Famous Quotations / Quotes
Famous Quotes about Liberty
 

 
Famous quotes, quotations, sayings, phrases, idioms, proverbs, and axioms about Liberty and the Responsibility that comes with it. 
 


The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations

A classic since 1953 with over 20,000 quotes from over 3,000 authors.


Famous Last Words

Apt Observations, Pleas, Curses, Benedictions, Sour Notes, Bons Mots, and Insights from People on the Brink of Departure


Stretch Your Wings

Famous Black Quotations for the Young


American Quotations

An exhaustive collection of profound quotes from the founding fathers, presidents, statesmen, scientists, constitutions, court decisions


The Oxford Dictionary of Humorous Quotations


Last Words of Saints and Sinners

700 Final Quotes from the Famous, the Infamous, and the Inspiring Figures of History


America's God and Country: Encyclopedia of Quotations

Contains over 2,100 profound quotations from founding fathers, presidents, constitutions, court decisions and more


The Law

This 1850 classic is an absolute must read for anyone interested in law, justice, truth, or liberty. A most compelling and revolutionary look at The Law.


Bartlett's Familiar Quotations

A Collection of Passages, Phrases, and Proverbs Traced to Their Sources in Ancient and Modern Literature (17th Edition)


The Stupidest Things Ever Said by Politicians

Rise up, America -- and laugh out loud at the greatest gaffes that no spin doctor could possibly fix!


The 776 Even Stupider Things Ever Said

Another great collection of stupidity


Quotable Quotes

Wit and Wisdom for All Occasions from America's Most Popular Magazine


The Most Brilliant Thoughts of All Time

You don't have to be a genius to sound like one. Here's a collection of the most profound and provocative wit and wisdom in the English language in two lines or less.


2,715 One-Line Quotations for Speakers, Writers & Raconteurs

Invaluable sampler of witticisms, epigrams, sayings, bon mots, platitudes and insights chosen for their brevity and pithiness.


Phillips' Book of Great Thoughts Funny Sayings

A stupendous collection of quotes, quips, epigrams, witticisms, and humorous comments for personal enjoyment and ready reference.


Quick Quips and Quotes; 532 Things I Wish I Had Said

Quick Quips and Quotes is the Ultimate Collection of one liners.


Bartlett's Book of Anecdotes

The ultimate anthology of anecdotes, now revised with over 700 new entries.


Quotations for Public Speakers

A Historical, Literary, and Political Anthology


Liberty - The American Revolution

This compelling series traces the events leading up to the war and America's fight for freedom.


Founding Fathers

The story of how these disparate characters fomented rebellion in the colonies, formed the Continental Congress, fought the Revolutionary War, and wrote the Constitution


Libertarianism: A Primer

David Boaz, director of the Cato Institute, has written a simple introduction to Libertarianism inteneded to appeal to disgruntled Democrats and Republicans everywhere.


The Libertarian Reader

Classic and Contemporary Writings from Lao-Tzu to Milton Friedman


Thomas Paine: Collected Writings

All the classics: Common Sense / The Crisis / Rights of Man / The Age of Reason / Pamphlets, Articles, and Letters

