government. – James Madison
To maintain the ascendancy of the Constitution over the lawmaking majority is the great and essential point on which the success of the [American] system must depend; unless that ascendancy can be preserved, the necessary consequence must be that the laws will supersede the Constitution; and, finally, the will of the Executive, by influence of its patronage, will supersede the laws ... -- John C. Calhoun (1782-1850)
They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. – Benjamin Franklin
Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none. – Thomas Jefferson
A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government. – Thomas Jefferson (1801)
The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground. – Thomas Jefferson
Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of Liberty. – Thomas Jefferson
If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains set lightly upon you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen. – Samuel Adams
The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg. – Thomas Jefferson (1781)
Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death! -Patrick Henry to the Virginia House of Burgesses, 1775
To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical. – Thomas Jefferson
Those who expect to reap the benefits of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it. – Thomas Paine
Government at its best is a necessary evil, and at its worst, an intolerant one. – Thomas Paine
I have sworn upon the altar of god, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man. – Thomas Jefferson (1800)
The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty, and the destiny of the Republican model of government, are justly considered as deeply, perhaps as finally staked, on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people. – George Washington
I have ever deemed it fundamental for the United States never to take active part in the quarrels of Europe. Their political interests are entirely distinct from ours. Their mutual jealousies, their balance of power, their complicated alliances, their forms and principles of government, are all foreign to us. They are nations of eternal war. – Thomas Jefferson (1823)
America does not go abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She well knows that by enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standards of freedom. – John Quincy Adams (1821)
An Avidity to punish is always dangerous to liberty. It leads men to stretch, to misinterpret, and to misapply even the best of laws. He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself. – Thomas Paine
God grants liberty only to those who love it, and are always ready to guard and defend it. – Daniel Webster (1834)
Not a place upon earth might be so happy as America. Her situation is remote from all the wrangling world, and she has nothing to do but to trade with them. – Thomas Paine (1776)
If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government that is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself. – James Madison
Sometimes it is said that man cannot be trusted with the government of himself. Can he, then, be trusted with the government of others? – Thomas Jefferson (1801)
Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters. – Daniel Webster (1782-1852)
In matters of Power, let no more be heard of confidence in men, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution. – Thomas Jefferson
The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government – lest it come to dominate our lives and interests. – Patrick Henry
The care of every man's soul belongs to himself. But what if he neglect the care of it? Well what if he neglect the care of his health or his estate, which would more nearly relate to the state. Will the magistrate make a law that he not be poor or sick? Laws provide against injury from others; but not from ourselves. God himself will not save men against their wills. – Thomas Jefferson
If we were directed from Washington when to sow and when to reap, we would soon want for bread. – Thomas Jefferson
There are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by the gradual and silent encroachment of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpation. – James Madison
Where is it written in the Constitution, in what section or clause is it contained, that you may take children from their parents and parents from their children, and compel them to fight the battle in any war in which the folly or the wickedness of government may engage it? – Daniel Webster
When all government, in little as in great things, shall be drawn to Washington as the Center of all power, it will render powerless the checks provided of one government on another and will become as venal and oppressive as the government from which we separated. – 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
On every question of construction, let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed. – Thomas Jefferson
When the government fears the people, it is liberty. When the people fear the government, it is tyranny. – Thomas Paine
The course of history shows that as a government grows, liberty decreases. – Thomas Jefferson
Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any body of regular troops that can be, on any pretense, raised in the United States. – Noah Webster
I believe the states can best govern our home concerns and the federal government our foreign ones. – Thomas Jefferson
The policy of the American government is to leave their citizens free, neither restraining nor aiding them in their pursuits. – Thomas Jefferson
A body of men holding themselves accountable to nobody ought not to be trusted by anybody. – Thomas Paine
These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it now deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as Freedom should not be highly rated. – Thomas Paine
I have thought that a man of tolerable abilities may work great changes if he first forms a good plan and makes the execution of that same plan his whole study and business. – Benjamin Franklin
The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but the newspapers. – Thomas Jefferson
Arbitrary power is most easily established on the ruins of liberty abused to licentiousness. – George Washington
I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive. – Thomas Jefferson
Resistance to tyranny is service to God. – James Madison
Single acts of tyranny may be ascribed to the accidental opinion of a day. But a series of oppressions, begun at a distinguished period, and pursued unalterably through every change of ministers, too plainly proves a deliberate systematic plan of reducing us to slavery. – Thomas Jefferson
The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but a swindling futurity on a large scale. – Thomas Jefferson
Democracies have been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and in general have been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their death. – James Madison
The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not. – Thomas Jefferson
It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood, if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man, who knows what the law is today, can guess what it will be like tomorrow. – James Madison, Federalist Paper #62
If there be any among us who wish to dissolve the Union or to change its Republican form, let them stand undisturbed, as monuments of the safety with which error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it. – Thomas Jefferson's First Inaugural Address
Experience [has] shown that, even under the best forms [of government], those entrusted with power have, in time and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny. – Thomas Jefferson 1779
The Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself. –Benjamin Franklin
In a republican nation whose citizens are to be led by reason and persuasion and not by force, the art of reasoning becomes of first importance. – Thomas Jefferson, 1824
The ground of liberty is to be gained by inches, and we must be contented to secure what we can get from time to time and eternally press forward for what is yet to get. It takes time to persuade men to do even what is for their own good. – Thomas Jefferson
I shall exert every faculty I possess in aiding to prevent the Constitution from being nullified, destroyed, or impaired; and even though I should see it fail, I will still, with a voice feeble, perhaps, but earnest as ever issued from human lips, and with extinguish, call on the people to come to its rescue. – Daniel Webster
Of all the enemies to public liberty, war is perhaps the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few … No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. – James Madison
Government ought to be as much open to improvement as anything which appertains to man, instead of which it has been monopolized from age to age, by the most ignorant and vicious of the human race. Need we any other proof of their wretched management, than the excess of debts and taxes with which every nation groans, and the quarrels into which they have precipitated the world? – Thomas Paine
The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it to be always kept alive. It will often be exercised when wrong but better so than not to be exercised at all. I like a little rebellion now and then. It is like a storm in the atmosphere. – Thomas Jefferson (1743-1846), U.S. President, Letter to Abigail Adams, 22 February 1787
To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude. .I place economy among the first and most important of republican virtues, and public debt as the greatest of the dangers to be feared. – President Thomas Jefferson
It would be thought a hard government that should tax its people one tenth part. – Benjamin Franklin
No nation was ever ruined by trade. – Benjamin Franklin
My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. – Thomas Jefferson.
