provocative statements by actual famous people - or not

On personal integrity hangs humanity's fate. -- R. Buckminster Fuller

There is no such thing as a vulnerability in technology that can only be used by nice people doing the right thing in accord with the rule of law. -- Cory Doctorow


When you bend the rules, watch out for the recoil.

Sixty five billion solar neutrinos pass through every square centimeter of Earth's surface (and every living thing) every second. -- science

If the brain were simple enough for us to understand it, we would be too stupid to understand it. -- Ken Hill

No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion. -- Nelson Mandela

We're hallucinating all the time, even now.  When we agree about our hallucinations, we call that "reality". -- Anil Seth, cognitive neuroscientist

Nothing is ever the way it should have been; it is only the way it must be.  One's fate is reshaped by every step he takes.

Two men in a burning house must not stop to argue. -- Ashanti proverb

The Internet provides global access to the sum of all human nonsense.

Boredom is the feeling that everything is a waste of time; serenity, that nothing is. -- Thomas Szasz

Most non-communicable diseases (such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease) are spread by big corporations because profit-maximizing behavior leads them to be out pushing products which end up causing disease. -- Stanton Glantz, public-health researcher famed for his analysis of tobacco industry documents in the 1990s

It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it. -- Upton Sinclair

One of the more dangerous pleasures of great wealth is that you never have to hear anyone tell you that you are completely wrong. -- David Frum, The Atlantic

Fervent pretense of religious belief emboldens a man's most unholy traits.

A sufficient amount of stupidity is indistinguishable from a conspiracy.

1N73LL1G3NC3 15 7H3 4B1L17Y 70 4D4P7 70 CH4NG3. -- 573PH3N H4WK1NG

Not all those who wander are lost. -- J. R. R. Tolkien

It used to be, when someone walked around talking to unseen spirits, people thought he was either holy or crazy.  Now we have a cure for both: the cellphone.

Why is it normal that people of "good doctrine" murder people of "bad doctrine", and not the other way around? -- unknown

In wilderness at night, your biggest threat is the half light and constant prattle of your fear, not the darkness and silence.  Don't bring the city with you.

What is "wild"?  It is not chaos.  Rather, it is a fluid connection to nature and her cycles, to the web of life, for the benefit of all.

Host: And today we have a guest, Ivan Ivanov. He has worked at the Forex market, and on his account, 1 million rubles! Ivan, please share how you achieved such success?
Guest: Very simple. At first I had 2 million ...
-- Egoza3000 - Russian member, Web Of Trust

The "Powers That Be" are not smart enough to engineer Armageddon, but they may yet be stupid enough.

If governments are involved in covering up the knowledge of aliens, then they are doing a much better job of it than they seem to do at anything else. -- Stephen Hawking

Being thorough is never fun; but neither is being reproachable.

Zombies love you for what's on the inside. -- unknown

Think outside the TV.

Perchance one may be the harp, and another the musician; yet no one owns the music. That it is played, is sufficient unto itself.

The constant drumbeat that lawful exercise of Presidential power is tantamount to tyranny creates a dire risk that healthy political dialog will be transformed into rabid mutual hatred, resulting in the very chaos that will produce an actual tyrant, someone with a Final Solution to all of our vexing social problems. -- Al Rodbell

There are no average people. There are only mediocre ways of perceiving them.

If you spend more on coffee than on IT security, you will be hacked. What's more, you deserve to be hacked. -- Richard Clarke

Someone stole my identity last week. Today he showed up at my door and pleaded for me to take it back. -- unknown

The reality is not that power corrupts; it is rather, that power is a magnet to the corruptible. -- Frank Herbert, Dune

Fortune does not change men, it unmasks them. -- Suzanne Necker

The cheap man pays twice. -- Russian proverb

Greg's Law of Conservation of Matter and Energy: "Any reduction in wasted matter or energy will soon be offset by additional waste."