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A FramerUnder every government the [last] resort of the people, is an appeal to the sword; whether to defend themselves against the open attacks of a foreign enemy, or to check the insidious encroachments of domestic foes.  Whenever a people ... entrust the defence of their country to a regular, standing army, composed of mercenaries, the power of that country will remain under the direction of the most wealthy citizens.
Charles Francis AdamsFailure seems to be regarded as the one unpardonable crime, success as the all-redeeming virtue, the acquisition of wealth as the single worthy aim of life. Ten years ago such revelations as these of the Erie Railway would have sent a shudder through the community, and would have placed a stigma on every man who had had to do them. Now they merely incite others to surpass by yet bolder outrages and more corrupt combinations.
John AdamsBanks have done more injury to the religion, morality, tranquility, prosperity, and even wealth of the nation than they can have done or ever will do good.
John AdamsIf a majority are capable of preferring their own private interest, or that of their families, counties, and party, to that of the nation collectively, some provision must be made in the constitution, in favor of justice, to compel all to respect the common right, the public good, the universal law, in preference to all private and partial considerations... And that the desires of the majority of the people are often for injustice and inhumanity against the minority, is demonstrated by every page of history... To remedy the dangers attendant upon the arbitrary use of power, checks, however multiplied, will scarcely avail without an explicit admission some limitation of the right of the majority to exercise sovereign authority over the individual citizen... In popular governments [democracies], minorities [individuals] constantly run much greater risk of suffering from arbitrary power than in absolute monarchies...
Samuel AdamsThe liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil Constitution,
are worth defending at all hazards;
and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks.
We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors:
they purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense of treasure
and blood, and transmitted them to us with care and diligence.
It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation,
enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us
by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them
by the artifices of false and designing men.
Samuel AdamsIn short, it is the greatest Absurdity to suppose it in the Power of one or any Number of Men, at the entering into Society, to renounce their essential natural Rights or the Means of preserving those Rights, when the grand End of civil Government, from the very Nature of its Institution, is for the Support, Protection and Defense of those very Rights: The principal of which, as is before observed, are Life, Liberty, and Property.
Samuel AdamsThe Legislative has no Right to absolute arbitrary Power over the Lives and Fortunes of the People: Nor can Mortals assume a Prerogative not only too high for Men but for Angels, and therefore reserv’d for the Exercise of the Deity alone.
Samuel AdamsLet us contemplate our forefathers, and posterity, and resolve to maintain the rights bequeathed to us from the former, for the sake of the latter. The necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude and perseverance. Let us remember that "if we suffer tamely a lawless attack upon our liberty, we encourage it, and involve others in our doom," it is a very serious consideration ... that millions yet unborn may be the miserable sharers of the event.
Samuel AdamsAll Men have a Right to remain in a State of Nature as long as they please: And in case of intolerable Oppression, civil or religious, to leave the Society they belong to and enter into another. When Men enter into Society, it is by voluntary Consent, and they have a Right to demand and insist upon the performance of such Conditions and previous Limitations as form an equitable original Compact.
Samuel AdamsIf men, through fear, fraud, or mistake, should in terms renounce or give up any natural right, the eternal law of reason and the grand end of society would absolutely vacate such renunciation. The right to freedom being the gift of Almighty God, it is not in the power of man to alienate this gift and voluntarily become a slave.
Samuel AdamsGovernors have no Right to seek and take what they please; by this, instead of being content with the Station assigned them, that of honorable Servants of the Society, they would soon become Absolute Masters, Despots,and Tyrants. Hence, as a private Man has a Right to say what Wages he will give in his private Affairs, so has a Community to determine what they will give and grant of their Substance for the Administration of public Affairs.
Alabama, Declaration of Rights Article I Section 35That the sole object and only legitimate end of government is to protect the citizen in the enjoyment of life, liberty, and property, and when the government assumes other functions it is usurpation and oppression.
Woody AllenWe stand today at a crossroads: One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other leads to total extinction. Let us hope we have the wisdom to make the right choice.
AristotleTo the size of the state there is a limit, as there is to plants, animals and implements, for none of these
retain their facility when they are too large.
Richard ArmeyThe people themselves, not their government, should be trusted with spending their own money and making their own decisions.
Richard Armey[T]he tax code has been piling up, year after year, a symbol of everything gone wrong in America, of arrogant rulers and lost freedom, just waiting for us to pick the whole thing up and heave it away. It has to happen. Free people can put up with such laws only for so long.
Richard ArmeyGovernment is saying to the average citizen every January 1: 'For the next five months you’ll be working for us, for goals we shall determine. Is that clear? After May 5 you may look after your own needs and ambitions, but report back to us next January. Now move along.' ... If nearly half of what you make is spent by someone else, that means that half your work time is spent working for someone else. Call me a radical, but I think that comes dangerously close to being a form of indentured servitude.
Nancy AstorTruth always originates in a minority of one, and every custom begins as a broken precedent.
Michael BadnarikI have the right to do whatever I wish with my property. If I own a pile of wood, I can set fire to it even if it is currently nailed together in the shape of a barn. Cigarettes may not be healthy for me in the long run, but I have the freedom to smoke them anyway. Drinking alcohol may or may not have negative side effects, but even if it does, the government has no authority to prohibit you from consuming it, even if it is "in your own best interest." Since when do we let the government decide what is or isn't good for us? What the hell does Congress know about nutrition, anyway? (For that matter, what does Congress know about the Constitution?) If the government can use force whenever something is "in our best interest" then government should force everyone to wake up at 6am every morning for calisthenics in the front yard. Fast food establishments should be torn down and replaced with bars that serve carrot juice and alfalfa sprouts, since - "it's in your best interest." This paternalistic attitude that "the government knows best" and that you are merely a helpless child is insulting and reprehensible. Hitler used the same attitude to persuade the Germans to subjugate themselves to the "Fatherland.
Frederic BastiatAll you have to do, is to see whether the law takes from some what belongs to them in order to give it to others to whom it does not belong. We must see whether the law performs, for the profit of one citizen and to the detriment of others, an act which that citizen could not perform himself without being guilty of a crime. Repeal such a law without delay. ... [I]f you don’t take care, what begins by being an exception tends to become general, to multiply itself, and to develop into a veritable system.
Frederic BastiatThe mission of the law is not to oppress persons and plunder them of their property, even though the law may be acting in a philanthropic spirit. Its purpose is to protect persons and property.... If you exceed this proper limit -- if you attempt to make the law religious, fraternal, equalizing, philanthropic, industrial, or artistic -- you will then be lost in uncharted territory, in vagueness and uncertainty, in a forced utopia or, even worse, in a multitude of utopias, each striving to seize the law and impose it on you.
Dan BaumThe [Supreme] Court during the past decade let police obtain search warrants on the strength of anonymous tips. It did away with the need for warrants when police want to search luggage, trash cans, car interiors, bus passengers, fenced private property and barns.
Paul BegalaStroke of the pen. Law of the land. Kinda cool.
Bell v. HoodHistory is clear that the first ten amendments to the Constitution were adopted to secure certain common law rights of the people, against invasion by the Federal Government.
Raoul BergerUsurpation, the exercise of power not granted, is not legitimized by repetition.
Albert J. BeveridgeBeware the leader who bangs the drums of war in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervor, for patriotism is indeed a double-edged sword. It both emboldens the blood, just as it narrows the mind. And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no need in seizing the rights of the citizenry. Rather, the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded by patriotism, will offer up all of their rights unto the leader and gladly so.
Ambrose BiercePolitics, n. Strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.
Ambrose BierceAn election is nothing more than the advanced auction of stolen goods.
Billings v. HallUnder our form of government, the legislature is not supreme ... like other departments of government, it can only exercise such powers as have been delegated to it, and when it steps beyond that boundary, its acts, like those of the most humble magistrate in the state who transcends his jurisdiction, are utterly void.
Justice Hugo L. BlackIn my judgment the people of no nation can lose their liberty so long as a Bill of Rights like ours survives and its basic purposes are conscientiously interpreted, enforced and respected so as to afford continuous protection against old, as well as new, devices and practices which might thwart those purposes. I fear to see the consequences of the Court's practice of substituting its own concepts of decency and fundamental justice for the language of the Bill of Rights as its point of departure in interpreting and enforcing that Bill of Rights.
Michael BloombergGovernment should not tell you what to do unless there's a compelling public purpose.
David BoazPower always corrupts, and the power of government to tell people how to live their lives or to transfer money from those who earn it to others is always a temptation to corruption. Taxes and regulations reduce people’s incentive to produce wealth, and government transfer programs reduce people’s incentive to work, to save, and to help family and friends in case of sickness, disability, or retirement. ...[I]t is nonetheless clear that government enterprises are less efficient, less innovative, and more wasteful than private firms.... [C]ompare what it’s like to call American Express versus the IRS to correct problems. Or compare a private apartment building with public housing.
James BovardThe first step in saving our liberty is to realize how much we have already lost, how we lost it, and how we will continue to lose it unless fundamental political changes occur.
Boyd v. U.S.Constitutional provisions for the security of person and property should be liberally construed. It is the duty of the courts to be watchful of constitutional rights against any stealthy encroachments thereon.
Justice Louis D. BrandeisThe government is the potent omnipresent teacher. For good or ill it teaches the whole people by its example. Crime is contagious. If the government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy. To declare that the end justifies the means -- to declare that the government may commit crimes -- would bring terrible retribution.
Justice Louis D. BrandeisWays may someday be developed by which the government, without removing papers from secret drawers, can reproduce them in court, and by which it will be enabled to expose to a jury the most intimate occurrences of the home.
Justice William J. BrennanThe concept of military necessity is seductively broad, and has a dangerous plasticity. Because they invariably have the visage of overriding importance, there is always a temptation to invoke security "necessities" to justify an encroachment upon civil liberties. For that reason, the military-security argument must be approached with a healthy skepticism.
Harry BrowneA welfare state is frightened of every poor person who tries to get in and every rich person who tries to get out.
Sir Thomas BrowneThe mortalist enemy unto knowledge, and that which hath done the greatest execution unto truth, has been a preemptory adhesion unto authority.
Tammy BruceNo matter how noble the original intentions, the seductions of power can turn any movement from one seeking equal rights to one that would deny them to others.
William F. Buckley, Jr.Marijuana never kicks down your door in the middle of the night. Marijuana never locks up sick and dying people, does not suppress medical research, does not peek in bedroom windows. Even if one takes every reefer madness allegation of the prohibitionists at face value, marijuana prohibition has done far more harm to far more people than marijuana ever could.
Edmund BurkeThey defend their errors as if they were defending their inheritance.
Edmund BurkeIt is a general popular error to suppose the loudest complainers for the public to be the most anxious for its welfare.
Edmund BurkeAll that is necessary for evil to triumph, is for good men to do nothing.
Edmund BurkeExample is the school of mankind, and they will learn at no other.
Edmund BurkeWe must not always judge of the generality of the opinion by the noise of the acclamation.
Edmund BurkeThe greater the power the more dangerous the abuse.
Edmund BurkeThe people never give up their liberties, but under some delusion.
Edmund BurkeThe true danger is when liberty is nibbled away, for expedience, and by parts.
William S. BurroughsOnce the law starts asking questions, there's no stopping them.
William S. BurroughsAfter 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.
George W. BushI don’t give a goddamn. I’m the President
and the Commander-in-Chief. Do it my way. ...
Stop throwing the Constitution in my face.
It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!
George W. BushI want him [Saddam Hussein]. I want -- I want justice.
There is an old poster seen out west.
As I recall, it said, Wanted Dead or Alive.
George W. BushThe liberation of Iraq is a crucial advance
in the campaign against terror.
We've removed an ally of al Qaeda.
Richard E. ByrdA hand from Washington will be stretched out and placed upon every man's business; the eye of the federal inspector will be in every man's counting house.... The law will of necessity have inquisical features, it will provide penalties, it will create complicated machinery. Under it, men will be hauled into courts distant from their homes. Heavy fines imposed by distant and unfamiliar tribunals will constantly menace the taxpayer. An army of federal inspectors, spies, and detectives will descend upon the state.
Gaius Julius CaesarAll bad precedents began as justifiable measures.
Gaius Julius CaesarBeware of the leader, who strikes the war drum in order to transfer the citizens into patriotic glow, patriotism is indeed a double-sided sword. It makes the blood so boldly, like it constricts the intellect. And if the striking of the war drum reached a fiebrige height and the blood is cooking and hating, and the intellect is dismissed, the leader doesn't need to reject the citizens rights. The citizens, cought by anxiety and blinded through patriotism, will subordinate all their rights to the leader and this even with happy courage. Why do I know that? I know it, because this is, what I did. And I am Gajus Julius Cäsar.
John C. CalhounTo 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 ...
William J. CampbellToday the grand jury is the total captive of the prosecutor who, if he is candid, will concede that he can indict anybody, at any time, for almost anything, before any grand jury.
CatoI must own, I know not what Treason is, if sapping and betraying the liberties of a people be not treason, in the eternal and original Nature of Things.
Cato the YoungerI would not be beholden to a tyrant, for his acts of tyranny. For it is but usurpation in him to save, as their rightful lord, the lives of men over whom he has no title to reign.
William Ellery ChanningThe cry has been that when war is declared, all opposition should therefore be hushed. A sentiment more unworthy of a free country could hardly be propagated. If the doctrine be admitted, rulers have only to declare war and they are screened at once from scrutiny.