If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it, he is obligated to do so. – Thomas Jefferson
The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted. – James Madison (1751-1836)
If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny. – Thomas Jefferson
An elective despotism was not the government we fought for. – Thomas Jefferson
I cannot undertake to lay my finger upon an article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on the objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents. – James Madison
Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others. I do not add "within the law," because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual. – Thomas Jefferson
Tyranny is defined as that which is legal for the government but illegal for the citizenry. – Thomas Jefferson
To say that a bad government must be established for fear of anarchy is really saying that we should kill ourselves for fear of dying. – Richard Henry Lee (1732- 1794), Member of Continental Congress, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, U.S. Senator
The power to declare war, including the power of judging the causes of war, is fully and exclusively vested in the legislature … the executive has no right, in any case, to decide the question, whether there is or is not cause for declaring war. – James Madison (1751-1836), 4th U.S. President
If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. – James Madison (1751-1836), 4th U.S. President
It is the duty of the patriot to protect his country from its government. – Thomas Paine (1737-1809)
The constitution vests the power of declaring war in Congress; therefore no offensive expedition of importance can be undertaken until after they shall have deliberated upon the subject and authorized such a measure. – George Washington
Where Liberty dwells, there is my country. – Benjamin Franklin
Laws are made for men of ordinary understanding and should, therefore, be construed by the ordinary rules of common sense. Their meaning is not to be sought for in metaphysical subtleties which may make anything mean everything or nothing at pleasure. --Thomas Jefferson to William Johnson, 1823. ME
Our legislators are not sufficiently apprized of the rightful limits of their power; that their true office is to declare and enforce only our natural rights and duties, and to take none of them from us. – Thomas Jefferson, Letter to F. W. Gilmer, 1816
Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty. – Thomas Jefferson
Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but only those specifically enumerated. – Thomas Jefferson
With respect to the words "general welfare," I have always regarded them as qualified by the detail of powers connected with them. To take them in a literal and unlimited sense would be a metamorphosis of the Constitution into a character which there is a host of proofs was not contemplated by its creators. – James Madison
When a man assumes a public trust, he should consider himself public property. – Thomas Jefferson
The issue today is the same as it has been throughout all history, whether man shall be allowed to govern himself or be ruled by a small elite. – Thomas Jefferson
That measures of this nature [military conscription] should be debated at all in the councils of a free government is cause of dismay. The question is nothing less than whether the most essential rights of personal liberty shall be surrendered and despotism embraced in its worst form. – Daniel Webster
Nothing gives one person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances. – Thomas Jefferson
It is our true policy to steer clear of entangling alliances with any portion of the foreign world. The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is, in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. – George Washington
If you are not free to choose wrongly and irresponsibly, you are not free at all. – Jacob Hornberger (1995)
One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)
The right to defy an unconstitutional statute is basic in our scheme. Even when an ordinance requires a permit to make a speech, to deliver a sermon, to picket, to parade, or to assemble, it need not be honored when it's invalid on its face. – Potter Stewart (1915-1985), U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Walker v. Birmingham, 1967
The American experiment has come and gone. Whatever freedoms the people still might have as their own, are monitored and registered and taxed at virtually every turn. – Jeff Baxter
None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free. – Goethe
It is not the business of government to make men virtuous or religious, or to preserve the fool from the consequences of his own folly. Government should be repressive no further than is necessary to secure liberty by protecting the equal rights of each from aggression on the part of others, and the moment governmental prohibitions extend beyond this line they are in danger of defeating the very ends they are intended to serve. – Henry George
Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue. – Barry Goldwater (1964)
If a nation values anything more than freedom, it will lose its freedom; and the irony of it is that if it is comfort or money that it values more, it will lose that, too. – Somerset Maugham
Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women. When it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it. – Justice Learned Hand
It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence. – Charles A. Beard
Liberty is not a means to a political end. It is itself the highest political end. – Lord Acton
Every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under. – H.L. Mencken
‘When the government's boot is on your throat, whether it is a left boot or a right boot is of no consequence. – Gary Lloyd
[On ancient Athens]: In the end, more than freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life, and they lost it all – security, comfort, and freedom. When the Athenians finally wanted not to give to society but for society to give to them, when the freedom they wished for most was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free and was never free again. – Edward Gibbon
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. – C. S. Lewis
Vices are simply the errors which a man makes in his search after his own happiness. Unlike crimes, they imply no malice toward others, and no interference with their persons or property. – Lysander Spooner
It is not the responsibility of the government or the legal system to protect a citizen from himself. – Justice Casey Percell
No one can read our Constitution without concluding that the people who wrote it wanted their government severely limited; the words no and not employed in restraint of government power occur 24 times in the first seven articles of the Constitution and 22 more times in the Bill of Rights. – Edmund A. Opitz
Liberty is always dangerous, but it is the safest thing we have. – Harry Emerson Fosdick
It is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones. – Calvin Coolidge
It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. – Voltaire
The war for freedom will never really be won because the price of our freedom is constant vigilance over ourselves and over our Government. – Eleanor Roosevelt
First they came for the Jews, but I did nothing because I'm not a Jew. Then they came for the socialists, but I did nothing because I'm not a socialist. Then they came for the Catholics, but I did nothing because I'm not a Catholic. Finally, they came for me, but by then there was no one left to help me. – Pastor Father Niemoller (1946) German Lutheran pastor arrested by the Gestapo in 1937
The most fundamental purpose of government is defense, not empire. – Joseph Sobran (1995)
Here's your enemy for this week, the government says. And some gullible Americans click their heels and salute – often without knowing who or even where the enemy of the week is. – Charley Reese (1998)
Whenever is found what is called a paternal government, there is found state education. It has been discovered that the best way to ensure implicit obedience is to commence tyranny in the nursery. – Benjamin Disraeli, 1874
Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. – William Pitt (1783)
Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you. – Pericles (430 BC)
The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. – Herbert Spencer (1891)
Liberty is the only thing you cannot have unless you are willing to give it to others. – William Allen White
Ask not what you can do for your country; ask what your government is doing to you. – Joseph Sobran (1990)
The saddest epitaph which can be carved in memory of a vanished liberty is that it was lost because its possessors failed to stretch forth a saving hand while yet there was time. – Justice George Sutherland (1938)
Let the people think they govern and they will be governed. – William Penn (1693)
The threat posed by humans to the natural environment is nothing compared to the threat to humans posed by global environmental policy. – Fred L. Smith (1992)
Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun. – Mao Zedong (1938)
Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom. – Albert Einstein
Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it. – George Bernard Shaw
The strength of the Constitution, lies in the will of the people to defend it. – Thomas Edison
The Constitution is a written instrument. As such, its meaning does not alter. That which it meant when it was adopted, it means now. – South Carolina v. United States, 199 U.S. 437, 448 (1905)
The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant. – John Stuart Mill, On Liberty (1859)
Left-wing politicians take away your liberty in the name of children and of fighting poverty, while right-wing politicians do it in the name of family values and fighting drugs. Either way, government gets bigger and you become less free. – Harry Browne
If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all. – Noam Chomsky
I wanted to change the world. But I have found that the only thing one can be sure of changing is oneself. – Aldous Huxley
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. – Plato
Virtually all reasonable laws are obeyed, not because they are the law, but because reasonable people would do that anyway. If you obey a law simply because it is the law, that's a pretty likely sign that it shouldn't be a law. – Unknown
Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government's purposes are beneficial … the greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding. – Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis, 1928
We have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we may have. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. – Stephen Schneider, environmental activist, in Discover, Oct. '89
Nothing can destroy a government more quickly than its failure to observe its own laws, or worse, its disregard of the charter of its own existence – U.S. Supreme Court Justice Tom C. Clark - Mapp vs. Ohio
Those who do not learn from the mistakes of history are doomed to repeat them. – George Santayana
Alcohol didn't cause the high crime rates of the '20s and '30s, Prohibition did. And drugs do not cause today's alarming crime rates, but drug prohibition does. – US District Judge James C. Paine, addressing the Federal Bar Association in Miami, November, 1991
The moral and constitutional obligations of our representatives in Washington are to protect our liberty, not coddle the world, precipitating no-win wars, while bringing bankruptcy and economic turmoil to our people. – Congressman Ron Paul, 1987
If the jury feels the law is unjust, we recognize the undisputed power of the jury to acquit, even if its verdict is contrary to the law as given by a judge, and contrary to the evidence … and the courts must abide by that decision. – US v Moylan, 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, 1969, 417 F.2d at 1006
The government is good at one thing. It knows how to break your legs, and then hand you a crutch and say, See- if it weren't for the government, you wouldn't be able to walk. – Harry Browne
Why doesn't everybody just leave everybody else the hell alone? – Jimmy Durante
No matter how disastrously some policy has turned out, anyone who criticizes it can expect to hear: But what would you replace it with? When you put out a fire, what do you replace it with? – Thomas Sowell
One of the annoying things about believing in free will and individual responsibility is the difficulty of finding somebody to blame your problems on. And when you do find somebody, it's remarkable how often his picture turns up on your driver's license. – P.J. O'Rourke
When they kept you out it was because you were black; when they let you in, it is because you are black. That's progress? – Marilyn French
No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. – Ronald Reagan
When the same man, or set of men, holds the sword and the purse, there is an end of liberty. – George Mason
Can any of you seriously say the Bill of Rights could get through Congress today? It wouldn't even get out of committee. – F. Lee Bailey
Socialists make the mistake of confusing individual worth with success. They believe you cannot allow people to succeed in case those who fail feel worthless. – Kenneth Baker
The American heritage was one of individual liberty, personal responsibility and freedom from government … Unfortunately … that heritage has been lost. Americans no longer have the freedom to direct their own lives … Today, it is the government that is free – free to do whatever it wants. There is no subject, no issue, no matter… that is not subject to legislation. – Harry Browne
It must never be unpatriotic to support your country against your government. It must always be unpatriotic to support your government against your country. – Stephen T. Byington
Penalties against possession of a drug should not be more damaging than the drug itself. – Jimmy Carter
America was born of revolt, flourished on dissent, became great through experimentation. – Henry Steele Commager
You can only be free if I am free. – Clarence Darrow
Drug misuse is not a disease, it is a decision, like the decision to step out in front of a moving car. You would call that not a disease but an error of judgment. – Philip K. Dick
When a legislature undertakes to proscribe the exercise of a citizen's constitutional rights it acts lawlessly and the citizen can take matters into his own hands and proceed on the basis that such a law is no law at all. – Justice William O. Douglas
Politics ought to be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage. – Dwight D. Eisenhower
So long as we need to control other people, however benign our motives, we are captive to that need. In giving them freedom, we free ourselves. – Marilyn Ferguson
Civil disobedience becomes a sacred duty when the State becomes lawless or, which is the same thing, corrupt. – Mohandas Gandhi
The broad masses of a population are more amenable to the appeal of rhetoric than to any other force. – Adolf Hitler
I never hurt nobody but myself and that's nobody's business but my own. – Billie Holiday
Historically, much of the motivation for public schooling has been to stifle variety and institute social control. – Jack Hugh
He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetuate it. – Martin Luther King, Jr.