Chop your own wood, and it will warm you twice. -- Henry Ford

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -- Krishnamurti

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth. -- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. -- Albert Einstein

The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

Our destiny is frequently met in the very paths we take to avoid it. -- Jean de La Fontaine

Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare. -- Japanese proverb

Fanaticism consists of redoubling your efforts when you have forgotten your aim. -- George Santayana

Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. -- Susan Ertz

The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax. -- Albert Einstein

In theory, there should be no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there is. -- William T. Harbaugh

Science is belief in the ignorance of experts. -- Richard Feynman

Anger punishes the bearer's heart. Who remains angry suffers most.

For many, the search for perfection virtually guarantees it will be found, and disregarded in order to continue the search.

Some mornings it just doesn't seem worth it to gnaw through the leather straps. -- Emo Philips

The secret of acting is sincerity. If you can fake that, you've got it made. -- George Burns

The individual and collective progressions of chronic diseases, including that old catch-all "aging", are as predictable as the individual and collective side-effects of the environmental toxins, pharmaceuticals, and life-style choices which cause them.

Television: a medium. So called because it is neither rare nor well done. -- Ernie Kovacs

An expert frequently avoids all the small errors as he sweeps on to the grand fallacy. -- M. Lincoln Schuster (of Simon & Schuster)

Science is the orderly arrangement of what, at the moment, seem to be the facts. -- unknown

Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by stupidity. -- Nick Diamos

We have enough youth; how about a fountain of SMART? -- unknown

Aspire to inspire before you expire. -- Eugene Bell Jr.

You can't be late until you show up. -- unknown

Silence is golden. Duct tape is silver. -- unknown

I am not available right now, but I thank you for caring enough to call. I am making some changes in my life. Please leave a message after the beep. If I do not return your call, you are one of the changes. -- telephone answering machine message

A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It makes the hand bleed that uses it. -- Rabindranath Tagore

The grand task of seers is to bring forth the idea that, in order to evolve, man must first free his awareness from its bindings to the social order. Once awareness is free, Intent will redirect it onto a new evolutionary path. -- Don Juan Matus, as quoted by Carlos Castaneda in The Art of Dreaming

Sometimes it just amazes me how many people desperately want to protect my personal information.

Ten thousand reflections
hide the true gem.

Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. -- John F. Kennedy, 1962

Time flies like the wind. Fruit flies like bananas. -- Groucho Marx

When asked what surprised him most about humanity, the Dalai Lama answered "Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then, he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then he dies having never really lived. -- Dalai Lama XIV

No study will ever be done on how many accidents are the result of driving under the influence of coffee.

I asked life, "Why you are so difficult?" Life smiled and replied, "Because you never appreciate easy things." -- unknown

Gettin' old ain't for sissies. -- Bette Davis

What color is a chameleon on a mirror? -- Stewart Brand

If a man speaks in the forest and there is no woman to hear, is he still wrong? -- unknown

What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away. -- unknown

The world doesn't want you to know. They want you to believe. But there is a big difference between believing and knowing. Should you believe in yourself or should you know yourself? -- Prem Rawat

It is impossible to be what others think you are. It is entirely possible to be yourself.

Most of us know that appearances can be deceiving. This leaves us no excuse for judging people by their appearance, or being fooled by it.

Imagination, like reason, is only a tool. We should not become so enamored with one of our faculties that we abandon the rest.

I tried thinking outside the box. A big wind came up, and now I can't find my box.

There are no bigger shareholders than the people who invest a third of their lives in your company.

