It seemed to me that all things were possible on the island, all tyrannies and cruelties, though in small; and if, in despite of what was possible, we lived at peace with another, surely this was proof that certain laws unknown to us held sway, or else that we had been following the promptings of our hearts all this time, and our hearts had not betrayed us.
Few intellectual tyrannies can be more recalcitrant than the truths that everybody knows and nearly no one can defend with any decent data (for who needs proof of anything so obvious). And few intellectual activities can be more salutary than attempts to find out whether these rocks of ages might crumble at the slightest tap of an informational hammer.
Stephen Jay Gould
Those who believe in their truth -- the only ones whose imprint is retained by the memory of men -- leave the earth behind them strewn with corpses. Religions number in their ledgers more murders than the bloodiest tyrannies account for, and those whom humanity has called divine far surpass the most conscientious murderers in their thirst for slaughter.
Emile M. Cioran
By my monastic life and vows I am saying no to all the concentration camps, the aerial bombardments, the staged political trials, the judicial murders, the racial injustices, the economic tyrannies, and the whole socioeconomic apparatus which seems geared for nothing but global destruction in spite of all its fair words in favor of peace.
There is not really any courage at all in attacking hoary or antiquated things, any more than in offering to fight one's grandmother. The really courageous man is he who defies tyrannies young as the morning and superstitions fresh as the first flowers. The only true free-thinker is he whose intellect is as much free from the future as from the past.
Gilbert K. Chesterton
Now judicial review, beloved by conservatives, can, of course, fulfill the excellent function of declaring government interventions and tyrannies unconstitutional. But it can also validate and legitimize the government in the eyes of the people by declaring these actions valid and constitutional.
Attempting to satisfy the passions that rage inside us and the longings that motivate us, we invent spirituality, lean on political solutions, create new villains, turn our backs on Jesus, and blame a thousand tyrannies- but we never come to terms with the source of the problem deep within the heart and inclination of every human being.
In this statement, my Scipio, I build on your own admirable definition, that there can be no community, properly so called, unless it be regulated by a combination of rights. And by this definition it appears that a multitude of men may be just as tyrannical as a single despot and indeed this is the most odious of all tyrannies, since no monster can be more barbarous than the mob, which assumes the name and mask of the people.
Marcus Tullius Cicero
The promises of pie-in-the-sky liberal environmentalists that we can convert to 'clean' energy sources and stimulate our economy are based on dubious environmental and economic assumptions, fantastic notions about alternative energy, and a disturbing acceptance of the tyrannies inherent in command-control economies.
Those who seek absolute power, even though they seek it to do what they regard as good, are simply demanding the right to enforce their own version of heaven on earth. And let me remind you, they are the very ones who always create the most hellish tyrannies. Absolute power does corrupt, and those who seek it must be suspect and must be opposed.
What is called 'capitalism'is basically a system of corporate mercantilism, with huge and largely unaccountable private tyrannies exercising vast control over the economy, political systems, and social and cultural life, operating in close cooperation with powerful states that intervene massively in the domestic economy and international society.
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
Convinced that the republican is the only form of government which is not eternally at open or secret war with the rights of mankind, my prayers & efforts shall be cordially distributed to the support of that we have so happily established. It is indeed an animating thought that, while we are securing the rights of ourselves & our posterity, we are pointing out the way to struggling nations who wish, like us, to emerge from their tyrannies also. Heaven help their struggles, and lead them, as it has done us, triumphantly thro' them.
Laws just or unjust may govern men's actions. Tyrannies may restrain or regulate their words. The machinery of propaganda may pack their minds with falsehood and deny them truth for many generations of time. But the soul of man thus held in trance or frozen in a long night can be awakened by a spark coming from God knows where and in a moment the whole structure of lies and oppression is on trial for its life.
The belief that politics can be scientific must inevitably produce tyrannies. Politics cannot be a science, because in politics theory and practice cannot be separated, and the sciences depend upon their separation. Empirical politics must be kept in bounds by democratic institutions, which leave it up to the subjects of the experiment to say whether it shall be tried, and to stop it if they dislike it, because, in politics, there is a distinction, unknown to science, between Truth and Justice.
W. H. Auden
The history of woman is the history of the continued and universal oppression of one sex by the other. The emancipation of woman is her restoration to equal rights and privileges with man.... Need we wonder, then, at the sad spectacle which humanity offers us? Its hideous wars, its social abominations, its foul creeds, its treacheries, vices, wants, diseases, lusts, tyrannies, and crimes are the natural outcome of the subjugation of one half of the human race by the other.
Tennessee Celeste Claflin
He believes that if talent is demanded of a literary publisher or a writer, it must also be demanded of a reader. Because we mustn't deceive ourselves: on the journey of reading we often travel through difficult terrains that demand a capacity for intelligent emotion, a desire to understand the other, and to approach a language distinct from the one of our daily tyrannies... Writers fail readers, but it also happens the other way around and readers fail writers when all they ask of them is confirmation that the world is how they see it.
Judged by every standard which history has applied to Governments, the Soviet Government of Russia is one of the worst tyrannies that has ever existed in the world. It accords no political rights. It rules by terror. It punishes political opinions. It suppresses free speech. It tolerates no newspapers but its own. It persecutes Christianity with a zeal and a cunning never equalled since the times of the Roman Emperors. It is engaged at this moment in trampling down the peoples of Georgia and executing their leaders by hundreds.