If you can cut the people off from their history, then they can be easily persuaded. – Karl Marx
In 1950, the average family of four paid 2% of its earnings to federal taxes. Today it pays 24%– William R. Mattox, Jr. (sometime before 1996)
The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities. – Ayn Rand
What is ominous is the ease with which some people go from saying that they don't like something to saying that the government should forbid it. When you go down that road, don't expect freedom to survive very long. – Thomas Sowell
However insignificant the minority, and however trifling the proposed trespass against their rights, no such trespass is permissible. – Herbert Spencer (from The Right To Ignore The State)
In the beginning of a change, the Patriot is a scarce man and brave, hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds however, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a Patriot. – Mark Twain
I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. – Voltaire
Liberals believe government should take people's earnings to give to poor people. Conservatives disagree. They think government should confiscate people's earnings and give them to farmers and insolvent banks. The compelling issue to both conservatives and liberals is not whether it is legitimate for government to confiscate one's property to give to another, the debate is over the disposition of the pillage. – Walter Williams
The pages of history shine on instances of the jury's exercise of its prerogative to disregard instructions of the judge. – U.S. vs. Dougherty, 1972
It took about 150 years, starting with a Bill of Rights that reserved to the states and the people all powers not explicitly delegated to the federal government, to produce a Supreme Court willing to rule that growing corn to feed to your own hogs is interstate commerce and can therefore be regulated by Congress. – David Friedman, The Machinery of Freedom
The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. – Edmund Burke
Patriotism means loving our country, not the government. – Michael Cloud
We ask that the government undertake the obligation above all of providing citizens with adequate opportunity for employment and earning a living. The activities of the individual must not be allowed to clash with the interests of the community, but must take place within its confines and be for the good of all. Therefore, we demand: … an end to the power of the financial interests. We demand profit sharing in big business. We demand a broad extension of care for the aged. We demand … the greatest possible consideration of small business in the purchases of national, state, and municipal governments. In order to make possible to every capable and industrious [citizen] the attainment of higher education and thus the achievement of a post of leadership, the government must provide an all-around enlargement of our entire system of public education … We demand the education at government expense of gifted children of poor parents … The government must undertake the improvement of public health – by protecting mother and child, by prohibiting child labor … by the greatest possible support for all clubs concerned with the physical education of youth. We combat the… materialistic spirit within and without us, and are convinced that a permanent recovery of our people can only proceed from within on the foundation of the common good before the individual good. – From the political program of the Nazi Party, adopted in Munich, February 24, 1920
The Constitution is not neutral. It was designed to take the government off the backs of people. – Justice William O. Douglas
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. It is an open secret that the dangerous increase of crime in this country is closely connected with this. – Albert Einstein
I'm in favor of legalizing drugs. According to my value system, if people want to kill themselves, they have every right to do so. Most of the harm that comes from drugs is because they are illegal. – Milton Friedman
There comes a time when a moral man can't obey a law which his conscience tells him is unjust. – Martin Luther King, Jr.
In our desire to have government become our benefactor and sustainer, we have allowed it to become our taskmaster and overlord. As a result, we have become little more than well-fed, well-entertained slaves to the state. Freedom, as envisioned by our forefathers, is gone. – Chuck Baldwin 2001
The limitation of tyrants is the endurance of those they oppose. – Frederick Douglass
The jury has the right to judge both the law as well as the fact in controversy. – John Jay, Joint-author of the Federalist Papers and first U. S. Supreme Court Chief Justice
Freedom is essentially a condition of inequality, not equality. It recognizes as a fact of nature the structural differences inherent in man – in temperament, character, and capacity – and it respects those differences. We are not alike and no law can make us so. – Frank Chodorov
The cure for evil and disorder is more liberty, not suppression. – Alexander Berkman
The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, and intolerable … – H. L. Mencken
Blacks were not enslaved because they were black but because they were available. Slavery has existed in the world for thousands of years. Whites enslaved other whites in Europe for centuries before the first black was brought to the Western hemisphere. Asians enslaved Europeans. Asians enslaved other Asians. Africans enslaved other Africans, and indeed even today in North Africa, blacks continue to enslave blacks. – Thomas Sowell, a black sociologist, author and columnist
Liberty is always unfinished business. – Anonymous
Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders; no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way out for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore, everyone, in his own interests, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle. None can stand aside with unconcern; the interests of everyone hangs on the results. Whether he chooses or not, every man is drawn into the greatest historical struggle, the decisive battle into which our epoch has plunged us. – Ludwig von Mises
Not only can no one predict the future, we don't understand the present – and there isn't even any certainty about the past. – Harry Browne
Men are most apt to believe what they least understand. – Montaigne
When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic. – Dresden James
People never believe in volcanoes until the lava actually overtakes them. – George Santayana
The worst forms of tyranny, or certainly the most successful ones, are not those we rail against but those that so insinuate themselves into the imagery of our consciousness, and the fabric of our lives, as not to be perceived as tyranny. – Michael Parenti
When the mass media in some foreign countries serve as megaphones for the rhetoric of their government, the result is ludicrous propaganda. When the mass media in our country serve as megaphones for the rhetoric of the U.S. government, the result is responsible journalism. – Norman Solomon
The aim of public education is not to spread enlightenment at all, it is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed and train a standardized citizenry, to put down dissent and originality. – H L. Mencken
We must remember that government, no matter how hard it tries, cannot protect an individual from themselves. This legislation is simply one more attempt by big government to tell us that they know what is best for us. It is not the first time and it will not be the last. – Peter Calcagno
Washington is not America. It has become an alien city-state that rules America, and much of the rest of the world, in the way that Rome ruled the Roman Empire. – Richard Maybury
Now that I look back, I realize that a life predicated on being obedient is a very comfortable life indeed. Living in such a way reduces to a minimum one's own need to think. – Adolf Eichmann, Memoirs written after his 1960 capture by Israel.
A State which dwarfs its men, in order that they may be more docile instruments in its hands even for beneficial purposes – will find that with small men no great thing can really be accomplished. – John Stuart Mill
The more power a government has the more it can act arbitrarily according to the whims and desires of the elite, and the more it will make war on others and murder its foreign and domestic subjects. The more constrained the power of governments, the more power is diffused, checked, and balanced, the less it will aggress on others and commit democide. – R. J. Rummel, Death by Government
The state calls its own violence law, but that of the individual crime. – Max Stirner
The state is a force incarnate. Worse, it is the silly parading of force. It never seeks to prevail by persuasion. Whenever it thrusts its finger into anything it does so in the most unfriendly way. Its essence is command and compulsion. – Michael Bakunin
In every State, the government is nothing but a permanent conspiracy on the part of the minority against the majority, which it enslaves and fleeces. – Michael Bakunin
tatism is but socialized dishonesty; it is feathering the nests of some with feathers coercively plucked from others – on the grand scale. There is no moral difference between the act of a pickpocket and the progressive income tax or any other social program. – Leonard Read
Opium and morphine are certainly dangerous, habit-forming drugs. But once the principle is admitted that it is the duty of the government to protect the individual against his own foolishness, no serious objections can be advanced against further encroachments … Is not the harm a man can inflict on his mind and soul even more disastrous than any bodily evils.? Why not prevent him from reading bad books and bad plays, from looking at bad paintings and statues and from hearing bad music? The mischief done by bad ideologies, surely, is much more pernicious both for the individual and for the whole society, than that done by narcotic drugs. – Von Mises, Human Action
Man is born free, yet he is everywhere in chains. – Jean Jacques Rosseau. The Social Contract, 1762
Everything government touches turns to crap. – Ringo Starr
One of the things the government can't do is run anything. The only things our government runs are the post office and the railroads, and both of them are bankrupt. – Lee Iacocca
The proper and limited use of government is to invoke a common justice and keep the peace – and that is all. – Leonard Read
The bureaucrat's first objective, of course, is preservation of his job – provided by the big-government system, at the taxpayer’s expense. … Whether real world problems get solved or not is of secondary importance. It doesn't take much cynicism, in fact, to see that the bureaucrats have a vested interest in not having problems solved. If the problems did not exist (or had been invented), there would be no reason for the bureaucrat to have a job – William Simon, former U.S Treasury Secretary
What is so bad about big government? My indictment of big government is that it is bad because it attacks liberty, prosperity, progress, harmony, and morality. Thanks to big government, we have significantly less of all of those good things than we would if we had been able to keep government right-sized. Big government is cancerous. Like a cancer, it hurts the body and tends to spread, doing more and more harm as it grows. It is time for some radical surgery. – George C. Leef
Bureaucrats write memoranda both because they appear to be busy when they are writing and because the memos, once written, immediately become proof that they were busy. – Charles Peters, How Washington Really Works
The era of big government is over. – Bill Clinton, State of the Union Address, January 23, 1996
You can't give the government the power to do good without also giving it the power to do bad – in fact, to do anything it wants. – Harry Browne
Those who have been once intoxicated with power, and have derived any kind of emolument from it, even though but for one year, can never willingly abandon it. – Edmund Burke
The power which a multiple millionaire, who may be my neighbor and perhaps my employer, has over me is very much less than that which the smallest "functionaire" possesses who wields the coercive power of the state, and on whose desecration it depends whether and how I am allowed to live or to work. – Frederich von Hayek, The Road to Serfdom
Few of us can easily surrender our belief that society must somehow make sense. The thought that the State has lost its mind and is punishing so many innocent people is intolerable. And so the evidence has to be internally denied. – Arthur Miller
Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from mistaken conviction. – Blaise Pascal
We do many things at the federal level that would be considered dishonest and illegal if done in the private sector. – Donald T. Regan
This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector. – Plato circa 400 B.C.