In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress. -- John Adams

If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed. If you do read the newspaper, you are misinformed. -- Mark Twain

I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle. -- Winston Churchill

A government, which robs Peter to pay Paul, can always depend on the support of Paul. -- George Bernard Shaw

A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt he proposes to pay off with your money. -- G. Gordon Liddy

Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. -- James Bovard

Foreign aid might be defined as a transfer of money from poor people in rich countries, to rich people in poor countries. -- Douglas Casey

Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys. -- P.J. O'Rourke

Government is the great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else. -- Frederic Bastiat

Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it. -- Ronald Reagan (1986)

I don't make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts. -- Will Rogers

If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it's free! -- P.J. O'Rourke

In general, the art of government consists of taking as much money as possible from one party of the citizens to give to the other. -- Voltaire

Just because you don't take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you! -- Pericles (430 BC)

No man's life, liberty, or property is safe while the legislature is in session. -- Mark Twain

Talk is cheap, except when Congress does it. -- Cullen Hightower

The government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end, and no responsibility at the other. -- Ronald Reagan

The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery. -- Winston Churchill

The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin. -- Mark Twain

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. -- Herbert Spencer

There is no distinctly native American criminal class, save Congress. -- Mark Twain

What this country needs are more unemployed politicians. -- Edward Langley

A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -- unknown (misattributed to Thomas Jefferson)

I was put on this Earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Right now, I am so far behind that I will never die. -- Calvin and Hobbes

I don't worship Truth. Experience has simply shown it's the best tool in the box.

There are no degrees of correctness in a creative act. Creativity flees the constraints of convention.

If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to fix it? - unknown

It's never too late to have a happy childhood. -- Tom Robbins

I'd love to change the world, but they won't give me the source code. -- unknown

Deliver yesterday, code today, think tomorrow. -- Noodle's Rule of Software Development

This phone call isn't really being monitored for training purposes.

The other lane always goes faster. -- unknown

Never wrestle with a pig, you'll only get dirty and the pig likes it. -- George Bernard Shaw

The laws of nature are only as immutable as the minds which promote them.

Ignorance of the law is 9/10ths of the law.

Just because you aren't paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get you. -- Joseph Heller

The search for "life as we know it" is doomed by definition.

96.37% of all statistics are made up. -- Kevin D. Quitt

Religions are like swimming pools, most of the noise comes from the shallow end. -- Bishop Shelby Spong

A closed mouth gathers no foot. -- unknown

If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably a wise investment. -- unknown

Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in his shoes. That way, when you criticize him, you're a mile away and you have his shoes. -- Deep Thoughts by Jack Handy

There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance - that principle is contempt prior to investigation. -- William H. Poole, interpreting William Paley

While you're trying to get ahead, remember to get aheart as well.

When your only problem IS a nail, all you want is a decent hammer.

There are only two ways to live your life: one is as though nothing is a miracle; the other is as though everything is a miracle. -- Albert Einstein

When the duty itself is dishonorable, it cannot be performed with honor.

Many problems can be solved simply by not contributing to them.

POLITICS, n. A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage. -- Ambrose Bierce

Animals see the unobstructed world with their whole eyes. But our eyes, turned back upon themselves, encircle and seek to snare the world, setting traps for freedom. -- Rainier Maria Rilke

Truth is food. If you withhold that food, the people will starve, and you cannot blame them for stretching what little provisions they have.

Time exists so that everything doesn't happen at once. -- Albert Einstein
Space exists so that everything doesn't happen to you. -- Susan Sontag

In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists. -- Eric Hoffer

The world has achieved brilliance without conscience. Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. If we continue to develop our technology without wisdom or prudence, our servant may prove to be our executioner. -- Gen. Omar Bradley

To those who don't have to do the work, All Things Are Possible. -- unknown

If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it? -- Albert Einstein

It is said that "great minds think alike." What a disappointment. I had hoped they would think differently.

"Zero Tolerance" equals zero intelligence. -- unknown

When you walk to the edge of all the light you have and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, you must believe that one of two things will happen: There will be something solid for you to stand upon, or you will be taught how to fly. -- Patrick Overton

The most precious thing we have is life; yet it has absolutely no trade-in value. -- unknown

How could someone know that we only use about 10% of our brain capacity? -- David A. Morton, M.D.

