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Life is sentences

John Adams

We think ourselves possessed, or, at least, we …

We think ourselves possessed, or, at least, we boast that we are so, of liberty of conscience on all subjects, and of the right of free inquiry and private judgment in all cases, and yet how far are we from these exalted privileges in fact!

We think ourselves possessed, or, at least, we boast that we are so, of liberty of conscience on all subjects, and of the right of free inquiry and private judgment in all cases, and yet…

And the day will come when the mystical generat…

And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter. But we may hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away all this artificial scaffolding...{Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823}

And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva…

I do not say that democracy has been more perni…

I do not say that democracy has been more pernicious on the whole, and in the long run, than monarchy or aristocracy. Democracy has never been and never can be so durable as aristocracy or monarchy; but while it lasts, it is more bloody than either. … Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. It is in vain to say that democracy is less vain, less proud, less selfish, less ambitious, or less avaricious than aristocracy or monarchy. It is not true, in fact, and nowhere appears in history. Those passions are the same in all men, under all forms of simple government, and when unchecked, produce the same effects of fraud, violence, and cruelty. When clear prospects are opened before vanity, pride, avarice, or ambition, for their easy gratification, it is hard for the most considerate philosophers and the most conscientious moralists to resist the temptation. Individuals have conquered themselves. Nations and large bodies of men, never.

I do not say that democracy has been more pernicious on the whole, and in the long run, than monarchy or aristocracy. Democracy has never been and never can be so durable as aristocracy or…

The true source of our sufferings has been our …

The true source of our sufferings has been our timidity.

The true source of our sufferings has been our timidity.

Be it remembered, that liberty must at all haza…

Be it remembered, that liberty must at all hazards be supported. We have a right to it, derived from our Maker. But if we have not, our fathers have earned and bought it for us at the expense of their ease, their estates, their pleasure, and their blood.

Be it remembered, that liberty must at all hazards be supported. We have a right to it, derived from our Maker. But if we have not, our fathers have earned and bought it for us…

To live without having a Cicero and a Tacitus a…

To live without having a Cicero and a Tacitus at hand seems to me as if it was aprivation of one of my limbs.

To live without having a Cicero and a Tacitus at hand seems to me as if it was aprivation of one of my limbs.

I must study politics and war, that my sons may…

I must study politics and war, that my sons may have the liberty to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.

I must study politics and war, that my sons may have the liberty to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, in order to give their children a right to study painting,…

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated …

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God…

Popularity, next to virtue and wisdom, ought to…

Popularity, next to virtue and wisdom, ought to be aimed at; for it is the dictate of wisdom, and is necessary to the practice of virtue inmost

Popularity, next to virtue and wisdom, ought to be aimed at; for it is the dictate of wisdom, and is necessary to the practice of virtue inmost

From the time we became an independant nation, …

From the time we became an independant nation, it was as much a law of nature that this would become our claim as that the Mississippi should flow to sea.

From the time we became an independant nation, it was as much a law of nature that this would become our claim as that the Mississippi should flow to sea.

The government of the United States is not in a…

The government of the United States is not in any sense founded upon the Christian religion

The government of the United States is not in any sense founded upon the Christian religion

My fixed principle never to be the tool of any …

My fixed principle never to be the tool of any man, nor the partisan of any nation, would forever exclude me from the smiles and favors or courts

My fixed principle never to be the tool of any man, nor the partisan of any nation, would forever exclude me from the smiles and favors or courts

But touch a solemn truth in collision with a do…

But touch a solemn truth in collision with a dogma of a sect, though capable of the clearest proof, and you will find you have disturbed a nest, and the hornets will swarm about your eyes and hand, and fly into your face and eyes

But touch a solemn truth in collision with a dogma of a sect, though capable of the clearest proof, and you will find you have disturbed a nest, and the hornets will swarm about your…

We can change it, we will and we must. We don’t…

We can change it, we will and we must. We don't have to change parties, we have to change direction. Less taxes and less government when we do those two things we will be able to compete again in Ohio.