The ideal tyranny is that which is ignorantly self-administered by its victims. The most perfect slaves are, therefore, those which blissfully and unawaredly enslave themselves. – Dresden James
I am unable to accept the idea that I should be an obedient subject of a gang of corrupt, unprincipled thugs who pontificate about freedom while enslaving the population. – John Pugsley, JPJ Nov 96
I fear for our nation. Nearly half of our people receive some kind of government subsidy. We have grown weak from too much affluence and too little adversity. I fear that soon we will not be able to defend our country from our sure and certain enemies. We have debased our currency to the point that even the most loyal citizen no longer trusts it. – A Roman Senator in A.D. 63
We should distinguish at this point between "government" and "state" … A government is the consensual organization by which we adjudicate disputes, defend our rights, and provide for certain common needs … A state on the other hand, is a coercive organization asserting or enjoying a monopoly over the use of physical force in some geographic area and exercising power over its subjects. – David Boaz
Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal. – Martin Luther King Jr.
If one really wishes to know how justice is administered in a country, one does not question the policemen, the lawyers, the judges, or the protected members of the middle class. One goes to the unprotected – those, precisely, who need the law's protection most! – and listens to their testimony. – James Baldwin, African- American Author, "No Name in the Street"
Political elections do not choose leaders of society. Rather, they are an exercise in which groups of people choose individuals who will assist them in looting other groups of individuals, those folks who were unfortunate enough not to be able to elect their own political strongman. The process can be downright blatant, as is the case in African and Asian countries, or it can be relatively subtle as it is in the United States, where the trappings of "constitutionality" and "rule of law" hide many of the more nefarious goings on. – William Anderson, Are Politicians Leaders? 10/19/2000
Political satire became obsolete when Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. – Tom Lehrer
Being elected to Congress is regarded as being sent on a looting raid for one's friends. – George F. Will, Newsweek
Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies. – Groucho Marx
Wherever politics intrudes upon economic life, political success is readily attained by saying what people like to hear rather than what is demonstrably true. Instead of safeguarding truth and honesty, the state then tends to become a major source of insincerity and mendacity. – Hans F. Sennholz
Politicians are always interested in people. Not that this is always a virtue. Fleas are interested in dogs. – P.J. O'Rourke
A concern for states rights, local self government and regional identity used to be taken for granted everywhere in America. But the United States is no longer, as it once was, a federal union of diverse states and regions. National uniformity is being imposed by the political class that runs Washington, the economic class that owns Wall Street and the cultural class in charge of Hollywood and the Ivy League. – Michael Hill, professor of British History, University of Alabama
Politics I supposed to be the second-oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first. – Ronald Reagan
Politicians can't give us anything without depriving us of something else. Government is not a god. Every dime they spend must first be taken from someone else. – Gary Asmus
Our democracy is but a name. We vote? What does that mean? It means that we choose between two bodies of real, though not avowed, autocrats. We choose between Tweedledum and Tweedledee. – Helen Keller
It is indeed a singular thing that people wish to pass laws to nullify the disagreeable consequences that the law of responsibility entails. Will they never realize that they do not eliminate these consequences but merely pass them along to other people? The result is one injustice the more and one moral the less. – Frederic Bastiat
Students now arrive at the university ignorant and cynical about our political heritage, lacking the wherewithal to be either inspired by it or seriously critical of it. – Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind
The voice of the majority is no proof of justice. – Johann von Schiller
A great many laws in a country, like many physicians, is a sign of malady. – Voltaire
An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law. – Martin Luther King Jr.
The government's only proper job is to protect individual rights against violence by force or fraud … to protect men from foreign invaders … to settle disputes among men according to objective laws … The greatness of the Founding Fathers was how well they understood this issue and how close some of them came to understanding it perfectly. – Ayn Rand
The Constitution is not hearsay. It is not a bunch of legal myths passed along by word of mouth. It is not a depository for judicial delusions and ideological pipe dreams. It is not a figment of some justice's Marxian imagination. It is a written document – a legally binding contract whose words, spirit and intent are clear. – Linda Bowles, nationally syndicated columnist
The ultimate touchstone of constitutionality is the Constitution itself and not what we have said about it. – Felix Frankfurter, Graves vs. New York; 1939
When the tyrant has disposed of foreign enemies by conquest or treaty, and there is nothing to fear from them, then he is always stirring up some war or other, in order that the people may require a leader. – Plato, 347 B.C.
Governments need armies to protect them from their enslaved and oppressed subjects. – Tolstoy
In order to become the master, the politician poses as the servant. – Charles de Gaulle
Fifty-one percent of a nation can establish a totalitarian regime, suppress minorities and still remain democratic. – Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn
The Constitution is a limitation on the government, not on private individuals. It does not prescribe the conduct of private individuals, only the conduct of the government. It is not a charter for government power, but a charter of the citizens' protection against the government. – Ayn Rand
I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.... – Congressional Oath of Office
We Americans have no commission from God to police the world – Benjamin Harrison
Mankind will in time discover that unbridled majorities are as tyrannical and cruel as unlimited despots. –John Adams 1793
Education is a weapon, whose effect depends on who holds it in his hands and at whom it is aimed. –Joseph Stalin
I want a government small enough to fit inside the Constitution. – Harry Browne
Immigrants used to come to America seeking freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom from government. Now they come looking for free health care, free education, and a free lunch. – Harry Browne
Government seems to operate on the principle that if even one individual is incapable of using his freedom competently, no one can be allowed to be free. – Harry Browne
A society that puts equality … ahead of freedom will end up with neither equality nor freedom. – Milton Friedman
Few men desire liberty; most men wish only for a just master. – Sallust
It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong. – Thomas Sowell
We can't be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans ... – Bill Clinton (USA TODAY, 11 March 1993, page 2A)
Americans are so enamored of equality they would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom. – Alexis de Tocqueville
The rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened. – John F. Kennedy
Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws. – Plato (427-347 B.C.)
Patrick Henry did not say, "Give me absolute safety or give me death." – John Stossel, ABC News journalist
The Declaration, after all, catalogued the assaults on our freedoms committed by Britain's King George III. What has been built up over the last two and a quarter centuries is a structure that dwarfs George III's regime. – K.E. Grubbs, Jr., Investor's Business Daily, 7/3/01
Our country's founders cherished liberty, not democracy. – US House Congressional Resolution 48 "A Republic; not a Democracy", sponsored by Ron Paul, 3/6/01.
There's no greater service to this country than the defense of its freedom. – Senator Barry Goldwater, 1964 (1909-1998)
Contrary to popular opinion, the Constitution was not – and is not – a grant of rights to the citizenry. Instead, the Constitution is a "barbed-wire entanglement" designed to interfere with, restrict, and impede government officials in the exercise of political power. – Jacob Hornberger, 11/01
To be governed … is to be watched, inspected, directed, indoctrinated, numbered, estimated, regulated, commanded, controlled, law-driven, preached at, spied upon, censured, checked, valued, enrolled – by creatures who have neither the right, nor the wisdom, nor the virtue to do so. – Pierre-Joseph Proudhon
There seems to be an attitude that government ownership of land is good as long as you call it "open space" … All it is is socialism. – Douglas Bruce, Colorado tax-reduction activist
The "private sector" of the economy is, in fact, the voluntary sector; and...the "public sector" is, in fact, the coercive sector. – Henry Hazlitt
Americans have the mistaken viewpoint that Lady Liberty is only a peacetime luxury who is ill-equipped to fight the nasties. Therefore, they reason, we need an equally nasty Big Brother. Americans have forgotten that Lady Liberty is one ferocious mother when protecting her children. – Mary Ruwart
What is the basic, the essential, the crucial principle that differentiates freedom from slavery? It is the principle of voluntary action versus physical coercion or compulsion. – Ayn Rand
For libertarians, freedom entails the right of people to live their lives any way they choose, so long as their conduct is peaceful. For conservatives, freedom entails the right of government to do just about anything it wants, even if its conduct is violent. – Jacob Hornberger
The prospect of a government that treats all its citizens as criminal suspects is more terrifying than any terrorist. And even more frightening is a citizenry that can accept the surrender of its freedoms as the price of "freedom". – Joe Sobran
There is nothing so bad that politics cannot make it worse. – Thomas Sowe
Public Schools too often fail because they are shielded from the very force that improves performance and sparks innovation in nearly every other human enterprise – competition. – Robert Lutz/Clark Durant
Education – compulsory schooling, compulsory learning – is a tyranny and a crime against the human mind and spirit. Let all those escape it who can, any way they can. – John Holt
The public school system: "Usually a twelve year sentence of mind control. Crushing creativity, smashing individualism, encouraging collectivism and compromise, destroying the exercise of intellectual inquiry, twisting it instead into meek subservience to authority." – Walter Karp, Editor Harper's Magazine
Democracy, n. "A government of the masses. Authority derived through mass meeting or any form of "direct" expression. Results in mobocracy. Attitude toward property is communistic - negating property rights. Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether it be based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint or regard to consequences. Results in demagogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy." - U.S. Army Training Manual TM2000-05, 1928
Whenever we depart from voluntary cooperation and try to do good by using force, the bad moral value of force triumphs over good intentions. – Milton Friedman
The only freedom which deserves the name, is that of pursuing our own good in our way, so long as we do not attempt to deprive others of theirs, or impede their efforts to obtain it. – John Stuart Mill