I am a nobody, nobody is perfect, therefore I am perfect. -- unknown

There is no justice. There is just us.

When the last tree has been cut; when the last fish has been caught; when the last river has been poisoned; only then will you find that you cannot eat money. -- Cree Indian prophecy

Our environment is failing because a crucial element has been removed from it. That crucial element is us.

Most of us are pretty typical. -- David Dunning, Professor of Psychology, Cornell University

A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, and die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. -- Robert A. Heinlein

If scientists can be counted on for anything, it's for creating unintended consequences. -- Michael Dougan

To err is human. To blame, divine. -- unknown

The early bird may get the worm, but the late mouse gets the cheese. -- unknown

The righteousness of men should be treated with the same respect that one would accord to a rattlesnake.

Things are more like they are now than they ever were before. -- Dwight D. Eisenhower

Help fight continental drift! -- unknown

Tomorrow will be like today, only more so. -- Bible, Isaiah 56:12

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -- Albert Einstein

Life is worthless, just as worth is lifeless.

They never did make 'em like they used to! -- unknown

Cleanliness is next to impossible. -- Winnie the Pooh

I cried because I had no shoes, until I met a man who had no feet. -- unknown

First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win. -- Gandhi

He who laughs, lasts. -- Mary Pettibone Poole

Even moderation ought not to be practiced to excess. -- Buddha

Explain to me again the difference between superstitious beliefs or pagan incantations, and scientific ones.

Be braver - you cannot cross a chasm in two small jumps. -- David Lloyd George

The fact that many things have no explanation ought to prevent them from happening; but it doesn't. -- Pot-Shots by Ashleigh Brilliant

It is easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them. -- Alfred Adler

The only thing which is truly supernatural is our insistence upon confining our awareness to the world of daily life.

If perceivable reality was a jigsaw puzzle made up of 40 million pieces, we humans create our image of reality out of only 40 pieces. -- Robert Morning Sky

In order to be, never try to seem. -- Albert Camus

There are only two kinds of people: (1) people who think there are only two kinds of people, and (2) people who don't. -- unknown

Time began when you were born. It will end when you die. -- G.I. Gurdjieff

If you don't care where you are, then you ain't lost. -- unknown

Tell the truth and run. -- Yugoslavian proverb

A thing is not necessarily true because a man dies for it. -- Oscar Wilde

To refuse praise is to seek praise twice. -- Chinese proverb

Anything that is not worth doing at all is not worth doing well. -- Robert Fulghum

Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right. -- Isaac Asimov

This we know: the earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. Mankind did not create the web of life, he is merely a strand in it; and whatever he does to the web, he does to himself. -- Ted Perry, screenwriter

If you lose your mind, forget it. -- unknown

What if this weren't a hypothetical question? -- unknown

An effective way to deal with predators is to taste terrible. -- unknown

If God had meant for us to be naked, we would have been born that way. -- Mark Twain

You are no bigger than the things that annoy you. -- Jerry Bundsen

If you blame others for your failures, then credit them with your successes. -- unknown

Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die. -- Joe Louis

Here Lies The World's Healthiest Man -- RIP

God has no religion. -- Gandhi

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. -- Albert Einstein

Every day people are straying away from church and going back to God. -- Lenny Bruce

There is more to life than increasing its speed. -- Gandhi

Thank God kids never mean well. -- Lily Tomlin

It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for any public office. -- H. L. Mencken

Lawyers, I suppose, were children once. -- Charles Lamb

It is better to be a mouse in a cat's mouth than a man in a lawyer's hands. -- Spanish proverb

Whatever their other contributions to our society, lawyers could be an important source of protein. -- Guindon cartoon caption

We all have the strength to endure the misfortune of others. -- Francois de La Rochefoucauld

