"That government is best which governs least."
by:
Henry David Thoreau
(1817-1862) American author, poet, philosopher, polymath, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, and transcendentalist
Source:
Civil Disobedience (1849)
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Reader comments about this quote:
I love this quote. It is from a man who stood for what he believed and voiced his opinion strongly.
 -- Leigh, Central     
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    this quote truly talks about a man who stood for what he believed.
     -- Anonymous, can not say     
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    Too bad most American's are looking for a hand-out. If they only believed this they would want to limit this Goverment Like I do! Yeah Obama, let's lower our standard of living to match that of Europe! One bright idea after another.
     -- Big E Johnson, Vegas     
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     -- Logan, Memphis, TN      
     -- Mike, Norwalk      
    I love the quote... but wasn't it Thomas Jefferson who said: 'The government who governs least governs best.''?
     -- Katherine, Texas     
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    You are right Katherine.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
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    Tell that to that bunch of socialists running( ruining ) the country today.
     -- jim k, austin     
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     -- jim k, austin      
    The quote is often attributed to either Jefferson or Thomas Paine, but it is actually Thoreau that said it in his work "Civil Disobedience"... an excellent read, btw... http://www.monticello.org/library/reference/spurious.html
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
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     -- warren, olathe      
    The self government is best that governs himself the most.
     -- Anon     
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    And when we are ready for it, that will be the government we have.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    George Washington said "Government is not reason or eloquence. It is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearsome master." Let us recognize that culture is based on freedom, while government is based on force. It follows that government should only be used to protect our rights, as a defense against aggression and emergencies.
     -- Allen Weingarten, Monroe Township, NJ     
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