Wealth

692 – Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society Quote

“The challenge of the next half century is whether we have the wisdom to use that wealth to enrich and elevate our national life, and to advance the quality of our American civilization.

Your imagination, your initiative, and your indignation will determine whether we build a society where progress is the servant of our needs, or a society where old values and new visions are buried under unbridled growth. For in your time we have the opportunity to move not only toward the rich society and the powerful society, but upward to the Great Society.

The Great Society rests on abundance and liberty for all. It demands an end to poverty and racial injustice, to which we are totally committed in our time. But that is just the beginning.

The Great Society is a place where every child can find knowledge to enrich his mind and to enlarge his talents. It is a place where leisure is a welcome chance to build and reflect, not a feared cause of boredom and restlessness. It is a place where the city of man serves not only the needs of the body and the demands of commerce but the desire for beauty and the hunger for community.

It is a place where man can renew contact with nature. It is a place which honors creation for its own sake and for what it adds to the understanding of the race. It is a place where men are more concerned with the quality of their goals than the quantity of their goods.

But most of all, the Great Society is not a safe harbor, a resting place, a final objective, a finished work. It is a challenge constantly renewed, beckoning us toward a destiny where the meaning of our lives matches the marvelous products of our labor.”

–Lyndon B Johnson, 36th President of the United States of America

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576 – “General education is the best preventive of the evils now most dreaded. In the civilized countries of the world, the question is how to distribute most generally and equally the property of the world. As a rule, where education is most general the distribution of property is most general…. As knowledge spreads, wealth spreads. To diffuse knowledge is to diffuse wealth. To give all an equal chance to acquire knowledge is the best and surest way to give all an equal chance to acquire property.”

–Rutherford B Hayes, 19th President of the United States of America
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337 – “[Capitalism is] remarkably resilient and can be traced to a process [called] ‘cheapness.’ … Seven ‘things,’ [which] aren’t physical objects as much as they are a hidden social, ecological and economic infrastructure: nature, money, work, care, food, energy, and lives. [Where] cheapness is a process of responding to economic crises by devaluing each of those [structures] so that capitalism can continue to concentrate wealth in the hands of the already-wealthy…. Capitalism values cheapness above all else.”

–Chris Winters

He was discussing Jason W Moore and Raj Patel’s book The History of the World in Seven Cheap Things with Raj Patel (more…)

316 – “You Didn’t Build That” Quote

“There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, “well, it must be because I was just so smart.” There are a lot of smart people out there. “It must be because I worked harder than everybody else.” Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.

If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges; if you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.”

–Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States of America
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302 – “It’s important to understand CEOs are not job creators. Nor are the rich. Nor are corporations. The job creators are the Middle Class and the Poor, whose purchases create jobs. If the Middle Class and Poor aren’t paid enough, job creation slows. Which is why a higher minimum wage creates jobs.”

–Robert Reich, 22nd United States Secretary of Labor
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