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"Racing frantically against the clock, the team was still scouting for locations [for the movie Atlas Shrugged, Part I]with only three days left before shooting ended. Some locations were found only the day before they were used; some actors were cast just two days before they went on camera."
Brian Doherty
"Atlas Shrugged: The Movie Scenes from the 38-year struggle to film Ayn Rand's famous novel", Reason magazine, May 2011

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 4/08, 6:09pm)
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"The fact is, close to five years after 9/11 and fifteen years after the breakup of the Soviet Union, the United States still lacks a coherent national security policy. Instead of guiding principles, we have what appear to be a series of ad hoc decisions, with dubious results. Why invade Iraq and not North Korea or Burma? Why intervene in Bosnia and not Darfur?...Are we committed to use force wherever there's a despotic regime that's terrorizing its people—and if so, how long do we stay to ensure democracy takes root?...Perhaps someone inside the White House has clear answers to these questions. But our allies—and for that matter our enemies—certainly don't know what the answers are. More important, neither do the American people. Without a well-articulated strategy that the public supports and the world understands, America will lack the legitimacy—and ultimately the power—it needs to make the world safer than it is today."
Barack H. Obama
Barack Obama, "The Audacity of Hope", page 302.

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 3/30, 11:35am)
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By elevating the issue of helping others into the central and primary issue of ethics, altruism has destroyed the concept of any authentic benevolence or good will among men. It has indoctrinated men with the idea that to value another human being is an act of selflessness, thus implying that a man can have no personal interest in others—that to value another means to sacrifice oneself—that any love, respect or admiration a man may feel for others is not and cannot be a source of his own enjoyment, but is a threat to his existence, a sacrificial blank check signed over to his loved ones.
Ayn Rand
“The Ethics of Emergencies,” The Virtue of Selfishness, 43.

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 3/25, 7:01pm)
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The arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and assistance to foreign hands should be curtailed, lest Rome fall.
Marcus Tullius Cicero
55 BC

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(Added by William Dwyer on 3/24, 1:55pm)
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"It is my contention that limited government is a floating abstraction which has never been concretized by anyone; that a limited government must either initiate force or cease being a government; that the very concept of limited government is an unsuccessful attempt to integrate two mutually contradictory elements: statism and voluntarism. Hence, if this can be shown, epistemological clarity and moral consistency demands the rejection of the institution of government totally, resulting in free market anarchism, or a purely voluntary society ... Suppose that I were distraught with the service of a government in an Objectivist society. Suppose that I judged, being as rational as I possibly could, that I could secure the protection of my contracts and the retrieval of stolen goods at a cheaper price and with more efficiency. Suppose I either decide to set up an institution to attain these ends, or patronize one which a friend or a business colleague has established. Now, if he succeeds in setting up the agency, which provides all the services of the Objectivist government, and restricts his more efficient activities to the use of retaliation against aggressors, there are only two alternatives as far as the "government" is concerned: (a) It can use force or the threat of it against the new institution, in order to keep its monopoly status in the given territory, thus initiating the use of threat of physical force against one who has not himself initiated force. Obviously, then, if it should choose this alternative, it would have initiated force. Q.E.D. Or: (b) It can refrain from initiating force, and allow the new institution to carry on its activities without interference. If it did this, then the Objectivist "government" would become a truly marketplace institution, and not a "government" at all. There would be competing agencies of protection, defense and retaliation – in short, free market anarchism."
Roy A. Childs, Jr.
"Objectivism and The State: An Open Letter to Ayn Rand"

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 3/12, 11:40am)
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... the United States represents approximately 5% of the world's population but has created more new wealth than all the rest of the world combined.
Ronald M. Mann
The 5000 Year Leap; ISBN 10: 0-88080-148-4

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 3/07, 10:17am)
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"[there is] no clear distinction between money and non-money ... although we usually assume there is a sharp line of distinction between what is money and what is not -- and the law generally tries to make such a distinction -- so far as the causal effects of monetary events are concerned, there is no such clear difference. What we find is rather a continuum in which objects of various degrees of liquidity, or with values which can fluctuate independently of each other, shade into each other in the degree to which they function as money."
Friedrich A. Von Hayek
"The Denationalization of Money", p. 47, quoted in "The Sovereign Individual", page 198

