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Aldems' Political Quotations: Apt & Otherwise

(Continued from page 11)

    "We have grown literally afraid to be poor. We despise anyone who elects to be poor in order to simplify and save his inner life. If he does not join the general scramble and pant with the money-making street, we deem him spiritless and lacking in ambition."
       -- William James 

    "Habit is thus the enormous fly-wheel of society, its most precious conservative agent. It alone is what keeps us all within the bounds of ordinance, and saves the children of fortune from the envious uprisings of the poor."
       -- William James 

    "The man who knows governments most completely is he who troubles himself least about a definition which shall give their essence. Enjoying an intimate acquaintance with all their particularities in turn, he would naturally regard an abstract conception in which these were unified as a thing more misleading than enlightening."
       -- William James 

    "No more fiendish punishment could be devised, were such a thing physically possible, than that one should be turned loose in society and remain absolutely unnoticed."
       -- William James 

    "For morality life is a war, and the service of the highest is a sort of cosmic patriotism which also calls for volunteers."
       -- William James 

    "It seems the natural thing for us to listen whilst the Europeans talk."
       -- William James

    "As there is no worse lie than a truth misunderstood by those who hear it, so reasonable arguments, challenges to magnanimity, and appeals to sympathy or justice, are folly when we are dealing with human crocodiles and boa-constrictors."
       -- William James 

    "The second office in the government is honorable and easy; the first is but a splendid misery."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "No man will ever carry out of the Presidency the reputation which carried him into it."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "I have no ambition to govern men; it is a painful and thankless office."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Whenever a man has cast a longing eye on offices, a rottenness begins in his conduct."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "No duty the Executive had to perform was so trying as to put the right man in the right place."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "The parties of Whig and Tory are those of nature. They exist in all countries, whether called by these names or by those of Aristocrats and Democrats, Cote Droite and Cote Gauche, Ultras and Radicals, Serviles and Liberals. The sickly, weakly, timid man fears the people, and is a Tory by nature. The healthy, strong and bold cherishes them, and is formed a Whig by nature."   
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "If I could not go to Heaven but with a party, I would not go there at all."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "A cold-blooded, calculation, unprincipled, usurper, without a virtue, no statesman, knowing nothing of commerce, political economy, or civil government, and supplying ignorance by bold presumption."
       -- Thomas Jefferson,
describing Napoleon Bonaparte

    "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity have been burnt, tortured, fined, imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What is the effect of coercion ? -- to make half the world fools and the other half hypocrites."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial by strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "We are not to expect to be translated from despotism to liberty in a featherbed."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "An enemy generally says and believes what he wishes."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Resort is had to ridicule only when reason is against us."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "If the present Congress errs in too much talking, how can it be otherwise in a body to which the people send one hundred and fifty lawyers, whose trade it is to question everything, yield nothing, and talk by the hour?"
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Politics is such a torment that I advise everyone I love not to mix with it."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Were we directed from Washington when to sow and when to reap we should soon want bread."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Educate and inform the whole mass of the people…. They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty."
       -- Thomas Jefferson
(to James Madison, 1787)

    "Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government."
       -- Thomas Jefferson
(to Richard Price, 1789)

    "A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement."
       -- Thomas Jefferson,
first Inaugural

    "The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only object of good government."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "All, too, will bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal law must protect, and to violate would be oppression."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "Experience declares that man is the only animal which devours its own kind, for I can apply no milder term to the governments of Europe, and to the general prey of the rich on the poor."
       -- Thomas Jefferson

    "The First Lady is, and always has been, an unpaid public servant elected by her husband."
       -- Lady Bird Johnson

    "Any committee is only as good as the most knowledgeable, determined and vigorous person on it. There must be somebody who provides the flame."
       -- Lady Bird Johnson

