patriotism

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 Johnson used to remark, the last refuge of the scoundrel, wrapping outdated industry in the mantle of national interest is the last refuge of the economically dispossessed.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.

You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who says or does it.

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.

If the test of patriotism comes only by reflexively falling into lockstep behind the leader whenever the flag is waved, then what we have is a formula for dictatorship, not democracy.

Unity is the great goal toward which humanity moves irresistibly. But it becomes fatal, destructive of the intelligence, the dignity, the well-being of individuals and peoples whenever it is formed without regard to liberty, either by violent means or under the authority of any theological, metaphysical, political, or even economic idea. That patriotism which tends toward unity without regard to liberty is an evil patriotism, always disastrous to the popular and real interests of the country it claims to exalt and serve. Often, without wishing to be so, it is a friend of reaction – an enemy of the revolution, i.e., the emancipation of nations and men.

The hand that gives is among the hand that takes. Money has no fatherland, financiers are without patriotism and without decency, their sole object is gain.

When a government is dependent upon bankers for money, they and not the leaders of the government control the situation, since the hand that gives is above the hand that takes. Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency; their sole object is gain.

Love makes fools, marriage cuckolds and patriotism malevolent imbeciles.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism - how passionately I hate them!

This topic brings me to that worst outcrop of herd life, the military system, which I abhor... This plague-spot of civilization ought to be abolished with all possible speed. Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism -- how passionately I hate them!

Some people live an entire lifetime wondering if they've made a difference in the world, Marines don't have that problem.

We ask for State legislation, and we are told to go to the Federal Government; we come to the Federal Government and it is contended that these things rightfully belong to the States. It does not make a particle of difference. If we come here to the Federal Government and ask for remedial legislation, we are told that these things will come when they become a custom, and not by legislation. And then we go to employers, to their companies, and ask them to confer with us in order to inaugurate that custom, and they tell us, If you do not get out of here we will put a boot in the place where it will feel uncomfortable. If we strike or ask that the matter be submitted to arbitration, we are told there is nothing to arbitrate. If we strike in order to enforce what we believe to be our rights, we are enjoined; and if we exercise what we believe to be our rights in spite of the injunction, we are guilty of contempt of court and are put in the jug during his honor's pleasure. There is not anywhere we can go for the purpose of trying to bring about some remedy, some change, some improvement but we are met by the same opposition, prompted by the same cause, prompted by the same motive, and that is to leave the workingman helpless to the mercy of the employing class. I think, though, I may say that that time has gone by. The workingmen of our country have learned somewhat of their rights, and they propose to stand by them, and they have the courage to do so, too.

A place for everything, and everything in its place

People who think they're generous to a fault usually think that's their only fault.

The generality of mankind is lazy. What distinguishes men of genuine achievement from the rest of us is not so much their intellectual powers and aptitudes as their curiosity, their energy, their fullest use of their potentialities. Nobody really knows how smart or talented he is until he finds the incentives to use himself to the fullest. God has given us more than we know what to do with.