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 3/06, 10:59pm)
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"Mass democracy leads to control of government by its 'employees.' But wait ... there are many more voters than there are persons on the government payroll. How could it be possible for employees to dominate under such conditions? The welfare state emerged to answer exactly this quandry. Since there were not otherwise enough employees to create a working majority, increasing numbers of voters were effectively put on the payroll to receive transfer payments of all kinds. In effect, the recipients of transfer payments and subsidies became pseudogovernment employees who were able to dispense with the bother of reporting every day to work."
James Dale Davidson
"The Sovereign Individual", page 126

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 3/06, 12:04am)
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All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management.
Franklin, D. Roosevelt
http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=15445

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(Added by John Armaos on 2/23, 6:27pm)
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There's a lot of college students who all want to be Ayn Rand and soon they'll ... grow up and become conservatives. ... and in the end those college students and their buddies ... in the end will vote for the republican candidate, whoever he is, in November 2012.
Charles Krauthammer
http://rebirthofreason.com/Spirit/Videos/227.shtml

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 2/19, 8:54pm)
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What’s extraordinary about all this is that stimulus can’t have failed, because it never happened. Once you take state and local cutbacks into account, there was no surge of government spending.
Paul Krugman
http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/14/the-great-abdication/

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(Added by Merlin Jetton on 2/16, 1:15pm)
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Maybe sacrifice--altruism--is popular (though not so much in practice as in discourse) because people want other people to sacrifice for them! Not exactly a benevolent reason!
Tibor R. Machan
Post after his article "Are our actions mostly motivated unconsciously?"

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(Added by Steve Wolfer on 2/10, 10:26am)
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He [Obama] hasn't advocated the abolition of private property; only of individual control over it. A distinction in search of a difference.
Fred Bartlett
http://rebirthofreason.com/Forum/ArticleDiscussions/2247.shtml#5

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(Added by Steve Wolfer on 1/31, 12:07pm)
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Of all the Civil War legislation -- aside, obviously, from emancipation -- this [National Banking Act of February 1863] had the most far-reaching consequences, most of them bad. Although Congress increased the number of national banks in operation (1,650 by December 1865), the destruction of the competitive-money/private-note issue system led to a string of financial upheavals, occurring like clockwork every twenty years until 1913. Competition in money had not only given the United States the most rapidly growing economy in the world, but it had also produced numerous innovations at the state level, the most important of which, branch banking, was prohibited for national banks. Thus, not only did the National Bank and Currency Acts establish a government monopoly over money, but they also excluded the most efficient and stable form of banking yet to emerge (although that mistake would be partially corrected in the 1920s). Critics of Lincoln's big-government policies are on firm ground when they assail the banking policy of the Civil War.
Larry Schweikart
A Patriot's History of the United States: From Columbus's Great Discovery to the War on Terror

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(Added by Luke Setzer on 1/27, 6:47am)
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It is time to leave behind the divisive battles of the past. It is time to move forward as one nation.
President Barack Obama
President's State of the Union Address; Jan. 2011

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 1/25, 7:18pm)
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The lesson of history is that, in the long run, super-elites have two ways to survive: by suppressing dissent or by sharing their wealth. It is obvious which of these would be the better outcome for America, and the world. Let us hope the plutocrats aren’t already too isolated to recognize this. Because, in the end, there can never be a place like Galt’s Gulch.
Chrystia Freeland
http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/01/the-rise-of-the-new-global-elite/8343/#

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 1/25, 3:35am)
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The difference between capitalism and 'democratic socialism' is like the difference between choosing to patronize different restaurants based on their value to you; and that of voting-in a live-in cook who, for 4 years, literally force-feeds you foods he chooses at prices he dictates -- in complete and total disregard of your preference and even of your tolerance.
Edward D. Thompson
Ed Thompson

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 1/09, 1:57pm)
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I admire [Rand's] emphasis in everything she writes on individual liberties, and how fragile they can be. ... I do want to add that I'm not an admirer of her harshness, and her lack of thinking about the social contract -- what we all need to do with each other in order to live happily in society.
Anne C. Heller
http://rebirthofreason.com/Spirit/Sightings/56.shtml (video)

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 1/08, 2:39am)
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So, let me get this straight. You want me to violate his God-given civil rights in the name of some murky sense of the "greater good," is that right? ... [heads nod] ... Well, all right. I'm game.
Annie Corlie [playing the part of Judge Laura Burch]
2009 movie: Law Abiding Citizen

