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Magnificent Quote Thread

4689 Views 39 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  mjorin
"The anitidote for fifty enemies is one friend."--Aristotle
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Reject your sense of injury and the injury itself disappears. - Marcus Aurelius
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Reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.
-- Richard Feynman
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The right most prized by civilized men is the right to be let alone.
- Justice Louis Brandeis

You can get much further with a kind word and a gun than with a kind word alone.
- Al Capone

An unjust law is itself a species of violence. Arrest for it’s breach even more so.
- Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

No man is good enough to govern another without that other’s consent.
- Abraham Lincoln

Congress is like a baby—a huge appetite on one end and no sense of responsibility on the other.
- John Sununu

All that is necessary to close the circle of our felicities is a wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, but shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement.
- Thomas Jefferson

To impose beliefs derived from faith on people who do not share them is odious.
- The Economist

To exploit and to govern mean the same thing.
- Mikhail Bakunin

Democracy is the theory that the people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.
- H.L. Mencken

If the government is big enough to give you everything you want, it is big enough to take away everything you have.
- Barry Goldwater

Free trade, one of the greatest blessings which a government can confer on a people, is in almost every country unpopular.
- Thomas Macauley

People who say that Congress spends money like a drunken sailor aren’t being fair—the sailor spends his own money.
- Jim Eason

The cause of war is not weapons as much as political realities. No lasting peace can be achieved simply by opposing this or that new weapons system, because such opposition deals only with consequences, not reasons.
- Vaclav Havel

Recognizing that the right to differ is a centerpiece of our First Amendment freedoms, a government may not mandate by fiat a feeling of unity in its citizens.
- The United States Supreme Court

When it is not necessary to make a law, it is necessary not to make a law.
- Jean Montesquieu

Peace is not just the absence of war.
- Timothy Garton Ash

If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable.
- The United States Supreme Court

So the universe is not quite as you believed. You’d better rearrange your beliefs, then, because you certainly can’t rearrange the universe.
- Isaac Asimov

The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it’s natural manure.
- Thomas Jefferson

To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual means of preserving peace.
- George Washington

Collectivism is based on the rejection of the possibility human beings rising above their circumstances—they are presumed to be entirely products of their race, gender, class and sexual orientation.
- Dinesh D’Souza

Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.
- Craig Magie

Private greed must inevitably lead to public good.
- Adam Smith

Beware of strong drink. It can make you shoot at tax collectors—and miss.
- Robert Heinlein

Laissez Faire capitalism is a system where men deal with one another, not as victims and executioners, nor as masters and slaves, but as traders, by free, voluntary exchange to mutual benefit.
- Ayn Rand

Ruthless striving overcomes everything.
- Virgil
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I actually have a rather large collection of quotes in a file on my cloud drive. I started collecting them more than 20 years ago. That post is just a sort of random sampling.
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“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” - Matthew - The Bible
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I have been using one of the quotes Tom posted pretty heavily of late when talking with "conservatives" online that think making their case based on their religious beliefs should hold sway over others who don't hold those same religious views.

Here's the quote in question:

To impose beliefs derived from faith on people who do not share them is odious.
- The Economist

I've searched several times now and can't seem to find the author....and The Economist's website has no record of it in their search engine.

Tom, do you happen to know who might have actually said it? I'd like to give credit where it is due, but since I can't....I've amended it slightly.

"To impose beliefs derived from faith on people who do not share them is as despotic as it is ineffectual."
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I drew it from an editorial in their "Lexington" column, sometime around 1993. They have (or at least then had) two different editorial columns, one on US affairs (called "Lexington") and one on UK affairs (called "Bagehot"). The editorials are never individually by-lined (they are attributed to the entire editorial board of the magazine).

I honestly can't recall exactly when I found it, but I believe that particular Lexington editorial was about reproductive rights politics in the USA.
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Another good one that I recently discovered (said in casual conversation on an internet forum):

The opposite of war isn't peace, it's trade.
- Sal Glesser
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Another good one that I recently discovered (said in casual conversation on an internet forum):

The opposite of war isn't peace, it's trade.
- Sal Glesser

Great one. Like the old adage, "The opposite of love isn't hate; it's indifference".

To which one should reply...."Whatever you say. I really don't care." LOL :)
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From a friend who grew up in Croatia, "Socialism is equal poverty for everyone."
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When I was living in Hungary (early 90's--just after the end of Communism) the joke was:

"What is Socialism? The solution to problems that otherwise would never have occurred."

It doesn't sound as witty in English translation, but basically everyone knew that Socialism was creating the problems it purported to solve.
"When did doilies and one hundred year old plates become so important? What happened to the boy who was always slipping off looking for adventure?"

J.R.R. Tolkien--The Hobbit, Gandolf speaking to Bilbo Baggins
Some real doozies from Edward Snowden here;


1. "Arguing that you don't care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide, is no different than saying you don't care about free speech because you have nothing to say."

2. "Sometimes the scandal is not what law was broken, but what the law allows."

3. "The definition of a security state is one that prioritizes security over all other considerations."

4. "So many of the things we're told by the government simply aren't true."

5. “Privacy is the fountainhead of all other rights. Freedom of speech doesn’t have a lot of meaning if you can’t have a quiet space. A space within yourself, within your mind, within the community of your friends, within your home, to decide what it is you actually want to say.”

6. “Privacy isn’t about something to hide. Privacy is about something to protect. And that’s who you are. That’s what you believe in. That’s who you want to become. Privacy is the right to the self. Privacy is what gives you the ability to share with the world who you are on your own terms.”

