There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism.
Real liberty is neither found in despotism or the extremes of democracy, but in moderate governments.
A well adjusted person is one who makes the same mistake twice without getting nervous.
A promise must never be broken.
Learn to think continentally.
The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for among old parchments or musty records. They are written, as with a sunbeam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the divinity itself; and can never be erased.
Safety from external danger is the most powerful director of national conduct. Even the ardent love of liberty will, after a time, give way to its dictates.
There are seasons in every country when noise and impudence pass current for worth; and in popular commotions especially, the clamors of interested and factious men are often mistaken for patriotism.
It’s not tyranny we desire; it’s a just, limited, federal government.
To all general purposes we have uniformly been one people, each individual citizen everywhere enjoying the same national rights, privileges, and protection.
Real firmness is good for anything; strut is good for nothing.
Unless your government is respectable, foreigners will invade your rights; and to maintain tranquillity, it must be respectable – even to observe neutrality, you must have a strong government.
Even to observe neutrality you must have a strong government.
You should not have taken advantage of my sensibility to steal into my affections without my consent.
The voice of the people has been said to be the voice of God; and, however generally this maxim has been quoted and believed, it is not true to fact. The people are turbulent and changing, they seldom judge or determine right.
The nation which can prefer disgrace to danger is prepared for a master and deserves one.
Men are rather reasoning than reasonable animals, for the most part governed by the impulse of passion.
I never expect to see a perfect work from an imperfect man.
Men often oppose a thing merely because they have had no agency in planning it, or because it may have been planned by those whom they dislike.
I think the first duty of society is justice.
Constitutions should consist only of general provisions; the reason is that they must necessarily be permanent, and that they cannot calculate for the possible change of things.
The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for among old parchments or musty records. They are written, as with a sunbeam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the divinity itself; and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power.
The honor of a nation is its life.
In politics, as in religion, it is equally absurd to aim at making proselytes by fire and sword. Heresies in either can rarely be cured by persecution.
Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of man will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice without constraint.
It is the advertiser who provides the paper for the subscriber. It is not to be disputed, that the publisher of a newspaper in this country, without a very exhaustive advertising support, would receive less reward for his labor than the humblest mechanic.
The inquiry constantly is what will please, not what will benefit the people. In such a government there can be nothing but temporary expedient, fickleness, and folly.
Power over a man’s subsistence is power over his will.
A national debt, if it is not excessive, will be to us a national blessing.
When the sword is once drawn, the passions of men observe no bounds of moderation.
Here, sir, the people govern; here they act by their immediate representatives.
Nobody expects to trust his body overmuch after the age of fifty.
In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place, oblige it to control itself.
Let us recollect that peace or war will not always be left to our option; that however moderate or unambitious we may be, we cannot count upon the moderation, or hope to extinguish the ambition of others.
In the usual progress of things, the necessities of a nation in every stage of its existence will be found at least equal to its resources.
Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of men will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice, without constraint.