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This is the talk page for discussing improvements to the Politics page.

Shouldn't these quotes be organized somehow? Perhaps by alphabetical order?

I have started by placing them under different catagory headings. Alan Liefting 02:39, 3 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Can i understand why all of the most appropriate quotes about anarchism that have been recently added, have been deleted without any explanation? i don't see a reason for the delete, and if you may, i would like to get an answer within a day.

thank you, Odo Odo 06:53, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)


  • La política es una forma de la maldad. El mayor error que he cometido en mi vida.

Standardizing headings[edit]

I've standardized the headings in this article to follow wiki policy on capitalization and other style characteristics. I've also changed Reform, campaign finance to a less indexy-sounding Campaign finance reform and made it a subheading under Reform. But one problem remains. Iraq War is apparently meant to be about the 2003 invasion of Iraq and related topics, but "Iraq War" is an ambiguous, POV term. How can we rename this collection of quotes in an NPOV but less-than-cumbersome manner? — Jeff Q (talk) 14:21, 27 May 2005 (UTC)

What's wrong with 2003 Invasion of Iraq? (For lots of answers to my question, see w:Talk:2003_Invasion_of_Iraq#Requested_move_4_August) ~ MosheZadka (Talk) 15:14, 23 October 2005 (UTC)


If military service began at age 50+ war would be very rare.


There are two Ambrose Bierce definitions of Politics, strange considering he only wrote one. Several quotes appear in multiple places, also I fail to see how quotes from 20 or 30 years ago can have anything to do with the Iraq War, as it didn't happen until only a few ago and the other war in Iraq was the Guld war and still well after those quotes. Who the hell is Carl Borgen, I thought Wiki had standards as to who is considered and people writing about themselves and putting in spam for their own stuff was a no no.

Near-complete absence of citations[edit]

Almost nothing in this page includes a proper citation. We should aim to fix that. (It might resolve some of the issues noted above, if they have not already been.) 121a0012 15:13, 5 March 2008 (UTC)


This is probably a silly question, but why are the last few lines of The Hunting of the Snark listed under Politicians and Lawyers?

No clear reason at all. I've just removed it. ~ NEO 20:44, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I'm just a passerby and not really familiar with the customs round here so excuse me for not just moving things around myself but there's another heading 27.3 The "Masses" . The first couple of items under it maybe fit okay, the third one seems a bit of a stretch for the context but okay... the fourth through eighth sound like they're ripped off from posters (though maybe got them from quotations) and mostly aren't attributed to anyone. The final one (George Bush) sounds like it's made up and is obviously about a different sort of 'mass'es. 21:19, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

Iraq War quotations[edit]

I'm unconvinced that most of these are actually about politics, which is the subject of this theme page. There are more appropriate theme pages for quotations about military strategy, Rumsfeldisms, etc. They don't belong here. 121a0012 06:56, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

"War" section[edit]

I'm moving the quotations that do not seem to be on-topic from the "War" section here. You are welcome to move them back, individually, with complete source citations, if you have some reason to believe they are actually about politics, the subject of this page. 121a0012 16:51, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