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 1/08, 1:49am)
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In my opinion, the existence of life is a highly overrated phenomenon. Mars gets along perfectly without so much as a microorganism.
Dr. Manhattan
2009 post-kantian, existentialist movie: "Watchmen"

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 12/30/2010, 8:48pm)
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A physicist will accept the goal of grasping the nature of the independently existing physical world, only if he accepts that there is such a world, and he perceives it, rather than a shadowy world of subjective appearance. He will search for the causal laws governing nature, only if he accepts the law of causality and rejects the view that things can act apart from or in contradiction to their natures. He will require his theories to ascribe specific, non-contradictory properties to physical entities, only if he accepts the law of identity and the principles of Aristotelian logic. He will demand that his theories derive from observational evidence, only if he accepts the wider principle that abstractions, of any kind, derive from perceived concretes. And he therefore rejects claims based on arbitrary guesses or intuition. He will choose rationally between competing theories and eventually be able to prove his theories, but only if he accepts rational standards of proof and believes himself capable of achieving certainty. And he will hold to the independence of his scientific judgment, but only if he recognizes that truth is the correspondence between ideas and facts and not, for example, a consensus among the scientific community.
David Harriman
http://arc-tv.com/the-crisis-in-physics-and-its-cause/

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 12/28/2010, 4:11pm)
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There's not a single Democrat or Republican who's ever worked with me that will not look you in the eye and say, "Biden has never, ever, ever broken his word."
Vice Pres., Joe Biden
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40720643/ns/meet_the_press-transcripts/ns/meet_the_press-transcripts

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 12/20/2010, 11:00am)
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Absolutely, positively. Look what the deficit commission suggested. They suggested we do exactly what we did. They suggested we have a payroll tax. They suggested that we stimulate the economy this year into next year. They suggested that this has no impact on long-term debt because it's for two years. Look, you know this, the only people who are going to agree with me when I say this are the economists listening, left, right and center. In the middle of a recession, where we're just climbing out of it, where the economy--unemployment is still at 9.7 percent, the idea of raising taxes and reducing spending is a prescription for disaster. No one is suggesting that.
Vice Pres., Joe Biden
Biden's answer on Meet The Press regarding spending another $1 trillion after seeing deficit commission report

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 12/20/2010, 10:49am)
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There is one simple truth that many politicians, on both sides of the aisle do not seem to understand: You cannot be for jobs but against those who create them. Reread that sentence and let it sink in. You cannot give speeches about job creation and simultaneously vilify those who do the creating.
Glenn Beck
Broke, page 342

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(Added by Steve Wolfer on 12/15/2010, 6:02pm)
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"'Sympathetic as I am to those who prefer a fight over compromise,' Obama explained, it would be the wrong thing to do.' 'Wrong thing,' as in 'impossible thing.' With Republicans coming, tax rates were going to stay the same or rise for everyone. 'Sympathetic,' as in 'I wish we could use reconciliation or some other procedural ruse to cram this tax hike through, but oh, yeah, we already did that to pass the most contentious domestic legislation in memory.'"
David Harsanyi
And This Is the Thanks Obama Gets?

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 12/08/2010, 11:30am)
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"President: We should have pointed out not everyone goes through the new machines, and only a minority get patted down. SAR [Special Assistant for Reality]: Mr. President, if you'd told people, 'Hello, there's only 1 chance in 3 you'll be molested at the airport today' most people wouldn't think, 'Oh good, I like those odds.'"
Peggy Noonan
"The Special Assistant for Reality"

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 11/26/2010, 6:11pm)
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... Barbara and Nathaniel had inherited or adopted some of Rand's philosophical prejudices and modes of expression that (I felt) limited their ability to be objectively descriptive. ... I ended up disagreeing with some of both Brandens' interpretations of Rand's character and importance, but that was to be expected.
Anne C. Heller
Anne C. Heller interview in Summer 2010 issue of The New Individualist

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 11/26/2010, 8:23am)
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Without objects self-consciousness would be nonsense.
Johann Friedrich Herbart
Psychology as a Science (1824)

