Quotes File


Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.

~Martin Luther King Jr.


Learning is not child’s play; we cannot learn without pain.


I've learned that everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you're climbing it.


Let this be an example for the acquisition of all knowledge, virtue, and riches.  By the fall of drops of water, by degrees, a pot is filled.

~The Hitopadesa  


Knowledge is simply knowing when to laugh.
~Duane McCormick


I respect no study and deem no study good, which results in money~making.



"The witty woman is a tragic figure in American life. Wit destroys eroticism and eroticism destroys wit, so women must choose between taking lovers and taking no prisoners."

~Florence King


To think is to differ. ~Clarence Darrow


Every truth has four corners: as a teacher I give you one
corner, and it is for you to find the other three. ~Confucius


Truth never damages a cause that is just.
~Mohandas Gandhi


Strange times are these in which we live when old and young are taught falsehoods in school. And the one man that dares to tell the truth is called at once a lunatic and fool.


Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves "who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?" Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of the Universe. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do... we were born to make manifest the Universe that is within us. And as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we're liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

~Marianne Williamson


In the fields of observation, chance favors only the prepared mind. ~Louis Pasteur


If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about the answers.   –Thomas Pynchon


It's not my place to run the train, the whistle I cannot blow.
It's not my place to say how far the train's allowed to go.
It's not my place to shoot off steam, nor even clang the bell.
But let the damn thing jump the track and see who catches hell.


You can count the number of seeds in an apple, but you can't count the number of apples in a seed.


Why you? Because the world will end if you don't act. You are the citizen of a flawed but actual democracy. Citizens are not actually capable of not acting....Your life is married to the political beyond the possibility of divorcement.

You are always an agent. When you don't act, you act. When you don't vote, you vote. When you accept the loony logic of some of the left that there is no political value in supporting the lesser of two evils, you open the door to the greater evil.

Tony Kushner, Commencement Speech at Vassar College, May 26, 2002


Either you repeat the same conventional doctrines everybody else is spouting, or else you say something true, and it will sound like it's from Neptune.

~Noam Chomsky


The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas. ~Dr. Linus Pauling


It does not take a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.
Samuel Adams


There's no national glue holding us together because somebody put too much pluribus in the unum.

~Florence King


A problem worthy of attacks

Proves its worth by hitting back.

~Paul Erdos 


“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it’s time to pause and reflect.”

~ Mark Twain


Teachers should be able to teach subjects, not manuals merely. ~ Horace Mann


Those who trust us educate us. ~ George Eliot


"Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith. I consider the capacity for it terrifying."

~ Sir Thomas More



~ George Carlin


The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed, in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible.
~Bertrand Russell


"Who cares what you think?"

~ President George W. Bush, July 4, 2001


"To live is to war with trolls."

~ Ibsen


"I don't have faith that the truth will prevail if it becomes known, but we have no alternative to proceeding on that assumption, whatever its credibility may be."

~ Noam Chomsky


"He who joyfully marches in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice."

~ Albert Einstein


It is when the gods hate a man with uncommon abhorrence that they drive him into the profession of a school~master



Lasting change does not happen overnight. Lasting change happens in infinitesimal increments: a day, an hour, a minute, a heartbeat at a time.

~ Sarah Ban Breathnach


I respect faith, but doubt is what gets you an education.

~ Wilson Mizner


Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent.  It takes a touch of genius ~ and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction. ~E. F. Schumacher


Americans worship creativity the way they worship physical beauty ~ as a way of enjoying elitism without guilt: God did it.

~Florence King


"Good teaching cannot be reduced to technique; good teaching
comes from the identity and integrity of the teacher." ~Parker Palmer


"What I'm asking people to do is simply this: In your own way, in your own life, every day, you are confronted with a piece of data. Don't just eat it up. Just think about it for a minute. You have the right to process your own information based on the equipment that you were born with. That's your right. That's real freedom. You have the right to make up your own mind. Now, if you choose to numb yourself, and to be bamboozled, you have the right to be bamboozled. But in your state of bamboozlement, you do not have the right to be a liability, because of your self~imposed ignorance, on other people who might want to do things the right way. If you voluntarily choose to be a numbskull, for whatever reason you have chosen it, that's fine. You have the right to be stupid, but you don't have the right to harm other people as a result of your stupidity. And you don't have the right to legislate your stupidity into existence, to force it on other people who have a clearer view of what things are." 