    "Being president is like being a jackass in a hailstorm. There's nothing to do but to stand there and take it."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "If one morning I walked on top of the water across the Potomac River, the headline that afternoon would read: PRESIDENT CAN'T SWIM."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "There are no favorites in my office. I treat them all with the same general inconsideration."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "There is but one way for a president to deal with Congress, and that is continuously, incessantly, and without interruption. If it is really going to work, the relationship has got to be almost incestuous."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "You've got to work things out in the cloakroom, and when you've got them worked out, you can debate a little before you vote."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "Until justice is blind to color, until education is unaware of race, until opportunity is unconcerned with the color of men's skins, emancipation will be a proclamation but not a fact."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "A President's hardest task is not to do what is right, but to know what is right."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "It is important that the United States remain a two-party system. I'm a fellow who likes small parties and the Republican Party can't be too small to suit me."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "I never trust a man unless I've got his pecker in my pocket."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "I seldom think of politics more than eighteen hours a day."
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "I'm a powerful S.O.B., you know that?"
       -- Lyndon Baines Johnson

    "You can't be in politics unless you can walk in a room and know in a minute who's for you and who's against you."
       -- Sam E. Johnson
(Lyndon's dad)

    "I am aware that by many persons, it is considered in the nature of a joke to to become a candidate and to be elected as a member of the Legislature."
       -- Sam E. Johnson
(Lyndon's dad), 1904

    "So many objections may be made to everything, that nothing can overcome them but the necessity of doing something."
       -- Dr. Samuel Johnson
(Boswell's friend)

    "It is better that some should be unhappy rather than that none should be happy, which would be the case in a general state of equality."
       -- Dr. Samuel Johnson
(Boswell's friend)

    "I would not give half a guinea to live under one form of government other than another. It is of no moment to the happiness of an individual."
       -- Dr. Samuel Johnson
(Boswell's friend)

    "Politics are not unlike war. Sometimes it is necessary to shoot from the hip."
       -- Jesse Jones,
publisher

    "I felt somehow for many years that George Washington and Alexander Hamilton just left me out by mistake. But through the process of amendment, interpretation, and court decision, I have finally been included in "We, the people."
       -- Rep. Barbara Jordan (D-TX)

    "Do not call for black power or green power. Call for brain power."
       -- Rep. Barbara Jordan (D-TX)

    "What the people want is very simple. They want an America as good as its promise."
       -- Rep. Barbara Jordan (D-TX)

    "If you're going to play the game properly, you'd better know every rule."
       -- Rep. Barbara Jordan (D-TX)

    "There is a holy mistaken zeal in politics as well as religion. By persuading others, we convince ourselves."
       -- "Junius",
anonymous 18th Century English political writer

    "Republicans many times can't get the words 'equality of opportunity' out of their mouths. Their lips do not form that way."
       -- Jack Kemp

    "Frankly, I don't mind not being President. I just mind that someone else is."
       -- Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA)

    "The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dreams shall never die."
       -- Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA)

    "The one thing I do not want to be called is First Lady. It sounds like a saddle horse."
       -- Jacqueline Kennedy

    "Now, I think that I should have known that he was magic all along. I did know it---but I should have guessed that it would be too much to ask to grow old with and see our children grow up together. So now, he is a legend when he would have preferred to be a man."
       -- Jacqueline Kennedy,
1964

    "Whenever I was upset by something in the papers, [Jack] always told me to be more tolerant, like a horse flicking away flies in the summer."
       -- Jacqueline Kennedy

    "Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names."
       -- John Fitzgerald Kennedy

    "The problems of the world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were."
       -- John Fitzgerald Kennedy

    "We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too."
       - John Fitzgerald Kennedy,
Address at Rice University, September 12th, 1962

    "I am not the Catholic candidate for President. I am the Democratic Party's candidate for President, who happens also to be a Catholic."
       -- John Fitzgerald Kennedy

    "The Republican nominee-to-be, of course, is also a young man. But his approach is as old as McKinley. His party is the party of the past. His speeches are generalities from Poor Richard's Almanac. Their platform, made up of left-over Democratic planks, has the courage of our old convictions. Their pledge is a pledge to the status quo--and today there can be no status quo."
       -- John Fitzgerald Kennedy,
1960

    "Do you realize the responsibility I carry? I'm the only person standing between Richard Nixon and the White House."
       -- John Fitzgerald Kennedy

    "Sure it's a big job; but I don't know anyone who can do it better than I can."

(Continued on page 13)

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