  • Every government does as much harm as it can, and as much good as it must. ~ Nicholas Walter
  • If we cannot by reason, by influence, by example, by strenuous effort, and by personal sacrifice, mend the bad places of civilization, we certainly cannot do it by force. ~ Auberon Herbert
  • Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction. ~ Albert Einstein
  • History doesn't repeat itself, but it rhymes. ~ Mark Twain
  • The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions. ~ Robert Lynd
  • How much more grievous are the consequences of anger than the causes of it. ~ Marcus Aurelius
  • If it were proved to me that in making war, my ideal had a chance of being realized, I would still say 'No' to war. For one does not create human society on mounds of corpses. ~ Louis Lecoin, French pacifist leader
  • It is a man's own mind, not his enemy or foe, that lures him to evil ways. ~ Buddha
  • Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding. ~ Albert Einstein
  • The pioneers of a warless world are the young men (and women) who refuse military service. ~ Albert Einstein
  • There is nothing that war has ever achieved that we could not better achieve without it. ~ Havelock Ellis
  • To build may have to be the slow and laborious task of years. To destroy can be the thoughtless act of a single day. ~ Sir Winston Churchill
  • War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. ~ John Stuart Mill
  • War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. ~ Karl Kraus
  • Warmaking doesn't stop warmaking. If it did, our problems would have stopped millennia ago. ~ Colman McCarthy
  • We must be prepared to make heroic sacrifices for the cause of peace that we make ungrudgingly for the cause of war. There is no task that is more important or closer to my heart. ~ Albert Einstein
  • Were the Soviet Union to sink tomorrow under the waters of the ocean, the American military-industrial establishment would have to go on, substantially unchanged, until some other adversary could be invented. Anything else would be an unacceptable shock to the American economy. ~ George Kennan (1987)
  • The world cannot continue to wage war like physical giants and to seek peace like intellectual pygmies. ~ Basil O'Connor

  • Why is it the Mongols of this world always tell us they're defending us against the Mongols? ~ Edward Whittemore, Nile Shadows (1983)
  • And I said on my program, if, if the Americans go in and overthrow Saddam Hussein and it's clean, he has nothing, I will apologize to the nation, and I will not trust the Bush Administration again. ~ Fox News's Bill O'Reilly, on Good Morning America (18 March 2003)
  • Excuse me, I am not convinced. I cannot go to the public and say, well let's go to war... and I don't believe in it myself. ~ German foreign minister Fischer to US Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld about the necessity of a war on Iraq (February 8 2003)
  • Based on my experience with the administration in the months leading up to the war, I have little choice but to conclude that some of the intelligence related to Iraq's nuclear weapons program was twisted to exaggerate the Iraqi threat. ~ ex-Ambassador Joseph Wilson (July 6 2003)
  • By invading Iraq, the president has greatly undermined the war on terrorism. ~ Richard A. Clarke, former National Security Council Special Advisor (24 March 2004)
  • Facing clear evidence of peril, we cannot wait for the final proof, the smoking gun that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud. ~ George W. Bush in Cinncinati (October 2002)
  • He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983. ~ Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser (18 February 1998)
  • History is made by angry minorities, not by passive majorities. ~ Fareed Zakaria on insurgent action in Iraq, This Week with George Stephanopoulos (15 August 2004)
  • Hussein has chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies. ~ Madeline Albright Clinton Secretary of State, (10 November 1999)
  • I asked for universal health care and all I got was this lousy stealth bomber. ~ Daniel Brooks, anti-war protestor (18 January 2003)
  • I believe demolishing Hussein's military power and liberating Iraq would be a cakewalk. ~ Ken Adelman, defense policy board member (13 Febuary 2002)
  • I think this is a very hard choice, but the price, we think the price is worth it. ~ Madeleine Albright, May 12, 1996 — On whether the cost to the Iraqi people, due to sanctions against Iraq, including the deaths of children, could be justified. Later she wrote of that response, "I should have answered the question by reframing it and pointing out the inherent flaws in the premise behind it. … My reply had been a terrible mistake, hasty, clumsy, and wrong. … I had fallen into a trap and said something that I simply did not mean. That is no one’s fault but my own.[1]