~ Frank Zappa


"For us, there is only the trying.

The rest is not our business."

~T.S. Eliot


If we all work together, we can totally disrupt the system. –Ashleigh Brilliant


Be kind to teachers; those who do not deserve your respect, may at least deserve your pity.

 –Ashleigh Brilliant


While one person hesitates because he feels inferior, the other is busy making mistakes and becoming superior.

~Henry C. Link


Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.

~William Jennings Bryan


What luck for rulers, that men do not think.

~Adolf Hitler


When the sun of knowledge stands low even dwarves throw big shadows.

 ~ Markus Fuchs


Learning why an idea fails is just as important as knowing why it


~ Roman Szpur


I never taught language for the purpose of teaching it; but

invariably used language as a medium for the communication of

thought; thus the learning of language was coincident with the

acquisition of knowledge.

~ Annie Sullivan


Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious

learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really

the work of childhood.

~ Fred Rogers


Genius is more often found in a cracked pot than in a whole one.

 ~E.B. White


Life is painting a picture, not doing a sum.

~Oliver Wendell Homes, Jr


The first job of a citizen is to keep your mouth open.

~Günter Grass


Obstacles cannot crush me. Every obstacle yields to stern resolve. He who is fixed to a star does not change his mind.

~Leonardo Da Vinci



Beyond a critical point within a finite space, freedom diminishes as numbers increase... the human question is not how many can possibly survive within the system, but what kind of existence is possible for those who do survive.

~Frank Herbert



I must create a system, or be enslav'd by another man's.

~William Blake


Education can be dangerous. It is very difficult to make it not dangerous. In

fact, it is almost impossible. ~Robert M. Hutchins


What is to give light must endure burning.

~Viktor Frankl



When small men cast long shadows the sun is going down.

~Venita Cravens


To escape criticism ~ Do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.

~Elbert Hubbard



We are the music makers,
And we are the dreamer of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea~breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World~losers and world~forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems.

~Arthur William Edgar O'Shaughnessy


The most extraordinary thing about a really good teacher is that he or she transcends accepted educational methods.

~Margaret Mead


No hay nada más fecundo que la ignorancia consciente de sí misma.

~José Ortega y Gasset


The first idea that the child must acquire in order to be actively disciplined is that of the difference between good and evil; and the task of the educator lies in seeing that the child does not confound good with immobility and evil with activity.

~María Montessori


It is because modern education is so seldom inspired by a great hope that it so seldom achieves great results. The wish to preserve the past rather than the hope of creating the future dominates the minds of those who control the teaching of the young.

~Bertrand Russell


It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious.

~Alfred North Whitehead


All advanced thinkers, skeptical or otherwise, are apt to be intolerant, in the past and also now. On the whole, tolerance is more often found in connection with a genial orthodoxy.

~Alfred North Whitehead


Imagination is a contagious disease. It cannot be measured by the yard, or weighed by the pound, and then delivered to the students by members of the faculty. It can only be communicated by a faculty whose members themselves wear their learning with imagination.

~Alfred North Whitehead


Too many apples from the tree of systematized knowledge lead to the fall of progress.

~Alfred North Whitehead


You may not divide the seamless coat of learning. What education has to impart is an intimate sense for the power of ideas, for the beauty of ideas, and for the structure of ideas, together with a particular body of knowledge which has peculiar reference to the life of the being possessing it.

~Alfred North Whitehead


The students are alive, and the purpose of education is to stimulate and guide their self~development. It follows as a corollary from this premise, that the teachers also should be alive with living thoughts.

~Alfred North Whitehead


Teach Good, Fight Hard, Grow Love

~Rich Gibson


Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another.
~G.K. Chesterton


The greatest sign of success for a teacher is to be able to say,
"The children are now working as if I did not exist." 

~Maria Montessori


Education is a weapon, whose effect depends on who holds it in his hands
and at whom it is aimed.

~ Joseph Stalin


I see the mind of a 5~year~old as a volcano with two vents: destructiveness and creativeness.

~Sylvia Ashton~Warner


Spoon feeding in the long run teaches us nothing but the shape of the spoon.

~ E. M. Forster


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

~ Aristotle


No woman is required to build the world by destroying herself.

