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 Thomas Sowell Quotes
101 Famous Quotes by Thomas Sowell
6/30/1930 - (Present)
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About Thomas Sowell

Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it

Socialism Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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With various people complaining about "price gouging”... economist Walter Williams has coined a new term: "Tax gouging." But government is never accused of either "greed" or "gouging" — not even when they bulldoze people's homes in order to turn the land over to businesses that will pay more taxes.

Taxes Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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If the battle for civilization comes down to the wimps versus the barbarians, the barbarians are going to win.

Terrorism Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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One of the consequences of such notions as "entitlements" is that people who have contributed nothing to society feel that society owes them something, apparently just for being nice enough to grace us with their presence.

Welfare Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Despite a voluminous and often fervent literature on "income distribution," the cold fact is that most income is not distributed: It is earned.

Welfare Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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It is amazing that people who think we cannot afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, and medication somehow think that we can afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, medication and a government bureaucracy to administer it.

Welfare Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The welfare state is not really about the welfare of the masses. It is about the egos of the elites.

Welfare Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Various kinds of ideas can be classified by their relationship to the authentication process. There are ideas systematically prepared for authentication ("theories"), ideas not derived from any systematic process ("visions"), ideas which could not survive any reasonable authentication process ("illusions"), ideas which exempt themselves from any authentication process ("myths"), ideas which have already passed authentication processes ("facts"), as well as ideas known to have failed- or certain to fail- such processes ("falsehoods" - both mistakes and lies).

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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One of the peculiarities of the American Revolution was that its leaders pinned their hopes on the organization of decision-making units, the structuring of their incentives, and the counterbalancing of the units against one another, rather than on the more usual (and more exciting) principle of substituting "the good guys" for "the bad guys.".

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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While rationalism at the individual level is a plea for more personal autonomy from cultural norms, at the social level it is often a claim- or arrogation- of power to stifle the autonomy of others.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Mystical references to "society" and its programs to "help" may warm the hearts of the gullible but what it really means is putting more power in the hands of bureaucrats.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Freedom has cost too much blood and agony to be relinquished at the cheap price of rhetoric.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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What is ominous is the ease with which some people go from saying that they don't like something to saying that the government should forbid it. When you go down that road, don't expect freedom to survive very long.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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To those who feel that their values are the values, the less controlled systems necessarily present a spectacle of "chaos," simply because such systems respond to a diversity of values. The more successfully such systems respond to diversity, the more "chaos" there will be, by definition, according to the standards of any specific set of values- other than diversity or freedom as values. Looked at another way, the more self-righteous observers there are, the more chaos (and "waste") will be seen.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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"What freedom does a starving man have?" The answer is that starvation is a tragic human condition- perhaps more tragic than loss of freedom. That does not prevent these from being two different things.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Both free speech rights and property rights belong legally to individuals, but their real function is social, to benefit vast numbers of people who do not themselves exercise these rights.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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If you have ever seen a four-year-old trying to lord it over a two-year-old, then you know what the basic problem of human nature is -- and why government keeps growing larger and ever more intrusive.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The most fundamental fact about the ideas of the political left is that they do not work. Therefore we should not be surprised to find the left concentrated in institutions where ideas do not have to work in order to survive.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Much of the social history of the Western world, over the past three decades, has been a history of replacing what has worked with what sounded good. In area after area- crime, education, housing, race relations- the situation has gotten worse after the bright new theories were put into operation. The amazing thing is that this history of failure and disaster has neither discouraged the social engineers nor discredited them.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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What is politically defined as economic "planning" is the forcible superseding of other people's plans by government officials.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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It is precisely those things which belong to "the people" which have historically been despoiled- wild creatures, the air, and waterways being notable examples. This goes to the heart of why property rights are socially important in the first place. Property rights mean self-interested monitors. No owned creatures are in danger of extinction. No owned forests are in danger of being leveled. No one kills the goose that lays the golden egg when it is his goose.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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If you are not prepared to use force to defend civilization, then be prepared to accept barbarism.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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To include freedom in the very definition of democracy is to define a process not by its actual characteristics as a process but by its hoped for results. This is not only intellectually invalid, it is, in practical terms, blinding oneself in advance to some of the unwanted consequences of the process.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Given that some social processes must convey inherent constraints, the choice is among various mixtures of persuasion, force, and cultural inducement. The less of one, the more of the others. The degree of freedom that is possible is therefore tied to the extent to which people respond to persuasion or inducement.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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