“Personal affection is a luxury you can have only after all your enemies are eliminated. Until then, everyone you love is a hostage, sapping your courage and corrupting your judgment.”
“Being young is an 18 year prison sentence for a crime your parents committed. But you do get time off for good behavior.”
“The society whose citizens are willing to stand and fight is the one with the best chance of surviving long enough for history to even notice.”
“Armies have spent a lot of time and effort training their soldiers not to think of the enemy as human beings. It’s so much easier to kill them if you think of them as dangerous animals. The trouble is, war isn’t about killing. It’s about getting the enemy to stop resisting your will. Like training a dog not to bite. Punishing him leaves you with a beaten dog. Killing him is a permanent solution, but you’ve got no dog. If you can understand why he’s biting and remove the conditions that make him bite, sometimes that can solve the problem as well. The dog isn’t dead. He isn’t even your enemy.”
“The problem with elections is that anybody who wants an office badly enough to run for it probably shouldn’t have it. And anybody who does not want an office badly enough to run for it probably shouldn’t have it, either. Government office should be received like a child’s Christmas present, with surprise and delight. Instead it is usually received like a diploma, an anticlimax that never seems worth the struggle to earn it.”
“A good working definition of fanaticism is that you are so convinced of your views and policies that you are sure that anyone who opposed them must be either stupid and decieved or have some ulterior motive. We are today a nation where almost everyone in the public eye displays fanaticism with every utterance.”
“All the common people want is to be left alone. All the ordinary soldier wants is to collect his pay and not get killed. That's why the great forces of history can be manipulated by astonishingly small groups of determined people.”
“We live in a time when moderates are treated worse than extremists, being punished as if they were more fanatical than the actual fanatics.”
“You don't know who a person is until you see how he acts when given unexpected power. He hasn't rehearsed for the part. So what you see is what he is.”
“Child-rearing today was so complicated. You always had to think of what they'd say on television later.”
“As god is my witness, it was never my intent to throw out the constitution. I thought it was hanging by a thread, and I could save it... You don't save it by cutting that thread. - President Nielson”
“My husband is a good man," she said. "It's important to him to be a good man. He has to not only be good, he has to believe that he's good. In the eyes of God, in my eyes, in his parents' eyes, in his own eyes. Good.”
“After that Johnny began to watch himself. For the first time he learned to think before he spoke.”
“About this time the custom arose of referring to the Eastern Shore with capital letters, as if it were a special place; this tribute was never paid the western shore.”
“And again, as always, after so many years we were still in the same place we always were.”
“Die Götter spielen mit dem Schicksal der Menschen. Es sind ganz offensichtlich keine komplexen Spiele, denn den Göttern fehlt es an Geduld.”
“As it is, I'm Elizabeth DeVille, super spy and resident poor girl, and watching him out of the corner of my eye will have to do. I nod at something my best friend Suri is saying to me, feeling like a shitty friend because I'm not really listening.”
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