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(Added by Stephen Boydstun on 11/22/2010, 4:28am)
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"President Obama took to urban radio to reassure his base and whine his case. He said he does not get enough credit for all he has done. He took a situation that was in trouble and in terrible disrepair two years ago and brought it back from the brink of destruction – referring, of course, to the Republican Party."
Ron Hart
OCregister.com, "Ron Hart: The Audacity of Nope Brings Hope"

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 11/06/2010, 12:54pm)
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Does my conclusion differ from 'common-sense' and if so can I isolate why that is okay?
Steve Wolfer
http://rebirthofreason.com/Forum/RoRFitness/0087.shtml#7

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 11/05/2010, 7:23am)
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"Not only is it highly unlikely, for paradox-of-voting reasons, that yours will be the crucial vote, but even if it is, it will have elected a candidate who is then highly unlikely to be the crucial vote on any proposal of interest, and who cannot even be relied upon to vote the right way if he is. So given the generally lower level of stakes, an election like this one is likely to be a happy hunting ground for protest votes ... I know that there are some souls in the grip of the model who probably would vote for a policy of exterminating X puppies over a policy of exterminating X+1, but it seems pretty clear that there is some point at which it becomes obvious that a morally and politically valid response is simply to declare that the fundamental basis of the implied contract has broken down, and that it’s a reasonable choice to simply refuse to participate further ... [if you don't] vote for the candidate you think is the best ... the expected value of your vote is very small indeed, and the costs of it are the psychological toll on your own morale, plus the opportunity cost of whatever else you might have done with the time."
Daniel Davies
CrookedTimber.org, "On Not Being Obliged to Vote Democrat"

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 11/01/2010, 11:45am)
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If Latinos sit out the election instead of saying, 'We're gonna punish our enemies and we're gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us,' ...
President Barack Obama
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39839069/ns/politics/?utm_source=web&utm_medium=twitter

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 10/27/2010, 7:45am)
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We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution.
Abraham Lincoln

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(Added by Sam Erica on 10/22/2010, 6:48am)
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If you can support Star's campaign with a gift of up to $2,400 today, I would be so deeply grateful to you. Our Republican Party needs Star Parker in Congress, and so does our nation
Newt Gingrich

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(Added by William Dwyer on 10/20/2010, 1:22pm)
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I think I'm going to go all "Ayn Rand."
Glenn Beck
Glenn Beck (radio) Program; 10/20/ 2010

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 10/20/2010, 8:48am)
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It is laughable to even argue with a certain person about this any longer. You'll just get tired and he will reap all the attention he craves.
Old Yeller

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(Added by William Dwyer on 10/19/2010, 9:36am)
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Millions for defense, but not a cent for tribute!
Robert Goodloe Harper
Coin Stories: Millions for Defense, but Not One Cent for Tribute

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(Added by Luke Setzer on 10/19/2010, 7:03am)
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Some people in D.C. talk about me like a dog.
President Barack Obama

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(Added by Steve Wolfer on 10/18/2010, 10:33pm)
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The left accuses the right of not really wanting to accomplish the altruistic goal, and so they question their motives. The right can't question the motives of the left, so they have to claim that they are well meaning but their approach has problems. And that is how most of the political debate goes. We're in a unique position of understanding that altruism is taken for granted by the left and the right, since we don't accept it ourselves. So we can understand why they talk past each other, and why the right will always seem heartless and the left will always seem brainless.
Joseph Rowlands
http://rebirthofreason.com/Forum/GeneralForum/1661.shtml#10

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 10/14/2010, 2:51pm)
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But the Objectivist view is that government shouldn't violate our rights. We're not interested in small government. We're interested in strictly limited government. We're not limiting it because we think someone could abuse it. We're limiting it because a government that initiates force is already bad. Illegitimate power is not something that can be abused. Its very use is wrong from the start, and abuse is just people's way of saying that it isn't being used the way they prefer.
Joseph Rowlands
http://rebirthofreason.com/Forum/GeneralForum/1661.shtml#3

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 10/12/2010, 2:12pm)
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I'm always suspicious of politics dividing people instead of bringing them together.
President Barack Obama
Albuquerque Community Meeting; http://tv.breitbart.com/obama-on-immigration-debate-im-always-suspicious-of-politics-dividing-people-instead-of-bringing-them-together/

