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Disarming the Victims <— William S. Burroughs


Where do successful mass shootings occur? Public schools where guns are banned, or gun clubs with their "gun culture"?

“Most of the trouble in this world has been caused by folks who can’t mind their own business, because they have no business of their own to mind, any more than a smallpox virus has.”

 

After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it.

I sure as hell wouldn’t want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military.

William S Burroughs, The War Universe (1992)

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2012 in Liberty

 

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The Inconvenience of Too Much Liberty <— Jefferson


"We are not to expect to be translated from despotism to liberty in a featherbed"

“We are not to expect to be translated from despotism to liberty in a featherbed”

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty, than those attending too small a degree of it.

Then it is important to strengthen the state governments: and as this cannot be done by any change in the federal constitution…it must be done by the states themselves, erecting such barriers at the constitutional line as cannot be surmounted either by themselves or by the general
government.

Thomas Jefferson, letter to Archibald Stuart, on the need to defend States’ Rights against the Federal government

 
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Posted by on December 7, 2012 in Politics

 

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The Supreme Court, on Nipples <— Dave Barry


Woman protesting with nipple-shaped pasties.

I think we can all agree that this is very important.

We need our highest judicial body to stop this childish bickering and get back to debating the kinds of weighty constitutional issues that have absorbed the court in recent years, such as whether a city can legally force an exotic dancer to cover her entire nipple, or just the part that pokes out.

Dave Barry, Dave Barry is Not Making This Up

 
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Posted by on November 30, 2012 in Freedom of Expression, Humor, Politics

 

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Information Must be Free <— Thomas Jefferson


“He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me.”

If nature has made any one thing less susceptible than all others of exclusive property, it is the action of the thinking power called an idea, which an individual may exclusively possess as long as he keeps it to himself; but the moment it is divulged, it forces itself into the possession of every one, and the receiver cannot dispossess himself of it.

Its peculiar character, too, is that no one possesses the less, because every other possesses the whole of it. He who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me.

— Thomas JeffersonLetter to Isaac McPherson (1813)

 
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Posted by on November 28, 2012 in economic, Freedom of Expression, Politics

 

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Err on the Side of Innocence <— Ben Franklin <— Blackstone


Blackstone’s Ratio, mentioned by Ben Franklin in this quote, identifies why the benefit of the doubt must always be given to the accused, especially if the accusation is really bad.

That it is better 100 guilty Persons should escape than that one innocent Person should suffer, is a Maxim that has been long and generally approved.

Benjamin Franklin, letter to Benjamin Vaughan (1785)

 
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Posted by on November 23, 2012 in Politics

 

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Many Laws = Corrupt Government <— Tacitus


When laws are carried out not only for the public good, but also to target and punish, it dos society great harm.

The more numerous the laws,
the more corrupt the government.

Publius Tacitus, Annals (117 AD)
(Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges)

 
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Posted by on November 19, 2012 in Philosophy, Politics

 

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Another’s Happiness, Equal to Your Own <— Heinlein


In the later novel, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, a character refers to the earlier book’s comment: “Dr. Harshaw says that ‘the word ‘love’ designates a subjective condition in which the welfare and happiness of another person are essential to one’s own happiness.”

Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.

Robert Anson Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land (1961)

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2012 in People, Philosophy, society

 

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