"You and I are told we must choose between a left or right,
but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right.
There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream --
the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order --
or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism.
Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives,
those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on
this downward path. Plutarch warned,
'The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he
who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits.'"
Ronald Reagan
(1911-2004) 40th US President
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Reader comments about this quote:
The master of double talk... reminds me of "Slavery is freedom"...
 -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US     
  • 1 6
    As usual, the 'great communicator', and not-so-great thinker, offers up a false dichotomy in furtherance of his ideology. What a novel idea; replace a horizontal fiction with a vertical one. At least he appears to have, at one time, understood that there was a difference between the convention of 'left' and 'right'. Apparently, he had a second thought but failed to have a third.
     -- Terry Berg, Occidental, CA     
  • 6
    lol Terry, and I happen to agree with you about the messenger, he said (a public aura) one thing, and did another. Maybe he thought his means would accomplish his spoken end? Nah! it was double talk. All the same, none of that changes the ultimate correctness of the quote, considering there hasn't been much difference between the fascists and socialists these last many years
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 1
    Yeah, and it's a matter of right and wrong. Where is the balance? In the centre, and that is where the right is; the rest is part right and part wrong.
     -- Gölök Zoltán Leenderdt Franco Buday, Vancouver, GVRD(Paine Cnty), Coastal Lwr Mainland BC(State of Neo Sumer), U.S. of Eh!     
  • 1 1
    Every Congress, no matter what party has been the majority, has spent more money than the last spreading 'bounties, donations and benefits'. The result: an absolutely unpayable debt -- i.e. total and complete dependence on the Fed and bankruptcy of the nation. It is only a matter of time before Rome falls again...
     -- E Archer, NYC     
  • 6
     -- Anonymous, Portland, OR      
     -- Paul, New York, NY      
    You Reagan-Haters are showing your utter ignorance. Because of Reagan's vision of Freedom, the Berlin Wall came down, totalitarinism was stopped dead in its tracks and millions were freed from communist tyranny. You have people like Reagan to thank for the freedom you take for granted. If we listened to idiots like you, we'd all be in the Gulag by now. You need to word up: http://www.inthefaceofevil.com/inthefaceofevil/story.html
     -- vince, malone     
  • 2
    Paul from New York is EXACTLY right. WORD UP or you will find yourselves in the ant heap of totalitarianism pretty darned soon. Thanks to the ignorant idol-worshippers voted for Barrack Hussein Obama, we're already further down that path than you might realize.
     -- Marv L S, St. Paul     
  • 1
    This political duality of Right & Left came about ONLY as in terms of the Seating Arrangement in the Parliament... where Pro-Labour/Liberals so to say sat on the left of the dias and the Pro-Capital or the Conservatives sat to the right of the dias. Given the fact of the ideologies mentioned therein are 'necessarily' functionall complementary... it is quite stupid of us to have equated them with the right ^ left divide which is in fact opposite of one another. How far from Truth have we traversed with this illogical misreading into reality? So politically speaking the modernday political talk is a meaningless verbiage . and the human tragedies that we are sufferring is because of the disbursement of the excequer funds along these non-real differences !!
     -- Vedapushpa, Bangalore - India     
    Ahahahahha. And then Reagan gave us "Obama-Phone"... AND he fed fat the now whale sized parasite the military industrial complex and set them loose on a few nations murdering people all over the globe by CIA treachery giving chemical warfare and sponsoring both sides of wars... Reagan ran up more debt than every President before him COMBINED. That's a massive budget for bounties, donations and benefits, ay?
     -- DanielVincentKelleyOnYT, Newport Vermont     
  • 5
    Daniel, why the thumb down. Was that an ad hominem exercise or don't you like freedom? The left and the right are clearly both ends of the same ant heap of totalitarianism socialist stick. Where is freedom in the directional point, it is clearly not with socialism's theocracies. Regan's Benjamin Franklinesk depiction of Plutarch's statement is an accurate observation in human nature.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 2
     -- Rhonda, Buckhannon      
    I liked what Reagan said. The reason he did not do what he said is because he surrounded himself with friends who only wanted to pad their wallets. He did not spend more in 1980's dollars than FDR did in 1930's dollars.
     -- cal, Lewisville, TX     
  • 2
     -- luis, key biscayne      
     -- enrique, Miami      
     -- jim k, Austin      
     -- Mary, MI      
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