The function of the true state is to impose the minimum restrictions and safeguard the maximum liberties of the people, and it never regards the person as a thing.
The left and right wings of the party establishment--two great pinions of an ancient bird of prey.
Strike against war, for without you no battles can be fought! Strike against manufacturing shrapnel and gas bombs and all other tools of murder! Strike against preparedness that means death and misery to millions of human beings! Be not dumb, obedient slaves in an army of destruction! Be heroes in an army of construction!
Our democracy is but a name. We vote? What does that mean? It means that we choose between two bodies of real, though not avowed, autocrats. We choose between Tweedledum and Tweedledee.
Dont buy a single vote more than necessary. Ill be damned if Im going to pay for a landslide.
But peace does not rest in the charters and covenants alone. It lies in the hearts and minds of all people. So let us not rest all our hopes on parchment and on paper, let us strive to build peace, a desire for peace, a willingness to work for peace in the hearts and minds of all of our people. I believe that we can. I believe the problems of human destiny are not beyond the reach of human beings.
The basic problems facing the world today are not susceptible to a military solution.
The inhabitant of London could order by telephone, sipping his morning tea in bed, the various products of the whole earth . . . he could at the same time and by the same means adventure his wealth in the natural resources and new enterprise of any quarter of the world . . . he could secure forthwith, if he wished, cheap and comfortable means of transit to any country or climate without passport or other formality . . .
The theory of aggregate production, which is the point of the following book, nevertheless can be much easier adapted to the conditions of a totalitarian state than the theory of production and distribution put forth under conditions of free competition and a larger degree of laissez-faire. [from the foreword of the 1936 German edition of Keyness book, General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money]
The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is generally understood. Indeed, the world is ruled by little else.
Politicians are the same all over: they promise to build a bridge even where there is no river.
Comrades! We must abolish the cult of the individual decisively, once and for all.
I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today my own government. . . .There is something strangely inconsistent about a nation and a press that would praise you when you say, Be nonviolent toward Jim Clark, but will curse and damn you when you say, Be nonviolent toward little brown Vietnamese children! There is something wrong with that press.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
Nothing good ever comes of violence.
A piece of freedom is no longer enough for human beings . . . unlike bread, a slice of liberty does not finish hunger. Freedom is like life. It cannot be had in installments. Freedom is indivisible--we have it all, or we are not free.
Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time; the need for man to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence.
Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.
An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.
The first casualty of war is truth.
If any question why we died,
Intelligence is not all that important in the exercise of power, and is often, in point of fact, useless.
Ninety percent of the politicians give the other ten percent a bad name.
We had been bombing the bejesus out of them since May. [on the bombing of Cambodia, 19 July 1973]
What are 3,000 MIRVs among friends? (laughter). [to Soviet Premier Leonid Brezhnev, 27 March 1974]
Power is the ultimate aphrodisiac.
The US must carry out some act somewhere in the world which shows its determination to continue to be a world power. [April 1975]
Covert action should not be confused with missionary work. [on the U.S. sellout of the Kurds in Iraq in 1975]
Why should we flagellate ourselves for what the Cambodians did to each other? [regarding the impact of the massive bombing of Cambodia in 1973, which killed three-quarters of a million peasants and disrupted Cambodian society, setting the stage for Pol Pot to come to power and ultimately kill another one-and-a-half million people]
No country can act wisely simultaneously in every part of the globe at every moment of time.
Liberals hold that men are not to be trusted, beyond necessity, with arbitrary power. As Lord Acton said, power corrupts--corrupts the initially good--and absolute power corrupts absolutely. But weakness in the face of power corrupts equally and apart from consequences, buth the power-seeking attitude and that of servility are inherently to be condemned. [Intelligence and Democratic Action 1960:14]
War is a ritual, a deadly ritual, not the result of aggressive self-assertion, but of self-transcending identification. Without loyalty to tribe, church, flag or ideal, there would be no wars.
The most persistent sound which reverberates through mens history is the beating of war drums.
The fundamental assumption that the United States retains the right and obligation to intervene in the Third World in any way it ultimately deems necessary, including military, remains an article of faith among the people who guide both political parties.
The great divide in American foreign policy thinking is between those who believe in paper and those who believe in power.
Passing a law like the assault weapons ban is a symbolic--purely symbolic--move in that direction. Its only real justification is not to reduce crime but to desensitize the public to the regulation of weapons in preparation for their ultimate confiscation. [April 5, 1996]
After eight years during which foreign policy success was largely measured by the number of treaties the president could sign and the number of summits he could attend, we now have an administration willing to assert American freedom of action and the primacy of American national interests. Rather than contain American power within a vast web of constraining international agreements, the new unilateralism seeks to strengthen American power and unashamedly deploy it on behalf of self-defined global ends. . . . The new unilateralism recognizes the uniqueness of the unipolar world we now inhabit and thus marks the real beginning of American post-Cold War foreign policy. [June 8, 2001]
Either the State for ever, crushing individual and local life, taking over in all fields of human activity, bringing with it its wars and its domestic struggles for power, its palace revolutions which only replace one tyrant by another, and inevitably at the end of this development there is . . . death! Or the destruction of States, and new life starting again in thousands of centers on the principle of the lively initiative of the individual and groups and that of free agreement. The choice lies with you!
Lenin is not comparable to any revolutionary figure in history. Revolutionaries have had ideals. Lenin has none.