  • I think these people are the last remnants of a dying cause. ~ Paul Wolfowitz (18 June 2003)
  • I voted for the 87 billion, before I voted against it ~ John Kerry
  • If you are looking at a map of the world and wondering where the United States is, you can find it over there, trapped between Iraq and a hard place. ~ John Bell Smithback, writer of Idiom-Magic (15 July 2005)
  • In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons. ~ Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D, NY) (10 October 2002)
  • Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power. ~ Al Gore, (September 2002)
  • Iraq will not require sustained aid. ~ Mitch Daniels, (28 March 2003)
  • It's disingenuous for the State Department people to say they were bamboozled because they knew about this for a year. ~ Ambassador Joseph Wilson, (6 May 2003) in an anonymous interview with New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, on the absence of evidence of an Iraqi nuclear program or weapons.
  • Japan is the second largest donor in Iraq after the United States, with over $5 billion dollars for humanitarian, infrastructure and reconstruction projects. ~ Michael K. Simpson
  • There is a possibility, Rockefeller says, that the fabrication of these [Niger] documents may be part of a larger deception campaign aimed at manipulating public opinion and foreign policy regarding Iraq. ~ Senator Jay Rockefeller (D. WVa) (21 March 2003), writing to FBI Director Robert Mueller asking for an investigation of the Niger letters.
  • My belief is we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators. ~ Dick Cheney (16 March 2003)
  • Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process. ~ Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), (16 December 1998)
  • Saddam Hussein has not developed any significant capacity with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors. ~ Secretary of State Colin Powell (24 February 2001)
  • Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam now has weapons of mass destruction. ~ Dick Cheney, vice president of USA, (26 August 2002)
  • The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons. ~ Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV) (3 October 2002)
  • We are able to keep his [Saddam's] arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt. NSC advisor Condoleezza Rice (29 July 2001)
  • We do know that [Saddam] is actively pursuing a nuclear weapon. ~ Condoleezza Rice, (10 September 2002)

  • We don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud. ~ Condoleezza Rice (September 2002)
  • We know where [the weapons] are. They're in an area around Tikrit and Baghdad and east, west, north and south somewhat. ~ Donald Rumsfeld (30 March 2003)
  • You have a mixture of a small number of terrorists, a small number of militias, coupled with some demonstrations and some lawlessness. ~ Donald Rumsfeld (9 April 2004)
  • You know, I have repeatedly defended President Bush against the left on Iraq, even though I think he should have waited until the U.N. inspections were over. I don't believe he went in there for oil. We didn't go in there for imperialist or financial reasons. We went in there because he bought the Wolfowitz-Cheney analysis that the Iraqis would be better off, we could shake up the authoritarian Arab regimes in the Middle East, and our leverage to make peace between the Palestinians and Israelis would be increased. ~ Bill Clinton (Time Magazine, June 2004)
  • The Dick Cheney shooting incident shows what happens when you put the kids in charge of the kindergarten and let them play with guns. Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo show what happens when you put them in charge of other kids without responsible adult supervision. The Iraq war shows what happens when you put the lunatics in charge of the asylum and let them play with real armies. ~ Letter to the editor, The Age Newspaper (Australia) (20 February 2006)
  • The war in Iraq is about winning over the minds of the Iraqis. Unfortunately the president continues to see Iraq as a military war. ~ Seargent First Class Willams
  • When I started to hold the Democratic Party to the same standards that I held the Republican Party, support for my cause started to erode and the "left" started labeling me with the same slurs that the right used. I guess no one paid attention to me when I said that the issue of peace and people dying for no reason is not a matter of "right or left", but "right and wrong." ~ Cindy Sheehan (29 May, 2007)
  • I was born about a quarter of a mile from where we are sitting now and I was here in London during the Blitz. And every night I went down into the shelter. 500 people killed, my brother was killed, my friends were killed. And when the Charter of the UN was read to me, I was a pilot coming home in a troop ship: 'We the peoples of the United Nations determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind.' That was the pledge my generation gave to the younger generation and you tore it up. And it's a war crime that's been committed in Iraq, because there is no moral difference between a stealth bomber and a suicide bomber. Both kill innocent people for political reasons. - Tony Benn, ex-Labour Party MP, (22 March 2007)

"Misstatements and tautologies" section[edit]

More off-topic cruft looking for a better home with a proper citation:

  • When a great many people are unable to find work, unemployment results. ~ Calvin Coolidge (ex-president, discussing the United States economic situation in 1931)
  • If Lincoln was alive today, he'd roll over in his grave. ~ Gerald Ford
  • Things are more like they are now than they have ever been. ~ Gerald Ford
  • I love sports. Whenever I can, I always watch the Detroit Tigers on the radio. ~ Gerald Ford
  • There is a mandate to impose a voluntary return to traditional values. ~ Ronald Reagan
  • Wait a minute! I'm not interested in agriculture. I want the military stuff. ~ Senator William Scott, during a briefing in which officials began telling him about missile silos
  • The proof is the proof, and if we have the proof, then that is the proof, and if it's a good proof it's because it's been proven. ~ Jean Chrétien
  • Those who survived the San Francisco earthquake said, 'Thank God I'm still alive. But, of course, those who died, their lives will never be the same again.' ~ Sen. Barbara Boxer
  • They believe sentences imposed by juries should be carried out. ~ George W. Bush

More deletia[edit]

I've removed the following (mostly unsourced) quotes as being off-topic:

  • I must create my own System, or be enslaved by another Man's. I will not Reason and Compare — my business is to Create! ~ William Blake
  • 'Art and not morality is represented as the actual metaphysical activity of mankind' ~ Friedrich Nietzsche, The Birth of Tragedy
  • Some teachers of mankind--as Plato, the first Christians, the orthodox Muslims, and the Buddhists--have gone so far as to repudiate art. [They consider it] so highly dangerous in its power to infect people against their wills, that mankind will lose far less by banishing all art than by tolerating each and every art. Such people were wrong in repudiating all art, for they denied that which cannot be denied--one of the indispensable means of communication, without which mankind could not exist. Now there is only fear, lest we should be deprived of any pleasures art can afford, so any type of art is patronized. And I think the last error is much grosser than the first and that its consequences are far more harmful. ~ Leo Tolstoy What is Art? (1896)
  • The free market is ugly and stupid, like going to the mall; the unfree market is just as ugly and just as stupid, except there is nothing in the mall and if you don't go there they shoot you. ~ P.J. O'Rourke
  • The right to suffer is one of the joys of a free economy. ~ Howard Pyle (aide to President Dwight D. Eisenhower, commenting on the unemployment situation in Detroit)
  • Those who are responsible for the national security must be the sole judges of what the national security requires. It would be obviously undesirable that such matters should be made the subject of evidence in a court of law or otherwise discussed in public. ~ Unattributed member of the The House of Lords discussing the removal of trade union rights at GCHQ, (1984)
  • No beacon shines with greater vivacity than that resurrected by oppression. ~ Anonymous
  • A recognition that there is a bit of Torquemada in everyone should make us wary of any attempt to enforce a consensus or demonize those who challenge it. ~ What is Your Dangerous Idea? (2007) ed., John Brockman, "Introduction," Steven Pinker, p. xxxi.
  • Censorship is stopping a man from eating steak because a baby cant chew it. -Mark Twain
  • Even grass we will eat ~ Ramiz Alia, former Albanian president said that during an interview, when asked about Albania opening to the democracy.
  • Why is it the Mongols of this world always tell us they're defending us against the Mongols? ~ Edward Whittemore, Nile Shadows (1983)
  • Sunlight is the best disinfectant.
    • Common paraphrase of Louis Brandeis, Other People's Money—and How Bankers Use It (1914): "Publicity is justly commended as a remedy for social and industrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric light the most efficient policeman."
  • We have to face the fact that either all of us are going to die together or we are going to learn to live together and if we are to live together we have to talk. ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
  • I feel the happiest when I can light my American cigarettes with Soviet matches. ~ Mohammed Daud Khan, President of Afghanistan, 1973-1978
  • Ultimately European anti-Americanism isn’t our problem. It’s Europe’s problem. ~ Denis Boyles
  • Sometimes I must speak other than I think, that's called diplomacy. ~ Stilgar, a naib in Frank Herbert 's Dune Messiah

I've never asked for a square inch of England, neither a square inch of Europe. So Blair, keep your England, and let me keep my Zimbabwe. Robert Gabriel Mugabe (2002,U N Summit, Cape Town )

  • Learn as much by writing as by reading. ~ Lord Acton
  • An educated nation have a lot of ideas, an un-educated nation don't have ideas, it limits to follow someone ~ Vasco E. G. Lima e Silva
  • Few men desire liberty; The majority are satisfied with a just master. ~ Sallust
  • I 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 inter-state commerce. ~ J. Edgar Hoover
  • Life springs from death; and from the graves of patriot men and women spring living nations.

