The dangers of not thinking clearly are much greater now than ever before. It’s not that there’s something new in our way of thinking – it’s that credulous and confused thinking can be much more lethal in ways it was never before.Carl Sagan Quotes. (n.d.). BrainyQuote.com. Retrieved January 6, 2020, from BrainyQuote.com Web site: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/carl_sagan_841930
Now more than ever the people are responsible for the character of their Congress. If that body be ignorant, reckless, and corrupt, it is because the people tolerate ignorance, recklessness, and corruption.President James-Garfield, 100th anniversary of Declaration of Independence
Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.Abraham Lincoln
I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection.Thomas Paine (1776)
Even mercy, where conquest is the object, is only a trick of war; the cunning of the fox is as murderous as the violence of the wolf.Thomas Paine (1776)
The mobs of the great cities add just so much to the support of pure government as sores do to the strength of the human body. It is the manners and spirit of a people, which preserve a republic in vigor. A degeneracy in these is a canker which soon eats to the heart of its laws and constitution.Thomas Jefferson (1787)
The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.Thomas Jefferson
Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government.Thomas Jefferson
Where there is no law, there is no liberty; and nothing deserves the name of law but that which is certain and universal in its operation upon all the members of the community.Benjamin Rush (1788)
A little matter will move a party, but it must be something great that moves a nation.Thomas Paine (1792)
The most sacred of the duties of a government [is] to do equal and impartial justice to all citizens.Thomas Jefferson (1816)
- Illusory Truth Effect : how the frequency of statements influences how accurate we think they are.
- Puppet Candidates : how candidates claim they create things reserved for Congress. (Bush v Gore)
- The Enemy’s POV and Ideological Identity : ideology > facts. Even worse, we have arrived where ideology is our identity.
- Bullshit Curation : “the Orwellian spin of stories from political groups to make the terrible sound good for us or the good for us sound terrible.”
- Memic Straw Men & Gotcha Jerks & Gotcha Jerks II : is it better to be kind or to be right? Attacking people for their different understanding is just making them more entrenched.
Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.
— Van Gogh
…clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what’s true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness…
— Carl Sagan
My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all.
If there is an afterlife, then he has that complete understanding now.
One, remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Two, never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it. Three, if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is there and don’t throw it away.
We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the Universe. That makes us something very special.
Quiet people have the loudest minds.
For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to talk and we learned to listen. Speech has allowed the communication of ideas, enabling human beings to work together to build the impossible. Mankind’s greatest achievements have come about by talking, and its greatest failures by not talking. It doesn’t have to be like this. Our greatest hopes could become reality in the future. With the technology at our disposal, the possibilities are unbounded. All we need to do is make sure we keep talking.
My expectations were reduced to zero when I was 21. Everything since then has been a bonus.
A gaffe is when a politician tells the truth – some obvious truth he isn’t supposed to say.
— Michael Kinsley
I often wonder what I’d do if there weren’t any books in the world.
— James Baldwin, Giovanni’s Room
The books that the world calls immoral are books that show the world its own shame.
— Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
One accurate measurement is worth a thousand expert opinions.
— Grace Hopper
Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.
— Anaïs Nin (via thepowerwithin)
Staying true to yourself is not about staying the same. It’s not about making a goal to be the exact individual whom you were since day one. Staying true means expressing what you think, feel, and value; regardless of when in your life it arises. You may not be the exact same person who you used to be, however that’s completely natural. You have simply grown and deepened your self image since then.
— Nicole Addison (via thepowerwithin)
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
― Martin Luther King, Jr.
There are books, that one has for twenty years without reading them, that one always keeps at hand, that one takes along from city to city, from country to country, carefully packed, even when there is very little room, and perhaps one leafs through them while removing them from a trunk; yet one carefully refrains from reading even a complete sentence. Then after twenty years, there comes a moment when suddenly, as though under a high compulsion, one cannot help taking in such a book from beginning to end, at one sitting: it is like a revelation. Now one knows why one made such a fuss about it. It had to be with one for a long time; it had to travel; it had to occupy space; it had to be a burden; and now it has reached the goal of its voyage, now it reveals itself, now it illuminates the twenty bygone years it mutely lived with one. It could not say so much if it had not been there mutely the whole time, and what idiot would dare to assert that the same things had always been in it.
― Elias Canetti, The Human Province
It was much better to imagine men in some smoky room somewhere, made mad and cynical by privilege and power, plotting over the brandy. You had to cling to this sort of image, because if you didn’t then you might have to face the fact that bad things happened because ordinary people, the kind who brushed the dog and told their children bedtime stories, were capable of then going out and doing horrible things to other ordinary people. It was so much easier to blame it on Them. It was bleakly depressing to think that They were Us. If it was Them, then nothing was anyone’s fault. If it was Us, what did that make Me? After all, I’m one of Us. I must be. I’ve certainly never thought of myself as one of Them. No-one ever thinks of themselves as one of Them. We’re always one of Us. It’s Them that do the bad things.
― Terry Pratchett
To be normal is the ultimate aim of the unsuccessful.
— Carl Jung
But the problem is, I don’t know how to be the glass half full girl, but I also don’t know how to not be the glass half empty girl. Those are two extremes and I feel like I’m somehow caught in the middle.
I’ve noticed before that if you go too long without anyone seeing you, really seeing you, it’s easy to start wondering if you’re really there.
— Maggie Mitchell
Everything you see or hear or experience in any way at all is specific to you. You create a universe by perceiving it, so everything in the universe you perceive is specific to you.
— Douglas Adam
Two important facts about our minds: we can be blind to the obvious, and we are also blind to our blindness.
— Daniel Kahneman
Because let’s be very clear: strong men – strong men, men who are truly role models, don’t need to put down women to make themselves feel powerful. People who are truly strong lift others up.
— Michelle Obama
Happy endings are a luxury of fiction.
— Trudi Canavan
Since the United State presidential election is right around the corner, I have been thinking quite a bit about qualities in the head of the executive branch. Here are some quotes I ran across in dwelling so much.
You have to remember one thing about the will of the people: it wasn’t that long ago that we were swept away by the Macarena.
― Jon Stewart
Every election is determined by the people who show up.
― Larry J. Sabato,
The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.
― Winston S. Churchill
Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.
― Abraham Lincoln
I do not know if the people of the United States would vote for superior men if they ran for office, but there can be no doubt that such men do not run.
― Alexis de Tocqueville,
We in America do not have government by the majority. We have government by the majority who participate.
― Thomas Jefferson
Oh God, the terrible tyranny of the majority. We all have our harps to play. And it’s up to you to know with which ear you’ll listen.
― Ray Bradbury,
Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.
― Benjamin Franklin
Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.’
― Isaac Asimov
I predict future happiness for Americans, if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.
― Thomas Jefferson
What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or in the holy name of liberty or democracy?
― Mahatma Gandhi
As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
― H.L. Mencken
Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.
― John Adams
I sincerely believe that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies, and that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.
― Thomas Jefferson