Nothing is illegal if a hundred businessmen decide to do it. -- Andrew Young

We don't know a millionth of one percent about anything. -- Thomas Edison

If you think education is expensive, try ignorance. -- Derek Bok

We're all in this alone. -- Lily Tomlin

A man can't get rich if he takes proper care of his family. -- Navajo proverb

At the moment you are most in awe of all there is about life that you don't understand, you are closer to understanding it all than at any other time. -- Jane Wagner

All great truths begin as blasphemies. -- George Bernard Shaw

Animals have these advantages over man: they have no theologians to instruct them, their funerals cost them nothing, and no one starts lawsuits over their wills. -- Voltaire

Scriptures, n. The sacred books of our religion, as distinguished from the false and profane writings on which all other faiths are based. -- Ambrose Bierce

When people are free to do as they please, they usually imitate each other. -- Eric Hoffer

If you talk to God you are praying; if God talks to you, you have schizophrenia. -- Dr. Thomas Szasz

History would be a wonderful thing - if it were only true. -- Leo Tolstoy

To die for an idea is to set a rather high price on conjecture. -- Anatole France

Lawyers are the only persons in whom ignorance of the law is not punished. -- Jeremy Bentham

Liberty doesn't work as well in practice as it does in speeches. -- Will Rogers

Man is a clever animal who behaves like an imbecile. -- Albert Schweitzer

It is only the poor who are forbidden to beg. -- Anatole France

Pray, v. To ask that the laws of the universe be annulled on behalf of a single petitioner confessedly unworthy. -- Ambrose Bierce

We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another. -- Jonathan Swift

I have only a flickering light to guide me in the darkness of a thick forest. Up comes a theologian and blows it out. -- Denis Diderot

War is, at first, the hope one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. -- Karl Kraus

Nobody makes a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little. -- Edmund Burke

All religions will pass, but this will remain: simply sitting in a chair and looking in the distance. -- Vasilii Rozanov

Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted. -- Aldous Huxley

The animal needing something knows how much it needs; the man does not. -- Democritus of Abdera

Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation. -- Oscar Wilde

The tyrant grinds down his slaves and they don't turn against him; they crush those beneath them. -- Emily Bronte

Wars begin when you will, but they do not end when you please. -- Niccolo Machiavelli

Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one. -- Marcus Aurelius

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. -- Edmund Burke

A great deal of talent is lost to the world for want of a little courage. -- Sydney Smith

I have learned this at least by my experiments; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. -- Henry David Thoreau

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. -- Theodore Roosevelt

The important thing is this; to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become. -- Charles DuBois

We do not stop playing because we grew old. We grow old because we stopped playing. -- George Bernard Shaw

If you steal something small you are a petty thief; but if you steal millions, you are a gentleman of society. -- Greek proverb

If we believe absurdities, we shall commit atrocities. -- Voltaire

The most savage controversies are those about matters as to which there is not good evidence either way. Persecution is used in theology, not in mathematics. -- Bertrand Russell

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race. -- Calvin Coolidge

I would rather be ashes than dust. I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than that it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The proper function of a man is to live, not exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time. -- Jack London

If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing. -- Anatole France

The more ignorant the authority, the more dogmatic it is. In the fields where no real knowledge is even possible, the authorities are the fiercest and most assured and punish non-belief with the severest of penalties. -- Abraham Myerson

One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man. -- Elbert Hubbard

Appeasers believe that if you keep on throwing steaks to a tiger, the tiger will become a vegetarian. -- Heywood Broun

Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves. -- Abraham Lincoln, 1859 letter

The tree is known by its fruit. -- Bible, Matthew 12:33

My definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular. -- Adlai Stevenson

A hungry man is not a free man. -- Adlai Stevenson

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. -- Aesop

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind. -- Albert Einstein

Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world. -- Arthur Schopenhauer

The best way of avenging yourself is not to become like the wrongdoer. -- Marcus Aurelius

A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step. -- Lao Tzu

Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe. -- Saint Augustine

We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools. -- Martin Luther King Jr.