~Rabbi Sofer (17th Century)


It has been agreed that every man shall have a cow.
We give him half a cow, to be getting on with.
He doesn't know what to do with half a cow, and leaves it lying about.
This proves he didn't really want or need a cow in the first place.
We take it away from him.

~Paraphrased from G. K. Chesterton


    You must be

true to yourself.

    Strong enough to be

true to yourself.

    Brave enough to be

    strong enough to be

true to yourself.

    Wise enough to be

    brave enough to be

    strong enough to

    shape yourself from what

 you actually are.

~Sylvia Ashton~Warner (in Myself)


"They do say," Mr. Adams said to Old Man Warner, who stood next to him, "that over in the north village they're talking of giving up the lottery."


Old Man Warner snorted. "Pack of crazy fools," he said. "Listening to the young folks, nothing's good enough for them. Next thing you know, they'll be wanting to go back to living in caves, nobody work any more, live that way for a while. Used to be a saying about 'Lottery in June, corn be heavy soon.' First thing you know, we'd all be eating stewed chickweed and acorns. There's always been a lottery," he added petulantly.  "Bad enough to see young Joe Summers up there joking with everybody."


"Some places have already quit lotteries." Mrs. Adams said.


"Nothing but trouble in that," Old Man Warner said stoutly. "Pack of young fools."

~Shirley Jackson


"The leader of genius must have the ability to make different opponents appear as if they belonged to one category."
~Adolf Hitler


"Wherever they burn books, they will also, in the end, burn people."
~Heinrich Heine


The principal goal of education is to create men who are capable of doing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have done ~ men who are creative, inventive and discoverers.

~ Jean Piaget


The best education consists in immunizing people against systematic attempts at education.

~ Paul Karl Feyerabend


I am beginning to suspect all elaborate and special systems of education. They seem to me to be built up on the supposition that every child is a kind of idiot who must be taught to think.

 ~ Anne Sullivan


The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.

~ Bertrand Russell


Expecting all children the same age to learn from the same materials is like expecting all children the same age to wear the same size clothing.

~ Madeline Hunter


The one real goal of education is to leave a person asking questions.

~ Max Beerhohm


Schooling, instead of encouraging the asking of questions, too often discourages it.

~ Madeleine L'Engle


If there is anything more dangerous to the life of the mind than having no independent commitment to ideas, it is having an excess of commitment to some special and constricting idea.

~ Richard Hofstadter


As we read the school reports on our children, we realize a sense of relief that can rise to delight that~thank Heaven~nobody is reporting in this fashion on us.

~ J.B. Priestley


It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere.


Reeling and Writhing, of course, to begin with," the Mock Turtle replied, "and then the different branches of Arithmetic ~Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision.

~Lewis Carroll


Fool some one once and they'll be foolish for a day, but teach them to fool themselves and they'll be foolish for a lifetime.


“Not everyone born free and equal, as the Constitution says, but everyone made equal. Each man the image of every other; then all are happy, for there are no mountains to make them cower, to judge themselves against.”

~Fahrenheit 451


To repeat what others have said, requires education; to challenge it,
requires brains.
Mary Pettibone Poole, A Glass Eye at a Keyhole, 1938


Be it said in passing, that success is a very hideous thing.  Its false
resemblance to merit deceives men.  For the masses, success has almost
the same profile as supremacy. 

` Victor Hugo


While children's perceptions of the world and opportunities for genuine spontaneity and creativity are being systematically eliminated from the kindergarten, unquestioned obedience to authority and rote learning of meaningless material are being encouraged
Harry L. Gracey, sociologist


Of course, Behaviorism "works." So does torture. Give me a no~nonsense, down~to~earth behaviorist, a few drugs, and simple electrical appliances, and in six months I will have him reciting the Athanasian Creed in public.
W. H. Auden


I think my deepest criticism of the educational system at that period [junior high and high school], and that also applies to other periods, is that it's all based upon a distrust of the student. Don't trust him to follow his own leads; guide him; tell him what to do; tell him what he should think; tell him what he should learn. Consequently at the very age when he should be developing adult characteristics of choice and decision making, when he should be trusted on some of those things, trusted to make mistakes and to learn from those mistakes, he is, instead, regimented and shoved into a curriculum, whether it fits him or not.
Carl Rogers


If anything concerns me, it's the oversimplification of something as complex as assessment. My fear is that learning is becoming standardized. Learning is idiosyncratic. Learning and teaching is messy stuff. It doesn't fit into bubbles.
Michele Forman, 2001 Teacher of the Year

When we judge a man not by his car but by his conversation, not by his house but by his books, we may have a land fit for teachers to live in. 