Mona Charen[T]he sprawl of government into every conceivable realm of life has caused the withering of traditional institutions. Fathers become unnecessary if the government provides Aid to Families with Dependent Children. Church charities lose their mission when the government provides food, shelter and income to the poor. And the non-poor no longer feel pressed to provide aid to those in need, be they aged parents or their unfortunate neighbors—“compassion” having become the province of the state.
Dick CheneyIt will be necessary for us to be a nation of men, and not laws.
Lord ChesterfieldArbitrary power has seldom... been introduced in any country at once. It must be introduced by slow degrees, and as it were step by step.
Joseph H. ChoateThe Act of Congress which we are impugning before you is communistic in its purposes and tendencies, and is defended here upon principles as communistic, socialistic - what shall I call them - populistic as ever have been
addressed to any political assembly in the world.
Noam ChomskyMoral cowardice and intellectual corruption are the natural concomitants of unchallenged privilege.
Sir Winston ChurchillThis report, by its very length, defends itself against the risk of being read.
Quintus Tullius CiceroDuring war, the laws are silent.
Justice Tom C. ClarkNothing 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.
Bill ClintonWhen we got organized as a country and we wrote a fairly radical Constitution with a radical Bill of Rights, giving a radical amount of individual freedom to Americans, it was assumed that the Americans who had that freedom would use it responsibly.... [However, now] there's a lot of irresponsibility. And so a lot of people say there's too much freedom. When personal freedom's being abused, you have to move to limit it.
Bill ClintonIf the personal freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution
inhibit the government's ability to govern the people,
we should look to limit those guarantees.
Bill ClintonWhen we got organized as a country and we wrote a fairly radical Constitution with a radical Bill of Rights, giving a radical amount of individual freedom to Americans ... And so a lot of people say there's too much personal freedom. When personal freedom's being abused, you have to move to limit it. That's what we did in the announcement I made last weekend on the public housing projects, about how we're going to have weapon sweeps and more things like that to try to make people safer in their communities.
Bill ClintonWe can't be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans...
Frank I. CobbIf the author of the Declaration of Independence were to utter such a sentiment today, the Post Office Department could exclude him from the mail, grand juries could indict him for sedition and criminal syndicalism, legislative committees could seize his private papers ... and United States Senators would be clamoring for his deportation that he... should be sent back to live with the rest of the terrorists.
William S. CohenTerrorism is escalating to the point that Americans soon may have to choose between civil liberties and more intrusive means of protection.
Samuel Taylor ColeridgeEvery reform, however necessary, will by weak minds be carried to an excess, that itself will need reforming.
Calvin CoolidgeIt is much more important to kill bad bills than to pass good ones.
Calvin CoolidgeThe collection of taxes which are not absolutely required, which do not beyond reasonable doubt contribute to the public welfare, is only a species of legalized larceny. The wise and correct course to follow in taxation is not to destroy those who have already secured success, but to create conditions under which everyone will have a better chance to be successful.
Calvin CoolidgeGovernment price-fixing once started, has alike no justice and no end. It is an economic folly from which this country has every right to be spared.
William CowperTo follow foolish precedents, and wink\\
With both our eyes, is easier than to think.
Edward H. CraneArticle I, Section 8, of the Constitution, of course, lays out the delegated, enumerated, and therefore limited powers of Congress. Only through a deliberate misreading of the general welfare and commerce clauses of the Constitution has the federal government been allowed to overreach its authority and extend its tendrils into every corner of civil society.
Donna Woolfolk CrossWhen law enforcers are shown to have such unswerving integrity, only the most churlish among us would question the methods they use to “get their man.” Constitutional guarantees are regarded as bothersome “technicalities” that impede honest law enforcers in the performance of their duties.
John Philpot CurranIt is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become prey to the active. The conditions upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime, and the punishment of his guilt.
Daily TelegraphToday, The Daily Telegraph starts its 'A Free Country' campaign. Week by week, and in major individual investigations, we shall examine how freedom is being taken away, whether by Westminster or Whitehall or Brussels or any other authority. We shall try to annoy the control freaks, whether they are Right, Left or Centre, and we shall welcome allies for freedom from all quarters. The Conservative leadership contestants hardly breathe a word about freedom. The Labour Government's Queen's Speech is a shopping list of attacks on our liberties. There's plenty to do. Libertad o muerte!
Justice David DavisThe Constitution of the United States is a law for rulers and people,
equally in war and in peace, and covers with the shield of its protection
all classes of men, at all times, and under all circumstances.
No doctrine, involving more pernicious consequences,
was ever invented by the wit of man than
that any of its provisions can be suspended
during any of the great exigencies of government.
Such a doctrine leads directly to anarchy or despotism,
but the theory of necessity on which it is based is false;
for the government, within the Constitution, has all the powers granted to it,
which are necessary to preserve its existence;
as has been happily proved by the result
of the great effort to throw off its just authority.
Elmer DavisThe Republic was not established by cowards; and cowards will not preserve it ...
This will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.
Charles de GaulleIn order to become the master, the politician poses as the servant.
Charles de MontesquieuThe deterioration of every government begins with the decay of the principles on which it was founded.
Charles-Louis de SecondatBut constant experience shows us that every man invested with power is apt to abuse it, and to carry his authority as far as it will go.
Charles-Louis de SecondatUseless laws weaken necessary laws.
Charles-Louis De SecondatThe deterioration of every government begins with the decay of the principles on which it was founded.
Alexis de TocquevilleIt [government] covers the surface of society with a network of small complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, guided; men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting: such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to be nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.
Alexis de TocquevilleThe American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money.
Alexis de TocquevilleAfter having thus successively taken each member of the community in its powerful grasp and fashioned him at will, the supreme power then extends its arm over the whole community. It covers the surface of society with a network of small, complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided; men seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.
Declaration of IndependenceBut, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.
DemosthenesThere is one safeguard known generally to the wise, which is an advantage and security to all, but especially to democracies as against despots. What is it? Distrust.
Brannon P. DenningWhen courts fail to engage in oversight or even distort the Constitution to rationalize the ultra vires actions of government, and when academics and political activists aid and abet them in this activity by devising ingenious rationalizations for ignoring the Constitution’s words, they are playing a most dangerous game. For they are putting at risk the legitimacy of the lawmaking process and risking the permanent disaffection of significant segments of the people.
Alan DershowitzRights are not self-evident. They're not unalienable.
They are subject to modification just like anything else.
Alan DershowitzWe, the People of this country, have no unalienable rights... all our rights are subject to modification... the Constitution of the United States of America is nothing more than a piece of paper and... our government should not be restrained by the Constitution because our government can do good things for people.
John DickensonIndeed nations, in general, are not apt to think until they feel; and therefore nations in general have lost their liberty: For as violations of the rights of the governed, are commonly not only specious, but small at the beginning, they spread over the multitude in such a manner, as to touch individuals but slightly. Thus they are disregarded. The power or profit that arises from these violations centering in few persons, is to them considerable. For this reason the governors having in view their particular purposes, successively preserve an uniformity of conduct for attaining them. They regularly increase the first injuries, till at length the inattentive people are compelled to perceive the heaviness of their burthens -- They begin to complain and inquire — but too late. They find their oppressors so strengthened by success, and themselves so entangled in examples of express authority on the part of their rulers, and of tacit recognition on their own part, that they are quite confounded: for millions entertain no other idea of the legality of power, than it is founded on the exercise of power.
Denis DiderotWatch out for the fellow who talks about putting things in order! Putting things in order always means getting other people under your control.
Benjamin DisraeliFor you see, the world is governed by very different personages from what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes.
Justice William O. DouglasThe right to be let alone is indeed the beginning of all freedom.
Justice William O. DouglasThose in power need checks and restraints lest they come to identify the common good for their own tastes and desires, and their continuation in office as essential to the preservation of the nation.
Justice William O. DouglasAs nightfall does not come all at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air - however slight - lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness.
Frederick DouglassI know no class of my fellowmen, however just, enlightened, and humane, which can be wisely and safely trusted absolutely with the liberties of any other class.
William DraytonIf Congress can determine what constitutes the general welfare and can appropriate money for its advancement, where is the limitation to carrying into execution whatever can be effected by money?
John DrydenIll habits gather by unseen degrees -- As brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas.
Rahm EmmanuelYou never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.
Federal FarmerBesides, to lay and collect internal taxes in this extensive country must require a great number of congressional ordinances, immediately operation upon the body of the people; these must continually interfere with the state laws and thereby produce disorder and general dissatisfaction till the one system of laws or the other, operating upon the same subjects, shall be abolished.
Justice Stephen J. FieldHere I close my opinion. I could not say less in view of
questions of such gravity that go down to the very foundations of the government. If the
provisions of the Constitution can be set aside by an Act of Congress, where is the course
of usurpation to end? The present assault upon capital is but the beginning. It will be but
the stepping-stone to others, larger and more sweeping, till our political contests will
become a war of the poor against the rich; a war growing in intensity and bitterness.
Felix FrankfurterIt is easy to make light of insistence on scrupulous regard for the safeguards of civil liberties when invoked on behalf of the unworthy. History bears testimony that by such disregard are the rights of liberty extinguished, heedlessly at first, then stealthily, and brazenly in the end.
Benjamin FranklinOur Constitution is in actual operation; everything appears to promise that it will last; but in this world
nothing is certain but death and taxes.
Milton FriedmanHell hath no fury like a bureaucrat scorned.
Milton FriedmanEvery friend of freedom... must be as revolted as I am by the prospect of turning the United States into an armed camp, by the vision of jails filled with casual drug users and of an army of enforcers empowered to invade the liberty of citizens on slight evidence.
Milton FriedmanThe power to determine the quantity of money... is too important, too pervasive, to be exercised by a few people, however public-spirited, if there is any feasible alternative. There is no need for such arbitrary power... Any system which gives so much power and so much discretion to a few men, [so] that mistakes - excusable or not - can have such far reaching effects, is a bad system. It is a bad system to believers in freedom just because it gives a few men such power without any effective check by the body politic - this is the key political argument against an independent central bank.
Erich FrommIf you want a Big Brother, you get all that comes with it.
Rocco Galati19 terrorists in 6 weeks have been able to command 300 million North Americans to do away with the entirety of their civil liberties that took 700 years to advance from the Magna Carta onward. The terrorists have already won the political and ideological war with one terrorist act. It is mindboggling that we are that weak as a society.
Glenn GarvinConsider also the willy-nilly growth of the Social Security number. When the numbers were created in 1935, they were supposed to be used for one thing only, to record individual workers’ payments into the Social Security system. Eight years later, Franklin Roosevelt decided all new federal record-keeping would be based on the numbers. In 1962, the IRS adopted them as taxpayer identification numbers. And after Congress permitted states to use the numbers for welfare payments and driver’s licenses in 1976, they mushroomed: food stamps, school lunches, federal loans, even blood donations required Social Security numbers. These days it’s almost impossible to open a bank account or hook up your telephone without one.
Edward GibbonIn 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.
William GodwinMake men wise, and by that very operation you make them free. Civil liberty follows as a consequence of this; no usurped power can stand against the artillery of opinion.
Joseph Paul GoebbelsThe war made possible for us the solution of a whole series of problems that could never have been solved in normal times.
Hermann GoeringWhy of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don't want war neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.
Justice Arthur GoldbergIt is fundamental that the great powers of Congress to conduct
war and to regulate the Nation's foreign relations are subject to the
constitutional requirements of due process. The imperative necessity
for safeguarding these rights to procedural due process under the
gravest of emergencies has existed throughout our constitutional
history, for it is then, under the pressing exigencies of crisis, that
there is the greatest temptation to dispense with fundamental
constitutional guarantees which, it is feared, will inhibit
governmental action.
Emma GoldmanThere is no greater fallacy than the belief that aims and purposes are one thing, while methods and tactics are another… All human experience teaches that methods and means cannot be separated from the ultimate aim.
Bobcat GoldthwaitAmerica's one of the finest countries anyone ever stole.
Barry GoldwaterThe Trilateralist Commission is international...(and)...is intended to be the vehicle for multinational consolidation of the commercial and banking interests by seizing control of the political government of the United States. The Trilateralist Commission represents a skillful, coordinated effort to seize control and consolidate the four centers of power - political, monetary, intellectual, and ecclesiastical.
Barry GoldwaterHow did it happen? How did our national government grow from a servant with sharply limited powers into a master with virtually unlimited power? In part, we were swindled. There are occasions when we have elevated men and political parties to power that promised to restore limited government and then proceeded, after their election, to expand the activities of government. But let us be honest with ourselves. Broken promises are not the major causes of our trouble. Kept promises are. All too often we have put men in office who have suggested spending a little more on this, a little more on that, who have proposed a new welfare program, who have thought of another variety of 'security.' We have taken the bait, preferring to put off to another day the recapture of freedom and the restoration of our constitutional system. We have gone the way of many a democratic society that has lost its freedom by persuading itself that if 'the people' rule, all is well.
