You know, when we get to a point in this country where dissent is extremism, we've turned, I think, a very dark page in our history. And I don't want us to go there. I encourage Americans and I'm - right now, to go to these town hall meetings, to - to talk to your Congressmen, the people that you elected.
To many Congressmen and Senators right now, there's a ceaseless antagonism toward Hollywood because politically, it is high-reward and low-risk. So when you can't do anything about poverty or the budget deficit, and you can't deal with Bosnia or the possibility of nuclear explosions in Russia, what do you do? You bash Hollywood and get on the front pages.
I am amazed that Congressmen can pass a bill imposing severe penalties on anyone who burns the American flag , whereas they are responsible for burning that for which the flag stands: the United States as a territory, as a people , and as a biological manifestation. That is an example of our perennial confusion of symbols with realities.
I can't remember the exact quote but when I used to trade and Mr. Volcker was Fed chairman, he said something like 'gold is my enemy, I'm always watching what gold is doing', we need to think why he made a statement like that. If you're a central banker or one of the congressmen or senators, watch what gold is doing because this is a no-confidence vote in fiscal and dollar policy.
Business leaders, labor unions, governors, mayors, congressmen and presidents have all complained about a lack of funding for years, but aside from a one-time cash infusion from the stimulus program, nothing much has changed. There is still no consensus on how to solve the problem or where to get the massive amounts of money needed to fix it, just another example of political paralysis in Washington.
There's nothing entertaining about watching goons hurl venomous slurs at congressmen like the civil rights hero John Lewis and the openly gay Barney Frank How curious that a mob fond of likening President Obama to Hitler knows so little about history that it doesn't recognize its own small-scale mimicry of Kristallnacht.
Some men escape the grip. Maybe their wives have no social ambitions; maybe they've hit a sentence or two in a 'dangerous book' that pleased them; maybe they started on the treadmill as I did and were knocked off. Anyway, they're the congressmen you can't bribe, the Presidents who aren't politicians, the writers, speakers, scientists, statesmen who aren't just populate grab-bags for a half-dozen women and children.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
What do we have for veterans? Government-run health care. I understand that. Congressmen and senators... they get five choices of government-run health care. Why should a congressman and senator get anything more than a regular citizen does? Why are they privileged and the rest of us aren't?
If a theology student in lowa should get up at a PTA luncheon in Sioux City and attack the President's military policy, my guess is that you would probably find it reported somewhere the next morning in the New York Times. But when 300 Congressmen endorse the President's policy, the next morning it is apparently not considered news fit to print.
Spiro T. Agnew
In general, presidents and congressmen have very limited power to do good for the economy and awesome power to do bad. The best good thing that politicians can do for the economy is to stop doing bad. In part, this can be achieved through reducing taxes and economic regulation, and staying out of our lives.
Walter E. Williams
The talk shows are stuffed full of sufferers who have regained their health--congressmen who suffered through a serious spell of boozing and skirt-chasing, White House aides who were stricken cruelly with overweening ambition, movie stars and baseball players who came down with acute cases of wanting to trash hotel rooms while under the influence of recreational drugs. Most of them have found God, or at least a publisher.
New York congressmen have recently been plagued by a string of embarrassing scandals. Shirtless craigslist hunk Chris Lee, nonconsensual staff tickle monster, Eric Massa, naked texter Anthony Weiner, so this guy is now running to join those dubious ranks and win the Michael Grimm seat. And he's campaigning on the promise that he's too old to be too gross. And I'm not paraphrasing the campaign pledge.
So what? A lobbyist cheated Indian tribes out of $25 million then laundered their money through phony Christian charities trying to stop other Indian tribes from getting casinos [on screen: 'Thou Shalt Not Compete'] and bribe congressmen in the process. Know what I call that? I call that business as usual in Washington. [on screen: 'Screwing Indians']
I have done it [appointed commissions] regretfully and with the hope that it would be temporary. But after a commission is established you find it always wants to enlarge itself, employ more people, is very busy with Senators and Congressmen to impress upon them the great value of the services of the commission, and even when I talk to people that I appoint to commissions and tell them I would like them to go on to various boards with the idea that they may be abolished, they say they ought to be abolished, but when they have taken their position they very soon seem to change their mind.
