February 15, 2010

Quotables: Calvin Coolidge

"All growth depends upon activity. There is no development physically or intellectually without effort, and effort means work."


"Any man who does not like dogs and want them about does not deserve to be in the White House."


"Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas."


"Civilization and profit go hand in hand."

"Collecting more taxes than is absolutely necessary is legalized robbery."

"Don't expect to build up the weak by pulling down the strong."

"Duty is not collective; it is personal."

"Economy is the method by which we prepare today to afford the improvements of tomorrow."

"Four-fifths of all our troubles would disappear, if we would only sit down and keep still."

"Heroism is not only in the man, but in the occasion."


"I have found it advisable not to give too much heed to what people say when I am trying to accomplish something of consequence. Invariably they proclaim it can't be done. I deem that the very best time to make the effort."


"I sometimes wish that people would put a little more emphasis upon the observance of the law than they do upon its enforcement."


"If I had permitted my failures, or what seemed to me at the time a lack of success, to discourage me I cannot see any way in which I would ever have made progress."


"Industry, thrift and self-control are not sought because they create wealth, but because they create character."


"If you don't say anything, you won't be called on to repeat it."

"It is only when men begin to worship that they begin to grow."

"It takes a great man to be a good listener."

"No man ever listened himself out of a job."


"Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. It may not be difficult to store up in the mind a vast quantity of face within a comparatively short time, but the ability to form judgments requires the severe discipline of hard work and the tempering heat of experience and maturity."


"Little progress can be made by merely attempting to repress what is evil. Our great hope lies in developing what is good."


"Men speak of natural rights, but I challenge any one to show where in nature any rights existed or were recognized until there was established for their declaration and protection a duly promulgated body of corresponding laws."


"Never go out to meet trouble. If you just sit still, nine cases out of ten, someone will intercept it before it reaches you."


"No enterprise can exist for itself alone. It ministers to some great need, it performs some great service, not for itself, but for others; or failing therein, it ceases to be profitable and ceases to exist."


"No nation ever had an army large enough to guarantee it against attack in time of peace, or ensure it of victory in time of war."


"No person was ever honored for what he received. Honor has been the reward for what he gave."


"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. "


"Patriotism is easy to understand in America. It means looking out for yourself by looking out for your country."


"Perhaps one of the most important accomplishments of my administration has been minding my own business."


"Prosperity is only an instrument to be used, not a deity to be worshiped."

"The business of America is business."


"The government of the United States is a device for maintaining in perpetuity the rights of the people, with the ultimate extinction of all privileged classes. "


"The man who builds a factory builds a temple, that the man who works there worships there, and to each is due, not scorn and blame, but reverence and praise."


"The nation which forgets its defenders will be itself forgotten."

"The right thing to do never requires any subterfuge, it is always simple and direct."

"There is no force so democratic as the force of an ideal."


"There is no dignity quite so impressive, and no one independence quite so important, as living within your means."


"You know, I have found out in the course of a long public life that the things I did not say never hurt me."


"They criticize me for harping on the obvious; if all the folks in the United States would do the few simple things they know they ought to do, most of our big problems would take care of themselves."


"Those who trust to chance must abide by the results of chance."

"Ultimately property rights and personal rights are the same thing."

"We cannot do everything at once, but we can do something at once."


"We do not need more intellectual power, we need more spiritual power. We do not need more of the things that are seen, we need more of the things that are unseen."


"We draw our Presidents from the people. It is a wholesome thing for them to return to the people. I came from them. I wish to be one of them again."


"We need more of the Office Desk and less of the Show Window in politics. Let men in office substitute the midnight oil for the limelight."


"To live under the American Constitution is the greatest political privilege that was ever accorded to the human race."


"When a great many people are unable to find work, unemployment results."

"When people are bewildered they tend to become credulous."

"You can't know too much, but you can say too much."


- Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States (R), 1923-1929

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