Were it necessary to bring a majority into a comprehension of the libertarian philosophy, the cause of liberty would be utterly hopeless. Every significant movement in history has been led by one or just a few individuals with a small minority of energetic supporters. – Leonard E. Read
The greatest threat to the future of our nation – to our freedom – is not foreign military aggression … but the growing dependence of the people on a paternalistic government. A nation is no stronger than its people and the best measure of their strength is how they accept responsibility. There will never be a great society unless the materialism of the welfare state is replaced by individual initiative and responsibility. – Charles B. Shuman
Few of us seem to want to keep government out of our personal affairs and responsibilities. Many of us seem to favor various types of government guaranteed and compulsory "security." We say that we want personal freedom, but we demand government housing, government price controls, government-guaranteed jobs and wages. We boast that we are responsible persons, but we vote for candidates who promise us special privileges, government pensions, government subsidies, and government electricity. – Dean Russell
It must be obvious that liberty necessarily means freedom to choose foolishly as well as wisely; freedom to choose evil as well as good; freedom to enjoy the rewards of good judgment, and freedom to suffer the penalties of bad judgment. If this is not true, the word "freedom" has no meaning. – Ben Moreell
Given man's nature, freedom will always be in jeopardy, and the only question that need concern each of us is if and how well we took our stand in its defense during the short period of time when we were potentially a part of the struggle. – Benjamin Rogge
Painful as it may be to hear it, there's nothing special about the people of this country that sets them apart from the other people of the world. It is the Bill of Rights, and only the Bill of Rights, that keeps us from becoming the world's biggest banana republic. The moment we forget that, the American Dream is over. – Alexander Hope, "Looking Forward"
I do not challenge the dedication and sincerity of those who disagree with the freedom philosophy and confidently promote government solutions for all our ills. I am just absolutely convinced that the best formula for giving us peace and preserving the American way of life is freedom, limited government, and minding our own business overseas. – Ron Paul
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves. – John Henry Boetker
If the only motive was to help people who could not afford education, advocates of government involvement would have simply proposed tuition subsidies. – Milton Friedman
When politics are used to allocate resources, the resources all end up being allocated to politics. – P.J. O'Rourke
Man, no doubt, owes many other moral duties to his fellow men; such as to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, care for the sick, protect the defenseless, assist the weak, and enlighten the ignorant. But these are simply moral duties, of which each man must be his own judge, in each particular case, as to whether, and how, and how far, he can, or will perform them. – Lysander Spooner
A right is not what someone gives you; it's what no one can take from you. – Ramsey Clark, U.S. Attorney General, New York Times, 10/02/77
The Bill of Rights is a born rebel. It reeks with sedition. In every clause it shakes its fist in the face of constituted authority … It is the one guarantee of human freedom to the American people. – Frank I. Cobb (1869-1923), LaFollette's Magazine, 01/20
Men in authority will always think that criticism of their policies is dangerous. They will always equate their policies with patriotism, and find criticism subversive. – Henry Steele Commager (1902-1998), Freedom and Order, 1966
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 (1902-1998), Freedom, Loyalty and Dissent, 1954
It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon a supposition that he may abuse it. – Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658), Address, First Protectorate Parliament, 1654
It is better, so the Fourth Amendment teaches us, that the guilty sometimes go free than the citizens be subject to easy arrest. – William O. Douglas (1898-1980), Henry v. United States, 1959
We are willing enough to praise freedom when it is safely tucked away in the past and cannot be a nuisance. In the present, amidst dangers whose outcome we cannot foresee, we get nervous about her, and admit censorship. – E. M. Forster
Being tolerant does not mean that I share another one's belief. But it does mean that I acknowledge another one's right to believe, and obey, his own conscience. – Victor Frankl (1905-1997), The Will To Meaning
The freedom of speech and the freedom of the press have not been granted to the people in order that they may say things which please, and which are based upon accepted thought, but the right to say the things which displease, the right to say the things which convey the new and yet unexpected thoughts, the right to say things, even though they do a wrong. – Samuel Gompers (1850-1924), Seventy Years of Life and Labor, 1925
The doctrine of blind obedience and unqualified submission to any human power, whether civil or ecclesiastical, is the doctrine of despotism, and ought to have no place among Republicans and Christians. – Angelica Grimke (1805-1879), Anti- Slavery Examiner, September 1836
Where men cannot freely convey their thoughts to one another, no other liberty is secure. – William E. Hocking (1873-1966), Freedom of the Press, 1947
If there is any principle of the constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought – not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate. – Oliver Wendall Holmes, Jr. (1841-1935), U.S. Supreme Court Justice, United States v. Schwimmer, 1929
Liberty is often a heavy burden on a man. It involves the necessity for perpetual choice which is the kind of labor men have always dreaded. – Oliver Wendall Holmes, Sr. (1809-1884), Elsie Venner, 1861
Truth, in its struggles for recognition, passes through four distinct stages.
First, we say it is damnable, dangerous, disorderly, and will surely disrupt society.
Second, we declare it is heretical, infidelic and contrary to the Bible.
Third, we say it is really a matter of no importance either one way or the other.
Fourth, we aver that we have always upheld it and believed it.
– Elbert Hubbard (1856- 1915)
Emergency does not increase granted power or remove or diminish the restrictions imposed upon power granted or reserved. The Constitution was adopted in a period of grave emergency. Its grants of power to the federal government and its limitations of the power of the States were determined in the light of emergency, and they are not altered by emergency. – Charles Evans Hughes (1862-1948), Chief Justice, U.S. Supreme Court, Home Building & Loan Assn v. Blairsdell, 1934
It is not the function of our Government to keep the citizen from falling into error; it is the function of the citizen to keep the government from falling into error. – Robert H. Jackson (1892-1954), U.S. Supreme Court Justice, American Communications Assn v. Douds, 1950
The very purpose of a Bill of Rights was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy. One's right to life, liberty and property, to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly may not be submitted to vote; they depend on no elections. – Robert H. Jackson (1892-1954), U.S. Supreme Court Justice, West Virginia Board of Education vs. Barnette, 1943
We are reluctant to admit that we owe our liberties to men of a type that today we hate and fear – unruly men, disturbers of the peace, men who resent and denounce what Whitman called "the insolence of elected persons" – in word, free men … – Gerald W. Johnson (1890-1980), American Freedom and the Press, 1958
Men fight for liberty and win it with hard knocks. Their children, brought up easy, let it slip away again, poor fools. And their grand-children are once more slaves. – D. H. Lawrence (1885-1938), 1915
In a free society the state does not administer the affairs of men. It administers justice among men who conduct their own affairs. – Walter Lippmann (1889- 1974), An Inquiry into the Principles of the Good Society, 1937
To argue against any breach of liberty from the ill use that may be made of it, is to argue against liberty itself, since all is capable of being abused. – Lord George Lyttleton (1709-1773)
A good end cannot sanctify evil means; nor must we ever do evil, that good may come of it. – William Penn (1644-1718), Some Fruits of Solitude in Reflections and Maxims
No free people can lose their liberties while they are jealous of liberty. But the liberties of the freest people are in danger when they set up symbols of liberty as fetishes, worshipping the symbol instead of the principle it represents. – Wendell Phillips (1811-1884), in Liberty and the Great Libertarians (C. Spradling)
One evening, when I was yet in my nurse's arms, I wanted to touch the tea urn, which was boiling merrily … My nurse would have taken me away from the urn, but my mother said "Let him touch it." So I touched it – and that was my first lesson in the meaning of liberty. – John Ruskin (1819-1900), The Story of Arachne, 1870
There is nothing new in the realization that the Constitution sometimes insulates the criminality of a few in order to protect the privacy of us all. – Antonin Scalia, U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Arizona v. Hicks, 3/3/87
There is no "slippery slope" toward loss of liberty, only a long staircase where each step down must first be tolerated by the American people and their leaders. – Alan K. Simpson, U.S. Senator, New York Times, 9/26/82
The liberty the citizen enjoys is to be measured not by governmental machinery he lives under, whether representative or other, but by the paucity of restraints it imposes upon him. – Herbert Spencer (1820-1903), Social Statics, 1850
A man's liberties are none the less aggressed upon because those who coerce him do so in the belief that he will be benefited. – Herbert Spencer (1820-1903), Social Statics, 1850
I don't believe in quotas. America was founded on a philosophy of individual rights, not group rights. – Clarence Thomas, U.S. Supreme Court Justice
The government solution to a problem is usually as bad as the problem. – Milton Friedman
The marvel of all history is the patience with which men and women submit to burdens unnecessarily laid upon them by their governments. – U.S. Senator William Borah
Concentrated power is not rendered harmless by the good intentions of those who create it. – Milton Friedman
The War on Drugs is a price support system for terrorists and drug pushers. It turns ordinary, cheap plants like marijuana and poppies into fantastically lucrative black market products. Without the War on Drugs, the financial engine that fuels terrorist organizations would sputter to a halt. – Ron Crickenberger, Libertarian Party Political Director 2/4/02
Libertarianism is the philosophy which says that you can run your life better than the government can, and you have the right to be left alone in order to do it. – Anonymous
Letting lawyers make laws is like letting doctors make diseases. – Anonymous
As the growing emphasis on feelings crowds out reason, facts will play a smaller role in public discourse. – Paul Craig Roberts
Anything called a "program" is unconstitutional. – Joseph Sobran
Control's real name is bondage. The logical conclusion would be, if giving up some rights produces a better society, then by giving up all our rights we could produce a perfect society. – Citizens' Rule Book
The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism, but under the name of liberalism, they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program until one day America will be a socialist nation without ever knowing how it happened. – Norman Thomas
Our Constitution is not a body of law to govern the people; it was formulated to govern the government, to make government the servant and not the master of the people. – William F. Jasper
Six Miracles of Socialism:
There is no unemployment, but no one works.