Hilda Neatby 

The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.

Alvin Toffler

"Reeling and Writhing, of course, to begin with," the Mock Turtle replied (to the question of what was taught in school), "and then the different branches of Arithmetic ~ Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision."  

Lewis Carroll Alice's Adventures in Wonderland


Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist. He who would gather immortal palms must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must explore if it be goodness.

~Ralph Waldo Emerson


The intellect is vagabond, and our system of education fosters restlessness.

~Ralph Waldo Emerson


To exploit us, they measure us. To control us, they measure us.

~Subcomandante Marcos


Power concedes nothing without a demand.
It never has, and it never will.
If there is no struggle, there is no progress.
Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation are men who
want crops without plowing the ground. They want rain without thunder and
lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its waters.

~Frederick Douglass


Skills~based instruction, the type to which most children of color are subjected, tends to foster low~level uniformity and subvert academic potential.

~Dorothy Strickland


Teacher preparation should never be reduced to a form of training. Rather, teacher preparation should go beyond the technical preparation of teachers and be rooted in the ethical formation both of selves and of history. But it is important to be clear that I am speaking not about a restricted kind of ethics that shows obedience only to the law of profit. On the contrary, I am speaking of a universal human ethic, an ethic that is not afraid to condemn the kind of ideological discourse I have just cited. Not afraid to condemn the exploitation of labor and the manipulation that makes a rumor into truth and truth into a mere rumor.
~Paolo Freire, Pedagogy of Freedom: Ethics, Democracy and Civic Courage


Learning without thought is labor lost.

~ Confucius


The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher

esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.

 ~ Nietzsche


"Nothing is more terrible than ignorance in action." ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


Look around the table. If you don't see a sucker, get up, because you're the sucker. ~Amarillo Slim


The plural of the word ‘anecdote’ is not ‘data.’ When you reason and govern from anecdote, all you are doing is inflaming passions and skewing the debate.

~Larry Bensky


To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards out of men.

~Abraham Lincoln


"[T]he rank and file are usually much more primitive than we imagine. Propaganda must therefore always be essentially simple and repetitive. In the long run basic results in influencing public opinion will be achieved only by the man who is able to reduce problems to the simplest terms and who has the courage to keep forever repeating them in this simplified form, despite the objections of the intellectuals."

~Josef Goebbels


"The receptivity of the great masses is very limited, their intelligence is small, but their power of forgetting is enormous. In consequence, all effective propaganda must be limited to a very few points and must harp on these in slogans until the last member of the public understands what you want him to understand by your slogan."

~Adolf Hitler, from Mein Kampf

What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite.
~Bertrand Russell


" An organization is neither conscious nor alive. Its value is instrumental and derivative. It is not good in itself; it is good only to the extent that it promises the good of the individals who are part of collective whole. To give organizations precedence over persons is to subordinate ends to means." –Aldous Huxley


"In 1931, when Brave New World was being written, I was convinced that there was still plenty of time. The completely organized society, the scientific caste system, the abolition of free will by methodical conditioning, the servitude made acceptable by regular doses of chemically induced happiness, the orthodoxies drummed in by nightly courses of sleep~teaching ~ these things were coming all right, but not in my time, not even in the time of my grandchildren.... Twenty~seven years later...I feel a good deal less optimistic... In the West,...individual men and women still enjoy a large measure of freedom. But...this freedom and even the desire for this freedom seem to be on the wane."
Aldous Huxley Brave
New World Revisited 1958


Great is truth, but still greater, from a practical point of view, is silence about truth. –Aldous Huxley


Here the theoretical reduction of unmanageable multiplicity to comprehensible unity becomes the practical reduction of human diversity to subhuman uniformity, of freedom to servitude. In politics the equivalent of a fully developed scientific theory or philosophical system is a totalitarian dictatorship. In economics, the equivalent of a beautifully composed work of art is the smoothly running factory in which the workers are perfectly adjusted to the machines.