Barry GoldwaterNow those who seek absolute power, even though they seek it to do what they regard as good, are simply demanding the right to enforce their own version of heaven on earth, and let me remind you they are the very ones who always create the most hellish tyranny.
Alexander HamiltonWe may safely rely on the disposition of the State legislatures to erect barriers against the encroachments of the national authority.
Alexander HamiltonAllow a government to decline paying its debts and you overthrow all public morality.
Alexander HamiltonWise politicians will be cautious about fettering the government
with restrictions that cannot be observed, because they know that
every break of the fundamental laws, though dictated by necessity,
impairs that sacred reverence which ought to be maintained in
the breast of rulers towards the constitution of a country.
Alexander HamiltonBut as the plan of the [Constitutional] convention aims only at a partial union or consolidation, the State governments would clearly retain all the rights of sovereignty which they before had, and which were not, by that act, EXCLUSIVELY delegated to the United States.
Alexander HamiltonIf the federal government should overpass the just bounds of its
authority and make a tyrannical use of its powers, the people,
whose creature it is, must appeal to the standard they have
formed, and take such measures to redress the injury done to the
Constitution as the exigency may suggest and prudence justify.
Alexander HamiltonThe State governments possess inherent advantages, which will ever give them an influence and ascendancy over the National Government, and will for ever preclude the possibility of federal encroachments. That their liberties, indeed, can be subverted by the federal head, is repugnant to every rule of political calculation.
Charles HandyThere is as far as I know, no example in history, of any state voluntarily ceding power from the centre to its constituent parts.
George V. HansenOnly the IRS can attach 100% of a tax debtor's wages and/or property.<br/>
Only the IRS can invade the privacy of a citizen without court process of any kind.<br/>
Only the IRS can seize property without a court order.<br/>
Only the IRS can force a citizen to try his case in a special court governed by the IRS.<br/>
Only the IRS can compel the production of documents, records, and other materials without a court case being in existence.<br/>
Only the IRS can with impunity publish the details of a citizens debt.<br/>
Only the IRS can legally, without a court order, subject citizens to electronic surveillance.<br/>
Only the IRS can force waiver of statute of limitations and other citizen's rights through the threat of Arbitrary assesment.<br/>
Only the IRS uses extralegal coercion. Threats to witnesses to examine their taxes regularly produces whatever evidence the IRS dictates.<br/>
Only the IRS is free to violate a written agreement with a citizen.<br/>
Only the IRS uses reprisals against citizen and public officials alike.<br/>
Only the IRS can take property on the basis of conjecture.<br/>
Only the IRS is free to maintain lists of citizen guilty of no crime for the purpose of harassing and monitoring them.<br/>
Only the IRS envelops all citizens.<br/>
Only the IRS publicly admits that it's purpose is to instill fear in the citizenry as a technique of performing it's function.
Friedrich August von HayekPerhaps the fact that we have seen millions voting themselves into complete dependence on a tyrant has made our generation understand that to choose one's government is not necessarily to secure freedom.
Friedrich August von HayekThe system of private property is the most important guaranty of freedom, not only for those who own property, but scarcely less for those who do not.
Friedrich August von HayekThe ultimate decision about what is accepted as right and wrong will be made not by individual human wisdom but by the disappearance of the groups that have adhered to the "wrong" beliefs.
Friedrich August von HayekI am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.
Friedrich August von HayekJustice, like liberty and coercion, is a concept which, for the sake of clarity, ought to be confined to the deliberate treatment of men by other men.
Robert A. HeinleinLimiting the freedom of news ‘just a little bit’ is in the same category within the classic example ‘a little bit pregnant.’
Patrick HenryGuard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect
every one who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will
preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force,
you are inevitably ruined.
Auberon HerbertHow should it happen that the individual should be without rights,
but the combination of individuals should possess unlimited rights?
Gen. Joseph P. HoarIn their great wisdom, our Founding Fathers, gathered in Philadelphia to draft the new U.S. Constitution, gave the sole authority to declare war to the U.S. Congress. ... our Founders understood that it was essential, to secure a representative form of republican self-government, that the power to declare war must be in the hands of Congress, and not in the Executive Branch. ...
Nothing has transpired in the intervening centuries to justify any alteration in their wise decision. Under our Federal Constitution, only the Congress has the power to declare war, and that must remain a cardinal principle. In recent decades, we have seen an erosion of that Constitutional principle, and I fully concur that this erosion must be halted and reverse.
Billie HolidayYou can be up to your boobies in white satin,
with gardenias in your hair and no sugar cane for miles,
but you can still be working on a plantation.
Herbert HooverEvery collectivist revolution rides in on a Trojan horse of 'emergency'. It was the tactic of Lenin, Hitler, and Mussolini. In the collectivist sweep over a dozen minor countries of Europe, it was the cry of men striving to get on horseback. And 'emergency' became the justification of the subsequent steps. This technique of creating emergency is the greatest achievement that demagoguery attains.
J. Edgar HooverI regret to say that we of the FBI are powerless to act in cases of oral-genital intimacy, unless it has in some way obstructed interstate commerce.
Jacob G. HornbergerOf course, the proponents of political tyranny are usually well-motivated. Those who enacted the gun-registration law in California point to criminals who have used semiautomatic weapons to commit horrible, murderous acts. But the illusion -- the pipe dream -- is that bad acts can be prevented by the deprivation of liberty. They cannot be! Life is always insecure. The only choice is between liberty and insecurity, on the one hand, and insecurity and enslavement on the other. The true patriot scrutinizes the actions of his own government with unceasing vigilance. And when his government violates the morality and rightness associated with principles of individual freedom and private property, he immediately rises in opposition to his government. This is why the gun owners of California might ultimately go down in history as among the greatest and most courageous patriots of our time.
Philip K. HowardCoercion by government, the main fear of our founding fathers, is now its most common attribute.
George HuddlestonThat is reserved expressly to the States and is not granted to the Federal Government by our national charter. The Federal Government has nothing to do under the Constitution with the preservation of public order. To pass this bill is to pass a bill for an unconstitutional purpose, under the guise of regulating interstate commerce.
Justice Charles Evans HughesEmergency does not create power. 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.
Humanist Manifesto, Article 12We deplore the division of humankind on nationalistic grounds. We have reached a turning point in human history where the best option is to transcend the limits of national sovereignty and to move towards the building of a world community. We look toward the development of a system of world law, world order, based upon transnational government.
David HumeIt is seldom that liberty of any kind is lost all at once.
Andrew JacksonIt is to be regretted that the rich and powerful too often bend the acts of government to their selfish purposes.
Andrew JacksonEvery man is equally entitled to protection by law; but when the laws undertake to add… artificial distinctions, to grant titles, gratuities, and exclusive privileges, to make the rich richer and the potent more powerful, the humble members of society -- the farmers, mechanics, and laborers -- who have neither the time nor the means of securing like favors to themselves, have a right to complain of the injustice of their government.
Justice Robert H. JacksonThe most odious of all oppressions are those which mask as justice.
Thomas JeffersonThe general [federal] government will tend to monarchy, which will fortify itself from day to day, instead of working its own cures.
Thomas JeffersonWhen the government fears the people there is liberty; when the people fear the government there is tyranny.
Thomas JeffersonThe price of freedom is eternal vigilance.
Thomas JeffersonA wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement.
Thomas JeffersonI consider the foundation of the Constitution as laid on this ground: That 'all powers not delegated to the United States, by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States or to the people' (10th Amendment). To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specifically drawn around the powers of Congress, is to take possession of a boundless field of power, no longer susceptible to any definition.
Thomas JeffersonFor the power given to Congress by the Constitution does not extend to the internal regulation of the commerce of a State (that is to say, of the commerce between citizen and citizen,) which remain exclusively with its own legislature; but to its external commerce only, that is to say, its commerce with another State, or with foreign nations, or with the Indian tribes.
Thomas JeffersonSingle acts of tyranny may be ascribed to the accidental opinion of the day; but a series of oppressions, begun at a distinguished period, and pursued unalterably through every change of ministers (adminstrators) too plainly proves a deliberate, systematic plan of reducing us to slavery.
Thomas JeffersonI am not among those who fear the people. They, and not the rich, are our dependence for continued freedom. And to preserve their 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. If we run into such debts, as that we must be taxed in our meat and in our drink, in our necessities and our comforts, in our labors and our amusements, for our calling and our creeds, as the people of England are, our people, like them, must come to labor sixteen hours in the twenty-four, give the earnings of fifteen of these to the government for their debts and daily expenses; and the sixteenth being insufficient to afford us bread, we must live, as they now do, on oatmeal and potatoes; have no time to think, no means of calling the mismanagers to account; but be glad to obtain subsistence by hiring ourselves to rivet their chains on the necks of our fellow suffers. Our land-holders, too, like theirs, retaining indeed the title and stewardship of estates called theirs but held really in trust for the treasury, must wander, like theirs, in foreign countries, and be contented with penury, obscurity, exile, and the glory of the nation. This example reads to us the salutary lesson, that private fortunes are destroyed by public as well as by private extravagances. And this is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle in one instance becomes a precedent for the second; that second for a third; and so on, till the bulk of the society is reduced to mere automatons of misery, to have no sensibilities left but for sinning and suffering. Then begins, indeed, the bellum omnium in omnia, which some philosophers observing to be so general in this world, have mistaken for the natural, instead of the abusive state of man. And the fore horse on this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression.
Thomas JeffersonNo free man shall ever be de-barred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain their right to keep and bear arms is as a last resort to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
Thomas JeffersonAt the establishment of our constitutions, the judiciary bodies were supposed to be the most helpless and harmless members of the government. Experience, however, soon showed in what way they were to become the most dangerous; that the insufficiency of the means provided for their removal gave them a freehold and irresponsibility in office; that their decisions, seeming to concern individual suitors only, pass silent and unheeded by the public at large; that these decisions, nevertheless, become law by precedent, sapping, by little and little, the foundations of the constitution, and working its change by construction, before any one has perceived that that invisible and helpless worm has been busily employed in consuming its substance. In truth, man is not made to be trusted for life, if secured against all liability to account.
Thomas JeffersonNo man has a natural right to commit aggression on the equal rights of another, and this is all from which the laws ought to restrain him.
Thomas JeffersonAn elective despotism was not the government we fought for, but one which should not only be founded on true free principles, but in which the powers of government should be so divided and balanced among general bodies of magistracy, as that no one could transcend their legal limits without being effectually checked and restrained by the others.
Thomas JeffersonExperience has already shown that the impeachment the Constitution has provided is not even a scarecrow.
Thomas Jefferson[W]hensoever the general government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force.
Thomas JeffersonWhen the representative body have lost the confidence of their constituents, when they have notoriously made sale of their most valuable rights, when they have assumed to themselves powers which the people never put into their hands, then indeed their continuing in office becomes dangerous to the State, and calls for an exercise of the power of dissolution.
Thomas JeffersonWhy suspend the habeas corpus in insurrections and rebellions?
Examine the history of England. See how few of the cases of the
suspension of the habeas corpus law have been worthy of that
suspension. They have been either real treasons, wherein the parties
might as well have been charged at once, or sham plots, where it was
shameful they should ever have been suspected. Yet for the few cases
wherein the suspension of the habeas corpus has done real good, that
operation is now become habitual and the minds of the nation almost
prepared to live under its constant suspension.
Thomas JeffersonWe must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and liberty or profusion and servitude. If we run into such debt, as that we must be taxed in our meat and in our drink, in our necessaries and our comforts, in our labors and our amusements, for our calling and our creeds...[we will] have no time to think, no means of calling our miss-managers to account but be glad to obtain subsistence by hiring ourselves to rivet their chains on the necks of our fellow-sufferers... And this is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle in one instance becomes a precedent for[ another]... till the bulk of society is reduced to be mere automatons of misery... And the fore-horse of this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression.
Thomas JeffersonNo freeman shall be debarred the use of arms [within his own lands].
Thomas JeffersonI know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion.
Thomas JeffersonExperience hath shewn, that even under the best forms [of government] those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.
Thomas JeffersonRightful 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 limits of the law,' because law is often but the tyrant's will, and always so when it violates the rights of the individual.
Thomas JeffersonTo lay taxes to provide for the general welfare of the United States, that is to say, 'to lay taxes for the purpose of providing for the general welfare.' For the laying of taxes is the power, and the general welfare the purpose for which the power is to be exercised. They are not to lay taxes ad libitum for any purpose they please; but only to pay the debts or provide for the welfare of the Union.
Lyndon B. JohnsonYou do not examine legislation in the light of the benefits it will convey if properly administered, but in the light of the wrongs it would do and the harm it would cause if improperly administered.
George JonasThe issue isn't gun control but state control -- obtuse and arbitrary state control, state control run amok. ... Forget guns. If Dr. Hudson, Mr. Turnbull, Dr. Gingrich and others end up in jail it won't be for their guns but our liberties.
JuvenalNow that no one buys our votes, the public has long since cast off its cares; for the people that once bestowed commands, consulships, legions, and all else, now meddles no more and longs eagerly for just two things -- bread and circuses.
Walt KellyWe have met the enemy and he is us.
