Alexis de Tocqueville Quotes
"All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it."
"No protracted war can fail to endanger the freedom of a democratic country."
"History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies."
"There are many men of principle in both parties in America, but there is no party of principle."
"We succeed in enterprises which demand the positive qualities we possess, but we excel in those which can also make use of our defects."
"Consider any individual at any period of his life, and you will always find him preoccupied with fresh plans to increase his comfort."
"Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude."
"The surface of American society is covered with a layer of democratic paint, but from time to time one can see the old aristocratic colours breaking through."
"In the United States, the majority undertakes to supply a multitude of ready-made opinions for the use of individuals, who are thus relieved from the necessity of forming opinions of their own."
"A democratic government is the only one in which those who vote for a tax can escape the obligation to pay it."
"In America the majority raises formidable barriers around the liberty of opinion; within these barriers an author may write what he pleases, but woe to him if he goes beyond them."
"Nothing seems at first sight less important than the outward form of human actions, yet there is nothing upon which men set more store: they grow used to everything except to living in a society which has not their own manners."
"Life is to entered upon with courage."
"There is hardly a pioneer's hut which does not contain a few odd volumes of Shakespeare. I remember reading the feudal drama of Henry V for the first time in a log cabin."
"The whole life of an American is passed like a game of chance, a revolutionary crisis, or a battle."
"Two things in America are astonishing: the changeableness of most human behavior and the strange stability of certain principles. Men are constantly on the move, but the spirit of humanity seems almost unmoved."
"An American cannot converse, but he can discuss, and his talk falls into a dissertation. He speaks to you as if he was addressing a meeting; and if he should chance to become warm in the discussion, he will say "Gentlemen" to the person with whom he is conversing."
"I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America."
"The debates of that great assembly are frequently vague and perplexed, seeming to be dragged rather than to march, to the intended goal. Something of this sort must, I think, always happen in public democratic assemblies."
"Those that despise people will never get the best out of others and themselves."
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