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Recent Quotes

U.N. human rights chief Louise Arbour: Pursuing security objectives at all costs may create a world in which we are neither safe nor free. T…

Pursuing security objectives at all costs may create a world in which we are neither safe nor free. This will certainly be the case if the only choice is between the terrorists and the torturers.

Air Force General Curtis LeMay: If we’d lost [World War II], we’d all have been prosecuted as war criminals….

If we’d lost [World War II], we’d all have been prosecuted as war criminals.

Wilhelm Von Humboldt: [N]othing promotes this ripeness for freedom so much as freedom itself. This truth, perhaps, may not …

[N]othing promotes this ripeness for freedom so much as freedom itself. This truth, perhaps, may not be acknowledged by those who have so often used this unripeness as an excuse for continuing repression. But it seems to me to follow unquestionably from the very nature of man. The incapacity for freedom can only arise for Read more…

Immanuel Kant: …one cannot arrive at the maturity for freedom without having already acquired it; one must be free…

…one cannot arrive at the maturity for freedom without having already acquired it; one must be free to learn how to make use of one’s powers freely and usefully. The first attempts will surely be brutal and will lead to a state of affairs more painful and dangerous than the former condition, under the dominance Read more…

Wilhelm Von Humboldt: To inquire and to create–these are the centres around which all human pursuits more or less directly…

To inquire and to create–these are the centres around which all human pursuits more or less directly revolve.

Rosa Luxemburg: Historically, the errors committed by a truly revolutionary movement are infinitely more fruitful tha…

Historically, the errors committed by a truly revolutionary movement are infinitely more fruitful than the infallibility of the cleverest Central Committee.

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Noam Chomsky: Q: What moves a citizen from being a passive onlooker, a spectator, to becoming engaged? Chomsky: Tak…

Q: What moves a citizen from being a passive onlooker, a spectator, to becoming engaged? Chomsky: Take something recent in our history, the women’s movement. If you had asked my grandmother if she was oppressed, she wouldn’t have understood what you were talking about. If you had asked my mother, she knew she was oppressed Read more…

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Barbara Ehrenreich: What we need is a tough new kind of feminism with no illusions. Women do not change institutions simp…

What we need is a tough new kind of feminism with no illusions. Women do not change institutions simply by assimilating into them. We need a feminism that teaches a woman to say no ì not just to the date rapist or overly insistent boyfriend but, when necessary, to the military or corporate hierarchy within Read more…

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Lydia Sargent: If feminist revolution envisions a society… that foster the values of solidarity, self-management, …

If feminist revolution envisions a society… that foster the values of solidarity, self-management, participatory democracy, diversity, and equity, then the journey has not yet began.

John Alejandro King a.k.a. The Covert Comic: I regret that I have no life to give for my country….

I regret that I have no life to give for my country.

Mikhail Bakunin: Take the most radical of revolutionaries and place him on the throne of all the Russias or give him d…

Take the most radical of revolutionaries and place him on the throne of all the Russias or give him dictatorial powers…and before the year is out he will be worse than the Czar himself.

China Mieville: The chaotic and bloody world around us IS the rule of law…

The chaotic and bloody world around us IS the rule of law

Richard Holloway: To believe without question is questionable….

To believe without question is questionable.

Murray Bookchin: The assumption that what currently exists must necessarily exist is the acid that corrodes all vision…

The assumption that what currently exists must necessarily exist is the acid that corrodes all visionary thinking.

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Noam Chomsky: Literal censorship barely exists in the United States, but thought control is a flourishing industry,…

Literal censorship barely exists in the United States, but thought control is a flourishing industry, indeed an indispensable one in a free society based on the principle of elite decision, public endorsement or passivity.

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Noam Chomsky: By entering into the arena of argument and counterargument, of technical feasibility and tactics, of …

By entering into the arena of argument and counterargument, of technical feasibility and tactics, of footnotes and citations, by accepting the presumption of legitimacy of debate on certain issues, one has already lost one’s humanity.

Camilo Mejía: I have held a rifle to a man’s face, a man on the ground and in front of his mother, children, and wi…

I have held a rifle to a man’s face, a man on the ground and in front of his mother, children, and wife, and not known why I did it. I have seen a soldier broken down inside because he killed a child…I admit that in Iraq there was the fear of being killed, but Read more…

John Alejandro King a.k.a. The Covert Comic: The mightiest of weapons is truth. And everyone knows you’re not permitted to bring a weapon into a G…

The mightiest of weapons is truth. And everyone knows you’re not permitted to bring a weapon into a Government building.

General Augusto Pinochet: …everything I did, I would do again. Who am I supposed to ask for forgiveness? They are the ones wh…

…everything I did, I would do again. Who am I supposed to ask for forgiveness? They are the ones who have to ask me for forgiveness, them, the Marxists.