Too much organization transforms men and women into automata, suffocates the creative spirit and abolishes the very possibility of freedom. –Aldous Huxley


And that is the secret of happiness and virtue ~ liking what you've got to do. All conditioning aims at that: making people like their inescapable social destiny.
~ Aldous Huxley. / Brave New World



 If you make people think they're thinking, they'll love you; but if you really make them think they'll hate you.  

~ Don Marquis


An unexciting truth may be eclipsed by a thrilling lie. ~ Aldous Huxley


"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. "

~ Edmund Burke


"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted. "

~ Albert Einstein


"You need only reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in their struggle for independence."

~Charles A. Beard



It is ironic that the United States should have been founded by intellectuals, for throughout most of our political history, the intellectual has been for the most part either an outsider, a servant, or a scapegoat.

       :: Richard Hofstadter: Anti~Intellectualism in American Life, 1963 ::


"Intelligence is an excellence of mind that is employed within a fairly narrow, immediate, and predictable range... Intelligence works within the framework of limited but clearly stated goals, and may be quick to shear away questions of thought that do not seem to help in reaching them."

"... Intellect, on the other hand, is the critical, creative, and contemplative side of mind. Whereas intelligence seeks to grasp, manipulate, re~order, adjust, intellect examines, ponders, wonders, theorizes, criticizes, imagines."

Richard Hofstadter


American education can be praised, not to say defended, on many counts; but I believe ours is the only system in the world vital segments of which have fallen into the hands of people who joyfully and militantly proclaim their hostility to intellect and their eagerness to identify with children who show the least intellectual promise.

R. Hofstadter


There is more to life than increasing its speed. ~Mohandas Gandhi


"Observers of American academia have often asked with some bitterness why athletic distinction is almost universally admired and encouraged whereas intellectual distinction is resented. I think the resentment is in fact a kind of backhanded tribute democracy plays to the importance of intellect in our affairs. Athletic skill is recognized as being transient, special, and for most of us unimportant in the serious business of life; and the tribute given the athlete is considered to be earned because he entertains. Intellect, on the other hand, is neither entertaining (to most men) nor innocent; since everyone sees that it can be an important and permanent advantage in life, it creates against itself a kind of universal fraternity of commonplace minds."

R. Hofstadter


"If you think you are beaten~you are.
If you think that you dare not~you don't.
If you'd like to win, but fear you can't
It's fifty to one you won't."


Heresy is only another word for freedom of thought.
~ Graham Greene


It's not what is poured into a student that counts, but
what is planted. ~Linda Conway


Learning from programmed information always hides reality
behind a screen. ~Ivan Illich


Where all think alike, no one thinks very much.
~ Walter Lippmann


A man who does not think for himself does not think at all.
~ Oscar Wilde


Thought control, like birth control, is best undertaken as long as possible before the fact. Many grown~ups will obstinately persist, if only now and then, in composing small strings of sentences in their heads and achieving at least momentary logic. This probably cannot be prevented, but we have learned how to minimize the consequences by arranging that such grown~ups will be unable to pursue that logic very far. If they were at home in the technology of writing, there's no telling how much social disorder they would cause by thinking things out at length.

Our schools have chosen to cut this danger off as close to the root as possible, thus taking measures to preclude not only the birth of thought but its conception. They give the pill to even the youngest children, but just to be on the safe side, they give it to everybody else, too, especially all would~be schoolteachers.
~ Richard Mitchell


There are no dangerous thoughts; thinking itself is dangerous." Hannah ARENDT

"He that complies against his will, Is of his own opinion still."



"Either you think ~ or else others have to think for you and take power from you, pervert and discipline your natural tastes, civilize and sterilize you."

Tender is the Night, 1934


I, Galileo, being in my seventieth year, being a prisoner and on my knees, and before your Eminencies, having before my eyes the Holy Gospel, which I touch with my hands, abjure, curse, and detest the error and the heresy of the movement of the earth."



"One has to multiply thoughts to the point where there aren't enough policemen to control them." Stanislaw Jerzey LEC


"No one ever heard of the truth being enforced by law. Whenever the secular arm is called in to sustain an idea, whether new or old, it is always a bad idea, and not infrequently it is downright idiotic."

Henry Louis MENCKEN


"Anyone who challenges the prevailing orthodoxy finds himself silenced with surprising effectiveness. A genuinely unfashionable opinion is almost never given a fair hearing."