7.“The common argument that we have ‘if you have nothing to hide …you have nothing to fear’– the origins of that are literally Nazi propaganda… That is literally the origin of that quote. It’s from their minister of propaganda Joseph Goebbels. So when we hear modern politicians, when we hear modern people repeating that reflexively without confronting its origins, without confronting what it really says… that’s harmful.”

8. "I think the most important idea is to remember that there have been times throughout American history where what is right is not the same as what is legal."

9. "I care more about the country than what happens to me. But we can't allow the law to become a political weapon or agree to scare people away from standing up for their rights, no matter how good the deal. I'm not going to be part of that."

10. "No system of mass surveillance has existed in any society, that we know of to this point, that has not been abused."

11. "I would rather be without a state than without a voice."

12 "I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded. That is not something I am willing to support or live under."

13 "All I wanted was for the public to be able to have a say in how they are governed. That is a milestone we left a long time ago."

14 "The immoral cannot be made moral through the use of secret law."

15 "I did not seek to sell U.S. secrets. I did not partner with any foreign government to guarantee my safety. Instead, I took what I knew to the public so what affects all of us can be discussed by all of us in the light of day, and I asked the world for justice."

16 "Citizens with a conscience are not going to ignore wrong-doing simply because they'll be destroyed for it: the conscience forbids it."

17 "I can't in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building."

18 "Being a patriot doesn't mean prioritizing service to government above all else. Being a patriot means knowing when to protect your country, knowing when to protect your Constitution, knowing when to protect your countrymen, from the violations of and encroachments of adversaries. And those adversaries don't have to be foreign countries."

19 "Every person remembers some moment in their life where they witnessed some injustice, big or small, and looked away because the consequences of intervening seemed too intimidating. But there's a limit to the amount of incivility, inequality and inhumanity that each individual can tolerate. I crossed that line. And I'm no longer alone."

20 "All I can say right now is the U.S. government is not going to be able to cover this up by imprisoning or murdering me. Truth is coming, and it cannot be stopped."
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> 14 "The immoral cannot be made moral through the use of secret law."

I'd rephrase this without the word "secret".

The immoral cannot be made moral through the use of law.

Many things that are totally lawful are still evil. And many things that are illegal are still good.
> 14 "The immoral cannot be made moral through the use of secret law."

I'd rephrase this without the word "secret".

The immoral cannot be made moral through the use of law.

Many things that are totally lawful are still evil. And many things that are illegal are still good.

Yeah, noticed and had the same caveat. I think Snowden was largely making that particular point about some of the laws passed in knee-jerk reaction after 9/11....FISA Courts, Patriot Act, hidden "laws". That's my guess anyway.
Those Snowden quotes are magnificent!
As individuals we only have one obligation to society: To make sure we, and our children, are not a burden to others.
-JL Collins

From: https://jlcollinsnh.com/manifesto/

The auto formatting in here is driving me crazy today. I can't seem to get it not to center everything. WTH?
Tom, I think it means you're drifting to the center. JK!
There is a good set of Milton Friedman quotes in this article: https://fee.org/articles/12-truth-bombs-from-milton-friedman

1. "Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself." – >Capitalism and Freedom (2002)

2. "I’m in favor of legalizing drugs. According to my values system, if people want to kill themselves, they have every right to do so. Most of the harm that comes from drugs is because they are illegal." – As quoted in If Ignorance Is Bliss, Why Aren't There More Happy People? (2009)

3. "With some notable exceptions, businessmen favor free enterprise in general but are opposed to it when it comes to themselves." –Lecture "The Suicidal Impulse of the Business Community" (1983)

4. "It's a moral problem that the government is making into criminals people, who may be doing something you and I don't approve of, but who are doing something that hurts nobody else." – America's Drug Forum interview (1991)

5. "One of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results." – Interview with Richard Heffner on The Open Mind (Dec. 7, 1975)
6. "You must distinguish sharply between being pro-free enterprise and being pro-business." – Big Business, Big Government (1978)

7. "The society that puts equality before freedom will end up with neither. The society that puts freedom before equality will end up with a great measure of both." – From "Created Equal," an episode of the PBS Free to Choose television series (1980)

8. "Governments never learn; only people learn." – As quoted in The Cynic's Lexicon: A Dictionary Of Amoral Advice (1984)

9. "We have to recognize that we must not hope for a Utopia that is unattainable. I would like to see a great deal less government activity than we have now, but I do not believe that we can have a situation in which we don't need government at all." – As quoted in The Times Herald, Norristown, Pennsylvania (Dec. 1, 1978)

10. "The great virtue of a free market system is that it does not care what color people are; it does not care what their religion is; it only cares whether they can produce something you want to buy. It is the most effective system we have discovered to enable people who hate one another to deal with one another and help one another." – "Why Government Is the Problem" (February 1, 1993), p. 19

11. "The case for prohibiting drugs is exactly as strong and as weak as the case for prohibiting people from overeating. We all know that overeating causes more deaths than drugs do." – America's Drug Forum interview (1991)

12. "There are four ways in which you can spend money. You can spend your own money on yourself. When you do that, why then you really watch out what you’re doing, and you try to get the most for your money. Then you can spend your own money on somebody else. For example, I buy a birthday present for someone. Well, then I’m not so careful about the content of the present, but I’m very careful about the cost. Then, I can spend somebody else’s money on myself. And if I spend somebody else’s money on myself, then I’m sure going to have a good lunch! Finally, I can spend somebody else’s money on somebody else. And if I spend somebody else’s money on somebody else, I’m not concerned about how much it is, and I’m not concerned about what I get. And that’s government. And that’s close to 40 percent of our national income." – Fox News interview (May 2004).
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