Wednesday, May 16, 2007

today's quote

"A people may prefer a free government, but if, from indolence, or carelessness, or cowardice, or want of public spirit, they are unequal to the exertions necessary for preserving it; if they will not fight for it when it is directly attacked; if they can be deluded by the artifices used to cheat them out of it; if by momentary discouragement, or temporary panic, or a fit of enthusiasm for an individual, they can be induced to lay their liberties at the feet even of a great man, or trust him with powers which enable him to subvert their institutions; in all these cases they are more or less unfit for liberty: and though it may be for their good to have had it even for a short time, they are unlikely long to enjoy it."

John Stuart Mill, Representative Government, 1861

4 comments:

Saur♥Kraut said...

So beautifully said, so terribly true, and so chillingly applicable today.

Omnipotent Poobah said...

So, is it just you, me, and liberty against the rest of the nuthatches?

rev. billy bob gisher ©2005 said...

"more or less unfit for liberty"

i can think of a few more things we are unfit for.

daveawayfromhome said...

I have this habit of putting things off until the last moment because the urgency then gives me a great creative rush that seems to work better than staring at a problem and occassionaly banging my head on the table. Maybe that's how America operates, too?

I hope so. Otherwise we may end up gnawing off our own leg to get out of the trap we've built for ourselves.