A general State education is a mere contrivance for molding people to be exactly like one another; and as the mold in which it casts them is that which pleases the dominant power in the government, whether this be a monarch, an aristocracy, or a majority of the existing generation; in proportion as it is efficient and successful, it establishes a despotism over the mind, leading by a natural tendency to one over the body.
more John Stuart Mill quotes
You're obliged to pretend respect for people and institutions you think absurd. You live attached in a cowardly fashion to moral and social conventions you despise, condemn, and know lack all foundation. It is that permanent contradiction between your ideas and desires and all the dead formalities and vain pretenses of your civilization which makes you sad, troubled and unbalanced. In that intolerable conflict you lose all joy of life and all feeling of personality, because at every moment they suppress and restrain and check the free play of your powers. That's the poisoned and mortal wound of the civilized world.
more Octave Mirbeau quotes
When it is a duty to worship the sun it is pretty sure to be a crime to examine the laws of heat.
more John Viscount Morley quotes
If none of us ever read a book that was “dangerous,” had a friend who was “different,” or joined an organization that advocated “change,” we would all be the kind of people Joe McCarthy wants.
more Edward R. Murrow quotes
In any free society, the conflict between social conformity and individual liberty is permanent, unresolvable, and necessary.
more Kathleen Norris quotes
The essence of a free life is being able to choose the style of living you prefer free from exclusion and without the compulsion of conformity or law.
more Eleanor Holmes Norton quotes
There’s a whiff of the lynch mob or the lemming migration about any over-large concentration of like-minded individuals, no matter how virtuous their cause.
more P. J. O'Rourke quotes
Natural liberty is the right of common upon a waste; civil liberty is the safe, exclusive, unmolested enjoyment of a cultivated enclosure.
more William Paley quotes
According to Gestapo records…they had little need to engage in direct spying on the citizens since the citizens themselves were more than willing to do their spying for them.
more Kort E. Patterson quotes
Every child in America who enters school at the age of five is mentally ill, because he comes to school with an allegiance toward our elected officials, toward our founding fathers, toward our institutions, toward the preservation of this form of government that we have. Patriotism, nationalism, and sovereignty, all that proves that children are sick because a truly well individual is one who has rejected all of those things, and is truly the international child of the future.
more Dr. Chester Pierce quotes
There is no inherent misdirection in holding unorthodox views. Indeed, the autonomous individual, free from compulsive conformance and unquestioned assumptions, is likely to be unorthodox... They stimulate the climate of controversy without which political democracy becomes an empty formalism.
more Snell Putney quotes
There are many well-meaning people today who work at placing an economic floor beneath all of us so that no one shall exist below a certain level or standard of living, and certainly we don't quarrel with this. But look more closely and you may find that all too often these well-meaning people are building a ceiling above which no one shall be permitted to climb and between the two are pressing us all into conformity, into a mold of standardized mediocrity.
more Ronald Reagan quotes
The idea that men are created free and equal is both true and misleading: men are created different; they lose their social freedom and their individual autonomy in seeking to become like each other.
more David Reisman quotes
Give me control over a man's economic actions, and hence over his means of survival, and except for a few occasional heroes, I'll promise to deliver to you men who think and write and behave as I want them to.
more Benjamine A. Rooge quotes
There is no subjugation so perfect as that which keeps the appearance of freedom for in that way one captures volition itself.
more Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes
The most absolute authority is that which penetrates into a man’s innermost being and concerns itself no less with his will than with his actions.
more Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes
What's the difference between a bright, inquisitive five-year-old, and a dull, stupid nineteen-year-old? Fourteen years of the British educational system.
more Bertrand Russell quotes
The State…has had a vested interest in promoting attitudes that would tend to make us skeptical of our own abilities, fearful of the motives of others, and emotionally dependent upon external authorities for purpose and direction in our lives.
more Butler D. Shaffer quotes
Every great historic change has been based on nonconformity, has been bought either with the blood or with the reputation of nonconformists.
more Ben Shahn quotes
Conformity and obedience, Bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth, Makes slaves of men and of the human frame, A mechanized automaton.
more Percy Bysshe Shelley quotes
The difference between a politician and a pickpocket is that the pickpocket doesn't get indignant when you tell him to keep his hands to himself.
more Joseph Sobran quotes
Most Americans aren't the sort of citizens the Founding Fathers expected; they are contented serfs. Far from being active critics of government, they assume that its might makes it right.
more Joseph Sobran quotes
Formerly no one was allowed to think freely; now it is permitted, but no one is capable of it any more. Now people want to think only what they are supposed to think, and this they consider freedom.
more Oswald Spengler quotes
Does it not seem a vast waste of valuable human material that the pioneers of thought, those who by their genius dare to clear unknown paths in the arts and sciences and in government, should have to conform to the dictates of that non-creative, slow-moving mass, the majority? An appeal to the majority is a resort to force and not an appeal to intelligence; the majority is always ignorant, and by increasing the majority we multiply ignorance. The majority is incapable of initiative, its attitude being one of opposition toward everything that is new. If it had been left to the majority, the world would never have had the steamboat, the railroad, the telegraph, or any of the conveniences of modern life.
more Charles T. Sprading quotes
If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
more Henry David Thoreau quotes
The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.
more Henry David Thoreau quotes
It is our nature to conform; it is a force which not many people can successfully resist. What is its seat? The inborn requirement of self-approval.
more Mark Twain quotes
To require conformity in the appreciation of sentiments or the interpretation of language, or uniformity of thought, feeling, or action, is a fundamental error in human legislation -- a madness which would be only equaled by requiring all men to possess the same countenance, the same voice or the same stature.
more Josiah Warren quotes
Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.
more Oscar Wilde quotes
The average man is a conformist, accepting miseries and disasters with the stoicism of a cow standing in the rain.
more Colin Wilson quotes
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