November 17

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Quotes of the day from previous years:

2003
A beginning is the time for taking the most delicate care that the balances are correct. This every sister of the Bene Gesserit knows. ~ Frank Herbert in Dune
2004
There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root. ~ Henry David Thoreau
2005
It seems to me that any sensible person must see that violence does not change the world and if it does, then only temporarily. ~ Martin Scorsese (born 17 November 1942)
2006
Political freedom means the absence of coercion of a man by his fellow men. The fundamental threat to freedom is power to coerce, be it in the hands of a monarch, a dictator, an oligarchy, or a momentary majority. ~ Milton Friedman (recent death)
2007
The paramount question of the day is not political, is not religious, but is economic. The crying-out demand of today is for a circle of principles that shall forever make it impossible for one man to control another by controlling the means of his existence. ~ Voltairine de Cleyre
2008
When you can have anything you want by uttering a few words, the goal matters not, only the journey to it. ~ Christopher Paolini
2009
What I say is, that the real non-resistants can believe in direct action only, never in political action. For the basis of all political action is coercion; even when the State does good things, it finally rests on a club, a gun, or a prison, for its power to carry them through. ~ Voltairine de Cleyre
2010
Make no laws whatever concerning speech, and speech will be free; so soon as you make a declaration on paper that speech shall be free, you will have a hundred lawyers proving that "freedom does not mean abuse, nor liberty license"; and they will define and define freedom out of existence. Let the guarantee of free speech be in every man's determination to use it, and we shall have no need of paper declarations. On the other hand, so long as the people do not care to exercise their freedom, those who wish to tyrannize will do so; for tyrants are active and ardent, and will devote themselves in the name of any number of gods, religious and otherwise, to put shackles upon sleeping men. ~ Voltairine de Cleyre
2011
Let us have Men, Men who will say a word to their souls and keep it — keep it not when it is easy, but keep it when it is hard — keep it when the storm roars and there is a white-streaked sky and blue thunder before, and one's eyes are blinded and one's ears deafened with the war of opposing things; and keep it under the long leaden sky and the gray dreariness that never lifts. Hold unto the last: that is what it means to have a Dominant Idea, which Circumstance cannot break. And such men make and unmake Circumstance. ~ Voltairine de Cleyre
2012
Miss Goldman is a communist; I am an individualist. She wishes to destroy the right of property, I wish to assert it. I make my war upon privilege and authority, whereby the right of property, the true right in that which is proper to the individual, is annihilated. She believes that co-operation would entirely supplant competition; I hold that competition in one form or another will always exist, and that it is highly desirable it should. But whether she or I be right, or both of us be wrong, of one thing I am sure; the spirit which animates Emma Goldman is the only one which will emancipate the slave from his slavery, the tyrant from his tyranny — the spirit which is willing to dare and suffer.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~
2013
I would have men invest themselves with the dignity of an aim higher than the chase for wealth; choose a thing to do in life outside of the making of things, and keep it in mind, — not for a day, nor a year, but for a life-time.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~
2014
In everything that lives, if one looks searchingly, is limned the shadow line of an idea — an idea, dead or living, sometimes stronger when dead, with rigid, unswerving lines that mark the living embodiment with the stern immobile cast of the non-living. Daily we move among these unyielding shadows, less pierceable, more enduring than granite, with the blackness of ages in them, dominating living, changing bodies, with dead, unchanging souls. And we meet, also, living souls dominating dying bodies — living ideas regnant over decay and death.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~
2015 
Rank or add further suggestions…

Ranking system:

4 : Excellent - should definitely be used.
3 : Very Good - strong desire to see it used.
2 : Good - some desire to see it used.
1 : Acceptable - but with no particular desire to see it used.
0 : Not acceptable - not appropriate for use as a quote of the day.


Suggestions[edit]

The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government. ~ Thomas Jefferson, in honor of the NRA being granted charter in NYC

  • 2 UDScott 14:53, 15 November 2005 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 18:20, 16 November 2006 (UTC)
  • 0 Kalki 22:57, 16 November 2007 (UTC) This did not seem genuine to me, as in Jefferson's time the issue would hardly be disputed, and a quick check of it finds no sources, and a pro-gun site which declares it bogus. I might add it to the "Misattributed" section on Jefferson's page after finding out more about it.
  • 1 Zarbon 06:36, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Note to self: religion: freaky. ~ Sarah Michelle Gellar as "Buffy Summers" in "What's My Line, Part 1", Buffy the Vampire Slayer (shown that day)

  • 2 UDScott 14:53, 15 November 2005 (UTC)
  • 1 InvisibleSun 18:20, 16 November 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 22:57, 16 November 2007 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 06:36, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Workers, the most absolutely necessary part of the whole social structure, without whose services none can either eat, or clothe, or shelter himself, are just the ones who get the least to eat, to wear, and to be housed withal — to say nothing of their share of the other social benefits which the rest of us are supposed to furnish, such as education and artistic gratification. ~ Voltairine de Cleyre

  • 3 InvisibleSun 18:20, 16 November 2006 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 22:57, 16 November 2007 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 06:36, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

People make a grievous error thinking that a list of facts is the truth. Facts are just the bare bones out of which truth is made. ~ Shelby Foote

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 21:29, 16 November 2009 (UTC) * 2 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

Politics, as I never tire of saying, is for social and emotional misfits, handicapped folk, those with a grudge. The purpose of politics is to help them overcome these feelings of inferiority and compensate for their personal inadequacies in the pursuit of power. ~ Auberon Waugh

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 21:29, 16 November 2009 (UTC) * 2 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 20:40, 16 November 2008 (UTC)

The human face is the organic seat of beauty.... It is the register of value in development, a record of Experience, whose legitimate office is to perfect the life, a legible language to those who will study it, of the majestic mistress, the soul. ~ Eliza Farnham

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 20:40, 16 November 2008 (UTC)

The ultimate aim of the human mind, in all its efforts, is to become acquainted with Truth. ~ Eliza Farnham

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC) with a lean toward 4.