We want freedom by any means necessary. We want justice by any means necessary. We want equality by any means necessary. We don't feel that in 1964, living in a country that is supposedly based upon freedom, and supposedly the leader of the free world, we don't think that we should have to sit around and wait for some segregationist congressmen and senators and a President from Texas in Washington, D.C., to make up their minds that our people are due now some degree of civil rights. No, we want it now or we don't think anybody should have it.
How did the party that elected the first black U.S. senator, the party that elected the first 20 African American congressmen, become a party that now loses 95 percent of the black vote? How did the Republican Party, the party of the Great Emancipator, lose the trust and faith of an entire race? During the Great Depression ... African Americans understood that Republicans championed citizenship and voting rights, but they became impatient for economic emancipation.
I think we're raising whole generations who regard facts as more or less optional. We have kids in elementary school who are being urged to take stands on political issues, to write letters to congressmen and presidents about nuclear energy. They're not a decade old, and they're being thrown these kinds of questions that can absorb the lifetime of a very brilliant and learned man. And they're being taught that it's important to have views, and they're not being taught that it's important to know what you're talking about. It's important to hear the opposite viewpoint, and more important to learn how to distinguish why viewpoint A and viewpoint B are different, and which one has the most evidence or logic behind it. They disregard that. They hear something, they hear some rhetoric, and they run with it.
We want to believe. Young students try to believe in older authors, constituents try to believe in their congressmen, countries try to believe in their statesmen, but they can't. Too many voices, too much scattered, illogical, ill-considered criticism. It's worse in the case of newspapers. Any rich, unprogressive old party with that particularly grasping, acquisitive form of mentality known as financial genius can own a paper that is the intellectual meat and drink of thousands of tired, hurried men, men too involved in the business of modern living to swallow anything but predigested food. For two cents the voter buys his politics, prejudices and philosophy. A year later there is a new political ring or a change in the paper's ownership, consequence: more confusion, more contradiction, a sudden inrush of new ideas, their tempering, their distillation, the reaction against them -
F. Scott Fitzgerald
People try so hard to believe in leaders now, pitifully hard. But we no sooner get a popular reformer or politician or soldier or writer or philosopher-a Roosevelt, a Tolstoi, a Wood, a Shaw, a Nietzsche, than the cross-currents of criticism wash him away. My Lord, no man can stand prominence these days. It's the surest path to obscurity. People get sick of hearing the same name over and over... We want to believe. Young students try to believe in older authors, constituents try to believe in their Congressmen, countries try to believe in their statesmen, but they can't. Too many voices, too much scattered, illogical, ill-considered criticism. It's worse in the case of newspapers. Any rich, unprogressive old party with that particularly grasping, acquisitive form of mentality known as financial genius can own a paper that is the intellectual meat and drink of thousands of tired, hurried men, men too involved in the business of modern living to swallow anything but predigested food. For two cents the voter buys his politics, prejudices, and philosophy. A year later there is a new political ring or a change in the paper's ownership, consequence: more confusion, more contradiction, a sudden inrush of new ideas, their tempering, their distillation, the reaction against them-
F. Scott Fitzgerald
The moment I entered the bright, buzzing lobby of Men's House I was overcome by a sense of alienation and hostility ... The lobby was the meeting place for various groups still caught up in the illusions that had just been boomeranged out of my head: college boys working to return to school down South; older advocates of racial progress with utopian schemes for building black business empires; preachers ordained by no authority except their own, without church or congregation, without bread or wine, body or blood; the community 'leaders' without followers; old men of sixty or more still caught up in post-Civil War dreams of freedom within segregation; the pathetic ones who possessed noting beyond their dreams of being gentlemen, who held small jobs or drew small pensions, and all pretending to be engaged in some vast, though obscure, enterprise, who affected the pseudo-courtly manners of certain southern congressmen and bowed and nodded as they passed like senile old roosters in a barnyard; they younger crowd for whom I now felt a contempt such as only a disillusioned dreamer feels for those still unaware that they dream-the business students from southern colleges, for whom business was a vague, abstract game with rules as obsolete as Noah's Ark but who yet were drunk on finance.