Thursday, August 27, 2009

Civil Liberties

This is doing the rounds on the VOTR circuit, and is well worth a watch.


There is a shortage of coherent strategy from those in or aspiring to Government on how the erosion of civil liberties can be reversed. Even more depressingly there is no real shared vision on which rights are considered as inalienable; partly because we know that in the eyes of successive governments there is no civil liberty that can be allowed to stand in the way are in of the agenda of the day, and because we are so easily rail-roaded.

So today can be Civil Liberty quote day here on D1979, because I think we need to remind ourselves of why the protection of Civil Liberties is the duty of all free people and of the dangers of ignorance in this matter.

"People can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders...All you have to do is tell them they're being attacked and denounce the pacifists for a lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country." Hermann Goering

"Accustomed to trample on the rights of others, you have lost the genius of your own independence and become the fit subjects of the first cunning tyrant who rises among you" Abraham Lincoln

“Men are qualified for civil liberties in exact proportion to their disposition to put moral chains upon their appetites: in proportion as their love of justice is above their rapacity” Edmund Burke

“All that's necessary for the forces of evil to win in the world is for enough good men to do nothing.” Edmund Burke

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible make violent revolution inevitable." Dr Martin Luther King

"Be not intimidated... nor suffer yourselves to be wheedled out of your liberties by any pretense of politeness, delicacy, or decency. These, as they are often used, are but three different names for hypocrisy, chicanery and cowardice." John Adams

“A people who extend civil liberties only to preferred groups start down the path either to dictatorship of the right or the left.” William Orville Douglas

“When complaints are freely heard, deeply considered and speedily reformed, then is the utmost bound of civil liberty attained that wise men look for.” John Milton

Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties. John Milton

The basis of a democratic state is liberty. Aristotle

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety" Benjamin Franklin

God grant that not only the love of liberty but a thorough knowledge of the rights of man pervade all the nations of the earth, so that a philosopher may pervade all the nations of the earth, so that a philosopher may set his foot anywhere on its surface and say:" This is my country." Benjamin Franklin

It is seldom that liberty of any kind is lost all at once. David Hume

Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately, nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are ruined. Patrick Henry

He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself. Thomas Paine

The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance. John Philpot Curran

There is no conflict between liberty and safety. We will have both or neither. Ramsey Clark

I would think there are hundreds or possibly thousands more apt quotes in the same vein, so feel free to leave any additional ones in the comments.


Shibby said...


Catosays said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Catosays said...

The New Freethinker

This is a bit long, but it's worth it, I think.

John Grubby who was short and stout
And troubled with religious doubt,
Refused about the age of three
To sit upon the curate's knee;
(For so the eternal strife must rage
Between the spirit of the age
And Dogma, which, as is well known,
Does simply hate to be outgrown).
Grubby, the young idea that shoots,
Outgrew the ages like old boots;
While still, to all appearance, small,
Would have no Miracles at all;
And just before the age of ten
Firmly refused Free Will to men.
The altars reeled, the heavens shook,
Just as he read of in the book;
Flung from his house went forth the youth
Alone with tempests and the Truth.
Up to the distant city and dim
Where his papa had bought for him
A partnership in Chepe and Deer
Worth, say twelve hundred pounds a year.
But he was resolute. Lord Brute
Had found him useful; and Lord Loot,
With whom few other men would act,
Valued his promptitude and tact;
Never did even philanthrophy
Enrich a man more rapidly:
'Twas he that stopped the Strike in Coal,
For hungry children racked his soul;
To end their misery there and then
He filled the mines with Chinamen
Sat in that House that broke the Kings,
And voted for all sorts of things --
And rose
from Under-Sec. to Sec.
With scarce a murmur or a check.
Some grumbled. Growlers who gave less
Than generous worship to success,
The little printers
in Dundee,
Who got ten years for blasphemy,
(Although he let them off with seven)
Respect him rather less than heaven.
No matter. This can still be said:
Never to supernatural dread
Never to unseen deity,
Did Sir John Grubby bend the knee;
Nor was he bribed by fabled bliss
To kneel to any world but this.
The curate lives in Camden Town,
His lap still empty of renown,
And still across the waste of years
John Grubby, in the House of Peers,
Faces that curate, proud and free,
And never sits upon his knee.

G K Chesterton

hermit said...

"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors"

Daniel1979 said...

Cato - I have not read that before, thanks for sharing.

Hermit, good one.

Tarquin said...

love the soundtrack - not sure about the video scenes, which weren't really evidence - I think 'taking liberties' said it better

admittedly that wasn't a music video...