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Gizmotude Quotation Archives



I often say of George Washington that he was one of the few in the whole history of the world who was not carried away by power. ~~ Robert Frost

Power intoxicates men. When a man is intoxicated by alcohol, he can recover, but when intoxicated by power, he seldom recovers. ~~ James F. Byrnes

Power does not corrupt. Fear corrupts, perhaps the fear of a loss of power. ~~ John Steinbeck

I have never been able to conceive how any rational being could propose happiness to himself from the exercise of power over others. ~~ Thomas Jefferson

The love of liberty is the love of others; the love of power is the love of ourselves. ~~ William Hazlitt

[Asking to meet with Italian businessmen instead of government officials.] I want to talk to these people because they stay in power and you change all the time. ~~ Nikita S. Khrushchev

Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. ~~ John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Action [Lord Acton]

A friend in power is a friend lost. ~~ Henry Brooks Adams

Wealth may be an excellent thing, for it means power, and it means leisure, it means liberty. ~~ James Russell Lowell

The United States has the power to destroy the world, but not the power to save it alone. ~~ Margaret Mead

It is easier to talk about money -- and much easier to talk about sex -- than it is to talk about power. People who have it deny it; people who want it do not want to appear to hunger for it; and people who engage in its machinations do so secretly. ~~ Rosabeth Moss Kanter

Knowledge itself is power. ~~ Francis Bacon

The abuse of greatness is when it disjoins remorse from power. ~~ William Shakespeare

If absolute power corrupts absolutely, does absolute powerlessness make you pure? ~~ Harry Shearer

Pick a man for his human qualities, his values, his compatibility with you, rather than what he represents in status, power or good looks. ~~ Carol Botwin

Spirit ... has 50 times the strength and staying power of brawn and muscle. ~~ Unattributed

Lust of power burns more fiercely than all the passions combined. ~~ Tacitus

There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will. ~~ Epictetus

You only have power over people so long as you don't take everything away from them. But when you've robbed a man of everything he's no longer in your power -- he's free again. ~~ Alexander Solzhenitsyn

[Of women] I do not wish them to have power over men; but over themselves. ~~ Mary Wollstonecraft

There is no history of mankind, there are only many histories of all kinds of aspects of human life. And one of these is the history of political power. This is elevated into the history of the world. ~~ Sir Karl Popper

What lies in our power to do, it lies in our power not to do. ~~ Aristotle

Power is the ultimate aphrodisiac. ~~ Henry Kissinger

The effect of power and publicity on all men is the aggravation of self, a sort of tumor that ends by killing the victim's sympathies. ~~ Henry Adams

The qualities that get a man into power are not those that lead him, once established, to use power wisely. ~~ Lyman Bryson

The attempt to combine wisdom and power has only rarely been successful and then only for a short while. ~~ Albert Einstein

He who fears something gives it power over him. ~~ Moorish proverb

Arbitrary power is like most other things which are very hard, very liable to be broken. ~~ Abigail Adams

Once, power was considered a masculine attribute. In fact, power has no sex. ~~ Katherine Graham

Knowledge is power, if you know it about the right person. ~~ Ethel Watts


Different people have different duties assigned to them by Nature; Nature has given one the power or the desire to do this, and the other that. Each bird must sing with his own throat. ~~ Henrik Ibsen

Ideas are powerful things, requiring not a studious contemplation but an action, even if it is only an inner action. ~~ Midge Dector

The longer we dwell on our misfortunes, the greater is their power to harm us. ~~ Voltaire

If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself but to your own estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment. ~~ Marcus Aurelius

Every one in a crowd has the power to throw dirt; nine out of ten have the inclination. ~~ William Hazlitt

Language exerts hidden power, like a moon on the tides. ~~ Rita Mae Brown

The secret of power is the knowledge that others are more cowardly than you are. ~~ Ludwin Boerne

Revolutionaries do not make revolutions. The revolutionaries are those who know when power is lying in the street and then they can pick it up. ~~ Hannah Arendt

Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren't. ~~ Margaret Thatcher

There are questions of real power and then there are questions of phony authority. You have to break through the phony authority to begin to fight the real questions of power. ~~ Karen Nussbaum

… power is something of which I am convinced there is no innocence this side of the womb. ~~ Nadine Gordimer

The worst thing that can be said of the most powerful is that they can take your life; but the same thing can be said of the most weak. ~~ Charles Caleb Colton

Physics does not change the nature of the world it studies, and no science of behavior can change the essential nature of man, even though both sciences yield technologies with a vast power to manipulate their subject matters. ~~ B. F. Skinner

All power in human hands is liable to be abused. ~~ James Madison

There is nothing more corrupting, nothing more destructive of the noblest and finest feelings of our nature, than the exercise of unlimited power. ~~ William Henry Harrison

Men moving only in an official circle are apt to become merely official -- not to say arbitrary -- in their ideas, and are apter and apter with each passing day to forget that they only hold power in a representative capacity. ~~ Abraham Lincoln

Character is power. ~~ Booker T. Washington

Three things ruin a man: power, money, and women. I never wanted power. I never had any money, and the only woman in my life is up at the house right now. ~~ Harry S. Truman

When power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man's concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of his existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses. ~~ John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Our credulity is greatest concerning the things we know least about. And since we know least about ourselves, we are ready to believe all that is said about us. Hence the mysterious power of both flattery and calumny. ~~ Eric Hoffer

Rank does not confer privilege or give power. It imposes responsibility. ~~ Peter Drucker

We still think of a powerful man as a born leader and a powerful woman as an anomaly. ~~ Margaret Atwood

Next to power without honor, the most dangerous thing in the world is power without humor. ~~ Eric Sevareid

A country is considered the more civilized the more the wisdom and efficiency of its laws hinder a weak man from becoming too weak or a powerful one too powerful. ~~ Primo Levi

The angry man who puts forth his arguments in vulgar language rarely has the power to convince an intelligent audience that they are worth listening to. ~~ The Old Farmer's Almanac (1894)

Liberty has never come from the government. Liberty has always come from the subjects of it. The history of liberty is a history of resistance. The history of liberty is a history of limitations of governmental power, not the increase of it. ~~ Woodrow Wilson

No human being, however great, or powerful, was ever so free as a fish. ~~ John Ruskin

The measure of a man is what he does with power. ~~ Pittacus

Power may be justly compared to a great river; while kept within its bounds it is both beautiful and useful, but when it overflows its banks, it is then too impetuous to be stemmed; it bears down all before it, and brings destruction and desolation wherever it goes. ~~ Andrew Hamilton