Talk:Eugene V. Debs

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This article was preserved after a vote for its deletion. See its archived VfD entry for details.

~ MosheZadka (Talk) 06:44, 4 December 2005 (UTC)

"I am not a Labor Leader"[edit]

This page describes Debs as "an American labor and political leader". And yet it quotes him as saying "I am not a Labor Leader; I do not want you to follow me or anyone else". Among radicals, he's not alone here. The anarchist Kropotkin preferred the term "initiator", not "leader". Should we consider an alternative label? --Las tortugas (talk) 21:09, 2 September 2015 (UTC)

Unsourced[edit]

Wikiquote no longer allows unsourced quotations, and they are in process of being removed from our pages (see Wikiquote:Limits on quotations); but if you can provide a reliable and precise source for any quote on this list please move it to Eugene V. Debs. --Antiquary 19:55, 14 April 2009 (UTC)


  • It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it.
  • Solidarity is not a matter of sentiment but a fact, cold and impassive as the granite foundations of a skyscraper. If the basic elements, identity of interest, clarity of vision, honesty of intent, and oneness of purpose, or any of these is lacking, all sentimental pleas for solidarity, and all other efforts to achieve it will be barren of results.
  • The people can have anything they want. The trouble is, they do not want anything. At least they vote that way on election day.

Debs on voting[edit]

"It is better to vote for what you want and not get it than to vote for what you don't want and get it," is probably a misquote, rather than spurious. In the speech, "Competition versus Cooperation," delivered at Central Music Hall, Chicago, on 29 Sept. 1900, Debs said, "It is infinitely better to vote for freedom and fail, than to vote for slavery and succeed."