No one works, but everyone gets paid.
Everyone gets paid, but there is nothing to buy with the money.
No one can buy anything, but everyone owns everything.
Everyone owns everything, but no one is satisfied.
No one is satisfied, but 99 percent of the people vote for the system.
Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all. – Frederic Bastiat
In order to prevent democracy from becoming a tyranny over minorities, individual rights must supersede all democratic voting and all regulations. Rights must come first. Laws should come second, and only to protect those rights; nothing more. – Stuart K. Hayashi
The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter. – Winston Churchill
It is easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them. – Alfred Adler
The people cannot delegate to government the power to do anything which would be unlawful for them to do themselves. – John Locke, "A Treatise Concerning Civil Government"
Since outright slavery has been discredited, "democracy" is the only remaining rationale for state compulsion that most people will accept. – Joseph Sobran in The Myth of 'Limited Government'
Democracy has proved only that the best way to gain power over people is to assure the people that they are ruling themselves. Once they believe that, they make wonderfully submissive slaves. – Joseph Sobran in The Myth of 'Limited Government'
If the government can't keep drugs away from inmates who are locked in steel cages, surrounded by barbed wire, watched by armed guards, drug-tested, strip-searched, X-rayed, and videotaped – how can it possibly stop the flow of drugs to an entire nation? – Ron Crickenberger
Mystical references to "society" and its programs to "help" may warm the hearts of the gullible, but what it really means is putting more power in the hands of bureaucrats. – Thomas Sowell
Truth is not determined by majority vote. – Doug Gwyn
Individuality is the aim of political liberty. By leaving the citizen as much freedom of action and of being as comports with order and the rights of others, the institutions render him truly a freeman. He is left to pursue his means of happiness in his own manner. – James Fenimore Cooper, American author, 1789-1851
If you have ever seen a four-year-old trying to lord it over a two-year-old, then you know what the basic problem of human nature is – and why government keeps growing larger and ever more intrusive. – Thomas Sowell
A Bill of Rights that means what the majority wants it to mean is worthless. – Justice Atonin Scalia
The end of the law is, not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom. – John Locke
The early American knew that freedom was nothing more than the absence of external restraint on behavior; the government could not give you freedom, it could only take it away. – Frank Chodorov, Time for Secession
The American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money. – Alexis de Tocqueville
Many people today think that the government's job is to take care of us. But I agree with the Declaration of Independence, which says that the government's job is to secure our rights (our inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness). – Tom Parker
It's not an endlessly expanding list of rights – the "right" to education, the "right" to health care, the "right" to food and housing. That's not freedom, that's dependency. Those aren't rights, those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle. – Alexis De Tocquiville
The bureaucracy is expanding to meet the needs of an expanding bureaucracy. – Unknown
"Solve" and "Problems" are not in the constitution. – Doug Newman
A personal note to the Founding Fathers: We're sorry. We blew it. You made it possible for us to live free and we blew it. We've given up nearly every personal liberty in the name of a false sense of security sold to the masses by the same type of maniacal government about which you warned us and against which you fought so bravely. We now have to ask permission to take a leak on an airline flight. We never deserved you. – Phil Murphy 7/4/02
Democracy is indispensable to Socialism. – V.I. Lenin
Democracy is the road to Socialism. – Karl Marx
Simple, clear purpose and principles give rise to complex, intelligent behavior. Complex rules and regulations give rise to simple, stupid behavior. – Dee Hock, Founder and CEO Emeritus of Visa Corp
The purpose of government is to rein in the rights of the people. – Bill Clinton, 42nd US President
If the personal freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution inhibit the government's ability to govern the people, we should look to limit those guarantees. – Bill Clinton, 42nd US President
Any president that lies to the American people should have to resign. – Bill Clinton, 42nd US President
There is all the difference in the world between treating people equally and attempting to make them equal. – F.A. Hayek
Whenever the legislators endeavor to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience … – John Locke (1632-1704), English Political Philosopher
The end of the law is, not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom. – John Locke (1632-1704), English Political Philosopher
Our government has kept us in a perpetual state of fear – kept us in a continuous stampede of patriotic fervor – with the cry of grave national emergency. Always there has been some terrible evil at home or some monstrous foreign power that was going to gobble us up if we did not blindly rally behind it. – General Douglas MacArthur (1880-1964), Supreme Allied Commander, General of the U.S. Army
It is not in the nature of politics that the best men should be elected. The best men do not want to govern their fellowmen. – George E. MacDonald (1824- 1905), Scottish Novelist
Between a balanced republic and a democracy, the difference is like that between order and chaos. – John Marshall (1755-1835), Chief Justice, U.S. Supreme Court
Unless a good deed is voluntary, it has no moral significance. – Everett Dean Martin (1880-1941), Political Philosopher
Whatever crushes individuality is despotism, no matter what name it is called. – John Stuart Mill (1806-1873), Economist and Philosopher
A right without an attendant responsibility is as unreal as a sheet of paper which has only one side. – Felix Morley (1894-1981), American Journalist, Educator and Author
It is a reality attested by all history that if a republic assumes imperial functions it will not remain a republic. – Felix Morley (1894-1981), American Journalist, Educator and Author
A tax-supported, compulsory educational system is the complete model of the totalitarian state. – Isabel Paterson (1886-1961), American Author
The main political problem is how to prevent the police power from becoming tyrannical. This is the meaning of all the struggles for liberty. – Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973), Austrian Economist and Author
The main point of a constitution is to put limits on what aspects of life are subject to majority rule. – Ronald Bailey
If none were to have Liberty but those who understand what it is, there would not be many freed Men in the world. – Lord Halifax
When the people have no tyrant, their own public opinion becomes one. – Lord Lytton
The kind of man who wants the government to adopt and enforce his ideas is always the kind of man whose ideas are idiotic. – H.L. Mencken
lib•er•tar•i•an: One who advocates maximizing individual rights and minimizing the role of the state. – American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against its government. – Edward Abbey
The government's War on Poverty has transformed poverty from a short-term misfortune into a career choice. – Harry Browne
.... an increase in the power of the State ... does the greatest harm to mankind by destroying individuality which lies at the heart of all progress... – Gandhi
A great danger that we face in our modern world is to get so caught up in the pursuit of the blessings that freedom has given us that we come to take freedom itself for granted, and thus fail to see to its maintenance. – Robert Hawes
The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. 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, Baltimore Evening Sun, Feb. 12, 1923
What the government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms and killing people. It's not good at much else. – Tom Clancy on Kudlow and Cramer 9/2/03
The majority of Americans get their news and information about what is going on with their government from entities that are licensed by and subject to punishment at the hands of that very government. – Neal Boortz
The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government … – US Constitution, Article 4, Section 4.
The word "Democracy" cannot be found in the American Declaration of Independence, or the Constitution, or in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag, or the Constitutions of any of the States. – Unknown
No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible. – Stanislaw J. Lec
A problem well stated is a problem half solved. – C.F. Kettering
The fatal flaw in socialism is twofold: first, the conceit inherent in the desire to plan the lives of others; second, the force necessary to impose that plan on unwilling subjects. This is not a formula for freedom but for tyranny. – Jim Peron in The Ideals of Tyranny
If voting made a difference, they would make it illegal. – Donal Scannell
In almost all matters, the real question should be: why are we letting government handle this? – Harry Browne
From the fact that people are very different it follows that, if we treat them equally, the result must be inequality in their actual position, and the only way to place them in an equal position would be to treat them differently. Equality before the law and material equality are therefore not only different but are in conflict with each other; and we can achieve either the one or the other, but not both at the same time. – Friedrich von Hayek
I'd rather live free with some peril than be a protected slave of government. – Dave Duffy
Democracy is not a system of liberty, but a form of tyranny: the tyranny of the majority. – Robert Garmong
It makes no difference, in principle, if this "collective will" is divined by the edicts of a dictator or by majority vote – so long as the rights of the individual may still be sacrificed. – Robert Garmong
We get to go to the polls every couple of years and choose between two flavors of the same gruel. The inmates get to elect the guards. Then, having exercised our rights as free citizens of a great social democracy, we go back to obeying orders. – Hal O'Boyle
To protect us from terrorists our government treats us like terrorists. Hal O'Boyle
The chances of your being harmed by terrorists are mathematically minute. The chance of your being robbed by your own government? That’s easy: 100 per cent. – Joseph Sobran, 1/1/04
The war on "terror" will never be over, it will just change locations. Like the war on drugs, prostitution, pornography, and the many others that will follow, it is a war on humanity. These wars will never be won; the State will just keep creating new boogiemen to frighten us with. The sheep will anxiously anticipate the next fall guy the State offers up as a sacrifice for the war on whatever happens to be next. Be careful, the next pawn could be me or you. – Mike Wasdin
The seeds of today's runaway government were planted when it was decided that government should help those who can't help themselves. From that modest, compassionate beginning to today's out-of-control mega-state, there's a straight, unbroken line. Once the door was open, once it was settled that the government should help some people at the expense of others, there was no stopping it. – Harry Browne
If the Tenth Amendment were still taken seriously, most of the federal government's present activities would not exist. That's why no one in Washington ever mentions it. – Thomas E. Woods, Jr.