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 10/09/2010, 8:47am)
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"When your child is a little older, you can teach him about our tax system in a way that is easy to grasp. Offer him, say, $10 to mow the lawn. When he has mowed it and asks to be paid, withhold $5 and explain that this is income tax. Give $1 to his younger brother, and tell him that this is "fair." Also, explain that you need the other $4 yourself to cover the administrative costs of dividing the money. When he cries, tell him he is being "selfish" and "greedy." Later in life he will thank you."
Joseph Sobran
"Teach Your Children Well" at LewRockwell.com

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 10/06/2010, 6:39pm)
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'My goal in life is to pare words from overly long, redundant, verbose, disorganized charges that have grown like Topsy over time.
(Judge) Colleen Mc Mahon
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/06/pageoneplus/corrections.html?_r=1

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(Added by Peter Reidy on 10/06/2010, 3:31pm)
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We need to go 'John Galt' and unplug ourselves from a corrupt system.
Glenn Beck
Glenn Beck Program (radio), 9/20/2010, paraphrased from my memory

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 9/30/2010, 7:31am)
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"And when we’re experiencing depression economics ... this is a situation in which virtue becomes vice and prudence is folly; what we need above all is for someone to spend more, even if the spending isn’t particularly wise ... public spending on the scale needed never seems to happen ... and what actually ended up doing the trick [for ending the Great Depression] was spending that was beyond pointless, it was actually destructive – a sort of cruel joke on the part of the gods of economics. The point is that it would have been much better if the Depression had been ended with massive spending on useful things, on roads and railroads and schools and parks. But the political consensus for spending on a sufficient scale never materialized; we needed Hitler and Hirohito instead."
Paul Krugman
"Economics is Not a Morality Play" from the oxymoronically named column "The Conscience of a Liberal"

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 9/29/2010, 9:25pm)
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So I came to my Christian faith later in life, and it was because the precepts of Jesus Christ spoke to me in terms of the kind of life that I would want to lead - being my brothers' and sisters' keeper ... . And I think also understanding that Jesus Christ dying for my sins spoke to the humility we all have to have as human beings, that we're sinful and we're flawed and we make mistakes, and that we achieve salvation through the grace of God.
President Barack Obama
http://www.startribune.com/politics/national/103938653.html?elr=KArks8c7PaP3iUMEaPc:E7_ec7PaP3iUiacyKUnciaec8O7EyUr

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 9/29/2010, 11:20am)
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Some conservative legal thinkers like Justice Scalia and Justice Thomas think that the Constitution means what it originally meant. That means we should understand the document by going into a kind of ‘Time Machine’ and capturing the public understanding of the public that ratified the document a century or more than a century ago.
Cass Sunstein
http://notalemming.wordpress.com/2010/09/26/cass-sunstein-most-conservatives-view-of-the-constitution-requires-a-time-machine/

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 9/27/2010, 11:47am)
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I'd rather vote for a witch than a Marxist
Bill O'Reilly
Spoken on the O'Reilly Factor TV show 9-20-2010

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(Added by Steve Wolfer on 9/20/2010, 5:52pm)
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... the shared values that we all hold so dear. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, endowed with certain inalienable rights, life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That's what makes us unique. That's what makes us strong. The ability to recognize our common humanity.
President Barack Obama
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kd7ZQZxDhjk

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(Added by Ed Thompson on 9/20/2010, 4:59pm)
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"I too am not holding my breath on 50.1%+ of the "representatives", effectively elected by a little as a single-digit percentage of the people residing in their district or state, voluntarily relinquishing their grasp on power and giving back to me the natural rights I own simply by existing. One can not expect slaveowners to voluntarily release their slaves from bondage -- and let's not kid ourselves, the slaveholder-slave relationship is literally and precisely the relationship that exists between virtually every elected official and their "constituents". That the slavery is not 100%, but perhaps 50% or so, does not change that fact in the slightest. So, the only recourse, other than meek acceptance of that servitude, is for us serfs to quietly revolt and refuse to cooperate with the state as much as possible without provoking their retaliatory use of their monopoly of force. They will not give us our freedom. We must seize it every day, in every way we can. We must either acquiesce to their illegitimate rule, or non-violently refuse to cooperate whenever and however we can."
Jim Henshaw
private email, Libertarian Party of Hawaii discussion group

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(Added by Jim Henshaw on 9/16/2010, 9:02pm)
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