We can change it, we will and we must. We don’t have to change parties, we have to change direction. Less taxes and less government when we do those two things we will be able…

That’s what they admire most about the horse, h…

That's what they admire most about the horse, his durability.

That’s what they admire most about the horse, his durability.

The point is made we’re still fighting this bat…

The point is made we're still fighting this battle. It's not as dynamic a battle as people being hosed down ... but it's still happening.

The point is made we’re still fighting this battle. It’s not as dynamic a battle as people being hosed down … but it’s still happening.

I am a revolutionary so my son can be a farmer …

I am a revolutionary so my son can be a farmer so his son can be a poet.

I am a revolutionary so my son can be a farmer so his son can be a poet.

In that telling, there were things that were ex…

In that telling, there were things that were exposed about Dr. King. It cut through me in a way I (had) to do something with their story.

In that telling, there were things that were exposed about Dr. King. It cut through me in a way I (had) to do something with their story.

I knew I needed to tell this story … and disc…

I knew I needed to tell this story ... and discovered the depth of my ignorance in doing so.

I knew I needed to tell this story … and discovered the depth of my ignorance in doing so.

My critics feel there was a lack of fairness in…

My critics feel there was a lack of fairness in the opera, because the Palestinians are treated with romantic harmonies and choruses of longing, and the Jews are treated unfairly because all we hear about them are their bodily ailments. And, yes, you do hear about Marilyn and Leon Klinghoffer's bodily problems, like their hip replacements, because that's exactly the sort of thing that a retired person on a cruise would talk about.

My critics feel there was a lack of fairness in the opera, because the Palestinians are treated with romantic harmonies and choruses of longing, and the Jews are treated unfairly because all we hear about…

It ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, ….

It ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, ... with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other ...

It ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, … with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other …

It really crackles back and forth with dialogue…

It really crackles back and forth with dialogue, especially in the first act, where people really scream at one another, as they should.

It really crackles back and forth with dialogue, especially in the first act, where people really scream at one another, as they should.

Call it then, … the Age of Paine.

Call it then, ... the Age of Paine.

Call it then, … the Age of Paine.

It was a faith-based group that brought him to …

It was a faith-based group that brought him to this country as a refugee from Cuba and sent him on a path toward the American dream,

It was a faith-based group that brought him to this country as a refugee from Cuba and sent him on a path toward the American dream,

The old boys are really looking forward to this…

The old boys are really looking forward to this,

The old boys are really looking forward to this,

Nothing is more dreaded than the national gover…

Nothing is more dreaded than the national government meddling with religion.

Nothing is more dreaded than the national government meddling with religion.

The question before the human race is whether t…

The question before the human race is whether the God of nature shall govern the world by His own laws, or whether priests and kings shall rule it by fictitious miracles

The question before the human race is whether the God of nature shall govern the world by His own laws, or whether priests and kings shall rule it by fictitious miracles

The aspiring, noble principle founded in benevo…

The aspiring, noble principle founded in benevolence, and cherished by knowledge; I mean the love of power, which has been so often the cause of slavery, has, whenever freedom has existed, been the cause of freedom

The aspiring, noble principle founded in benevolence, and cherished by knowledge; I mean the love of power, which has been so often the cause of slavery, has, whenever freedom has existed, been the cause of…

As the happiness of the people is the sole end …

As the happiness of the people is the sole end of government, so the consent of the people is the only foundation of it, in reason, morality, and the natural fitness of things

As the happiness of the people is the sole end of government, so the consent of the people is the only foundation of it, in reason, morality, and the natural fitness of things

Books that cannot bear examination, certainly o…

Books that cannot bear examination, certainly ought not to be established as divine inspiration by penal laws

Books that cannot bear examination, certainly ought not to be established as divine inspiration by penal laws

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