Patriotism

Patriotism depends as much on mutual suffering as on mutual success; and it is by that experience of all fortunes and all feelings that a great national character is created.

Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.

Patriotism is often understood to mean only a readiness for exceptional sacrifices and actions. Essentially, however, it is the sentiment which, in the relationships of our daily life and under ordinary conditions, habitually recognizes that the community is one’s substantive groundwork and end. It is out of this consciousness, which during life’s daily round stands the test in all circumstances, that there subsequently also arises the readiness for extraordinary exertions. But since men would often rather be magnanimous than law-abiding, they readily persuade themselves that they possess this exceptional patriotism in order to be sparing in the expression of a genuine patriotic sentiment or to excuse their lack of it. If again this genuine patriotism is looked upon as that which may begin of itself and arise from subjective ideas and thoughts, it is being confused with opinion, because so regarded patriotism is deprived of its true ground, objective reality.

Patriotism is a pernicious, psychopathic form of idiocy.

You'll never have a quiet world till you knock the patriotism out of the human race.

Beauty, purity, respectability, religion, morality, art, patriotism, bravery and the rest… are mere words, useful for duping barbarians into adopting civilization, or the civilized poor into submitting to be robbed and enslaved. This is the family secret of the governing class.

Patriotism, public opinion, parental duty, discipline, religion, morality, are only fine names for intimidation.

A great and lasting war can never be supported on this principle (patriotism) alone. It must be aided by a prospect of interest, or some reward.

I know [patriotism] exists, and I know it has done much in the present contest. But a great and lasting war can never be supported on this principle alone. It must be aided by a prospect of interest, or some reward.

It is not by reason, but most often in spite of it, that area created those sentiments that are the mainsprings of all civilization – sentiments such as honor, self-sacrifice, religious faith, patriotism, and the love of glory.

Men in authority will always think that criticism of their policies in dangerous. They will always equate their policies with patriotism, and find criticism subversive.

At its worst, American patriotism degenerates into a coarse form of national self-congratulation.

What is patriotism but the love of the good things we ate in our childhood?

The modern patriotism, the true patriotism, the only rational patriotism is loyalty to the nation all the time, loyalty to the government when it deserves it.

More democratic societies, including the United States, instituted measures to impose discipline on the domestic population and to institute unpopular measures under the guise of "combating terror," exploiting the atmosphere of fear and the demand for "patriotism" - which in practice means: "You shut up and I'll pursue my own agenda relentlessly." The Bush administration used the opportunity to advance its assault against most of the population, and future generations, in service to the narrow corporate interests that dominate the administration to an extent even beyond the norm.

By “nationalism” I mean first of all the habit of assuming that human beings can be classified like insects and that whole blocks of millions or tens of millions of people can be confidently labeled “good” or “bad.” But secondly… I mean the habit of identifying oneself with a single nation or other unit, placing it beyond good and evil and recognizing no other duty than that of advancing its interests. Nationalism is not to be confused with patriotism… By “patriotism” I mean devotion to a particular place and a particular way of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force upon other people. Patriotism is of its nature defensive, both militarily and culturally. Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseparable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality.

The highest patriotism is not a blind acceptance of official policy, but a love of one's country deep enough to call her to a higher plain.

If patriotism were defined, not as blind obedience to government, nor as submissive worship to flags and anthems, but rather as love of one's country, one's fellow citizens (all over the world), as loyalty to the principles of justice and democracy, then patriotism would require us to disobey our government, when it violated those principles.

A successful future for America depends on the meaning we attach to being citizens of the same republic--a meaning shattered every time the left questions the intelligence of their opponents and the right questions the patriotism of those who don’t share their views. That success also will be measured by the depth of our commitment to each other—a commitment that begins in our neighborhoods and PTAs and town councils and swells upward from there. Our success rest on the shape and power of our vision--how can we pursue “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” when the nation is a battleground of uncompromising ideas and ideologies? We need to change what’s in our minds but above all we need to change what’s in our hearts.

If patriotism is, as Dr. Johnson used to remark, the last refuge of the scoundrel, wrapping outdated industry in the mantle of national interest is the last refuge of the economically dispossessed. In economic terms, pleading national interest is the declining cottage industry of those who have been bypassed by the global economy.