John F. KennedyIf we make peaceful revolution impossible, we make violent revolution inevitable.
John F. KennedyThere is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it. And there is very grave danger that an announced need for increased security will be seized upon by those anxious to expand its meaning to the very limits of official censorship and concealment.
Nikita KhrushchevSociety cannot leap into Communism from capitalism without going through a socialist stage of development.
Nikita KhrushchevWe cannot expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism.
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetuate it.
Judge Whitman KnappAfter 20 years on the bench I have concluded that federal drug laws are a disaster. It is time to get the government out of drug enforcement.
Charles KochIf somebody smokes a joint, we're gonna go in and bust them? We're gonna raid houses in case somebody has a banned substance? Confiscate their houses? My God, if people don't see that as an abuse of force, of too much government, then we're just not communicating.
Charles KochUnfortunately, the fundamental concepts of dignity, respect, equality before the law and personal freedom are under attack by the nation’s own government. That’s why, if we want to restore a free society and create greater well-being and opportunity for all Americans, we have no choice but to fight for those principles.
Judge Alex Kozinski[Y]ou wonder why anyone would make the
mistake of calling it the Commerce Clause
instead of the 'Hey, you -can-do-whatever-you-feel-like Clause?'
Rose Wilder LaneNothing whatever but the constitutional law, the political
structure, of these United States protects any American from
arbitrary seizure of his property and his person, from the
Gestapo and the Storm Troops, from the concentration camp, the
torture chamber, the revolver at the back of his neck in a
cellar.
Wayne LaPierreWe've witnessed a fire sale of American liberties at bargain basement prices, in return for the false promise of more security... The America being designed right now won't resemble the America we've been defending... The danger isn't that Big Brother may storm the castle gates. The danger is that Americans don't realize that he is already inside the castle walls.
Richard Henry LeeIt is true, the yeomanry of the country possess the lands, the weight of property, possess arms, and are too strong a body of men to be openly offended—and, therefore, it is urged, they will take care of themselves, that men who shall govern will not dare pay any disrespect to their opinions. It is easily perceived, that if they have not their proper negative upon passing laws in congress, or on the passage of laws relative to taxes and armies, they may in twenty or thirty years be by means imperceptible to them, totally deprived of that boasted weight and strength: This may be done in great measure by congress.
Robert E. LeeGovernor, if I had foreseen the use those people designed to make of their victory,
there would have been no surrender at Appomattox Courthouse; no sir, not by me.
Had I foreseen these results of subjugation,
I would have preferred to die at Appomattox with my brave men,
my sword in my right hand.
Vladimir Ilyich LeninThe way to crush the bourgeoisie is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation.
Pope Leo XIIIIt is an injustice, a grave evil and a disturbance of the right order, for a larger and higher organisation, to arrogate to itself functions which can be performed efficiently by smaller and lower bodies.
Robert A. LevyThe fundamental principle is this: No matter how worthwhile an end may be, if there is no constitutional authority to pursue it, then the federal government must step aside and leave the matter to the states or to private parties. The president and Congress can proceed only from constitutional authority, not from good intentions alone. If Congress thinks it necessary to expand its powers, the Framers crafted an amendment process for that purpose. But too often, rather than follow that process, Congress has disregarded the limits set by the Constitution and gutted our frontline defense against overweening federal government.
C. S. LewisWhat assurance have we that our masters will or can keep the promise which induced us to sell ourselves? Let us not be deceived by phrases about 'Man taking charge of his own destiny'. All that can really happen is that some men will take charge of the destiny of the others. They will be simply men; none perfect; some greedy, cruel and dishonest. The more completely we are planned the more powerful they will be. Have we discovered some new reason why, this time, power should not corrupt as it has done before?
C. S. LewisThat is the key to history. Terrific energy is expended -- civilizations are built up -- excellent institutions devised; but each time something goes wrong. Some fatal flaw always brings the selfish and cruel people to the top, and then it all slides back into misery and ruin. In fact, the machine conks. It seems to start up all right and runs a few yards, and then it breaks down.
C. S. Lewis'Useful,' and 'necessity' was always 'the tyrant's plea'.
Abraham LincolnAs I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master.
This expresses my idea of democracy.
Abraham LincolnShall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step over the ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never! -- All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a Thousand years. At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.
Ken LivingstoneWhen you get into politics, you find that all your worst nightmares about it turn out to be true, and the people who are attracted to large concentrations of power are precisely the ones who should be kept as far away from it as possible.
John LockeGovernment has no other end than the preservation of property.
John LockeTis a Mistake to think this Fault [tyranny] is proper only to Monarchies; other Forms of Government are liable to it, as well as that.
For where-ever the Power that is put in any hands for the Government of the People, and the Preservation of their Properties, is applied to other ends,
and made use of to impoverish, harass, or subdue them to the Arbitrary and Irregular Commands of those that have it: There it presently becomes
Tyranny, whether those that thus use it are one or many.
General Douglas MacArthurI am concerned for the security of our great Nation; not so much because of any threat from without, but because of the insidious forces working from within.
Niccolo MachiavelliThus it happens in matters of state; for knowing afar off (which it is only given a prudent man to do) the evils that are brewing, they are easily cured.  But when, for want of such knowledge, they are allowed to grow so that everyone can recognize them, there is no longer any remedy to be found.
James MadisonIt is very certain that [the commerce clause] grew out of the abuse of the power by the importing States in taxing the non-importing, and was intended as a negative and preventive provision against injustice among the States themselves, rather than as a power to be used for the positive purposes of the General Government.
James MadisonIf Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, every thing, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress... Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America.
James MadisonIf Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, every thing, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress. ... Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America.
James MadisonThe internal effects of a mutable policy are [...] calamitous. It poisons the blessings of liberty itself. 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 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 tomorrow.
James MadisonCrisis is the rallying cry of the tyrant.
James MadisonMay it not be asked of every intelligent friend to the liberties of his country, whether the power exercised in such an act as this ought not to produce great and universal alarm? Whether a rigid execution of such an act, in time past, would not have repressed that information and communication among the people which is indispensable to the just exercise of their electoral rights? And whether such an act, if made perpetual, and enforced with rigor, would not, in time to come, either destroy our free system of government, or prepare a convulsion that might prove equally fatal to it?
James MadisonA standing military force, with an overgrown Executive will not long be safe companions to liberty. The means of defence against foreign danger have been always the instruments of tyranny at home.
James MadisonWhat becomes of the surplus of human life? It is either, 1st destroyed by infanticide, as among the Chinese and Lacedemonians; or 2nd it is stifled or starved, as among other nations whose population is commensurate to its food; or 3rd it is consumed by wars and endemic diseases; or 4th it overflows, by emigration, to places where a surplus of food is attainable.
James MadisonThe legislative department is everywhere extending the sphere of its activity and drawing all power into its impetuous vortex.
James MadisonAll men having power ought to be mistrusted.
James MadisonIf it be asked what is to be the consequence, in case the Congress shall misconstrue this part of the Constitution, and exercise powers not warranted by its true meaning, I answer, the same as if they should misconstrue or enlarge any other power vested in them; as if the general power had been reduced to particulars, and any one of these were to be violated; the same, in short, as if the State legislatures should violate their respective constitutional authorities. In the first instance, the success of the usurpation will depend on the executive and judiciary departments, which are to expound and give effect to the legislative acts; and in the last resort a remedy must be obtained from the people who can, by the election of more faithful representatives, annul the acts of the usurpers.
James MadisonIt is proper to take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties. We hold this prudent jealousy to be the first duty of citizens, and one of the noblest characteristics of the late Revolution. The freeman of America did not wait till usurped power had strengthened itself by exercise, and entangled the question in precedents. They saw all the consequences in the principle, and they avoided the consequences by denying the principle.
James MadisonIt 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 tomorrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known, and less fixed?
James MadisonWith 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 MadisonThe sober people of America are weary of the fluctuating policy which has directed the public councils. They have seen with regret and indignation that sudden changes and legislative interferences, in cases affecting personal rights, become jobs in the hands of enterprising and influential speculators, and snares to the more-industrious and less informed part of the community. They have seen, too, that one legislative interference is but the first link of a long chain of repetitions, every subsequent interference being naturally produced by the effects of the preceding.
James Madison[Y]ou will understand the game behind the curtain too well not to perceive the old trick of turning every contingency into a resource for accumulating force in the government.
George W. MaloneI believe that if the people of this nation fully understood what Congress has done to them over the last 49 years, they would move on Washington; they would not wait for an election... It adds up to a preconceived plan to destroy the economic and social independence of the United States!
John MarshallIt is emphatically the province and duty of the Judicial Department to say what the law is. Those who apply the rule to particular cases must, of necessity, expound and interpret that rule. If two laws conflict with each other, the Courts must decide on the operation of each. So, if a law be in opposition to the Constitution, if both the law and the Constitution apply to a particular case, so that the Court must either decide that case conformably to the law, disregarding the Constitution, or conformably to the Constitution, disregarding the law, the Court must determine which of these conflicting rules governs the case. This is of the very essence of judicial duty. If, then, the Courts are to regard the Constitution, and the Constitution is superior to any ordinary act of the Legislature, the Constitution, and not such ordinary act, must govern the case to which they both apply.
John MarshallThe province of the Court is solely to decide on the rights of individuals... . Questions, in their nature political or which are, by the Constitution and laws, submitted to the Executive, can never be made in this court.
Justice John MarshallA legislative act contrary to the Constitution is not law.
George MasonTo disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.
Neil A. McDonaldWhatever the immediate gains and losses, the dangers to our safety arising from political suppression are always greater than the dangers to the safety resulting from political freedom. Suppression is always foolish.
Louis McFaddenIt was not accidental. It was a carefully contrived occurrence...The international bankers sought to bring about a condition of despair here so that they might emerge as rulers of us all.
Louis McFaddenThe men who rule the Democratic Party then promised the people that if they were returned to power there would be no central bank established here while they held the reigns of government. Thirteen months later that promise was broken, and the Wilson administration, under the tutelage of those sinister Wall Street figures who stood behind Colonel House, established here in our free Country the worm-eaten monarchical institution of the "King's Bank" to control us from the top downward, and from the cradle to the grave.
Louis McFaddenWhat is needed here is a return to the Constitution of the United States. We need to have a complete divorce of Bank and State. The old struggle that was fought out here in Jackson's day must be fought over again... The Federal Reserve Act should be repealed and the Federal Reserve Banks, having violated their charters, should be liquidated immediately. Faithless Government officers who have violated their oaths of office should be impeached and brought to trial. Unless this is done by us, I predict that the American people, outraged, robbed, pillaged, insulted, and betrayed as they are in their own land, will rise in their wrath and send a President here who will sweep the money changers out of the temple.
Louis McFaddenWhen the Federal Reserve Act was passed, the people of these United States did not perceive that a world banking system was being set up here. A super-state controlled by international bankers and industrialists...acting together to enslave the world...Every effort has been made by the Fed to conceal its powers but the truth is--the Fed has usurped the government.
Gail W. McGeeI’m going to introduce a resolution to have the postmaster general stop reading dirty books and deliver the mail.
Justice John McLeanThat distinct sovereignties could exist under one government, emanating from the same people, was a phenomenon in the political world, which the wisest statesmen in Europe could not comprehend; and of its practicability many in our own country entertained the most serious doubts. Thus far the friends of liberty have had great cause of triumph in the success of the principles upon which our government rests. But all must admit that the purity and permanency of this system depend on its faithful administration. The states and the federal government have their respective orbits, within which each must revolve. If either cross the sphere of the other, the harmony of the system is destroyed, and its strength is impaired. It would be as gross usurpation on the part of the federal government, to interfere with state rights, by an exercise of powers not delegated; as it would be for a state to interpose its authority against a law of the union.
Justice John McLeanAll questions of power, arising under the constitution of the United States, whether they relate to the federal or a state government, must be considered of great importance. The federal government being formed for certain purposes, is limited in its powers, and can in no case exercise authority where the power has not been delegated. The states are sovereign; with the exception of certain powers, which have been invested in the general government, and inhibited to the states. No state can coin money, emit bills of credit, pass ex post facto laws, or laws impairing the obligation of contracts, &c. If any state violate a provision of the constitution, or be charged with such violation to the injury of private rights, the question is made before this tribunal; to whom all such questions, under the constitution, of right belong. In such a case, this court is to the state, what its own supreme court would be, where the constitutionality of a law was questioned under the constitution of the state. And within the delegation of power, the decision of this court is as final and conclusive on the state, as would be the decision of its own court in the case stated.
H. L. MenckenWhenever 'A' attempts by law to impose his moral standards upon 'B', 'A' is most likely a scoundrel.
