Tag Archives: U.S. Presidents

Ronald Reagan on Government by Consent

“We are a nation that has a government–not the other way around. And this makes us special among the nations of the Earth. Our Government has no power except that granted it by the people. It is time to check and reverse the growth of government which shows signs of having grown beyond the consent of the governed.”

— Ronald Reagan, First Inaugural Address, 20 January 1981


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February 22, 2009 · 5:04 pm

Ronald Reagan on Government

“In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem. From time to time, we have been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. But if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else?”

— Ronald Reagan, First Inaugural Address, 20 January 1981

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February 22, 2009 · 5:01 pm

George Washington on National Debt

“As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public credit. One method of preserving it is, to use it as sparingly as possible; avoiding occasions of expense by cultivating peace, but remembering also that timely disbursements to prepare for danger frequently prevent much greater disbursements to repel it; avoiding likewise the accumulation of debt, not only by shunning occasions of expense, but by vigorous exertions in time of peace to discharge the debts, which unavoidable wars may have occasioned, not ungenerously throwing upon posterity the burthen, which we ourselves ought to bear.”

— George Washington, Farewell Address, 1796

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February 16, 2009 · 12:15 pm

John Adams on Government

“There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.”

— John Adams, Notes for an Oration at Braintree (1772)

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February 14, 2009 · 10:04 am

Thomas Jefferson on History

“History, in general, only informs us what bad government is.”

— Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Norvell, 14 June 1807

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July 6, 2007 · 1:28 pm

Thomas Jefferson on Past and Future

“I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past.”

— Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, 1 August 1816

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July 6, 2007 · 1:27 pm

Franklin Roosevelt on Vision

“…when there is no vision the people perish…”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Inaugural Address, 4 March 1933

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July 6, 2007 · 11:59 am