Peter Kropotkin: It has taken me long to show you, of the well-to-do classes, that in view of the dilemma which life p…

It has taken me long to show you, of the well-to-do classes, that in view of the dilemma which life presents to you, you will be forced, if courageous and sincere, to come and work side by side with the Socialists, and champion in their ranks the cause of the social revolution. And yet how Read more…

Bertrand Russell: Our instinctive apparatus consists of two parts — the one tending to further our own life and that o…

Our instinctive apparatus consists of two parts — the one tending to further our own life and that of our descendants, the other tending to thwart the lives of supposed rivals. The first includes the joy of life, and love, and art, which is psychologically an offshoot of love. The second includes competition, patriotism, and Read more…

Andy Singer: We should work to create a world that produces loving people who want to live, not a world that produ…

We should work to create a world that produces loving people who want to live, not a world that produces hatemongers, willing to die. Don’t let rage defeat reason.

Joseph Weizenbaum: It is a widely held but grievously mistaken belief that civil courage finds exercise only in the cont…

It is a widely held but grievously mistaken belief that civil courage finds exercise only in the context of world-shaking events. To the contrary, its most arduous exercise is often in those small contexts in which the challenge is to overcome the fears induced by petty concerns over career, over our relationships to those who Read more…

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Arundhati Roy: But remember that if the struggle were to resort to violence, it will lose vision, beauty and imagina…

But remember that if the struggle were to resort to violence, it will lose vision, beauty and imagination. Most dangerous of all, it will marginalize and eventually victimize women. And a political struggle that does not have women at the heart of it, above it, below it, and within it is no struggle at all.

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Barbara Ehrenreich: One last lesson from the Christians–the ancient, original ones, that is. Theirs is the story of how …

One last lesson from the Christians–the ancient, original ones, that is. Theirs is the story of how a steadfast and heroic moral minority undermined the world’s greatest empire and eventually came to power. Faced with relentless and spectacular forms of repression, they kept on meeting over their potluck dinners (the origins of later communion rituals), Read more…

Paul Wolfowitz: Let’s look at it simply. The most important difference between North Korea and Iraq is that economica…

Let’s look at it simply. The most important difference between North Korea and Iraq is that economically we just had no choice in Iraq. The country swims on a sea of oil.

Adrienne Rich: I know of no woman – virgin, mother, lesbian, married, celibate – whether she earns her keep as a hou…

I know of no woman – virgin, mother, lesbian, married, celibate – whether she earns her keep as a housewife, a cocktail waitress, or a scanner of brain waves – for whom the body is not a fundamental problem: its clouded meanings, its fertility, its desire, its so-called frigidity, its bloody speech, its silences, its Read more…

Rudolf Rocker: Just as, according to the doctrines of theologians and pundits, God in his unfathomable wisdom often …

Just as, according to the doctrines of theologians and pundits, God in his unfathomable wisdom often uses the most cruel and frightful means to affect his plans, so also the state, according to political theology, is not bound by the rules of ordinary human morality when its rulers are determined to achieve definite ends by Read more…

George W. Bush: I know what I believe. I will continue to articulate what I believe and what I believe – I believe wh…

I know what I believe. I will continue to articulate what I believe and what I believe – I believe what I believe is right.

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Howard Zinn: Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment (beware of such moments!) but as an endl…

Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment (beware of such moments!) but as an endless succession of suprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society. We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.

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Howard Zinn: An optimist isn’t necessarily a blithe, slightly sappy whistler in the dark of our time. To be hopefu…

An optimist isn’t necessarily a blithe, slightly sappy whistler in the dark of our time. To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness. What we choose to emphasize in Read more…

Jose Marti: Today’s dreams will be tomorrow’s realities….

Today’s dreams will be tomorrow’s realities.

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Howard Zinn: I have tried hard to match my friends in their pessimism about the world (is it just my friends?), bu…

I have tried hard to match my friends in their pessimism about the world (is it just my friends?), but I keep encountering people who, in spite of all the evidence of terrible things happening everywhere, give me hope. Especially young people, in whom th efuture rests. Wherever I go, I find such people. And Read more…

Tring Cong Son: Corpses float on the water, dry in the field, on the city rooftops, on the winding streets. Corpses l…

Corpses float on the water, dry in the field, on the city rooftops, on the winding streets. Corpses lie abandoned under the eaves of the pagoda, on the road to the city churches, on the floors of deserted houses. Oh, springtime, corpses will nourish the plowed soil. Oh, Vietnam, corpses will lend themselves to the Read more…

Bertolt Brecht: Happy is the country which requires no heroes….

Happy is the country which requires no heroes.

