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    What, me worry? piece-it pete's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Cleveland Ohio

    Thomas Jefferson Quotes.

    I'm going nuts!!

    Actually I'm learning so much from this I'm going to keep it up.

    So, next up, the Founding Father considered the 1st Democrat, introducing:

    Thomas Jefferson!!

    I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every
    form of tyranny over the mind of man.

    I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that his justice cannot sleep forever: that considering numbers, nature and natural means only, a revolution of the wheel of fortune, an exchange of situation, is among possible events: that it may become probable by supernatural interference! The Almighty has no attribute which can take side with us in such a contest.

    The great object of my fear is the Federal Judiciary. That body, like gravity, ever acting with noiseless foot and unalarming advance, gaining ground step by step and holding what it gains, is engulfing insidiously the special governments into the jaws of that which feeds them.

    The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that... it is their right and duty to be at all times armed.

    When, in spite of all efforts to avoid it, a republic must go to war, the focus of the nation is temporarily changed. The President, as Commander-In-Chief, assumes the extraordinary powers necessary to conduct the all-out effort. Citizens and legislators must then put aside differences and unite against the common enemy. Undesirable conduct may be forced on the republic in dealing with an unscrupulous enemy.

    What is atrocious as an example becomes a duty to repress by retaliation.

    Religion, as well as reason, confirms the soundness of those principles on which our government has been founded and its rights asserted.

    No freeman shall be debarred the use of arms (within his own lands or tenements).

    It has long been my opinion, and I have never shrunk from its expression,... that the germ of dissolution of our Federal Government is in the constitution of the Federal Judiciary--an irresponsible body (for impeachment is scarcely a scare-crow), working like gravity by night and by day, gaining a little today and a little tomorrow, and advancing its noiseless step like a thief over the field of jurisdiction until all shall be usurped from the States and the government be consolidated into one. To this I am opposed.

    We have no right to prejudice another in his civil enjoyments because he is of another church.

    When a uniform exercise of kindness to prisoners on our part has been returned by as uniform severity on the part of our enemies,... it is high time, by other lessons, to teach respect to the dictates of humanity; in such a case, retaliation becomes an act of benevolence.

    The essential principles of our Government... form the bright constellation which has gone before us and guided our steps through an age of revolution and reformation. The wisdom of our sages and blood of our heroes have been devoted to their attainment. They should be the creed of our political faith, the text of civic instruction, the touchstone by which to try the services of those we trust; and should we wander from them in moments of error or of alarm, let us hasten to retrace our steps and to regain the road which alone leads to peace, liberty and safety.

    With us, all the branches of the government are elective by the people themselves, except the judiciary, of whose science and qualifications they are not competent judges. Yet, even in that department, we call in a jury of the people to decide all controverted matters of fact, because to that investigation they are entirely competent, leaving thus as little as possible, merely the law of the case, to the decision of the judges.

    Distinct States, amalgamated into one as to their foreign concerns, but single and independent as to their internal administration, regularly organized with a legislature and governor resting on the choice of the people and enlightened by a free press, can never be so fascinated by the arts of one man as to submit voluntarily to his usurpation. Nor can they be constrained to it by any force he can possess. While that may paralyze the single State in which it happens to be encamped, [the] others, spread over a country of two thousand miles diameter, rise up on every side, ready organized for deliberation by a constitutional legislature and for action by their governor, constitutionally the commander of the militia of the State, that is to say, of every man in it able to bear arms. [Pete note: So "a well regulated militia" means EVERY SINGLE able bodied man, from the writer of the Constitution.]

    It is a misnomer to call a government republican in which a branch of the supreme power is independent of the nation. [Pete note: regarding the Judiciary]

    From experience, we know that human beings do not always act in accordance with right and justice. Injustice in government undermines the foundations of a society. A nation, therefore, must take measures to encourage its members along the paths of justice and morality.

    The extent of our country was so great, and its former division into distinct States so established, that we thought it better to confederate as to foreign affairs only. Every State retained its self-government in domestic matters, as better qualified to direct them to the good and satisfaction of their citizens, than a general government so distant from its remoter citizens and so little familiar with the local peculiarities of the different parts.

    That every man shall be made virtuous by any process whatever is, indeed, no more to be expected than that every tree shall be made to bear fruit, and every plant nourishment. The brier and bramble can never become the vine and olive; but their asperities may be softened by culture, and their properties improved to usefulness in the order and economy of the world.

    I believe the States can best govern our home concerns, and the General Government our foreign ones.

    Self-love... is the sole antagonist of virtue, leading us constantly by our propensities to self-gratification in violation of our moral duties to others. Accordingly, it is against this enemy that are erected the batteries of moralists and religionists, as the only obstacle to the practice of morality. Take from man his selfish propensities, and he can have nothing to seduce him from the practice of virtue. Or subdue those propensities by education, instruction or restraint, and virtue remains without a competitor.

    The States should be left to do whatever acts they can do as well as the General Government.

    I fear, from the experience of the last twenty-five years, that morals do not of necessity advance hand in hand with the sciences.

    It is of immense consequence that the States retain as complete authority as possible over their own citizens. The withdrawing themselves under the shelter of a foreign jurisdiction [Pete note: he's calling the federal gov't foreign!] is so subversive of order and so pregnant of abuse, that it may not be amiss to consider how far a law of praemunire [a punishable offense against government] should be revised and modified, against all citizens who attempt to carry their causes before any other than the State courts, in cases where those other courts have no right to their cognizance.

    'When virtue is banished, ambition invades the minds of those who are disposed to receive it, and avarice possesses the whole community.

    'Those who have no sense of right, reason or religion, have a natural propensity to make use of their strength to the destruction of such as are weaker than they.

    The nation who [has] never admitted a chapter of morality into her political code,... [will] boldly [avow] that whatever power [she] can make hers is hers of right.

    The system of the General Government is to seize all doubtful ground. We must join in the scramble, or get nothing. Where first occupancy is to give right, he who lies still loses all.

    There are various ways of keeping truth out of sight.

    Truths necessary for our own character must not be suppressed out of tenderness to its calumniators.

    I have never been able to conceive how any rational being could propose happiness to himself from the exercise of power over others.

    My observations do not enable me to say I think integrity the characteristic of wealth. In general, I believe the decisions of the people in a body will be more honest and more disinterested than those of wealthy men, and I can never doubt an attachment to his country in any man who has his family and peculium [i.e., private property] in it.

    Lay down true principles and adhere to them inflexibly. Do not be frightened into their surrender by the alarms of the timid, or the croakings of wealth against the ascendency of the people.

    Jefferson is a bit long - winded! This is just a fraction, a small faction.

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    I fear explanations explanatory of things explained.
    Abraham Lincoln

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