The songs of the dead are the lamentations of the living. ~ Christopher Paolini

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 20:40, 16 November 2008 (UTC)

Live in the present, remember the past, and fear not the future, for it doesn't exist and never shall. ~ Christopher Paolini

  • 3 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 20:40, 16 November 2008 (UTC)

Success can only be achieved through repeated failure and introspection. ~ Soichiro Honda

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 20:40, 16 November 2008 (UTC)

Because the water raises rice and the fishes live in the water, I don’t want to contaminate it. ~ Soichiro Honda

  • 2 Zarbon 04:13, 16 October 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki 18:17, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

The stamp of persistent or of shifting Will is visible in the grass-blade rooted in its clod of earth, as in the gossamer web of being that floats and swims far over our heads in the free world of air.
Regnant ideas, everywhere! Did you ever see a dead vine bloom? I have seen it.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~

The Puritans had accused the Quakers of "troubling the world by preaching peace to it." They refused to pay church taxes; they refused to bear arms; they refused to swear allegiance to any government. (In so doing they were direct actionists, what we may call negative direct actionists.) So the Puritans, being political actionists, passed laws to keep them out, to deport, to fine, to imprison, to mutilate, and finally, to hang them. And the Quakers just kept on coming (which was positive direct action); and history records that after the hanging of four Quakers, and the flogging of Margaret Brewster at the cart's tail through the streets of Boston, "the Puritans gave up trying to silence the new missionaries"; that "Quaker persistence and Quaker non-resistance had won the day.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~

Note the difference between a right and a privilege. A right, in the abstract, is a fact; it is not a thing to be given, established, or conferred; it is. Of the exercise of a right power may deprive me; of the right itself, never. Privilege, in the abstract, does not exist; there is no such thing. Rights recognized, privilege is destroyed.
But, in the practical, the moment you admit a supreme authority, you have denied rights. Practically the supremacy has all the rights, and no matter what the human race possesses, it does so merely at the caprice of that authority.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~

In the name of Purity what lies are told! What queer morality it has engendered. For fear of it you dare not tell your own children the truth about their birth; the most sacred of all functions, the creation of a human being, is a subject for the most miserable falsehood. When they come to you with a simple, straightforward question, which they have a right to ask, you say, "Don't ask such questions," or tell some silly hollowlog story; or you explain the incomprehensibility by another — God! You say "God made you." You know you are lying when you say it. You know, or you ought to know, that the source of inquiry will not be dammed up so. You know that what you Could explain purely, reverently, rightly (if you have any purity in you), will be learned through many blind gropings, and that around it will be cast the shadowthought of wrong, embryo'd by your denial and nurtured by this social opinion everywhere prevalent. If you do not know this, then you are blind to facts and deaf to Experience.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~

As to the American tradition of non-meddling, Anarchism asks that it be carried down to the individual himself. It demands no jealous barrier of isolation; it knows that such isolation is undesirable and impossible; but it teaches that by all men's strictly minding their own business, a fluid society, freely adapting itself to mutual needs, wherein all the world shall belong to all men, as much as each has need or desire, will result.
And when Modern Revolution has thus been carried to the heart of the whole world — if it ever shall be, as I hope it will — then may we hope to see a resurrection of that proud spirit of our fathers which put the simple dignity of Man above the gauds of wealth and class, and held that to be an American was greater than to be a king.
In that day there shall be neither kings nor Americans — only Men; over the whole earth, MEN.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~

I paint a gradual slipping out of the now, to that beautiful then, where there are neither kings, presidents, landlords, national bankers, stockbrokers, railroad magnates, patentright monopolists, or tax and title collectors; where there are no over-stocked markets or hungry children, idle counters and naked creatures, splendor and misery, waste and need. I am told this is farfetched idealism, to paint this happy, povertyless, crimeless, diseaseless world; I have been told I "ought to be behind the bars" for it.
Remarks of that kind rather destroy the white streak of faith. I lose confidence in the slipping process, and am forced to believe that the rulers of the earth are sowing a fearful wind, to reap a most terrible whirlwind. When I look at this poor, bleeding, wounded World, this world that has suffered so long, struggled so much, been scourged so fiercely, thorn-pierced so deeply, crucified so cruelly, I can only shake my head and remember:
The giant is blind, but he's thinking: and his locks are growing, fast.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~

Those who, by the essence of their belief, are committed to Direct Action only are — just who? Why, the non-resistants; precisely those who do not believe in violence at all! Now do not make the mistake of inferring that I say direct action means non-resistance; not by any means. Direct action may be the extreme of violence, or it may be as peaceful as the waters of the Brook of Siloa that go softly. What I say is, that the real non-resistants can believe in direct action only, never in political action. For the basis of all political action is coercion; even when the State does good things, it finally rests on a club, a gun, or a prison, for its power to carry them through.
~ Voltairine de Cleyre ~