The problem is big government. If whoever controls government can impose his way upon you, you have to fight constantly to prevent the control from being harmful. With small, limited government, it doesn’t much matter who controls it, because it can’t do you much harm. – Harry Browne
The problem is that democracy is not freedom. Democracy is simply majoritarianism, which is inherently incompatible with real freedom. Our founding fathers clearly understood this. – Rep. Ron Paul in Democracy Is Not Freedom
As the state grows, one’s sense of self-ownership is destroyed, liberty is traded for "security," the human spirit diminishes, and the citizenry increasingly thinks and behaves like dependent children. – Eric Englund
To shackle future generations, with such monstrous debt and liabilities [$50 trillion+ of unfunded federal liabilities], is tantamount to selling them into tax slavery. – Eric Englund
A man is none the less a slave because he is allowed to choose a new master once in a term of years. – Lysander Spooner
Public schools are government-established, politician- and bureaucrat-controlled, fully politicized, taxpayer-supported, authoritarian socialist institutions. In fact, the public-school system is one of the purest examples of socialism existing in America. – Thomas L. Johnson
Americans have the right and advantage of being armed – unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. – James Madison
The Constitution shall never be construed … to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms. – Samuel Adams
A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. – Lucius Annaeus Seneca, c. 4BC - 65AD.
Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest. – Mahatma Gandhi, in Gandhi, An Autobiography, p. 446
The conclusion is thus inescapable that the history, concept, and wording of the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, as well as its interpretation by every major commentator and court in the first half-century after its ratification, indicates that what is protected is an individual right of a private citizen to own and carry firearms in a peaceful manner. – Report of the Subcommittee on the Constitution of the Committee on the Judiciary, United States Senate, 97th Congress, Second Session (February 1982)
The usual road to slavery is that first they take away your guns, then they take away your property, then last of all they tell you to shut up and say you are enjoying it. – James A. Donald
They have gun control in Cuba. They have universal health care in Cuba. So why do they want to come here? – Paul Harvey 8/31/94
After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it. I sure as hell wouldn't want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military. – William S. Burroughs
The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed. – Alexander Hamilton
When they took the 4th Amendment, I was quiet because I didn't deal drugs.
When they took the 6th Amendment, I was quiet because I am innocent.
When they took the 2nd Amendment, I was quiet because I don't own a gun.
Now they have taken the 1st Amendment, and I can only be quiet.
– Lyle Myhr
Armed people are free. No state can control those who have the machinery and the will to resist, no mob can take their liberty and property. And no 220-pound thug can threaten the well-being or dignity of a 110-pound woman who has two pounds of iron to even things out … People who object to weapons aren't abolishing violence, they're begging for rule by brute force, when the biggest, strongest animals among men were always automatically right. Guns ended that, and a social democracy is a hollow farce without an armed populace to make it work. – L. Neil Smith (from The Probability Broach)
The people of the various provinces are strictly forbidden to have in their possession any swords, bows, spears, firearms or other types of arms. The possession of these elements makes difficult the collection of taxes and dues, and tends to permit uprising. – Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Japanese Shogun, August 29, 1558
When the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised by an artful man, who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually...I ask, who are the militia? They consist of now of the whole people, except a few public officers. But I cannot say who will be the militia of the future day. If that paper on the table gets no alteration, the militia of the future day may not consist of all classes, high and low, and rich and poor... - George Mason, Virginia Constitution Convention
The police can't stop an intruder, mugger, or stalker from hurting you. They can pursue him only after he has hurt or killed you. Protecting yourself from harm is your responsibility, and you are far less likely to be hurt in a neighborhood of gun owners than in one of disarmed citizens – even if you don't own a gun yourself. – Harry Browne
A strong body makes a strong mind. As to the species of exercise I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Let your gun, therefore, be the constant companion of your walks. – Thomas Jefferson
Gun control? It's the best thing you can do for crooks and gangsters. I want you to have nothing. If I'm a bad guy, I'm always gonna have a gun. Safety locks? You will pull the trigger with a lock on, and I'll pull the trigger. We'll see who wins. – Sammy "The Bull" Gravano, whose testimony convicted John Gotti
To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them. – Richard Henry Lee 1788
I say that the Second Amendment doesn't allow for exceptions – or else it would have read that the right "to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, unless Congress chooses otherwise." And because there are no exceptions, I disagree with my fellow panelists who say the existing gun laws should be enforced. Those laws are unconstitutional [and] wrong – because they put you at a disadvantage to armed criminals, to whom the laws are no inconvenience. – Harry Browne, meetings with NRA's EVP, Wayne LaPierre and other panelists at a gun rights rally in Hot Springs, AR, 8/8/2000
An armed society is a polite society. – Robert A. Heinlein
“A well-crafted pepperoni pizza, being necessary to the preservation of a diverse menu, the right of the people to keep and cook tomatoes, shall not be infringed.” I would ask you to try to argue that this statement says that only pepperoni pizzas can keep and cook tomatoes, and only well-crafted ones at that. This is basically what the so-called states rights people argue with respect to the well-regulated militia, vs. the right to keep and bear arms. – Bruce Tiemann
Switzerland is a land where crime is virtually unknown, yet most Swiss males are required by law to keep in their homes what amounts to a portable, personal machine gun. –Tom Clancy
To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them. – George Mason
Gun bans don't disarm criminals, gun bans attract them. – Walter Mondale
Try to halt violence by restricting gun ownership and you won't halt violence. But you will create entire classes of new criminals – people who make paperwork errors, violate technical specification of the law, or rebel against the new restrictions. And you'll create new bureaus, new enforcement arms, new prisons to punish them. You'll make hordes of lawyers and bureaucrats very happy. Organized criminals will be grateful to the naive moral crusaders ("useful idiots") as they profit by selling an illegal product. And ordinary street criminals will bless fools, legislators, and "leaders" for making their job so much safer. – JPFO's "Bill of Rights Sentinel", Fall 2001.