Eric Arthur Blair or George ORWELL


"Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas."

Joseph Vissarionovich STALIN


"If they give you lined paper, write the other way."

William Carlos WILLIAMS


"If my answers frighten you Vincent, then you should cease asking scary questions. Samuel L. Jackson as Jules in _Pulp Fiction


I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it ~ Vincent Van Gogh


A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze new problems, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. ~ Robert A. Heinlein


The funny thing about human beings is that we tend to respect the intelligence of, and eventually to like, those who listen attentively to our ideas even if they continue to disagree with us.
S.I. Hayakawa


"It's good to be open~minded, but not so open that your brains fall out." ~ Jacob Needleman


A hundred thousand lemmings can't be wrong.

Everything not forbidden is compulsory.

"To be nobody~but~myself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make me everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight, and never stop fighting." ~ E. E. Cummings


"The attempt to silence a man is the greatest honor you can bestow on him. It means that you recognize his superiority to yourself." ~ Joseph Sobran


"Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence." ~ Albert Einstein


"It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education." ~ Albert Einstein


"If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are." ~ Capt. Jean~Luc Picard


"We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time." ~ T. S. Eliot


The beauty of the democratic systems of thought control, as contrasted with their clumsy totalitarian counterparts, is that they operate by subtly establishing on a voluntary basis~aided by the force of nationalism and media control by substantial interests~presuppositions that set the limits of debate, rather than by imposing beliefs with a bludgeon. Then let the debate rage; the more lively and vigorous it is, the better the propaganda system is served, since the presuppositions (U.S. benevolence, lack of rational imperial goals, defensive posture, etc.) are more firmly established. Those who do not accept the fundamental principles of state propaganda are simply excluded from the debate (or if noticed, dismissed as "emotional," "irresponsible," etc.).  ~ Noam Chomsky


The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed ~Steve Biko


Both read the Bible day and night~ But you read black where I read white  ~William Blake


If, however, the powerful are able to fix the premises of discourse, to decide what the general populace is allowed to see, hear, and think about, and to "manage" public opinion by regular propaganda campaigns, the standard view of how the system works is at serious odds with reality. ~ Noam Chomsky


If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all. ~Noam Chomsky


It is the responsibility of intellectuals to speak the truth and expose lies.

 ~Noam Chomsky



Whenever citizens are seen routinely as enemies of their own government, writers are routinely seen to be the most dangerous enemies ~E.L. Doctorow



Precious few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts. ~Albert Einstein



With the affairs of active human beings it is different. Here knowledge of truth alone does not suffice; on the contrary this knowledge must continually be renewed by ceaseless effort, if it is not to be lost. It resembles a statue of marble which stands in the desert and is continuously threatened with burial by the shifting sands. The hands of science must ever be at work in order that the marble column continue everlastingly to shine in the sun. To those serving hands mine also belong. ~Albert Einstein


Truth is that which confirms what we already believe.  ~Northrop Frye


The accepted ideas of any period are singularly those that serve the dominant economic interest...What economists believe and teach, whether in the United States or in the Soviet Union, is rarely hostile to the institutions ~ the private business enterprise, the Communist Party ~ that reflect the dominant economic power. Not to notice this takes effort, although many succeed. ~John Kenneth Galbraith


How to tell students what to look for
without telling them what to see is the
dilemma of teaching. ~Lascelles Abercrombie


Today the tyrant rules not by club or fist, but disguised as a market researcher, he shepherds his flocks in the ways of utility and comfort. ~Marshall McLuhan



During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act ~George Orwell


Circus dogs jump when the trainer cracks his whip. But the really well~trained dog is the one that turns his somersault when there's no whip.

 ~George Orwell


What a man believes upon grossly insufficient evidence is an index into his desires ~ desires of which he himself is often unconscious. If a man is offered a fact which goes against his instincts, he will scrutinize it closely, and unless the evidence is overwhelming, he will refuse to believe it. If, on the other hand, he is offered something which affords a reason for acting in accordance to his instincts, he will accept it even on the slightest evidence. The origin of myths is explained in this way ~Bertrand Russell


It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have these three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence to practice neither ~Mark Twain



Every view of things that is not strange is false. ~Paul Valéry



Let no one believe ... that the many are so exhausted by activities dictated by the need for earning a living, that freedom of thought is useless to them, or even disturbing. Or that they can best be activated by the diffusion of principles handed down from on high, while their freedom to think and to investigate is restricted ~Wilhelm Von Humboldt


"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains set lightly upon you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen."