When a fixed code of laws, which must be observed to the letter, leaves no further care to the judge than to examine the acts of citizens and to decide whether or not they conform to the law as written; then the standard of the just or the unjust, which is to be the norm of conduct for the ignorant as well as for the philosophic citizen, is not a matter of controversy but of fact; then only are citizens not subject to the petty tyrannies of the many which are the more cruel as the distance between the oppressed and the oppressor is less, and which are far more fatal than those of a single man, for the despotism of many can only be corrected by the despotism of one; the cruelty of a single despot is proportioned, not to his might, but to the obstacles he encounters.
At the round earth's imagined corners blow Your trumpets, angels, and arise, arise From death, you numberless infinities Of souls, and to your scattered bodies go ; All whom the flood did, and fire shall o'erthrow, All whom war, dea[r]th, age, agues, tyrannies, Despair, law, chance hath slain, and you, whose eyes Shall behold God, and never taste death's woe. But let them sleep, Lord, and me mourn a space ; For, if above all these my sins abound, 'Tis late to ask abundance of Thy grace, When we are there. Here on this lowly ground, Teach me how to repent, for that's as good As if Thou hadst seal'd my pardon with Thy blood.
I was going to die, sooner or later, whether or not I had even spoken myself. My silences had not protected me. Your silences will not protect you... What are the words you do not yet have? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own, until you will sicken and die of them, still in silence? We have been socialized to respect fear more than our own need for language." I began to ask each time: "What's the worst that could happen to me if I tell this truth?" Unlike women in other countries, our breaking silence is unlikely to have us jailed, "disappeared" or run off the road at night. Our speaking out will irritate some people, get us called bitchy or hypersensitive and disrupt some dinner parties. And then our speaking out will permit other women to speak, until laws are changed and lives are saved and the world is altered forever. Next time, ask: What's the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare. Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it's personal. And the world won't end. And the speaking will get easier and easier. And you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. And you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don't miss them. And new ones will find you and cherish you. And you will still flirt and paint your nails, dress up and party, because, as I think Emma Goldman said, "If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution." And at last you'll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.
Comme l'impe´t est obligatoire pour tous, qu'ils votent ou non, une large proportion de ceux qui votent le font sans aucun doute pour eviter que leur propre argent ne soit utilise contre eux; alors que, en fait, ils se fussent volontiers abstenus de voter, si par le ils avaient pu echapper ne serait-ce qu'e l'impe´t, sans parler de toutes les autres usurpations et tyrannies du gouvernement. Prendre le bien d'un homme sans son accord, puis conclure e son consentement parce qu'il tente, en votant, d'empeªcher que son bien ne soit utilise pour lui faire tort, voile une preuve bien insuffisante de son consentement e soutenir la Constitution. Ce n'est en realite aucunement une preuve. Puisque tous les hommes qui soutiennent la Constitution en votant (pour autant qu'il existe de tels hommes) le font secre¨tement (par scrutin secret), et de manie¨re e eviter toute responsabilite personnelle pour l'action de leurs agents ou representants, on ne saurait dire en droit ou en raison qu'il existe un seul homme qui soutienne la Constitution en votant. Puisque tout vote est secret (par scrutin secret), et puisque tout gouvernement secret est par necessite une association secre¨te de voleurs, tyrans et assassins, le fait general que notre gouvernement, dans la pratique, ope¨re par le moyen d'un tel vote prouve seulement qu'il y a parmi nous une association secre¨te de voleurs, tyrans et assassins, dont le but est de voler, asservir et - s'il le faut pour accomplir leurs desseins - assassiner le reste de la population. Le simple fait qu'une telle association existe ne prouve en rien que "le peuple des Etats-Unis", ni aucun individu parmi ce peuple, soutienne volontairement la Constitution. Les partisans visibles de la Constitution, comme les partisans visibles de la plupart des autres gouvernements, se rangent dans trois categories, e savoir: 1. Les scelerats, classe nombreuse et active; le gouvernement est pour eux un instrument qu'ils utiliseront pour s'agrandir ou s'enrichir; 2. Les dupes - vaste categorie, sans nul doute, dont chaque membre, parce qu'on lui attribue une voix sur des millions pour decider ce qu'il peut faire de sa personne et de ses biens, et parce qu'on l'autorise e avoir, pour voler, asservir et assassiner autrui, cette meªme voix que d'autres ont pour le voler, l'asservir et l'assassiner, est assez sot pour imaginer qu'il est "un homme libre", un "souverain"; assez sot pour imaginer que ce gouvernement est "un gouvernement libre", "un gouvernement de l'egalite des droits", "le meilleur gouvernement qu'il y ait sur terre", et autres absurdites de ce genre; 3. Une categorie qui a quelque intelligence des vices du gouvernement, mais qui ou bien ne sait comment s'en debarrasser, ou bien ne choisit pas de sacrifier ses intereªts prives au point de se devouer serieusement et gravement e la te¢che de promouvoir un changement. Le fait est que le gouvernement, comme un bandit de grand chemin, dit e un individu: "La bourse ou la vie." Quantite de taxes, ou meªme la plupart, sont payees sous la contrainte d'une telle menace.