We are more thoroughly an enlightened People, with respect to our Political Interests than perhaps any other under Heaven. Every man among us reads, and is so easy in his Circumstances as to have Leisure for Conversations of Improvement, and for acquiring Information.
The spirit of a nation is reflected in its history, its religion, and the degree of its political freedom. The improvement of individual morality is a matter involving one’s private religion, one’s parents, one’s personal efforts, and one’s individual situation. The cultivation of the spirit of the people as a whole requires in addition the respective contributions of folk religion and political institutions.
The only difference between the Democrats and the Republicans is that the Democrats allow the poor to be corrupt, too.
The last thing I ever wanted was to be alive when the three most powerful people on the whole planet would be named Bush, Dick and Colon.
The decisive means for politics is violence.[Für die Politik ist das entscheidende Mittel: die Gewaltsamkeit.]
The Catholic and the Communist are alike in assuming that an opponent cannot be both honest and intelligent.
The career of politics grants a feeling of power. The knowledge of influencing men, of participating in power over them, and above all, the feeling of holding in one’s hands a nerve fiber of historically important events can elevate the professional politician above everyday routine even when he is placed in formally modest positions.
That’s part of our policy, is not to be taken seriously, because I think our opposition, whoever they may be, in all their manifest forms, don’t know how to handle humor. You know, and we are humorous, we are, what are they, Laurel and Hardy. That’s John and Yoko, and we stand a better chance under that guise, because all the serious people, like Martin Luther King, and Kennedy, and Gandhi, got shot.
Sometimes I wonder if we shall ever grow up in our politics and say definite things which mean something, or whether we shall always go on using generalities to which everyone can subscribe, and which mean very little.