Unfamiliar Quotations

Government (See also Law)

"There are two things that are important in politics.  The first is money.  I can't remember what the second is." - Senator Mark Hanna (R-OH)

"Patriotism is when love of your own people comes first; nationalism when hate for people other than your own comes first." -Charles DeGaulle

"Innocent until proven guilty is for criminal convictions, not elections." - Mitt Romney

"I have found, that the brown bears are under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of Agriculture, the grizzly bears under the care of the Secretary of the Interior, and the Polar bears under my protection as Secretary of Commerce." - Herbert Hoover 

"You can't have your privacy violated if you don't know your privacy is violated, right?" -Congressman Mike Rogers, R-MI

"Every medium by which people communicate can be subject to exploitation by those with illegal intentions. Nevertheless, this is no reason to hand Big Brother the keys to unlock our e-mail diaries, open our ATM records, read our medical records, or translate our international communications." - John Ashcroft, 1997

"In terms of the American taxpayers contribution, [$1.7 billion] is it for the US. The American part of this will be $1.7 billion. We have no plans for any  further-on funding for this." - USAID Director Andrew Natsios, on rebuilding Iraq, April 23, 2003. When the cost estimate was raised to $166 billion, Natsios' statement was deleted from the State Department's website.

"A new organization of uncertain makeup using the name 'Group of the Martyr Ebenezer Scrooge' plans to sabotage the annual courier flight of the Government of the North Pole... Prime Minister and Chief Courier S. Claus has been notified and security precautions are being co-ordinated worldwide." - from the CIA Weekly Situation Report on International Terrorism, presented to President Ford in December 1974. It was classified secret for 25 years and blacked out when the report was declassified.

"The FBI, however well-intentioned, is not in the business of providing emergency road services, and might well have better things to do when listening in than respond with such services..." -Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals overturning an FBI request to eavesdrop via cars' onboard navigational systems.
"Freedom is not a concept in which people can do anything they want, be anything they can be. Freedom is about authority." -Mayor Rudolph Giuliani,  March 17, 1994

"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

"This was intended to be done by that office is being done by that office, NOT by that office in other ways.” -Secretary of Defense Donald M. Rumsfeld, discussing the Office of Strategic Influence, 111802

"THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE... We as members of the Senate, have come to look forward to the quality food prepared by Jean Pierre and Kerri, as well as the quiet camradery (sic) of our fellow Senators in a private setting." -Washington State Senator Don Benton (R-Vancouver) in a letter signed by 35 of his fellow senators, complaining about plans to close the Senate's private dining room, and eliminate their French chefs. March 2002.

"I want you to know that I can prophesy. I can communicate with the dead." -Dorothy B. Pelote, (D) Georgia State Representative, September 4, 2001

"Democrats taking over the committees in the Senate is the equivalent of the Bolsheviks taking over from the czar during the Russian revolution." -Marshall Wittmann, the Hudson Institute, May 2001

"Truth is very scarce in official documents. It is not expected by the public, and it would be utterly thrown away upon Congress." -J. Ross Browne, U.S. Treasury official, 1858

"Murder, robbery, rape, adultery and incest will openly be taught and practiced." -The Connecticut Courant reacting to Thomas Jefferson's election to the presidency 


"When you deny something your power is much more conspicuous than when you approve it." -Vladimir Voinovich

"If God is in the details, then the Code of Federal Regulations and especially the Federal Register are leading candidates for secular deification." -Joe Morehead

"If a pen is lost, a certificate to that effect must be furnished...and filed with the custodian. This certificate must give in detail specific circumstances attending the loss." -U.S. Geological Survey memo, 1913

"You don't want to read the Book of Revelation and the federal budget in one sitting. It is pretty scary." -Gene Goldsmith, (former) state representative, 42nd District of Washington

"The heavens may fall, the earth may be consumed, but the right of a congressman to lie and defame remains inviolate." -George Creel, 1920
"This bill isn't going anywhere. This (hearing) seemed to me to be held for campaign purposes so I brought my signs and bumper stickers, but I misinterpreted the context." -Representative Barney Frank (D-MA)

"There needs to be some plan whereby the unequal and sometimes crushing burden of medical expenses can be distributed." -Committee on the Costs of Medical Care, 1932