H. L. MenckenIt [the State] has taken on a vast mass of new duties and responsibilities; it has spread out its powers until they penetrate to every act of the citizen, however secret; it has begun to throw around its operations the high dignity and impeccability of a State religion; its agents become a separate and superior caste, with authority to bind and loose, and their thumbs in every pot. But it still remains, as it was in the beginning, the common enemy of all well-disposed, industrious and decent men.
H. L. MenckenIt is the theory of all modern civilized governments that they protect and foster the liberty of the citizen; it is the practice of all of them to limit its exercise, and sometimes very narrowly.
H. L. MenckenIt is the theory of all modern civilized governments that they protect and foster the liberty of the citizen; it is the practice of all of them to limit its exercise, and sometimes very narrowly.
H. L. Mencken[T]he only thing wrong with Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address was that it was the South, not the North, that was fighting for a government of the people, by the people and for the people.
Joel MillerWhat we have to remember is that not everything is under our control. If people are free in any meaningful sense of the word, that means they are at liberty to foul up their lives as much as make something grand of them. That's a gamble we all take. That's the risk of liberty. Nobody wants others to screw up their lives, but each must be free to do so for themselves.
Joel MillerFar from a simple attempt to rid the nation of crime and drugs,
our policy against narcotics -- like any public policy --
comes with strings attached. And increasingly these strings
are constricting around the necks of Americans' lives and liberties.
Jessica MitfordWhen is conduct a crime, and when is a crime not a crime? When Somebody Up There -- a monarch, a dictator, a Pope, a legislator -- so decrees.
James MonroeIt is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising their sovereignty. Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found. The people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement and ruin.
James MonroeOf the liberty of conscience in matters of religious faith, of speech and of the press; of the trial by jury of the vicinage in civil and criminal cases; of the benefit of the writ of habeas corpus; of the right to keep and bear arms.... If these rights are well defined, and secured against encroachment, it is impossible that government should ever degenerate into tyranny.
Michael MoriartyNational Health? Socialized pension funds? State-controlled television? Search and seizure laws? Forfeiture laws? If we're not living in the Soviet Union of the United States we certainly have returned to 1776 and 'taxation without representation.'
Christopher Darlington MorleyThere is only one success: to be able to spend your life in your own way, and not to give others absurd maddening claims upon it.
Moses MoskowitzOnce a matter has become, in one way or another, the subject of regulation by the United Nations, be it by resolution or the General Assembly or by convention between member States [Nations] at the insistence of the United Nations, that subject ceases to be a matter being 'essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of the member States...'
Benito MussoliniFascism should rightly be called Corporatism as it is a merge of state and corporate power.
National Press ClubIn Defense Of Freedom ... (more)
Reverend Martin NiemoellerIn Germany, the Nazis first came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Catholics, but I didn't speak up because I was a protestant.
Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak for me.
Reverend Martin NiemoellerWhen the Nazis came for the communists,
I remained silent;
I was not a communist.
When they locked up the social democrats,
I remained silent;
I was not a social democrat.
When they came for the trade unionists,
I did not speak out;
I was not a trade unionist.
When they came for me,
there was no one left to speak out.
Albert Jay NockMany now believe that with the rise of the totalitarian State the world has entered upon a new era of barbarism. It has not. The totalitarian State is only the State; the kind of thing it does is only what the State has always done with unfailing regularity, if it had the power to do it, wherever and whenever its own aggrandizement made that kind of thing expedient. Give any State like power hereafter, and put it in like circumstances, and it will do precisely the same kind of thing. The State will unfailingly aggrandize itself, if only it has the power, first at the expense of its own citizens, and then at the expense of anyone else in sight. It has always done so, and always will.
Albert Jay NockHere is the Golden Rule of sound citizenship, the first and greatest lesson in the study of politics: You get the same order of criminality from any State to which you give power to exercise it; and whatever power you give the State to do things FOR you carries with it the equivalent power to do things TO you.
Albert Jay Nock[T]he State's criminality is nothing new and nothing to be wondered at. It began when the first predatory group of men clustered together and formed the State, and it will continue as long as the State exists in the world, because the State is fundamentally an anti-social institution, fundamentally criminal. The idea that the State originated to serve any kind of social purpose is completely unhistorical. It originated in conquest and confiscation -- that is to say, in crime. It originated for the purpose of maintaining the division of society into an owning-and-exploiting class and a propertyless dependent class -- that is, for a criminal purpose. No State known to history originated in any other manner, or for any other purpose. Like all predatory or parasitic institutions, its first instinct is that of self-preservation. All its enterprises are directed first towards preserving its own life, and, second, towards increasing its own power and enlarging the scope of its own activity. For the sake of this it will, and regularly does, commit any crime which circumstances make expedient.
Lyn NofzigerThese things I believe: That government should butt out. That freedom is our most precious commodity and if we are not eternally vigilant, government will take it all away. That individual freedom demands individual responsibility. That government is not a necessary good but an unavoidable evil. That the executive branch has grown too strong, the judicial branch too arrogant and the legislative branch too stupid. That political parties have become close to meaningless. That government should work to insure the rights of the individual, not plot to take them away. That government should provide for the national defense and work to insure domestic tranquillity. That foreign trade should be fair rather than free. That America should be wary of foreign entanglements. That the tree of liberty needs to be watered from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. That guns do more than protect us from criminals; more importantly, they protect us from the ongoing threat of government. That states are the bulwark of our freedom. That states should have the right to secede from the Union. That once a year we should hang someone in government as an example to his fellows.
Lyn NofzigerAs I watch government at all levels daily eat away at our freedom, I keep thinking how prosperity and government largesse have combined to make most of us fat and lazy and indifferent to, or actually in favor of, the limits being placed on that freedom.
Barack Hussein Obama[J]ust because you have an individual right does not mean that the state or local government can't constrain the exercise of that right...
George OrwellThe Party is not interested in the overt act. The thought is all we care about.
Vance PackardThe most common characteristic of all police states is intimidation by surveillance. Citizens know they are being watched and overheard. Their mail is being examined. Their homes can be invaded.
Thomas PaineIt has been thought a considerable advance towards establishing the principles of Freedom, to say, that government is a compact between those who govern and those that are governed: but this cannot be true, because it is putting the effect before the cause; for as man must have existed before governments existed, there necessarily was a time when governments did not exist, and consequently there could originally exist no governors to form such a compact with. The fact therefore must be, that the individuals themselves, each in his own personal and sovereign right, entered into a compact with each other to produce a government: and this is the only mode in which governments have a right to arise, and the only principle on which they have a right to exist.
Thomas PaineA constitution is not the act of a government, but of a people constituting a government; and government without a constitution is power without a right. All power exercised over a nation, must have some beginning. It must be either delegated, or assumed. There are not other sources. All delegated power is trust, and all assumed power is usurpation. Time does not alter the nature and quality of either.
Thomas PaineA constitution is not the act of a government, but of a people constituting a government; and government without a constitution is power without a right. All power exercised over a nation, must have some beginning. It must be either delegated, or assumed. There are not other sources. All delegated power is trust, and all assumed power is usurpation. Time does not alter the nature and quality of either.
Star ParkerThis leftist political strategy to win office and power relies on something very powerful: the desire to increase the number of Americans who are dependent on getting money that is taken from other citizens. 
Sadly, this strategy has worked for half a century! And now it works because Americans who are trapped in this nightmare do not want their government money taken away from them!
Theophilus ParsonsBut, sir, the people themselves have it in their power effectually to resist usurpation, without being driven to an appeal of arms. An act of usurpation is not obligatory; it is not law; and any man may be justified in his resistance. Let him be considered as a criminal by the general government, yet only his fellow-citizens can convict him; they are his jury, and if they pronounce him innocent, not all the powers of Congress can hurt him; and innocent they certainly will pronounce him, if the supposed law he resisted was an act of usurpation.
Blaise PascalJustice without force is impotent, force without justice is tyranny. Unable to make what is just strong, we have made what is strong just.
Wendell PhillipsNo 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.
Franklin PierceThe constitutionality and propriety of the Federal Government assuming to enter into a novel and vast field of legislation, namely, that of providing for the care and support of all those … who by any form of calamity become fit objects of public philanthropy. ... I cannot find any authority in the Constitution for making the Federal Government the great almoner of public charity throughout the United States. To do so would, in my judgment, be contrary to the letter and spirit of the Constitution and subversive of the whole theory upon which the Union of these States is founded.
Daniel PillaCongress has doubled the IRS budget over the past 10 years -- making that agency one of the fastest growing non-entitlement programs. It has increased its employment by 20 percent. The IRS’s powers to investigate and examine taxpayers transcend those of any other law enforcement agency. Virtually all of the constitutional rights regarding search and seizure, due process, and jury trial simply do not apply to the IRS.
Roger PilonUnder our Constitution, the federal government has delegated, enumerated and thus limited powers. Power is delegated by the founding generation or through subsequent amendment (that makes it legitimate); enumerated in the constitution (that makes it legal); and limited by that enumeration. As the 10th Amendment says, if a power hasn’t been delegated, the federal government doesn’t have it. For 150 years, that design held for the most part. When faced with a welfare bill in 1794, for example, James Madison, the principal author of the Constitution, rose in the House to say that he could find no constitutional authority for the bill. A century later, when Congress passed a similar measure, President Cleveland vetoed it as beyond Congress’ authority. That all changed during the New Deal as both congress and the president sought to expand federal power. When the Supreme court objected, rather than amend the Constitution, Franklin D. Roosevelt tried to pack the court with six additional members. The scheme failed, but the threat worked. Thereafter, the court started reading the Constitution’s General Welfare and Commerce Clauses so broadly that the doctrine of enumerated powers was essentially destroyed—and with it limited government.
William PittNecessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.
William Pitt, Sr.Unlimited Power is apt to corrupt the minds of those who possess it.
PlatoThe people have always some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness… This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs, when he first appears he is a protector.
PlutarchThe real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits.
Bruce D. PorterThroughout the history of the United States, war has been the primary impetus behind the growth and development of the central state. It has been the lever by which presidents and other national officials have bolstered the power of the state in the face of tenacious popular resistance.
Ayn RandWhen you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion - when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing - when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors - when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don't protect you against them, but protect them against you - when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice - you may know that your society is doomed.
Ayn RandThere's no way to rule innocent men. The only power government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.
Ayn RandEvery government interference in the economy
consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force,
to some men at the expense of others.
Ayn RandVolumes can be and have been written about the issue of freedom versus dictatorship, but, in essence, it comes down to a single question: do you consider it moral to treat men as sacrificial animals and to rule them by physical force?
Ronald ReaganOur natural, inalienable rights are now considered to be a dispensation from government, and freedom has never been so fragile, so close to slipping from our grasp as it is at this moment.
Ronald ReaganNo government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!
Ronald ReaganAre you entitled to the fruits of your labor or does government have some presumptive right to spend and spend and spend?
Ronald ReaganHave we the courage and the will to face up to the immorality and discrimination of the progressive tax, and demand a return to traditional proportionate taxation? ... Today in our country the tax collector's share is 37 cents of every dollar earned. Freedom has never been so fragile, so close to slipping from our grasp.
Ronald ReaganGovernment does not tax to get the money it needs; government always finds a need for the money it gets.
Ronald ReaganThe federal government has taken too much tax money from the people, too much authority from the states, and too much liberty with the Constitution.
Ronald ReaganI just wanted to speak to you about something from the Internal Revenue Code. It is the last sentence of section 509A of the code and it reads: 'For purposes of paragraph 3, an organization described in paragraph 2 shall be deemed to include an organization described in section 501C-4, 5, or 6, which would be described in paragraph 2 if it were an organization described in section 501C-3.' And that's just one sentence out of those fifty-seven feet of books.
Charley ReeseCongress is extraordinarily reluctant to inject itself into foreign policy. It has dumped entirely its constitutional duty for money onto
a central bank, and for trade, onto the executive branch. It seems to never know what the CIA and other intelligence agencies are doing. Like the
Romans, they no longer talk of the republic or liberty. And like the Romans, the American people, or most of them anyway, don’t seem to care. ...
Like the Romans, we no longer have a citizen army but professional legions, and whether they wear jackboots or not, some federal officers seem to
regard Americans with about the same compassion as the Praetorian Guard had for the plebes. As in Rome, the air is full of suspicion, intrigues and
conspiracies, real or imagined, and the air reeks of greed and opportunism. As those on the Tiber, the rulers on the Potomac have grown
suspicious of the people, don’t trust them and, in some cases fear them. And, as in Rome, they grovel in luxury while taking 40 cents on the dollar
out of the sweat of working people to pay for corn and circuses to keep the mob satisfied.
Charley ReesePowers once assumed are never relinquished, just as bureaucracies, once created, never die.