~ Patrick Pearse, from his graveside oration at the funeral of the Fenian Jeremiah O'Donovan Rossa, 1 August 1915.

  • Remember that a government big enough to give you everything you want is also big enough to take away everything you have. ~ Barry Goldwater
  • The difference between a republic and a people's republic is a lot like the difference between a jacket and a strait jacket. ~ Ronald Reagan
  • The man who prefers his country before any other duty shows the same spirit as the man who surrenders every right to the state. They both deny that right is superior to authority. ~ Lord Acton
  • The most certain test by which we judge whether a country is really free is the amount of security enjoyed by minorities. ~ Lord Acton
  • There are four boxes to be used in defense of liberty: soap, ballot, jury, and ammo. Please use in that order. ~ Ed Howdershelt
  • When the people are being beaten with a stick, they are not much happier if it is called 'the People's Stick.' ~ Mikhail Bakunin in Statism and Anarchy
  • Whenever a separation is made between liberty and justice, neither, in my opinion, is safe. ~ Edmund Burke

  • I do not believe that the United States should be bound by the same rules as the smallest African nation. Life isn't like that. ~ Richard Perle, USA Pentagon advisor
  • It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country and mankind its citizens. ~ Baha'u'llah
  • Treaties are like roses and young girls; they last while they last. ~ Charles de Gaulle;

attributed to President Charles de Gaulle, on Franco-German treaty talks, Time (12 July 1963)

  • We [the U.S.] have about 50% of the world’s wealth but only 6.3% of the world’s population.… Our real task in the coming period is to devise a pattern of relationships which will permit us to maintain this position of disparity without positive detriment to our national security. ~ George Kennan, former member of the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff (1948) as quoted by Thomas H. Etzold and John Lewis Gaddis in Containment: Documents on American Policy and Strategy, 1945-1950 (1978)
  • I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually. ~ James Baldwin
  • If we do not believe in freedom of speech for those we despise we do not believe in it at all. ~ Noam Chomsky
  • I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. ~ Evelyn Beatrice Hall, commenting on an attitude of Voltaire in an expression which has often been misattributed to him.
  • You had the right to say: my worst enemy has the right to be free, on condition that he not ask for my death or that of my brothers. You did not have the right to say: my worst enemy is a comrade. You did not have the right to take a falsifier of history and to recast him in the colors of truth. ~ Pierre Vidal-Naquet
  • Freedom is the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. ~ George Orwell
  • When women are depressed, they either eat or go shopping. Men invade another country. It's a whole different way of thinking. ~ Elayne Boosler
  • A zebra does not change its spots. ~ Al Gore