In a consumer society there are inevitably two kinds of slaves: the prisoners of addiction and the prisoners of envy. -- Ivan Illich

Don't wait for the Last Judgment. It takes place every day. -- Albert Camus

The greatest horrors of our world are committed by people who are totally sincere. -- John Mortimer

The manner of giving is worth more than the gift. -- Pierre Corneille

It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees. -- Emiliano Zapata

"Freedom from fear" could be said to sum up the whole philosophy of human rights. -- Dag Hammarskjoeld

Who dares to teach must never cease to learn. -- John Cotton Dana

When the missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said "let us pray." We closed our eyes. When we opened them, we had the Bible and they had the land. -- Desmond Tutu

Man has such a predilection for systems and abstract deductions that he is ready to distort the truth intentionally; he is ready to deny the evidence of his senses only to justify his logic. -- Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Our deeds determine us, as much as we determine our deeds. -- George Eliot

Everything in war is barbaric; but the worst barbarity of war is that it forces men collectively to commit acts against which individually they would revolt with their whole being. -- Ellen Key

The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness. -- Joseph Conrad

When people like me, they tell me it is in spite of my color. When they dislike me, they point out that it is not because of my color. -- Frantz Fanon

I do not believe in a fate that falls on men however they act; but I do believe in a fate that falls on them unless they act. -- G.K. Chesterton

The right to be heard does not automatically include the right to be taken seriously. -- Hubert H. Humphrey

If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind. -- John Stuart Mill

In the name of noble purposes men have committed unspeakable acts of cruelty against one another. -- J. William Fulbright

When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. -- Jonathan Swift

What experience and history teach is this: that people and governments never have learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it. -- G.W.F. Hegel

Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder. -- George Washington

Reform must come from within, not from without. You cannot legislate for virtue. -- James Cardinal Gibbons

Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise. -- Thomas Gray

It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood. -- James Madison

The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone. -- Harriet Beecher Stowe

If there is technological advance without social advance, there is, almost automatically, an increase in human misery. -- Michael Harrington

Puritanism - the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy. -- H.L. Mencken

We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done. -- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices. -- William James

If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. -- John F. Kennedy

It is well that war is so terrible, otherwise we should grow too fond of it. -- Robert E. Lee

The earth we abuse and the living things we kill will, in the end, take their revenge; for in exploiting their presence we are diminishing our future. -- Marya Mannes

It is an open question whether any behavior based on fear of eternal punishment can be regarded as ethical or should be regarded as merely cowardly. -- Margaret Mead

If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants. -- Bernard of Chartres

A man said to the Universe: "Sir, I exist!" "However," replied the Universe, "This fact has not created in me a sense of obligation." -- Stephen Crane

To fight and conquer in all our battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting. -- "Sun Tzu" The Art of War

There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare. -- "Sun Tzu" The Art of War

All cruel people describe themselves as paragons of frankness. -- Tennessee Williams

To recommend thrift to the poor is both grotesque and insulting. It is like advising a man who is starving to eat less. -- Oscar Wilde

You see things; and you say, "Why?" But I dream things that never were; and I say, "Why not?" -- George Bernard Shaw

Common sense is not so common. -- Voltaire

Man is a rational animal who always loses his temper when he is called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason. -- Oscar Wilde

When a woman behaves like a man, why doesn't she behave like a nice man? -- Edith Evans

The best index to a person's character is (a) how he treats people who can't do him any good, and (b) how he treats people who can't fight back. -- Abigail Van Buren

With the supermarket as our temple and the singing commercial as our litany, are we likely to fire the world with an irresistible vision of America's exalted purpose and inspiring way of life? -- Adlai Stevenson

Silence, indifference and inaction were Hitler's principal allies. -- Immanuel Jakobovits

To be adult is to be alone. -- Jean Rostand

The most beautiful emotion we can experience is the mystical. It is the power of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead. To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty, which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their most primitive forms - this knowledge, this feeling, is at the center of true religiousness. In this sense, and in this sense only, I belong to the rank of devoutly religious men. -- Albert Einstein

