Progressive Thoughts





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"As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be
more apt to allow that all those who conduct
themselves as worthy members of the community
are equally entitled to the protections of civil
government. I hope ever to see America among
the foremost nations of justice and liberality."
-- George Washington



“Educate and inform the whole mass of the people...
They are the only sure reliance for the preservation
of our liberty.” -- Thomas Jefferson




You just need to be a flea against injustice. Enough
committed fleas biting strategically can make even
the biggest dog uncomfortable and transform even
the biggest nation. -- Marian Wright Edelman





“The ignorance of one voter in a democracy
impairs the security of all.”
-- John F. Kennedy




“Politics is about the improvement of people's lives.
It's about advancing the cause of peace and justice
in our country and the world.”
-- Paul Wellstone



"WAR is a racket. It always has been. A few profit -
and the many pay. But there is a way to stop it. You
can't end it by disarmament conferences. You can't
eliminate it by peace parleys at Geneva. Well-meaning
but impractical groups can't wipe it out by resolutions.
It can be smashed effectively only by taking the profit
out of war. -- Major General Smedley Butler, USMC

Cowardice asks the question: Is it safe?
Expediency asks the question: Is it politic?
Vanity asks the question: Is it popular?
But conscience asks the question: Is it right?
And there comes a time one must take a position
that is neither safe, nor politic nor popular...
but one must take it simply because it is right.
-- Martin Luther King


“The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a
government strong enough to protect the interests
of the people, and a people strong enough and well
enough informed to maintain its sovereign control
over the government.” -- Franklin D. Roosevelt




“The government is us;
we are the government, you and I.”
-- Theodore Roosevelt





It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather
an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires
in people's minds. -- Samuel Adams






"Without a struggle, there can be no progress."
-- Frederick Douglass




“You do not examine legislation in the light of the
benefits it will convey if properly administered,
but in the light of the wrongs it would do and the
harms it would cause if improperly administered.”
-- Lyndon B. Johnson


“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that
unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety
of my country... Corporations have been enthroned
and an era of corruption in high places will follow,
and the money power of the country will endeavor to
prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of
the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands
and the Republic is destroyed.”
-- Abraham Lincoln



“Peace Cannot Be Kept By Force - It Can Only
Be Achieved By Understanding.”
-- Albert Einstein





“Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than
our progress in education. The human mind is our
fundamental resource.”
-- John F. Kennedy



Over grown military establishments are under
any form of government inauspicious to liberty,
and are to be regarded as particularly hostile to
republican liberty. -- George Washington




"Every gun that's made, every warship launched,
every rocket fired, signifies a theft from those who
hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not
clothed. This world in arms...is spending the genius
of its scientists, the sweat of its laborers,"
-- Dwight D. Eisenhower



"It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own
debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would
save one-half the wars of the world."
-- Thomas Jefferson



"The test of our progress is not whether we add more
to the abundance of those who have much it is
whether we provide enough for those who have little."
-- Franklin D. Roosevelt





"Power concedes nothing without a demand.
It never did and it never will."
-- Frederick Douglass


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The word democracy comes from the ancient Greek "demos"
meaning "the people" and "kratein" meaning "to rule."
Democracy means "The People Rule."

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“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”
-- Theodore Roosevelt





“If a free society cannot help the many who are poor,
it cannot save the few who are rich.”
-- John F. Kennedy




“There are three critical ingredients to democratic
renewal and progressive change in America: good
public policy, grassroots organizing and electoral politics.”
-- Paul Wellstone





“Find purpose, the means will follow.”
-- Mahatma Gandhi






“When people feel there is a purpose and that
they’re needed, there’s not much else to do
except let them do the work.”
-- Maya Angelou




"Let the people rule."
-- Andrew Jackson




“We only think when we are confronted with problems... Conflict is
the gadfly of thought. It stirs us to observation and memory.
It instigates to invention. It shocks us out of sheep like passivity,
and sets us at noting and contriving. “
-- John Dewey



"I prayed for twenty years but received no answer
until I prayed with my legs."
-- Frederick Douglass





“All progress has resulted from people who took
unpopular positions.”
-- Adlai Stevenson





“Non-violence is not inaction. It is not discussion.
It is not for the timid or weak... Non-violence is hard
work. It is the willingness to sacrifice. It is the
patience to win.” -- Cesar Chavez

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The Greeks were so appalled at people who were uninvolved in
politics they invented a new word; “Idiot” from ancient Greek,
means one who is not political.

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“Democracy is the government of the people, by the
people, for the people.”
-- Abraham Lincoln





“We mean by "politics" the people's business –
the most important business there is.”
-- Adlai Stevenson





“A nation that destroys it's soils destroys itself.
Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the
air and giving fresh strength to our people.”
-- Franklin D. Roosevelt




“Information is the currency of democracy.”
-- Theodore Roosevelt






“Efforts and courage are not enough without
purpose and direction.”
-- John F. Kennedy




"Few will have the greatness to bend history itself;
but each of us can work to change a small portion
of events, and in the total; of all those acts will be
written the history of this generation."
-- Robert Kennedy


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

“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people
tolerate the growth of private power to a point where
it becomes stronger than their democratic state itself.
That, in its essence, is fascism - ownership of
government by an individual, by a group, or any
controlling private power.” -- Franklin D. Roosevelt


"Under a separation of state and economics, especially
with laissez-faire capitalism, the state no longer has a
role to play in protecting the people and assuring their
happiness. Laissez-faire means capitalism is outside
the regulatory control of the state and that the people
are entirely at the mercy of the capitalists."
--Thomas Jefferson


“The vote is the most powerful instrument ever
devised by man for breaking down injustice and
destroying the terrible walls which imprison men
because they are different from other men.”
-- Lyndon B. Johnson
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“In the future days which we seek to make secure,
we look forward to a world founded upon four
essential human freedoms.

1. The first is freedom of speech and expression --
everywhere in the world.

2. The second is freedom of every person to worship
God in his own way-- everywhere in the world.

3. The third is freedom from want, which, translated into world terms,
means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a
healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants -- everywhere in the world.

4. The fourth is freedom from fear, which, translated into world terms,
means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in
such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an
act of physical aggression against any neighbor -- anywhere in the world. ”

-- Franklin D. Roosevelt

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“The very word 'secrecy' is repugnant in a free and
open society; and we are as a people inherently
and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret
oaths, and to secret proceedings.”
-– John F. Kennedy


“Let us never forget that government is ourselves
and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers
of our democracy are not a President and senators
and congressmen and government officials, but the
voters of this country.”
-- Franklin D. Roosevelt



“When even one American-who has done nothing
wrong-is forced by fear to shut his mind and close
his mouth-then all Americans are in peril.”
-- Harry Truman




“We travel together, passengers on a little spaceship,
dependent on it's vulnerable reserves of air and soil,
all committed, for our safety, to it's security and peace.
Preserved from annihilation only by the care, the work
and the love we give our fragile craft.”
-- Adlai Stevenson
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