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Demagogues and dictators

Published Tuesday, March 15, 2016 @ 9:31 PM EDT
Mar 15 2016

A demagogue is a person with whom we disagree as to which gang should mismanage the country.
Don Marquis

A man is not a dictator when he is given a commission from the people and carries it out.
-Huey P. Long

America's two great specialties are demagogues and rock and roll, and we've all heard plenty of both in our time.
-Stephen King

America's two great specialties are demagogues and rock and roll, and we've all heard plenty of both in our time.
Stephen King

Any dictator would admire the uniformity and obedience of the U.S. media.
-Noam Chomsky

Demagogue: One who preaches doctrines he knows to be untrue to men he knows to be idiots.
H.L. Mencken

Demagogues and agitators are very unpleasant, they are incidental to a free and constitutional country, and you must put up with these inconveniences or do without many important advantages.
Benjamin Disraeli

Democracy consists of choosing your dictators, after they've told you what you think it is you want to hear.
-Alan Coren

Dictators ride to and fro on tigers from which they dare not dismount. And the tigers are getting hungry.
-Winston Churchill

Dictatorships foster oppression, dictatorships foster servitude, dictatorships foster cruelty; more abominable is the fact that they foster idiocy.
-Jorge Luis Borges

Elections give the illusion of freedom but are in fact a game among the powers that be, this is why we talk of 'formal democracy.' Instead of drawing forth the best energies of a people, this legal institution hands actual control to very different forces, turning democracy into another form of oligarchy and dictatorship.
-Karl Jaspers

Every dictatorship has ultimately strangled in the web of repression it wove for its people, making mistakes that could not be corrected because criticism was prohibited.
-Robert F. Kennedy

I am pessimistic about the human race because it is too ingenious for its own good. Our approach to nature is to beat it into submission. We would stand a better chance of survival if we accommodated ourselves to this planet and viewed it appreciatively instead of skeptically and dictatorially.
-E.B. White

I know ours is a world made by men for men, their dictatorship is so ancient it even extends to language.
-Oriana Fallaci

It is from weakness that people reach for dictators and concentrated government power. Only the strong can be free. And only the productive can be strong.
-Wendell Willkie

It is not the bad dictators who made the world bad; it is bad thinking. It is, therefore, in the realm of ideas that we will have to restore the world!
-Fulton J. Sheen

My career is a fascist state. I'm the dictator, the chief of police, the head of the army. Anybody who tries to interfere is put up against the wall and shot.
-Michael Caine

Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger. (At the Nuremberg Trials)
-Herman Goering

Of course we're unilateral. If we Americans had wanted to be ordered around by English wig-tops, French functionaries, bossy Germans, disorganized Italians, tin-pot Latin American dictators, and Ice Age Siberian bureaucrats, we would have stayed where we were.
-P.J. O'Rourke

People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made.
-Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Philosophers should consider the fact that the greatest happiness principle can easily be made an excuse for a benevolent dictatorship.
-Karl Popper

Reason can never be the absolute dictator of man's mental or moral economy.
-Theodore Dalrymple

Republicans say that Democrats want a huge, monolithic federal institution that will compromise personal liberty and freedom by controlling individuals' lives with intrusive policies and a dictatorial agenda. Republicans, of course, believe that is the job of organized religion.
-Dennis Miller

Television has made dictatorship impossible, but democracy unbearable.
-Shimon Peres

The difference between a democracy and a dictatorship is that in a democracy you vote first and take orders later; in a dictatorship you don't have to waste your time voting.
-Charles Bukowski

The most effective way to restrict democracy is to transfer decision-making from the public arena to unaccountable institutions: kings and princes, priestly castes, military juntas, party dictatorships, or modern corporations.
-Noam Chomsky

The necessary foundation of every authoritarian government is a public that prefers to feel rather than to reason. Emotion is the wild stag skillfully ridden by all dictators.
-Brian Ferguson

The only place where you can be a dictator and still be loved is on the movie set.
-Frederico Fellini

The rank and file have let their servants become their masters and dictators... Provision should be made in all union constitutions for the recall of leaders. Big salaries should not be paid. Career hunters should be driven out, as well as leaders who use labor for political ends. These types are menaces to the advancement of labor.
-Mary Harris Jones (Mother Jones)

The secret of the demagogue is to appear as dumb as his audience so that these people can believe themselves as smart as he is.
Karl Kraus

The ultimate failures of dictatorship cost humanity far more than any temporary failures of democracy.
-Franklin Delano Roosevelt

War is no longer made by simply analysed economic forces if it ever was. War is made or planned now by individual men, demagogues and dictators who play on the patriotism of their people to mislead them into a belief in the great fallacy of war when all their vaunted reforms have failed to satisfy the people they misrule.
Ernest Hemingway

We should not allow the word 'democracy' to be utilized apologetically to represent the dictatorship of the exploiting classes.
-Che Guevara

Wherever you have an efficient government you have a dictatorship.
-Harry S. Truman

Categories: Demagogues and dictators, Quotes of the day, Quotes on a topic


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