What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, man would die from a great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts, soon happens to man. All things are connected. -- Ted Perry, screenwriter

Life is too short to be little. Man is never so manly as when he feels deeply, acts boldly, and expresses himself with frankness and with fervour. -- Benjamin Disraeli

The only queer people are those who don't love anybody. -- Rita Mae Brown

Truth never damages a cause that is just. -- Gandhi

Is there something in trade that desiccates and flattens out, that turns men into dried leaves at the age of forty? Certainly there is. It is not due to trade but to intensity of self-seeking, combined with narrowness of occupation. Business has destroyed the very knowledge in us of all other natural forces except business. -- John Jay Chapman

Information, usually seen as the precondition of debate, is better understood as its by-product. -- Christopher Lasch

Today Americans are overcome not by the sense of endless possibility but by the banality of the social order they have erected against it. -- Christopher Lasch

Men are qualified for civil liberty in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon their own appetites; in proportion as their love to justice is above their rapacity; in proportion as their soundness and sobriety of understanding is above their vanity and presumption; in proportion as they are more disposed to listen to the counsels of the wise and good, in preference to the flattery of knaves. -- Edmund Burke

Not many appreciate the ultimate power and potential usefulness of basic knowledge accumulated by obscure, unseen investigators who, in a lifetime of intensive study, may never see any practical use for their findings but who go on seeking answers to the unknown without thought of financial or practical gain. -- Eugenie Clark

Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth. -- John F. Kennedy

Loyalty to petrified opinions never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul in this world; and never will. -- Mark Twain

I believe that a man is converted when first he hears the low, vast murmur of life, of human life, troubling his hitherto unconscious self. -- D. H. Lawrence

The accomplice to the crime of corruption is frequently our own indifference. -- Bess Myerson

Anyone who conducts an argument by appealing to authority is not using his intelligence; he is just using his memory. -- Leonardo Da Vinci

Ever notice that anyone going slower than you is an idiot, but going faster is a maniac? -- George Carlin

We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy is when men are afraid of the light. -- Plato

He who is the most slow in making a promise is the most faithful in the performance of it. -- Rousseau

Go out and preach the gospel; and if you must, use words. -- St. Francis of Assisi

It is not in the nature of politics that the best men should be elected. The best men do not want to govern their fellowmen. -- George MacDonald

Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time; for that's the stuff that life is made of. -- Benjamin Franklin

Education: That which discloses to the wise and disguises from the foolish their lack of understanding. -- Ambrose Bierce

I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work. -- Thomas Edison

The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough. -- Rabindranath Tagore

When it is a question of money, everyone is of the same religion. -- Voltaire

A man grows most tired while standing still. -- Chinese Proverb

I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it. -- unknown

Most of our so-called reasoning consists in finding arguments for going on believing as we already do. -- James Harvey Robinson

Don't worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you'll have to ram them down people's throats. -- Howard Aiken

Experience is that marvelous thing that enables you recognize a mistake when you make it again. -- F. P. Jones

I'm not a complete idiot; some parts are missing. -- unknown

God made the Idiot for practice, and then He made the School Board. -- Mark Twain

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time to plant a tree is today. -- African Proverb

I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use. -- Galileo Galilei

Just as eating against one's will is injurious to health, so study without a liking for it spoils the memory, and it retains nothing it takes in. -- Leonardo Da Vinci

Whoever gossips to you will gossip of you. -- Spanish proverb

Be master of your petty annoyances and conserve your energies for the big, worthwhile things. It isn't the mountain ahead that wears you out, it's the grain of sand in your shoe. -- unknown

I plan on living forever. So far, so good. -- unknown

A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains. -- Dutch proverb

It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit. -- Harry Truman

The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. -- Bertrand Russell

Common sense is not factored into the intelligence quotient. -- Greg Gabriel

It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are, if it doesn't agree with experiment it's wrong. -- Richard Feynman

Forgiveness is not an occasional act; it is a permanent attitude. -- Dr. Martin Luther King

When you do not listen to your conscience it's because you do not want advice from a stranger. -- unknown

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. -- Plato

I like my way of doing things better than your way of not doing them. -- D. L. Moody.