~ Samuel Adams


"You need only reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence."

~ Charles A. Beard (1874~1948)


"Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner."

~ James Bovard, (1994)


"The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well~meaning but without understanding."

Justice Louis Brandeis (1928)


"Without free speech no search for truth is possible... no discovery of truth is useful.... Better a thousandfold abuse of free speech than denial of free speech. The abuse dies in a day, but the denial slays the life of the people, and entombs the hope of the race."

~ Charles Bradlaugh ~ (English reformer ~ 1890)


Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.

~ John Bradshaw


I'm for prayer in the schools because ritual and ceremony are calming and civilizing, and the little fartlings should be tamped down whenever possible.

~Florence King


Among a people generally corrupt, liberty cannot long exist.

~ Edmund Burke ~ (British statesman ~ 1756)


All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

~ Edmund Burke


The road to tyranny, we must never forget, begins with the destruction of the truth. ~William Jefferson Clinton


It is important that students bring a certain ragamuffin, barefoot irreverence

to their studies; they are not here to worship what is known, but to question

it. ~Jacob Bronowski



"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

~ Benjamin Franklin (1755)


"Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom."

~ Albert Einstein (1950)


"No society can possibly be built on a denial of individual freedom."

Mahatma Ghandi


"Coercion cannot but result in chaos in the end."

~ Mahatma Ghandi


"One who uses coercion is guilty of deliberate violence. Coercion is inhuman."

~ Mahatma Ghandi


"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free."

~ Goethe



"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. Moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue."

~ Barry Goldwater


"A government that is big enough to give you all you want is big enough to take it all away."

~ Barry Goldwater


"The right of revolution is an inherent one. When people are oppressed by their government, it is a natural right they enjoy to relieve themselves of the oppression, if they are strong enough, whether by withdrawal from it, or by overthrowing it and substituting a government more acceptable."

~ Ulysses S. Grant


"The evils of tyranny are rarely seen but by him who resists it."

~ John Hay


Freedom granted only when it is known beforehand that its effects will be beneficial is not freedom."

~F. A. Hayek, winner of Nobel Prize for Economics



"The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire."

~ Robert A. Heinlein


"We must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight!! An appeal to arms and to the God of Hosts is all that is left to us!...Why stand we here idle? What is it that the gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!"

~ Patrick Henry


"If you are not free to choose wrongly and irresponsibly, you are not free at all."

Jacob Hornberger (1995)


"When governments fear the people there is liberty. When the people fear the government there is tyranny."

~Thomas Jefferson


"A little rebellion, now and then, is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical."

~ Thomas Jefferson , letter (to James Madison, 1787)


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

~ Thomas Jefferson , (1800)


"The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be...The nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists."

~Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


"Fifty~one percent of a nation can establish a totalitarian regime, suppress minorities and still remain democratic."

Erik von Kuehnelt~Leddihn

"I believe that every individual is naturally entitled to do as he pleases with himself and the fruits of his labor, so far as it in no way interferes with any other men's rights."

~ Abraham Lincoln


"No man is good enough to govern another man without that other's consent."

~Abraham Lincoln


"The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted."

~ James Madison


"I believe that there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachment than by violent and sudden usurpations." ~James Madison


What people need and what they want
may be very different....Teachers are those
who educate the people to appreciate the
things they need. ~ Elbert Hubbard


"The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule."

~ H. L. Mencken


"The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed ~ and hence clamorous to be led to safety ~ by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."

~ H.L. Mencken


"Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign."

~ John Stuart Mill


“When they took the 4th Amendment, I was quiet because I didn't deal drugs.
When they took the 6th Amendment, I was quiet because I am innocent.
When they took the 2nd Amendment, I was quiet because I don’t own a gun.
Now they have taken the 1st Amendment, and I can only be quiet.”

~ Lyle Myhr


"Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you."

~ Pericles (430 BC)


"The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities."

~ Ayn Rand


"There will never be a free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly."