H. L. RichardsonWhen a legislature decides to steal some of our rights and plans to use police force to accomplish it, what's the real difference between them and the thief? Darn little! They hide behind the excuse that they're legislating democratically. The fact they do it by a majority vote has no moral significance whatsoever. Numerical might does not constitute right, no more than a lynch mob can justify its act because a majority participated.
Michael RiveroMost people prefer to believe that their leaders are just and fair, even in the face of evidence to the contrary, because once a citizen acknowledges that the government under which he lives is lying and corrupt, the citizen has to choose what he or she will do about it. To take action in the face of corrupt government entails risks of harm to life and loved ones. To choose to do nothing is to surrender one's self-image of standing for principles. Most people do not have the courage to face that choice. Hence, most propaganda is not designed to fool the critical thinker but only to give moral cowards an excuse not to think at all.
George L. RomanI am convinced that we can do to guns what we've done to drugs: create a multi-billion dollar underground market over which we have absolutely no control.
Franklin D. RooseveltThe real truth of the matter is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the large centers has owned the government of the U.S. since the days of Andrew Jackson. History depicts Andrew Jackson as the last truly honorable and incorruptible American president.
Franklin D. RooseveltI hope your committee will not permit doubts as to constitutionality, however reasonable, to block the suggested legislation.
Murray N. RothbardThe great non sequitur committed by defenders of the State, including classical Aristotelian and Thomist philosophers, is to leap from the necessity of society to the necessity of the State.
George SantayanaFanaticism consists in redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim.
Eric SchaubCan we truly expect those who aim to exploit us to be trusted to educate us?
Eric SchaubThe 'strength' of the People becomes weak when we don't 'exercise' our rights.
Rick ScottIt is unclear how disarming law-abiding citizens would better protect them from the dangers and threats posed by those who would flout the law. It is at just such times that the constitutional right to self-defense is most precious and must be protected from government overreach.
Senate Report, 93rd CongressSince March 9, 1933, the United States has been in a state of declared national emergency....Under the powers delegated by these statutes, the President may: seize property; organize and control the means of production; seize commodities; assign military forces abroad; institute martial law; seize and control all transportation and communication; regulate the operation of private enterprise; restrict travel; and, in a plethora of particular ways, control the lives of all American citizens. ...
A majority of the people of the United States have lived all of their lives under emergency rule. For 40 years, freedoms and governmental procedures guaranteed by the Constitution have, in varying degrees, been abridged by laws brought into force by states of national emergency....from, at least, the Civil War in important ways shaped the present phenomenon of a permanent state of national emergency.
Mark SkousenToday’s political leaders demonstrate their low opinion of the public with every social law they pass. They believe that, if given the right to chose, the citizenry will probably make the wrong choice. Legislators do not think any more in terms of persuading people; they feel the need to force their agenda on the public at the point of a bayonet and the barrel of a gun, in the name of the IRS, the SEC, the FDA, the DEA, the EPA, or a multitude of other ABCs of government authority.
L. Neil SmithPeople 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 social democracy is a hollow farce without an armed populace to make it work.
Joseph SobranCan the real Constitution be restored? Probably not. Too many Americans depend on government money under programs the Constitution doesn't authorize, and money talks with an eloquence Shakespeare could only envy. Ignorant people don't understand The Federalist Papers, but they understand government checks with their names on them.
Joseph SobranPeople who create things nowadays can expect to be prosecuted by highly moralistic people who are incapable of creating anything. There is no way to measure the chilling effect on innovation that results from the threats of taxation, regulation and prosecution against anything that succeeds. We’ll never know how many ideas our government has aborted in the name protecting us.
Thomas SowellIt doesn't matter what rights you have under the Constitution of the United States, if the government can punish you for exercising those rights. And it doesn't matter what limits the Constitution puts on government officials' power, if they can exceed those limits without any adverse consequences. In other words, the Constitution cannot protect you, if you don't protect the Constitution with your votes against anyone who violates it. Those government officials who want more power are not going to stop unless they get stopped. As long as millions of Americans vote on the basis of who gives them free stuff, look for their freedom -- and all our freedom -- to be eroded away, bit by bit. Our children and grandchildren may yet come to see the Constitution as just some quaint words from the past that people once took seriously.
Thomas SowellThe fatal attraction of government is that it allows busybodies to impose decisions on others without paying any price themselves. That enables them to act as if there were no price, even when there are ruinous prices -- paid by others.
Thomas SowellThe question is not what anybody deserves. The question is who is to take on the God-like role of deciding what everybody else deserves. You can talk about 'social justice' all you want. But what death taxes boil down to is letting politicians take money from widows and orphans to pay for goodies that they will hand out to others, in order to buy votes to get re-elected. That is not social justice or any other kind of justice.
Thomas SowellNo 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?
Robert D. SpechtUnder any conditions, anywhere, whatever you are doing, there is some ordinance under which you can be booked.
Gerry SpenceAlthough we give lip service to the notion of freedom, we know that government is no longer the servant of the people but, at last, has become the people's master. We have stood by like timid sheep while the wolf killed -- first the weak, then the strays, then those on the outer edges of the flock, until at last the entire flock belonged to the wolf.
Gerry SpenceThese are dangerous times.  When we are afraid, we want to
be protected, and since we cannot protect ourselves against such
horrors as mass murder by bombers, we are tempted to run to
the government, a government that is always willing to trade the
promise of protection for our freedom, which left, as always,
the question: How much freedom are we willing to relinquish for
such a bald promise?
   Already the President was calling for more power, more power
for the FBI.  He wanted a thousand more men.  And he wanted to
use the army, no less, in situations like Oklahoma City.  And he
wanted more power to tap our phones and to invade our privacy. 
He wanted express authority from Congress to infiltrate the fringe
groups and, in short, to snoop and to peer and to spy on the
citizenry, especially those who hold different beliefs from those
that flow in the phlegmatic and murky mainstream of America. 
But the question remains, will we really be safer with a thousand
more, or even a hundred thousand more FBI agents armed with
even greater power to more easily tap our phone that are already
so easily tapped and to break into our homes that are no longer
safe under the much-mangled exclusionary rule?
Herbert SpencerIf men use their liberty in such a way as to surrender their liberty, are they thereafter any the less slaves? If people by a plebiscite elect a man despot over them, do they remain free because the despotism was of their own making?
Lysander SpoonerIn truth, in the case of individuals, their actual voting is not to be taken as proof of consent, even for the time being. On the contrary, it is to be considered that, without his consent having ever been asked, a man finds himself environed by a government that he cannot resist; a government that forces him to pay money, render service, and forego the exercise of many of his natural rights, under peril of weighty punishments. He sees, too, that other men practise this tyranny over him by the use of the ballot. He sees further that, if he will but use the ballot himself, he has some chance of relieving himself from this tyranny of others, by subjecting them to his own. In short, he finds himself, without his consent, so situated that, if he use the ballot, he may become a master; if he does not use it, he must become a slave. And he has no other alternative than these two. In self-defence, he attempts the former. His case is analogous to that of a man who has been forced into battle, where he must either kill others, or be killed himself. Because, to save his own life in battle, a man attempts to take the lives of his opponents, it is not to be inferred that the battle is one of his own choosing. Neither in contests with the ballot -- which is a mere substitute for a bullet -- because, as his only chance of self-preservation, a man uses a ballot, is it to be inferred that the contest is one into which he voluntarily entered; that he voluntarily set up all his own natural rights, as a stake against those of others, to be lost or won by the mere power of numbers. On the contrary, it is to be considered that, in an exigency, into which he had been forced by others, and in which no other means of self-defence offered, he, as a matter of necessity, used the only one that was left to him.
Lysander SpoonerNo attempt or pretence, that was ever carried into practical operation amongst civilized men -- unless possibly the pretence of a “Divine Right,” on the part of some, to govern and enslave others -- embodied so much of shameless absurdity, falsehood, impudence, robbery, usurpation, tyranny, and villany of every kind, as the attempt or pretence of establishing a government by consent, and getting the actual consent of only so many as may be necessary to keep the rest in subjection by force. Such a government is a mere conspiracy of the strong against the weak. It no more rests on consent than does the worst government on earth.
Lysander SpoonerThe strong are always free by virtue of their superior strength. So long as government is a mere contest as to which of two parties shall rule the other, the weaker must always succumb. And whether the contest be carried on with ballots or bullets, the principle is the same; for under the theory of government now prevailing, the ballot either signifies a bullet, or it signifies nothing. And no one can consistently use a ballot, unless he intends to use a bullet, if the latter should be needed to insure submission to the former.
Lysander SpoonerA government that can at pleasure accuse, shoot, and hang men, as traitors, for the one general offence of refusing to surrender themselves and their property unreservedly to its arbitrary will, can practice any and all special and particular oppressions it pleases. The result -- and a natural one -- has been that we have had governments, State and national, devoted to nearly every grade and species of crime that governments have ever practised upon their victims; and these crimes have culminated in a war that has cost a million of lives; a war carried on, upon one side, for chattel slavery, and on the other for political slavery; upon neither for liberty, justice, or truth. And these crimes have been committed, and this war waged, by men, and the descendants of men, who, less than a hundred years ago, said that all men were equal, and could owe neither service to individuals, nor allegiance to governments, except with their own consent.
Lysander SpoonerThe ostensible supporters of the Constitution, like the ostensible supporters of most other governments, are made up of three classes, viz.: \\1. Knaves, a numerous and active class, who see in the government an instrument which they can use for their own aggrandizement or wealth. \\2. Dupes—a large class, no doubt—each of whom, because he is allowed one voice out of millions in deciding what he may do with his own person and his own property, and because he is permitted to have the same voice in robbing, enslaving, and murdering others, that others have in robbing, enslaving, and murdering himself, is stupid enough to imagine that he is a “free man,” a “sovereign”; that this is “a free government”; “a government of equal rights,” “the best government on earth,” and such like absurdities. \\3. A class who have some appreciation of the evils of government, but either do not see how to get rid of them, or do not choose to so far sacrifice their private interests as to give themselves seriously and earnestly to the work of making a change.
Lysander SpoonerIn truth, in the case of individuals, their actual voting is not to be taken as proof of consent, even for the time being. On the contrary, it is to be considered that, without his consent having ever been asked, a man finds himself environed by a government that he cannot resist; a government that forces him to pay money, render service, and forego the exercise of many of his natural rights, under peril of weighty punishments. He sees, too, that other men practise this tyranny over him by the use of the ballot. He sees further that, if he will but use the ballot himself, he has some chance of relieving himself from this tyranny of others, by subjecting them to his own. In short, he finds himself, without his consent, so situated that, if he use the ballot, he may become a master; if he does not use it, he must become a slave. And he has no other alternative than these two. In self-defence, he attempts the former. His case is analogous to that of a man who has been forced into battle, where he must either kill others, or be killed himself. Because, to save his own life in battle, a man attempts to take the lives of his opponents, it is not to be inferred that the battle is one of his own choosing. Neither in contests with the ballot -- which is a mere substitute for a bullet -- because, as his only chance of self-preservation, a man uses a ballot, is it to be inferred that the contest is one into which he voluntarily entered; that he voluntarily set up all his own natural rights, as a stake against those of others, to be lost or won by the mere power of numbers. On the contrary, it is to be considered that, in an exigency, into which he had been forced by others, and in which no other means of self-defence offered, he, as a matter of necessity, used the only one that was left to him.
Josef StalinAmerica is like a healthy body and its resistance is threefold:
its patriotism, its morality, and its spiritual life.
If we can undermine these three areas,
America will collapse from within.
Harold E. StassenGovernment is like fire. If it is kept within bounds and under the control of the people, it contributes to the welfare of all. But if it gets out of place, if it gets too big and out of control, it destroys the happiness and even the lives of the people.
Jonathan SwiftIt is a maxim among lawyers that whatever hath been done before may be done again, and therefore they take special care to record all the decisions formerly made against common justice and the general reason of mankind. These, under the name of precedents, they produce as authorities to justify the most iniquitous opinions, and the judges never fail of directing them accordingly.
Thomas SzaszThe proverb warns that 'You should not bite the hand that feeds you.'
But maybe you should if it prevents you from feeding yourself.
Cornelius TacitusThe more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws.
A. J. P. TaylorFreedom does not always win. This is one of the bitterest lessons of history.
John TaylorConstitutions are violated, and it would be absurd to expect the federal government to enforce the
Constitution against itself. If the very federal judges the Constitution was partly intended to restrain were the ones exclusively charged with enforcing
it, then “America possesses only the effigy of a Constitution.” The states, the very constituents of the Union, had to do the enforcing.
Justice Clarence ThomasIf Congress can regulate this under the Commerce Clause, then it can regulate virtually anything ... quilting bees, clothes drives, and potluck suppers throughout the 50 States.
George ThomasNo government of the Centre would seek powers to imprison individuals who have committed no crime merely on the say-so of "experts" who believe they might commit a crime. No libertarian government would want to reduce our right to trial by jury, to curfew children, to place "anti-social behaviour orders" on citizens, to conduct compulsory DNA and drug tests on all offenders. No government that was concerned with freedom would seek to ban pursuits that harm no one, such as foxhunting, simply because they are unpopular. No government that has respect for its citizens would seek to interfere so intimately with so many of their private activities -- for instance, what right does a government have to tell me under what terms and conditions I may sell my house. The transaction should, quite simply, be none of their business.
