"We have restricted credit, we have restricted opportunity, we have controlled development, and we have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated, governments in the civilized world--no longer a government by free opinion, no longer a government by conviction and the vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and the duress of small groups of dominant men."
by:
Woodrow Wilson
(1856-1924) 28th US President
Date:
1913
Source:
in his book, The New Freedom: A Call For the Emancipation of the Generous Energies of a People, chapter 9
http://books.google.com/books?id=fiESAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA201
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Reader comments about this quote:
"A little group of willful men, representing no opinion but their own, have rendered the great government of the United States helpless and contemptible." -- Woodrow Wilson
 -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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     -- Logan, Memphis, TN      
    Oh my gosh! He wrote that in the 20's. What would he think of us now????
     -- Senor Reek, Heartland West     
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    Actually he wrote this prior to founding the Federal Reserve -- he was speaking of the banking trusts that the Fed was supposed to protect us from. Wilson happily ushered in the Fed in the belief that it would be able to stand up against the money trusts of the Morgan's, Warfield's, etc.. That was like putting the fox in charge of the hen house!
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Wilson was talking about the right wing of his day, and nothing has changed. The right wing now is trying to figure out how to get a hold of John McCain. Vote of the majority and free opinion I like that. The Republic enthusiasts believe that we started with an elitist few men and we should stay with government by an elitist few men. I disagree.
     -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
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    Waffler, the "Republic enthusiasts" here believe no such thing. Your statement proves your continued ignorance.
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
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    I was told the Constitution was written by men appointed by "states" rather than people and we would be better off if we were run by Senators and Presidents who do not answer to the majority but to some kind of elitist state groups. I am sure that is what I was told.
     -- Waffler, Smith, Arkansas     
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    The verbage is great. however Wilson's actions are much like Lincoln's, 180 degrees off. Considering it was that same "little group of men" that he turned to to make a US (soon to be global) version of the Rothchild financial empire. Wilson could not wait to have a one world regime, with himself as a big player obviously.
     -- Ernie John Hopkins, Madison, Mississippi     
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    The Constitution WAS written by men appointed by the states to be ambassadors to the convention. The charge given them by the state, as ambassadors, was to reevaluate and make changes to the Articles of Confederation. Well, they reevaluated and changed the Articles right out of existence by creating the Constitution. A simple look at history shows that the delegates (ambassadors) were not sent directly from the people... the people did not have a vote to charge these representatives with a particular duty; the states gave these representatives this charge. This does not, however, establish a rule of elitists. The colonies considered themselves states long before the Constitution was created; in fact, it was because of this strong sense of statehood that it took so long for the constitution to even be ratified. Americans today have a little different understanding of statehood than does the rest of the world (or our founders did). Most Americans perceive a state to be more along the lines of a province or subservient geographic area. A state, however, is defined as a specified geographic area with a political and sovereign politically governing body. The key word here is "sovereign." Each state, during the ratification of the Constitution, considered itself as sovereign and separate from each other state as currently Great Britain does from Japan. Before the Constitution, varying states even had their own currency! Each ambassador was appointed to the conference by the state to represent that state in what was considered an international affair. The collection of states under a single system of government is called "federalism," wherein each state freely agrees to delegate certain characteristics of its sovereignty to a higher power. So, as an example, consider if this were done today: If Germany were to enter into supranational federalism with France or Italy, wouldn't Germany want to make sure that its citizens would be protected against the vested interests of France or Italy in such a federalist alliance? If France and Italy wanted to implement an economic model that would destroy Germany's ability to produce its natural resources, wouldn't you think there should be a provision that would allow Germany to veto such a bill, even though it was in the minority in this federalist alliance? Or, what if Germany and France wanted to pass federalist legislation that would directly incapacitate the ability of the individuals in Italy to make a living; wouldn't you think there should be a power provided to veto such a bill, even though Italy was in the minority? Is it just to destroy the livelihood of Italy because Germany and France thought it was a good idea for their own economy? Democracy says, "no, there should