Politics includes all the activities and conflicts among people and parties to achieve power to implement policies. Politics is how people make decisions in public, together.
My religion is the best — my nation is the best — my language is the best — my skin color is the best — and so on. One may feel proud saying all these things, but that very pride ends up becoming the cause of all interhuman conflicts in the human society.
If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem. It is true that you may fool all of the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all of the time; but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.
Nobody has ever expected me to be president. In my poor, lean lank face nobody has ever seen that any cabbages were sprouting.
The ballot is stronger than the bullet.
Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment nothing can fail; without it nothing can succeed. He who molds public sentiment goes deeper than he who enacts statutes or decisions possible or impossible to execu
I desire so to conduct the affairs of this administration that if at the end, when I come to lay down the reins of power, I have lost every other friend on earth, I shall at least have one friend left, and that friend shall be down inside me.
I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country … corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow.
The idea that you can merchandise candidates for high office like breakfast cereal … is the ultimate indignity to the democratic process.
At least two thirds of our miseries spring from human stupidity, human malice and those great motivators and justifiers of malice and stupidity, idealism, dogmatism and proselytizing zeal on behalf of religious or political idols.
Identity politics is the radical notion that your worldview is shaped by your experiences and history and that those experiences will vary in relationship to the power a group or an individual has in the economy, society, or democracy.
If you don’t have a strategy, you’re part of someone else’s strategy.
When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons. We cease to grow.
Most of all, I remember those children in the classrooms and those kids who grabbed me around the knees, and I think of the old people who really need a voice when they’re trapped in wheelchairs in dirty nursing homes. The person in this office really must have a conscience to know that how they direct this government dramatically affects the lives of those people.
I’ve always said that in politics, your enemies can’t hurt you, but your friends will kill you.
As things are now going the peace we make, what peace we seem to be making, will be a peace of oil, a peace of gold, a peace of shipping, a peace in brief, without moral purpose or human interest.
The trouble is that once you see it, you can’t unsee it. And once you’ve seen it, keeping quiet, saying nothing, becomes as political an act as speaking out. There’s no innocence. Either way, you’re accountable.
There is no such thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives.
In the end, that’s what this election is about. Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or a politics of hope?
Wars and elections are both too big and too small to matter in the long run. The daily work — that goes on, it adds up.
Hope is essential to any political struggle for radical change when the overall social climate promotes disillusionment and despair.
If democracy is to survive… It requires that we engage regularly and permanently in political discourse.
Speechlessness may be the most debilitating form of powerlessness. And the one thing we can be sure of is that democracy cannot be talked to death.
The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed the passion is the measure of the holders lack of rational conviction. Opinions in politics and religion are almost always held passionately.
The antidote, the only antidote, to the power of organized money in Washington is the power of organized people.
In the midst of global crises such as pollution, wars and famine, kindness may be too easily dismissed as a ‘soft’ issue, or a luxury to be addressed after the urgent problems are solved. But kindness is the greatest need in all those areas — kindness toward the environment, toward other nations, toward the needs of people who are suffering. Until we reflect basic kindness in everything we do, our political gestures will be fleeting and fragile.
Simple kindness may be the most vital key to the riddle of how human beings can live with each other in peace, and care properly for this planet we all share.
I think the American Dream should be about a greater progressive legislation that allows for what I call a necessary future world of cooperational humanism.
Our species needs, and deserves, a citizenry with minds wide awake and a basic understanding of how the world works.
In science it often happens that scientists say, ‘You know that’s a really good argument; my position is mistaken,’ and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn’t happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion.
Widespread intellectual and moral docility may be convenient for leaders in the short term, but it is suicidal for nations in the long term. One of the criteria for national leadership should therefore be a talent for understanding, encouraging, and making constructive use of vigorous criticism.
The peace and welfare of this and coming generations of Americans will be secure only as we cling to the watchword of true patriotism: ‘Our country — when right to be kept right; when wrong to be put right.’
Thinking about profound social change, conservatives always expect disaster, while revolutionaries confidentially expect utopia. Both are wrong.