Henry David ThoreauThat government is best which governs least.
Arnold J. ToynbeeThe last stage but one of every civilisation, is characterised by the forced political unification of its constituent parts, into a single greater whole.
Srdja Trifkovic...the Patriot Act followed 9-11 as smoothly as the suspension of the Weimar constitution followed the Reichstag fire.
Henry St. George TuckerTo secure their enjoyment, however, certain protections or barriers have been erected which serve to maintain inviolate the three primary rights of personal security, personal liberty, and private property. These may in America be said to be: 1. The bill of rights and written constitutions ... 2. The rights of bearing arms -- which with us is not limited and restrained by an arbitrary system of game laws as in England, but is particularly enjoyed by every citizen, and is among his most valuable privileges, since it furnishes the means of resisting as a freeman ought, the inroads of usurpation.
Rexford TugwellTo the extent that these [New Deal policies] developed, they were tortured interpretations of a document [the Constitution] intended to prevent them.
Jonathan TurleyOur system is changing and [Congress] is the one branch that must act if we are to reverse those changes. We are seeing the emergence of a different model of government, a model long-ago rejected by the framers. ... A dominant presidency has occurred with very little congressional opposition. Indeed, when President Obama pledged to circumvent Congress, he received rapturous applause from the very body that he was proposing to make practically irrelevant. Now many members are contesting the right of this institution to even be heard in federal court. ... This body is moving from self-loathing to self-destruction in a system that is in crisis. The president's pledge to effectively govern alone is alarming, and what is most alarming is his ability to fulfill that pledge. When a president can govern alone, he can become a government unto himself, which is precisely the danger the framers sought to avoid.
Mark TwainNo man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the congress is in session.
Mark TwainWhenever you find you are on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.
Mark TwainThe mania for giving the Government power to meddle with the private affairs of cities or citizens is likely to cause endless trouble, through the rivaly of schools and creeds that are anxious to obtain official recognition, and there is great danger that our people will lose our independence of thought and action which is the cause of much of our greatness, and sink into the helplessness of the Frenchman or German who expects his government to feed him when hungry, clothe him when naked, to prescribe when his child may be born and when he may die, and, in time, to regulate every act of humanity from the cradle to the tomb, including the manner in which he may seek future admission to paradise.
Mark TwainWhenever you find that you are on the side of the majority, it is time to reform.
Sir Alex Fraser TytlerA democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largess of the public treasury. From that time on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury, with the results that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship.
UnknownWar is the tool through which the remaining Constitutional restraints on government and rights of the people will be destroyed. War will be the
gateway through which total statism in any of its forms (fascism, socialism, communism) will be imposed upon the United States. They will rally the
people’s patriotism, and give the laws Orwellian sounding names like the “Patriot Acts”, and “Freedom Laws” and cries of “America First,” but these
acts will be anti-patriotic, anti-freedom, and anti-American. At the core of all these activities will be one purpose -- to impose ever increasing control
over the citizens, marching toward total statism. They will suspend due process and Constitutional restrictions proclaiming “extraordinary times”
require extraordinary measures. At first they will only be used against a few select atrocious and most heinous individuals with unfamiliar
appearance, customs and beliefs. Initially, it will simply be a matter of degree, but the precedent is now set. Extraordinary measures solely for
extraordinary individuals, but slowly and then more rapidly the extraordinary will become the ordinary until such measures can apply to anyone.
They will deride anyone who opposes these Orwellian acts as dangerously naïve, as pacifists, as isolationists, as unpatriotic, as sympathizing with
“the enemy” whoever “the enemy” may be at the time, and as un-American. They will make war with vague, ever changing goals and objectives.
They will make war on elusive, obscure enemies by proclaiming wars against “subversives” or “guerillas” or “militias” or “revolutionaries” or
“aggressors” or “terrorists” or whatever ambiguous name they can imagine so that the “enemies” will always be elusive, never eliminated or fully
defeated. There will always be more “enemies.” War will be perpetual, lasting years or even decades. War will be the final mechanism that destroys
America from within; and the people will proudly cheer and defend and support the dismantling of their rights and destruction of their Constitutional
Republic, all out of supposed “necessity” to support “the war.”
Abel UpshurThe Federal Government is the creature of the States. It is not a party to the Constitution, but the result of it the creation of that agreement which was made by the States as parties. It is a mere agent, entrusted with limited powers for certain specific objects; which powers and objects are enumerated in the Constitution. Shall the agent be permitted to judge the extent of its own powers, without reference to his constituent? To a certain extent, he is compelled to do this, in the very act of exercising them, but always in subordination to the authority by whom his powers were conferred. If this were not so, the result would be, that the agent would possess every power which the agent could confer, notwithstanding the plainest and most express terms of the grant. This would be against all principle and all reason. If such a rule would prevail in regard to government, a written constitution would be the idlest thing imaginable. It would afford no barrier against the usurpations of the government, and no security for the rights and liberties of the people. If then the Federal Government has no authority to judge, in the last resort, of the extent of its own powers, with what propriety can it be said that a single department of that government may do so? Nay. It is said that this department may not only judge for itself, but for the other departments also. This is an absurdity as pernicious as it is gross and palpable. If the judiciary may determine the powers of the Federal Government, it may pronounce them either less or more than they really are.
U. S. Privacy Study CommissionThe real danger is the gradual erosion of individual liberties through automation, integration, and interconnection of many small, separate record-keeping systems, each of which alone may seem innocuous, even benevolent, and wholly justifiable.
Virginia Declaration of RightsThe rights enumerated in this Bill of Rights shall not be construed to limit other rights of the people not therein expressed.
Ludwig Von MisesThe essential characteristic of Western civilization that distinguishes it from the arrested and petrified civilizations of the East was and is its concern for freedom from the state. The history of the West, from the age of the Greek polis down to the present-day resistance to socialism, is essentially the history of the fight for liberty against the encroachments of the officeholders.
Ludwig Von MisesThe main political problem is how to prevent the police power from becoming tyrannical. This is the meaning of all the struggles for liberty.
Alice WalkerThe most common way people give up their power
is by thinking they don't have any.
George WashingtonAgainst the insidious wiles of foreign influence, (I conjure you to believe me fellow citizens) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake; since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of Republican Government.
George WashingtonA passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite nation, facilitating the illusion of an imaginary common interest in cases where no real common interest exists, and infusing into one nation the enmities of the other, betrays the former into a participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter without justification. It leads also to concessions to the favorite nation of privileges denied to others which is apt doubly to injure the nation making the concessions; by unnecessarily parting with what ought to have been retained, and by exciting jealousy, ill-will, and a disposition to retaliate, in the parties from whom equal privileges are withheld. And it gives to ambitious, corrupted, or deluded citizens who devote themselves to the favorite nation, facility to betray or sacrifice the interests of their own country, without odium, sometimes even with popularity; gilding, with the appearances of a virtuous sense of obligation, a commendable deference for public opinion, or a laudable zeal for public good, the foolish compliances of ambition, corruption, or infatuation.
George WashingtonWhile, then, every part of our country thus feels an immediate and particular interest in Union, all the parts combined cannot fail to find in the united mass of means and efforts greater strength, greater resource, proportionably greater security from external danger, a less frequent interruption of their peace by foreign nations... Hence, likewise, they will avoid the necessity of those overgrown military establishments, which, under any form of government, are inauspicious to liberty, and which are to be regarded as particularly hostile to Republican Liberty. In this sense it is, that your Union ought to be considered as a main prop of your liberty, and that the love of the one ought to endear to you the preservation of the other.
George WashingtonAgainst the insidious wiles of foreign influence (I conjure you to believe me, fellow-citizens,) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake; since history and experience prove, that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of Republican Government. But that jealousy, to be useful, must be impartial; else it becomes the instrument of the very influence to be avoided, instead of a defence against it. Excessive partiality for one foreign nation, and excessive dislike of another, cause those whom they actuate to see danger only on one side, and serve to veil and even second the arts of influence on the other. Real patriots, who may resist the intrigues of the favorite, are liable to become suspected and odious; while its tools and dupes usurp the applause and confidence of the people, to surrender their interests.
George WashingtonIf freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.
George WashingtonThe spirit of encroachment tends to consolidate the powers of all the departments in one, and thus to create whatever the form of government, a real despotism. A just estimate of that love of power, and proneness to abuse it, which predominates in the human heart is sufficient to satisfy us of the truth of this position.
George WashingtonArbitrary power is most easily established on the ruins of Liberty abused to licentiousness.
John WayneWe built your fort. We will not have it used against us.
Daniel WebsterNo power but Congress can declare war; but what is the value of this constitutional provision, if the President of his own authority may make such military movements as must bring on war? ... [T]hese remarks originate purely in a desire to maintain the powers of government as they are established by the Constitution between the different departments, and hope that, whether we have conquests or no conquests, war or no war, peace or no peace, we shall yet preserve, in its integrity and strength, the Constitution of the United States.
Daniel WebsterWhere is it written in the Constitution, in what article or section is it contained, that you may take children from their parents and parents from their children, and compel them to fight the battles of any war in which the folly and wickedness of the government may engage itself? Under what concealment has this power lain hidden, which now for the first time comes forth, with a tremendous and baleful aspect, to trample down and destroy the dearest right of personal liberty? Who will show me any Constitutional injunction which makes it the duty of the American people to surrender everything valuable in life, and even life, itself, whenever the purposes of an ambitious and mischievous government may require it? ... A free government with an uncontrolled power of military conscription is the most ridiculous and abominable contradiction and nonsense that ever entered into the heads of men.
Daniel WebsterGood 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 WebsterI apprehend no danger to our country from a foreign foe ... Our destruction, should it come at all, will be from another quarter. -- From the inattention of the people to the concerns of their government, from their carelessness and negligence, I must confess that I do apprehend some danger. I fear that they may place too implicit a confidence in their public servants, and fail properly to scrutinize their conduct; that in this way they may be made the dupes of designing men, and become the instruments of their own undoing. Make them intelligent, and they will be vigilant; give them the means of detecting the wrong, and they will apply the remedy.
Noah WebsterWhy not include a provision that everybody shall, in good weather, hunt on his own land and catch fish in rivers that are public property and that Congress shall never restrain any inhabitant of America from eating and drinking, at seasonable times, or prevent his lying on his left side, in a long winter's night, or even on his back, when he is fatigued by lying on his right.
Walter E. WilliamsConservatives and liberals are kindred spirits as far as government spending is concerned. ... Since government has no resources
of its own, and since there’s no Tooth Fairy handing Congress the funds for the programs it enacts, we are forced to recognize that government
spending is no less than the confiscation of one person’s property to give it to another to whom it does not belong -- in effect, legalized theft.
Walter E. WilliamsTry this thought experiment. Pretend you're a tyrant. Among your many liberty-destroying objectives are extermination of blacks, Jews and Catholics. Which would you prefer, a United States with political power centralized in Washington, powerful government agencies with detailed information on Americans and compliant states or power widely dispersed over 50 states, thousands of local jurisdictions and a limited federal government?
Woodrow WilsonI am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country.
A great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit.
Our system of credit is concentrated. The growth of the nation,
therefore, and all our activities are in the hands of a few men.
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 duress of a small group of dominant men.
Woodrow WilsonLiberty has never come from the government. Liberty has always come from the subjects of government. The history of liberty is the history of resistance. The history of liberty is a history of the limitation of governmental power, not the increase of it.
Woodrow WilsonA great industrial nation is controlled by its system of credit. Our system of credit is privately concentrated. The growth of the nation, therefore, and all our activities are in the hands of a few men who, even if their action be honest and intended for the public interest, are necessarily concentrated upon the great undertakings in which their own money is involved and who necessarily, by very reason of their own limitations, chill and check and destroy genuine economic freedom.
Woodrow WilsonWe 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.
Claire WolfeLike ‘em or hate ‘em, these once peaceful gun owners of the ‘90s are feeling a lot like Jews of 1939 Germany. Maligned, lied about, persecuted and threatened. Afraid, confused and angry.
Wright v. United StatesTo disregard such a deliberate choice of words and their natural meaning, would be a departure from the first principle of constitutional interpretation. "In expounding the Constitution of the United States," said Chief Justice Taney in Holmes v. Jennison, 14 U.S. 540, 570-1, "every word must have its due force and appropriate meaning; for it is evident from the whole instrument, that, no word was unnecessarily used, or needlessly added. The many discussions which have taken place upon the construction of the Constitution, have proved the correctness of this proposition; and shown the high talent, the caution and the foresight of the illustrious men who framed it. Every word appears to have been weighed with the utmost deliberation and its force and effect to have been fully understood.
Frank ZappaRemember, there's a big difference between kneeling down and bending over.
zzzz
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