~ Henry David Thoreau


It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. ~Voltaire


Education is man's going forward from cocksure ignorance to thoughtful

uncertainty. ~Kenneth G. Johnson


"The United States is a nation of laws, badly written and randomly enforced."

Frank Zappa


"Wherever is found what is called a paternal government, there is found state education. It has been discovered that the best way to insure implicit obedience is to commence tyranny in nursery."

Benjamin Disraeli, British Prime Minister


"It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong."



"Men had better be without education than be educated by their rulers."

~ Thomas Hodgskin


"Historically, much of the motivation for public schooling has been to stifle variety and institute social control."

~ Jack Hugh


"The aim of public education is not to spread enlightenment at all: it is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed a standard citizenry, to put down dissent and originality."

~ H.L. Mencken


"As for money, the relationship between it and effective schools has been studied to death. The unanimous conclusion is that there is no connection between school funding and school performance."

~ Brookings Institution scholars John Chubb and Terry Moe, 1990


"As we all learned from the sorry experience of state~sanctioned bureaucracies in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, decentralization is crucial to both freedom and excellence."

~ Mayor Jerry Brown, on why he opposes unionizing Oakland, California's charter schools.


It has been discovered that the best way to insure implicit obedience is to commence tyranny in nursery."

~ Benjamin Disraeli, British Prime Minister


"Historically, much of the motivation for public schooling has been to stifle variety and institute social control."

~ Jack Hugh


"The aim of public education is not to spread enlightenment at all: it is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed a standard citizenry, to put down dissent and originality."

~ H.L. Mencken


"In Germany, they first came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist. Then, they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew...Then they came for the Catholics. I didn't speak up then because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak up."

~Reverend Martin Niemoller, German Lutheran pastor arrested by the Gestapo in 1937.


"If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all."

Noam Chomsky


It is clear that the individual who persecutes a man, his brother, because he is not of the same opinion, is a monster.
~ Voltaire


"...there ought to be limits to freedom."
~ Governor George W. Bush,
US presidential candidate


"Man is born free, and is everywhere in chains."
~ Rousseau


"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."
~ Gandhi


"Whenever you find that you are on the side of the majority, it is time to reform."
~ Mark Twain


"There usually is an answer to any problem: simple, clean, and wrong."
~ H.L. Mencken


The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
~ Edmund Burke


Whenever people agree with me, I always think I must be wrong.
~ Oscar Wilde


It is wrong always, everywhere and for everyone to believe anything upon insufficient evidence.
~ W. K. Clifford, British philosopher, circa 1876


"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler."
~ Albert Einstein


"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty not safety."
~ Benjamin Franklin, 1759


Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.
~ Mark Twain


"If I can't dance, then I won't join your revolution."
~ Emma Goldman


Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.
~ Gandhi


You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake.
~ Jeannette Rankin


"It is not enough for a handful of experts to attempt the solution of a problem, to solve it and then to apply it. The restriction of knowledge to an elite group destroys the spirit of society and leads to its intellectual impoverishment."
~Albert Einstein


I tore myself away from the safe comfort of certainties through my love for truth; and truth rewarded me.

~ Sylvia Ashton Warner


What is education? Properly speaking, there is no such thing as education. Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another. ... What we need is to have a culture before we hand it down. In other words, it is a truth, however sad and strange, that we cannot give what we have not got, and cannot teach to other people what we do not know ourselves.

~G.K. Chesterton


The real struggle is not between East and West, or capitalism and communism, but between education and propaganda.

~ Martin Buber


Hope isn't a choice, it's a moral obligation, a human obligation, an obligation to the cells in your body....Hope is not naive, hope grapples endlessly with despair.  Real, vivid, powerful, thunderclap hope, like the soul, is at home in darkness, is divided; but lose your hope and you lose your soul....Will the world end if you act? Who can say? Will you lose your soul . . . if you don't act, if you don't organize? I guarantee it. And you will feel really embarrassed at your ten~year class reunion.

~ Tony Kushner, May 26, 2002 commencement speech at Vassar College


The origin of thinking is some perplexity, confusion or doubt. ~John Dewey


The truth is that the average schoolmaster, on all the lower levels, is and always must be...next door to an idiot, for how can one imagine an intelligent man engaging in so puerile an avocation?

~H. L. Mencken


It is tiresome to hear education discussed, tiresome to educate, and tiresome to be educated.

~William Lamb, second Viscount