be no exceptions, it's majority rule all of the time, absolutely." A Republic (as established by the founders of the Constitution (Article 4, Section 4)), agrees that it is not justifiable for France or Germany to pass legislation that would directly injure the individuals in Italy, or that France and Italy could pass legislation that would harm Germany's economy in production. This does not set up an "elitist" society, but a justifiable society that rules on the will of the majority while also protecting the rights of the minority. The ambassadors of the states to the federalist society are called "Senators" in our Constitution; however, the authors of the Constitution also thought it necessary to also carry the voice of the people to the federalist level; hence, they created the "House of Representatives," that was chosen directly by the people. This is clearly obvious when you study the "great compromise" of the Constitutional Convention. The Constitution originally arranged for the President to be elected by varied means other than by direct vote of the people. The power, in every way, still rested within the people themselves, because the people voted for their state representatives that in turn also voted for the Senate and the President. This dualistic nature of the legislative branch made it possible for issues pertaining to the state (the Senate) to be checked by the voice of the people themselves (the House of Representatives). If the people didn't like what the federalist Senate was doing, then they're warn their local representatives that they better vote for some other federal state ambassador (Senator) or come the next election they would be voted out themselves. The power, in everyway, always came back to the people. This order of a Republic, however, made the checks and balances stronger and protected the rights of the individuals and the states from the onslaught of the federalist system. A Republic gives the states the right to opt out of federal legislation that would harm its citizens. In a democracy, the states would not be capable of backing out of such federalist legislation as the REAL I.D.; however, we can clearly see that many states ARE opting out of the REAL I.D. legislation passed by the federal majority, because state legislatures and governors consider such federal laws to be against their state sovereignty and their citizens "inalienable rights." So, no, "the Republic enthusiasts" here do not believe that we should be ruled by "an elitist few men and we should stay with government by an elitist few men," neither do we find anything wrong with the sovereign states having the ability of sending ambassadors to represent them in international affairs. Democracies look to the majority rule, with no exception, anytime. Republics look to the majority rule, with a few exceptions, sometimes. If a federalist law infringes upon the sovereignty of the states or the inalienable rights of the people, then the federal government has no ability act--regardless of what the ruling majority desires. Democracies give no such mercy to the sovereignty of the states or the inalienable rights of the people. Both Republics and Democracies have many things in common (rule of the people, for instance), but the basic fundamental premise of each are nearly diametric (protection of the individual (republic), or the oppression of the majority in whatever it decides anytime (democracy)).
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
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    Waffler, as one of the Republic enthusits, I have no Idea what you're smoking but it has greatly diminished your ability to understand any thing I've said. And, you are wrong but once again.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Well, said, Logan -- another example of how the US was not and still is not a democracy -- and why it should never be.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    Waffler - John McCain is trying to get a hold on the right wing and fool it into thinking he is one of them. Wilson was proof the college professors have no business being president.
     -- warren, olathe     
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     -- Anonymous      
    Seems to be a misquote: ref. http://www.salon.com/tech/htww/2007/12/21/woodrow_wilson_federal_reserve/
     -- Anonymous     
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    Anonymous, Here is the link to a photocopy of the page from Wilson's book, page 201: http://books.google.com/books?id=fiESAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA201
    Actually, Salon has got it wrong -- it has incorrectly quoted from the book -- in particular the last sentence.
     -- Editor, Liberty Quotes     
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    colors do come out. (Incidentially, it is well said that a conservative is a liberal that has been mugged..). For Reston and Dick, i do hvae some bumper stickers that say "Unarmed...please don't hurt me." For the rest of you, and I know you know this, the one, single most effective deterrent to crime is the concealed
     -- jwala sharma, indore india     
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    The problem is the Founding Fathers did not imagine that there would be lobbyist, special interest groups and multi-national corporations whose interests were never of the peoples but only to circumvent the Constitution and take control of the people. Now the US government are indebted to the Rothschilds, the Rockefellers, the Exxons of this world via the Federal Reserve for trillions of dollars and have put our grandchildren's grandchildren in debt. It will be some time before the people take back their nation.
     -- patrick henry, washington dc     
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