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Arundhati Roy: [W]hen you live in the United States, with the roar of the free market, the roar of this huge militar…

[W]hen you live in the United States, with the roar of the free market, the roar of this huge military power, the roar of being at the heart of empire, it’s hard to hear the whispering of the rest of the world. And I think many U.S. citizens want to.

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Norman Solomon: Someday, the news media may get around to re-examining the assumption that killing foreigners in thei…

Someday, the news media may get around to re-examining the assumption that killing foreigners in their own country is the best patriotic credential imaginable. A front-page New York Times story the other day referred to Sen. John McCain as the most popular national political figure in the country. McCain built his career in politics while Read more…

Marc Santora: The Mount Sinai School of Medicine, at 100th Street and Fifth Avenue, sits on the green line. Step le…

The Mount Sinai School of Medicine, at 100th Street and Fifth Avenue, sits on the green line. Step left when you head out the door and you are on your way down Museum Mile, past some of the ritziest addresses in New York City. It is the Manhattan of Manolo Blahniks and millionaire extravagance. Step Read more…

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Fred Branfman: The United States dropped 6,727,084 tons of bombs on Indochina, more than triple what was dropped on …

The United States dropped 6,727,084 tons of bombs on Indochina, more than triple what was dropped on all of Europe and the entire Pacific Theater in World War II. We will never know how many innocent Indochinese peasants died from these illegal bombings, but former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara has estimated that 3.4 Read more…

John Kerry: I committed the same kinds of atrocities as thousands of others in that I shot in free fire zones, fi…

I committed the same kinds of atrocities as thousands of others in that I shot in free fire zones, fired 50-caliber machine bullets, used harass-and-interdiction fire, joined in search-and-destroy missions, and burned villages. All of these acts are contrary to the laws of the Geneva Convention, and all were ordered as written, established policies from Read more…

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Arundhati Roy: There are differences in the I.Q.s and levels of ruthlessness between this year’s U.S. presidential c…

There are differences in the I.Q.s and levels of ruthlessness between this year’s U.S. presidential candidates. The anti-war movement in the United States has done a phenomenal job of exposing the lies and venality that led to the invasion of Iraq, despite the propaganda and intimidation it faced. This was a service not just to Read more…

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Arundhati Roy: Broadly speaking, there are two kinds of mass resistance movements in third world countries today. Th…

Broadly speaking, there are two kinds of mass resistance movements in third world countries today. The landless peoples’ movement in Brazil, the anti-dam movement in India, the Zapatistas in Mexico, the Anti-Privatization Forum in South Africa, and hundreds of others, are fighting their own sovereign governments, which have become agents of the neo-liberal project. Most Read more…

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Arundhati Roy: Each of the Iraqi children killed by the United States was our child. Each of the prisoners tortured …

Each of the Iraqi children killed by the United States was our child. Each of the prisoners tortured in Abu Ghraib was our comrade. Each of their screams was ours. When they were humiliated, we were humiliated. The U.S. soldiers fighting in Iraq – mostly volunteers in a poverty draft from small towns and poor Read more…

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Arundhati Roy: Ordinary Americans have been manipulated into imagining they are a people under siege whose sole refu…

Ordinary Americans have been manipulated into imagining they are a people under siege whose sole refuge and protector is their government. If it isn’t the Communists, it’s al-Qaeda. If it isn’t Cuba, it’s Nicaragua. As a result, this, the most powerful nation in the world – with its unmatchable arsenal of weapons, its history of Read more…

Chinese Proverb: Man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones….

Man who removes a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.

Emerson: Common sense is genius dressed in its working clothes. …

Common sense is genius dressed in its working clothes.

Milton Berle: If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door….

If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.

Townsend Hoopes: Vietnam is not of course the only source of division in America today, but it is the most pervasive i…

Vietnam is not of course the only source of division in America today, but it is the most pervasive issue of our discord, the catalytic agent that stimulates and magnifies all other divisive issues. In particular, there can be no real truce between the generations – no end to the bitterness and alienation of even Read more…

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Tim Wise: Black and brown poor folks are doing self-help all the time, contrary to the common media imagery. Th…

Black and brown poor folks are doing self-help all the time, contrary to the common media imagery. They have to; after all, they have enough experience with white institutions to know that such institutions have never done much to improve their situation, and nothing at all unless it was demanded and unless they were mobilized Read more…

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Manning Marable: Mass unemployment feeds mass incarceration. About one-third of all prisoners were unemployed at the t…

Mass unemployment feeds mass incarceration. About one-third of all prisoners were unemployed at the time of their arrests, and others averaged less than $20,000 annual incomes in the year prior to their incarceration. When the Attica prison insurrection occurred in upstate New York in 1971, there were only 12,500 prisoners in New York Stateìs correctional Read more…

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