I came out of the Soviet Union no longer a communist, because I believed in personal freedom.
The need for Government is the need for force; where force is unnecessary, there is no need for Government.
The prairies were dust. Day after day, summer after summer, the scorching winds blew the dust and the sun was brassy in a yellow sky. Crop after crop failed. Again and again the barren land must be mortgaged for taxes and food and next year's seed. The agony of hope ended when there was not harvest and no more credit, no money to pay interest and taxes; the banker took the land. Then the bank failed.
As an American I am of course fundamentally opposed to democracy and to anyone advocating or defending democracy, which in theory and practice is the basis of socialism.
Our quilts were more than useful, they had the faint sentimentality of a pressed flower. And no more beauty. We did not value them for their appearance, but for the memories in them, for their good wearing qualities and the thrift they represented.
Two deep human desires were at war ... the longing for stability, for form, for permanence, which in its essence is the desire for death, and the opposing hunger for movement, change, instability and risk, which are life. Men came from the east and built these American towns because they wished to go no farther, and the towns they built were shaped by the urge to go onward.
Houses are the abiding joys; they are the most emotion-stirring of all things. An automobile is regarded with fond affection, a typewriter becomes the inseparable companion, clothes can stir sentimentality, and the bit of bric-a-brac is a toy one would weep to see torn away - but houses are real, deep, emotional things. How much excitement in the cutting of a window, what enormous importance in the angle of a roof!
The Democratic Party is now a political mechanism having a genuine political principle: national socialism.
I somehow always have this idea that as soon as I can get through this work that's piled up ahead of me, I'll really write a beautiful thing. But I never do. I always have the idea that someday, somehow, I'll be living a beautiful life.
Writing fiction is ... an endless and always defeated effort to capture some quality of life without killing it.
Curiosity is the hunger of the human mind.
Men in Government monopolize the necessary use of force; they are not using their energies productively; they are not milking cows. To get butter, they must use guns; they have nothing else to use.
I am now a fundamentalist American; give me time and I will tell you why individualism, laissez-faire and the slightly restrained anarchy of capitalism offer the best opportunities for the development of the human spirit.
Plants and animals repeat routine, but men who are not restrained will go into the future like explorers into a new country.
No state, no government exists. What does in fact exist is a man, or a few men, in power over many men.
Nothing whatever but the constitutional law, the political structure, of these United States protects any American from arbitrary seizure of his property and his person, from the Gestapo and the Storm Troops, from the concentration camp, the torture chamber, the revolver at the back of his neck in a cellar.
That way of life against which my generation rebelled had given us grim courage, fortitude, self-discipline, a sense of individual responsibility, and a capacity for relentless hard work.
We are never aware of the present; each instant of living becomes perceptible only when it is past, so that in a sense we do not live at all, but only remember living.
no one in a group of three is the same person he (she, it) is in a group of two. No more than he is the same in a group of two as he is alone.
There is a city myth that country life was isolated and lonely; the truth is that farmers and their families then had a richer social life than they have now. They enjoyed a society organic, satisfying and whole, not mixed and thinned with the life of town, city and nation as it now is.
Happiness is something that comes into our lives through doors we don't even remember leaving open.
What I can't understand is, how can anybody figure now that the government can support us, when we support the government.
I am too sick to work and haven't money enough to last 2 months and pay income tax. I want to keep going but do not see quite how, and there is no alternative - rather than justify my mother's 25-year dread of my "coming back on her, sick", I must kill myself. If she has to pay funeral costs, at least she will cut them to the bone and I will not be here to endure her martyrdom and prolong it by living.
Constant repetition dulls receptivity ..
Making the best of things is a damn poor way of dealing with them. My life has been a series of escapes from that quicksand.
It was not seen that woman's place was in the home until she began to go out of it; the statement was a reply to an unspoken challenge, it was attempted resistance to irresistible change.
Life is a thin narrowness of taken-for-granted, a plank over a canyon in a fog.
All men are brothers and each man is free.
I'm not "filled with my art". I ain't got no art. I've got only a kind of craftsman's skill, and make stories as I make biscuits or embroider underwear or wrap up packages.
I can imagine nothing more wonderful than always wanting to keep a man...It's this NOT wanting to keep them, and yet not quite being able to disentangle one's self, never quite having the ruthlessness to stike at the hands on the gunwale with an oar until they let go - that's the horrible thing.
I so much like real things - the realities that come naturally from the depths of us like - what shall I say? - the way trees grow, from some inner essential principle of them, just expressing itself.
The longest lives are short; our work lasts longer.
The first twenty years of my life were wasted...I didn't fit my environment, and I didn't know any other.
The real protection of life and property, always and everywhere.
The question is whether personal freedom is worth the terrible effort, the never-lifted burden and risks of self-reliance.
An Old World revolution is only a movement around a motionless center; it never breaks out of the circle. Firm in the center is belief in Authority.
As novices, we think we're entirely responsible for the way people treat us. I have long since learned that we are responsible only for the way we treat people.
I ask myself, 'why am I so lazy?' and am too lazy to reply.
A kiss without a mustache is like an egg without salt.