Education is what remains when we have forgotten all that we have been taught. -- Marquis of Halifax

A leader is best when people barely know that he exists, not so good when people obey and acclaim him, worse when they despise him. Fail to honor people, they fail to honor you. But of a good leader, who talks little, when his work is done, his aim is fulfilled, they will all say, "We did this ourselves." -- Lao-Tzu

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic. -- unknown

If you try to fail, and succeed, which have you done? -- unknown

Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration. -- Thomas A. Edison

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. -- Albert Einstein

Resentment is like taking poison and hoping the other person dies. -- St. Augustine

Don't keep forever on the public road, going only where others have gone. Leave the beaten track occasionally and dive into the woods. You will be certain to find something you have never seen before. Of course it will be a little thing, but do not ignore it. One discovery will lead to another, and before you know it, you will have something worth thinking about to occupy your mind, and really big discoveries are the result of thought. -- Alexander Graham Bell

Please all and you will please none. -- Aesop

Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from religious conviction. -- Blaise Pascal

Imagination is more powerful even than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein

Technology splits the individual, causing him to favor above the rest those parts of himself that engage with the technology. -- adopted from Neil Postman

I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who overcomes his enemies; for the hardest victory is victory over self. -- Aristotle

People defend nothing more violently than the pretenses they live by. -- Allen Drury

Even when all the experts agree, they may well be mistaken. -- Bertrand Russell

It has been said that politics is the second oldest profession. I have learned that it bears a striking resemblance to the first. -- Ronald Reagan

All logic texts are divided into two parts. In the first part, on deductive logic, the fallacies are explained; in the second part, on inductive logic, they are committed. -- Morris Raphael Cohen

Pride is what we have. Vanity is what others have. -- unknown

Stories are relics, part of an undiscovered pre-existing world. -- Stephen King

I just got lost in thought. It was unfamiliar territory. -- unknown

No matter what side of an argument you're on, you always find some people on your side that you wish were on the other side. -- Jascha Heifetz.

Cynicism is the intellectual cripple's substitute for intelligence. It is the dishonest businessman's substitute for conscience. It is the communicator's substitute, whether he is advertising man or editor or writer, for self-respect. -- Russell Lynes

In seeking knowledge, the first step is silence, the second listening, the third remembering, the fourth practicing, and the fifth teaching others. -- Solomon Ibn Gabirol

Logic: The art of thinking and reasoning in strict accordance with the limitations and incapacities of human understanding. -- Ambrose Bierce

Call a thing immoral or ugly, soul-destroying or a degradation of man, a peril to the peace of the world or to the well-being of future generations; as long as you have not shown it to be uneconomic you have not really questioned its right to exist, grow, and prosper. -- E. F. Schumacher

Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe. -- H. G. Wells

I have never wished to cater to the crowd; for what I know they do not approve, and what they approve I do not know. -- Epicurus

Duties are not performed for duty's sake, but because their neglect would make the man uncomfortable. A man performs but one duty: the duty of contenting his spirit, the duty of making himself agreeable to himself. -- Mark Twain

Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly and they will show themselves great. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

I shall pass through this world but once; any good thing, therefore, that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not deter it or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again. -- William Penn

Attributions were researched and popular misattributions corrected.  Missing or conflicting sources are attributed to "unknown".  Quotes with no attribution belong to Greg Lauver - I didn't want to see my name written several times on one page.

Now reading:Quotations
© 2008-2019 Lauver Systems • Edwardsburg, MI • 269 635-0721
Content © the authors