  • Banking was conceived in iniquity and was born in sin. The Bankers own the earth. Take it away from them, but leave them the power to create deposits, and with the flick of the pen they will create enough deposits to buy it back again. However, take it away from them, and all the great fortunes like mine will disappear and they ought to disappear, for this would be a happier and better world to live in. But, if you wish to remain the slaves of Bankers and pay the cost of your own slavery, let them continue to create deposits. ~ Josiah Stamp, Governor of the Bank of England (1920)
  • It's not about guns — it's about control.
  • A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks. ~ Thomas Jefferson to Peter Carr (1785) The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, (Memorial Edition) Lipscomb and Bergh, editors.
  • Mankind's greatest flaw is man itself. Without mankind, there would exist none of the problems we have today. ~Michael Suggs
  • A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it the superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable cry in defense of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason. ~ Thomas Paine (1776)
  • History is a long and tragic story of the fact that privileged groups seldom give up their privileges voluntarily. ~ Martin Luther King, Letter from Birmingham Jail (1963)
  • I never saw so many shocking bad hats in my life. (on seeng the first Reformed Parliament) ~ Duke of Wellington, W. Frazer Words on Wellington (1889)
  • Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. ~ Albert Einstein
  • It is no use saying, 'We are doing our best.' You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary. ~ Winston Churchill
  • Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all. ~ Dale Carnegie
  • Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall. ~ Confucius
  • Out of perfection nothing can be made. Every process involves breaking something up. ~ Joseph Campbell
  • The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them. ~ Albert Einstein
  • Promise people something and they'll just have to wait for it. ~ Anonymous
  • The neoconservative revival is a profound and, in many ways, a heartening phenomenon. For the neoconservative sees through the emptiness of the present and the poverty of the modern subject. The neoconservative knows that a present without past memory and tradition is self-illusory and finally self-destructive. The neoconservative knows that a subject without community and tradition is very soon little else that the modern possessive individual rendered passive and historyless. The neoconservative sees the folly of the Enlightenment’s wholesale attack on the very concept of tradition. She or he senses the unreality of the assumed universalism in Western liberal social-evolutionary schemas applied to history. The neoconservative notes the wasteful and complacent obstruction of the rich resources of the tradition. She or he knows the need to retrieve these resources anew in our parlous times if we are to maintain any truly Christian identity at all. ~ David Tracy, On Naming the Present
  • Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich. ~ Napoleon Bonaparte
  • [In the West] unpopular ideas can be silenced, and inconvenient facts kept dark, without any need for an official ban. ~ George Orwell
  • This is something, eh, that is the kind of thing that must be gone through with what I believe is best not talked about too much until we know whatever answers there will be. ~ President Dwight D. Eisenhower, responding to questions about the investigation of J. Robert Oppenheimer's supposed Communist sympathies
  • If we do not maintain Justice, Justice will not maintain us. ~ Francis Bacon
  • The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. ~ Edmund Burke
  • The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. ~ Albert Einstein

Many of these are excellent quotations but should be sourced properly and added to a more appropriate theme page. (If you disagree and think that one of these is actually about politics, please feel free to move it back after you've supplied a complete source citation.) 121a0012 03:50, 5 January 2009 (UTC)