This country was founded by religious nuts with guns. – P.J. O'Rourke
Those who beat their swords into plough shares shall plough for those who don't. – Anonymous
The Second Amendment is the Equal Rights Amendment. – Jannalee Tobias
Today, we need a nation of Minutemen, citizens who are not only prepared to take arms, but citizens who regard the preservation of freedom as the basic purpose of their daily life and who are willing to consciously work and sacrifice for that freedom. – John F. Kennedy
Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. - Thomas Jefferson's "Commonplace Book," 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764
Criminals obey "gun control" laws in the same manner politicians follow their oaths of office. – Anonymous
Suppose the Second amendment said "A well-educated electorate being necessary for self-governance in a free state, the right of the people to keep and read books shall not be infringed." Is there anyone who would suggest that means only registered voters have a right to read? – Robert Levy, Georgetown University professor
Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in possession and under our direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands? - Patrick Henry
...arms...discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and preserve order in the world as well as property. ...Horrid mischief would ensue were (the law-abiding) deprived the use of them. -- Thomas Paine
"The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that... it is their right and duty to be at all times armed." --Thomas Jefferson
We should not forget that the spark which ignited the American Revolution was caused by the British attempt to confiscate the firearms of the colonists. - Patrick Henry
The principle, on which the war was waged by the North, was simply this: That men may rightfully be compelled to submit to, and support, a government that they do not want; and that resistance, on their part, makes them traitors and criminals. No principle, that is possible to be named, can be more self-evidently false than this; or more self-evidently fatal to all political freedom. Yet it triumphed in the field, and is now assumed to be established. If it really be established, the number of slaves, instead of having been diminished by the war, has been greatly increased; for a man, thus subjected to a government that he does not want, is a slave. And there is no difference, in principle --- but only in degree --- between political and chattel slavery. The former, no less than the latter, denies a man's ownership of himself and the products of his labor; and asserts that other men may own him, and dispose of him and his property, for their uses, and at their pleasure. – Lysander Spooner (Nineteenth-Century lawyer, abolitionist, entrepreneur)
Nothing fills me with deeper sadness than to see a Southern man apologizing for the defense we made of our inheritance. Our cause was so just, so sacred, that had I known all that has come to pass, had I known what was to be inflicted upon me, all that my country was to suffer, all that our posterity was to endure, I would do it all over again. - Jefferson Davis
I am with the South in life or in death, in victory or defeat. I never owned a negro and care nothing for them, but these people have been my friends and have stood up to me on all occasions. In addition to this, I believe the North is about to wage a brutal and unholy war on a people who have done them no wrong, in violation of the Constitution and the fundamental principles of the government...We propose no invasion of the North, no attack on them, and only ask to be let alone. Patrick R. Cleburne
If by the mere force of numbers a majority should deprive a minority of any clearly written constitutional right, it might, in a moral point of view, justify revolution. – Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865), First Inaugural Address, 4 March 1861
I tried all in my power to avert this war. I saw it coming, for twelve years I worked night and day to prevent it, but I could not. The North was mad and blind; it would not let us govern ourselves, and so the war came, and now it must go on till the last man of this generation falls in his tracks, and his children seize the musket and fight our battle, unless you acknowledge our right to self government. We are not fighting for slavery. We are fighting for Independence, and that, or extermination President Jefferson Davis, Confederate States of America
Surrender means that the history of this heroic struggle will be written by the enemy; that our youth will be trained by Northern school teachers; will learn from Northern school books their version of the War; will be impressed by all the influences of history and education to regard our gallant dead as traitors, and our maimed veterans as fit subjects for derision. -General Pat Cleburne, CSA
If centralism is ultimately to prevail; if our entire system of free Institutions as established by our common ancestors is to be subverted, and an Empire is to be established in their stead; if that is to be the last scene of the great tragic drama now being enacted: then, be assured, that we of the South will be acquitted, not only in our own consciences, but in the judgment of mankind, of all responsibility for so terrible a catastrophe, and from all guilt of so great a crime against humanity. -Alexander Stephens, Vice President of the Confederate States of America
I saw in States’ rights the only availing check upon the absolutism of the sovereign will, and secession filled me with hope, not as the destruction but as the redemption of Democracy…. Therefore I deemed that you were fighting the battles of our liberty, our progress, and our civilization, and I mourn for the stake which was lost at Richmond more deeply than I rejoice over that which was saved at Waterloo. -Lord Acton, in a letter to Robert E Lee right after the war
We protest solemnly in the face of mankind, that we desire peace at any sacrifice, save that of honor. In independence we seek no conquest, no aggrandizement, no concession of any kind from the states with which we have lately been confederated. All we ask is to be let alone – that those who never held power over us shall not now attempt our subjugation by arms. This we will, we must resist to the direst extremity. The moment that this pretension is abandoned, the sword will drop from our grasp, and we shall be ready to enter into treaties of amnesty and commerce that cannot but be mutually beneficial. So long as this pretension is maintained, with a firm reliance on that Divine Power which covers with its protection the just cause, we must continue to struggle for our inherent right to freedom, independence, and self government. – President Jefferson Davis' first address to the Confederate Congress
In our government-controlled schools we are taught that Lincoln was our greatest president because his war ended slavery and saved the Union. As usual, the other side of the story – the side that reflects poorly on the government – somehow gets lost. – Richard J. Maybury, The Abe Lincoln Hoax
So the case stands, and under all the passion of the parties and the cries of battle lie the two chief moving causes of the struggle. Union means so many millions a year lost to the South; secession means the loss of the same millions to the North. The love of money is the root of this as of many many other evils … the quarrel between North and South is, as it stands, solely a fiscal quarrel. – Charles Dickens, as editor of All the Year Round, a British periodical in 1862
For 134 years the American people have been led to believe that the right of secession had been overturned by a "verdict of arms," but that isn't true … It is true the shot fired at Fort Sumter was a mistake since it provided the pretext for the Southland to be invaded by foreign troops, but the right of secession realized through the ballot box remains an essential part of our constitutional order. – George Kalas, Chairman Emeritus, The Southern Party
The American people, North and South, went into the [Civil] war as citizens of their respective states, they came out as subjects … what they thus lost they have never got back. – H.L. Mencken
The future inhabitants of [both] the Atlantic and Mississippi states will be our sons. We think we see their happiness in their union, and we wish it. Events may prove otherwise; and if they see their interest in separating why should we take sides? God bless them both, and keep them in union if it be for their good, but separate them if it be better. – Thomas Jefferson
The Union was formed by the voluntary agreement of the States; and these, in uniting together, have not forfeited their Nationality, nor have they been reduced to the condition of one and the same people. If one of the States chose to withdraw its name from the contract, it would be difficult to disprove its right of doing so … – Alex de Tocqueville, Democracy In America
If [the Declaration of Independence] justifies the secession from the British empire of 3,000,000 of colonists in 1776, we do not see why it would not justify the secession of 5,000,000 of Southrons from the Federal Union in 1861. – New York Tribune, December 17, 1860
The error is in the assumption that the General Government is a party to the constitutional compact. The States … formed the compact, acting as sovereign and independent communities. – John C. Calhoun
The procedure of secession was to have an election for delegates to a state convention, to meet in convention, and to adopt ordinances of secession. This was done in accord with the Southern understanding of what would be in keeping with the United States Constitution. It had, after all, been ratified by the states acting through conventions. Could they not "un-ratify" it – secede from the Union – in the same fashion? – Clarence Carson, A Basic History Of The United States
Our government is an agency of delegated and strictly limited powers. Its founders did not look to its preservation by force; but the chain they wove to bind these States together was one of love and mutual good offices … – Jefferson Davis
"Texas, to be respected must be polite. Santa Anna living, can be of incalculable benefit to Texas; Santa Anna dead, would just be another dead Mexican.”
After being called his own political party Houston answered,
"From that I rather derive some consolation because I know that I could not be in better company, and no differences can arise between myself and myself."
Quoting Lincoln witht the Stars 'n Bars as an avatar!
Only at specific times and for specific reasons. I figure if even Lincoln said something pro-freedom, it MUST be true.
I saw the original quote, funny stuff.
Those that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little
temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety -Benjamin Franklin
If a man’s from Texas, he’ll tell you. If he’s not, why embarrass him by asking?
Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.
George S. Patton
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.
I think that God in creating Man somewhat overestimated his ability.
Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so.
pretty sure lincoln wasn't the one to say that?
"What the fuck was that?"
~Mayor of Hiroshima~
"Do you not know sir, that I live by war, and that peace would be my undoing?" - Sir John Hawkwood.
Gentlemen, we've got to protect our phoney, baloney jobs!
Can I get a Harumph on that??
Mel Brooks, Blazing Saddles (uncut and unedited)
"There are three reasons to own a gun: To protect yourself and your family, to hunt dangerous and delicious animals, and to keep the King of England out of your face." - Krusty the Clown
Many people think that when McArthur left the Philippines he said, "I shall return". But according to my Great Uncle Phil who was his driver, he really said, "People of the Philippines its been nice working with ya but I'll see ya around."
I love talking about nothing for its the only thing I know anything about. Oscar Wilde
"I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."
" For GOD so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever would believe on him shall not parish, but have ever lasting life."
"The LORD is my Shepard, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presences of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil. My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all of the days of my life. And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever."
David, King of Israel
"The truest measure of a mans success in life is how happy his wife is."
Since most of the good ones have been listed:
(speaking of Texas) "All the other States are trying to do away with the Death Penalty. My State just put in an express lane."
Comedian Ron White
"Get the fuck off of my obstacle, Private Pyle."
Lee Emery in FMJ.
" Hey, man, you don't talk to the Colonel. You listen to him. The man's enlarged my mind. He's a poet-warrior in the classic sense. I mean sometimes he'll... uh... well, you'll say "hello" to him, right? And he'll just walk right by you. He won't even notice you. And suddenly he'll grab you, and he'll throw you in a corner, and he'll say, "do you know that 'if' is the middle word in life? If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you, if you can trust yourself when all men doubt you"... I mean I'm no, I can't... I'm a little man, I'm a little man, he's... he's a great man. I should have been a pair of ragged claws scuttling across floors of silent seas..."
Dennis Hopper in Apocalypse Now
Can't believe no one has said this one!
ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕKing Leonidas of Sparta
"Too weird to live, too rare to die"
"Buy the ticket, take the ride"
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro"-Hunter S. Thompson
"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country" George S. Patton
There was a quote that I swore came from Gen. Lee or Jackson that went along the lines of....
"Tobacco" or "Whiskey"....."I dont do it anymore. I find that I like it too much."
But I cant seem to find it in searching....
Ideas are far more powerful than guns. We don't allow our enemies to have guns, why should we allow them to have ideas?
Death solves all problems - no man, no problem.
Quantity has a quality all its own
God placed limits on man's intelligence but he placed no limits on man's stupidity
German official post WWII
"We view ourselves on the eve of battle. We are nerved for the contest, and must conquer or perish. It is vain to look for present aid: none is at hand. We must now act or abandon all hope! Rally to the standard, and be no longer the scoff of mercenary tongues! Be men, be free men, that your children may bless their father's name."
Sam Houston - 1836 - The Battle of San Jacinto.
The funniest part is Lincoln is quoting the bible.
"Americans can always be relied upon to do the right thing. . . . . .after they have exhausted all other possibilitites." Winston Churchill
People will pay more to be entertained than educated.
General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson to General J.E.B. Stuart ("Major" at the time) when Stuart reported for duty.
Shut the f*ck up!
I said that yesterday - thereby making it 'historical'. Oops, just said it again so I'll have to repost this again later. Vicious circle I tell ya...
"I wish to have no connection with any ship that does not sail fast; for I intend to go in harm's way." - John Paul Jones (1747 - 1792), Letter, November 16, 1778
"let there be light" ~ God