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

The celebration of unbounded individualism means, beyond some point, the acceptance of force- either private (crime, riot, vigilanteism) or public (authoritarianism).

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Freedom...refer[s] to a social relationship among people- namely, the absence of force as a prospective instrument of decision making. Freedom is reduced whenever a decision is made under threat of force, whether or not force actually materializes or is evident in retrospect.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Force is the antithesis of freedom, but force must be used, if only to defend against other force.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Envy plus rhetoric equals "social justice.".

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The assumption that spending more of the taxpayer's money will make things better has survived all kinds of evidence that it has made things worse. The black family- which survived slavery, discrimination, poverty, wars and depressions- began to come apart as the federal government moved in with its well-financed programs to "help.".

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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One of the most fashionable notions of our times is that social problems like poverty and oppression breed wars. Most wars, however, are started by well-fed people with time on their hands to dream up half-baked ideologies or grandiose ambitions, and to nurse real or imagined grievances.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Many bad policies are simply good policies taken too far.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Policies are judged by their consequences, but crusades are judged by how good they make the crusaders feel.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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What is history but the story of how politicians have squandered the blood and treasure of the human race.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The first lesson of economics is scarcity: There is never enough of anything to satisfy all those who want it.The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Neither "property" nor the value of property is a physical thing. Property is a set of defined options...It is that set of options which has economic value...It is the options, and not the physical things, which are the "property" - economically as well as legally...But because the public tends to think of property as tangible, physical things, this opens the way politically for government confiscation of property by forcibly taking away options while leaving the physical objects untouched.

Politics / government Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The desire of businessmen for profits is what drives prices down unless forcibly prevented from engaging in price competition, usually by governmental activity.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Price fixing does not represent simply windfall gains and losses to particular groups according to whether the price happens to be set higher or lower than it would be otherwise. It represents a net lose to the economy as a whole to the extent that many transactions do not take place at all, because the mutually acceptable possibilities have been reduced.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Since man does not create physical matter, those who handle material objects in the production process are not producers in that sense. Economic benefits result from the transformation of matter in form, location, or availability (intellectually or temporally). It is these transformations that create economic benefits valued by consumers, and whoever arranges such transformations contributes to the value of things, whether his hands actually come into contact with physical objects or not.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Perhaps the most widespread misunderstanding of economics is that it applies solely to financial transactions. Frequently this leads to statements that "there are noneconomic values" to consider. There are, of course, noneconomic values. Indeed, there are only noneconomic values. Economics is not a value itself but merely a method of trading off one value against another.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The principles applied in economic processes are general social principles.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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American prosperity and American free enterprise are both highly unusual in the world, and we should not overlook the possibility that the two are connected.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The growing complexity of science, technology, and organization does not imply either a growing knowledge or a growing need for knowledge in the general population. On the contrary, the increasingly complex processes tend to lead to increasingly simple and easily understood products. The genius of mass production is precisely in its making more products more accessible, both economically and intellectually to more people.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Prices are important not because money is considered paramount but because prices are a fast and effective conveyor of information through a vast society in which fragmented knowledge must be coordinated.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Many of the products which create a modern standard of living are only the physical incorporations of ideas- not only the ideas of an Edison or a Ford but the ideas of innumerable anonymous people who figure out the design of supermarkets, the location of gasoline stations, and the million mundane things on which our material well-being depends. Societies which have more people carrying out physical acts and fewer people supplying ideas do not have higher standards of living. Quite the contrary.

Finance and economics Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The more adaptability exists for a given kind of decision, the less risky it is to make plans for the future, and therefore the more likely it is that more people will make more plans in such areas.

Psychological subjects Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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The most basic question is not what is best but who shall decide what is best.

Psychological subjects Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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We should listen first and foremost to our own experience...We should stop looking for saviors... Society has not existed for thousands of years because it had a succession of saviors. It's existed because it has institutions and processes through which people can realize their own goals.

Psychological subjects Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Ideas are everywhere, but knowledge is rare.

Psychological subjects Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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Ideas, as the raw material from which knowledge is produced, exist in superabundance, but that makes the production of knowledge more difficult rather than easier. Many ideas- probably most- will have to be discarded somewhere in the process of producing authenticated knowledge. Authentication is as important as the raw information itself, and the manner and speed of the authentication process can be crucial...

Psychological subjects Quotes, by Thomas Sowell

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