Politics

1041 – “There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of 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

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997 – Abiy Ahmed Ali on Our Lifelong Assignment to Make the World Better

“What we need to make our first and primary task is and where our struggle ought to concentrate on is upon ourselves. We have to cleanse our thoughts from hatred; different political views and religion are our blessings, we have to conduct them with love. Even if there are disagreements arising from our differences, we should side with justice rather than injustice and correct our moral lenses. Justice should be our main principle; love and respect for all human beings ought to be our moral compass. This is our eternal job that cannot be completed and a work that needs to be always performed. It is our lifelong assignment.”

-Abiy Ahmed Ali, 15th Prime Minister of Ethiopia

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943 – “The proof that the state is a creation of nature and prior to the individual is that the individual, when isolated, is not self-sufficing; and therefore he is like a part in relation to the whole. But he who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god: he is no part of a state.”

-Aristotle

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787 – “Liberty sets the mind free, fosters independence and unorthodox thinking and ideas. But it does not offer instant prosperity or happiness and wealth to everyone. This is something that politicians in particular must keep in mind.”

–Boris Yeltsin, 1st President of the Russian Federation
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783 – James Madison on Factionalism and Partisanship

“The latent causes of faction are thus sown in the nature of man; and we see them everywhere brought into different degrees of activity, according to the different circumstances of civil society. A zeal for different opinions concerning religion, concerning government, and many other points, as well of speculation as of practice; an attachment to different leaders ambitiously contending for pre-eminence and power; or to persons of other descriptions whose fortunes have been interesting to the human passions, have, in turn, divided mankind into parties, inflamed them with mutual animosity, and rendered them much more disposed to vex and oppress each other than to co-operate for their common good. So strong is this propensity of mankind to fall into mutual animosities, that where no substantial occasion presents itself, the most frivolous and fanciful distinctions have been sufficient to kindle their unfriendly passions and excite their most violent conflicts. But the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who hold, and those who are without property, have ever formed distinct interests in society.”

–James Madison, 4th President of the United States of America

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758 – “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion but allow very lively debate within that spectrum – even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.”

–Noam Chomsky
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654 – Henry Steele Commager on Governments and Criticism

“If government, or those in positions of power and authority, can silence criticism by the argument that such criticism might be misunderstood somewhere, there is an end to all criticism, and perhaps an end to our kind of political system. For men in authority will always think that criticism of their policies is dangerous. They will always equate their policies with patriotism, and find criticism subversive.”

–Henry Steele Commager (more…)