  1. Albright, Madeleine (2003). "Madam Secretary". p. 275. 


  • You're not supposed to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who says it.
  • None more rare than a seasoned, honest politician. Tony Plunkett (2014)
  • People say I steal. Well, all politicians steal. ~ Huey P. Long
  • A thief is more moral than a congressman; when a thief steals your money, he doesn't demand you thank him. ~ Walter Williams
  • Socialism needs democracy like the human body needs oxygen. ~ Leon Trotsky
  • Votes count, but resources decide ~ Stein Rokkan
  • There is only one difference between dictatorship and democracy. In democracy, you vote and then take orders; in dictatorship you don't waste time voting. ~ Charles Bukowski
  • What good fortune for governments that the people do not think ~ Adolf Hitler
  • They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.
  • It will be years — not in my time — before a woman will become Prime Minister. ~ Margaret Thatcher (1974).
  • A disordered currency is one of the greatest political evils.
  • All growth, including political growth, is the result of risk-taking.
  • All politics are based on the indifference of the majority.
  • Envy is the cause of political division.
  • Good politics are often inextricably intertwined.
  • The key to understanding the American system is to imagine that you have the power to make nearly any law you want. But your worst enemy will be the one to enforce it.
  • No amount of political freedom will satisfy the hungry masses.
  • Politics is a concentric series of conspiracies in which the last party to conspire emerges victorious
  • Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies.
  • Politics is the art of putting people under obligation to you.
  • Therefore, the good of man must be the end of the science of politics.
  • University politics are vicious precisely because the stakes are so small.
  • We live in a world in which politics has replaced philosophy.
  • Yes, we have to divide up our time like that, between our politics and our equations. But to me our equations are far more important, for politics are only a matter of present concern. A mathematical equation stands forever.
  • They say that politics is the second oldest profession. I find that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.
  • What do you call a politician displaying his honesty in public? A rare work of art...
  • The only way I can lose this election is if I'm caught in bed with either a dead girl or a live boy.
  • A politician is an animal which can sit on a fence and yet keep both ears to the ground.
  • Politics is the entertainment industry for ugly people.
  • They [the people] may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.
  • The greatest lesson in life is to know that even fools are right sometimes.
  • Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you really want to test his character, give him power.
  • In public policy, it matters less who has the best arguments and more who gets heard — and by whom.
    • Ralph Reed, head of Christian Coalition, in memo to Enron executives, (2000).
  • Talking to politicians is fine, but with a little money they hear you better.
  • Politics has gotten so expensive that it takes a lot of money to even get beat with.
  • There are two things you need for success in politics. Money and I can't think of the other.
  • All the perplexities, confusion and distress in America arise not from defects in their Constitution or Confederation, nor from the want of honor or virtue, so much as the downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation.
  • History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling money and its issuance.
  • If congress has the right under the Constitution to issue paper money, it was given them to use themselves, not to be delegated to individuals or corporations.
  • If we Americans are split into two meaningful camps, it is not conservative versus liberal. The two camps are the politically awake and the hypnotized.
    • Doris "Granny D" Haddock
  • In politics, there are things which you do but don't talk about them and things which you talk about but don't do anything.
  • The streets are safe in Philadelphia — it's only the people who make them unsafe.
  • Rifles, muskets, long-bows and hand-grenades are inherently democratic weapons. A complex weapon makes the strong stronger, while a simple weapon — so long as there is no answer to it — gives claws to the weak.
  • If there is anything a public servant hates to do it's something for the public.
  • The great masses of the people will more easily fall victim to a big lie, than to a small one.
  • Reason accepts no authority above itself and is necessarily subversive.~ Allan Bloom
  • You cannot impose ideologies on people who do not embrace it wholeheartedly.
  • Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.
  • Reform is not for the shortwinded.
  • Today's political campaigns function as collection agencies for broadcasters. You simply transfer money from contributors to television stations.
  • We've got a real irony here. We have politicians selling access to something we all own -our government. And then we have broadcasters selling access to something we all own — our airwaves. It's a terrible system.
    • Newton Minow, former Federal Communications Commission chairman (2000).
  • Unless we fundamentally change this system, ultimately campaign finance will consume our democracy.
  • [Buckley v. Valeo is] one of the most weakly reasoned, poorly written, initially contradictory court opinions I've ever read.
  • We don't buy votes. What we do is we buy a candidate's stance on an issue.
    • Allen Pross, executive director, California Medical Association's PAC (1989).
  • Political action committees and moneyed interests are setting the nation's political agenda. Are we saying that only the rich have brains in this country? Or only people who have influential friends who have money can be in the Senate?
  • The day may come when we'll reject the money of the rich as tainted, but it hadn't come when I left Tammany Hall at 11:25 today.
  • Difference of religion breeds more quarrels than difference of politics.
  • It is not the function of our government to keep the citizen from falling into error; it is the function of the citizen to keep the government from falling into error.
  • The French approach election differently than the Americans... they vote.
  • Things being investigated, knowledge became complete. Their knowledge being complete, their thoughts were sincere. Their thoughts being sincere, their hearts were rectified. Their hearts being rectified, their persons were cultivated. Their persons being cultivated, their families were regulated. Their families being regulated, their states were rightly governed. Their states being rightly governed, the whole kingdom was made tranquil and happy.
  • Next time they give you all that civic bullshit about voting, keep in mind that Hitler was elected in a full, free democratic election.
  • Voter apathy was, and will remain the greatest threat to democracy.
  • Democracy (in America) means you have to pretend to care about 51 percent of the people once in four years.
    • Variously attributed
  • The most important political office is that of private citizen.

"Imperium et libertas."[edit]

"One of the greatest of Romans, when asked what were his politics, replied, "Imperium et libertas." That would not make a bad programme for a British Ministry. Randolph Churchill, speech, Mansion House, London (Nov. 10, 1879)." Error! In fact, Benjamin Disraeli. 11:00, 29 November 2017 (UTC)