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    walter e. williams Quotes

    Most of the great problems we face are caused by politicians creating solutions to problems they created in the first place.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: problem 
     
    Today's liberals wish to disarm us so they can run their evil and oppressive agenda on us. The fight against crime is just a convenient excuse to further their agenda. I don't know about you, but if you hear that Williams' guns have been taken, you'll know Williams is dead.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: crimes  evil  fight  wishes 
     
    Communism and socialism is [sic] seductive. It promises us that people will contribute according to ability and receive according to needs. Everybody is equal. Everybody has a right to decent housing, decent food and affordable medical care. History should have taught us that when we hear people talk this stuff - watch out!
    — Walter E. Williams
    The greatest percentage of poverty is found in female-headed households. Over 70 percent of female-headed households are poor. A large percentage of poor people are children (17 percent); fully 85 percent of black children living in poverty reside in a female-headed household.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Always be suspicious of those who pretend to know it all, claim their way is the best way and are willing to force their way on the rest of us.
    — Walter E. Williams
    In a free society, government has the responsibility of protecting us from others, but not from ourselves.
    — Walter E. Williams
    The Founders knew that a democracy would lead to some kind of tyranny. The term democracy appears in none of our Founding documents. Their vision for us was a Republic and limited government.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Nothing in our Constitution suggests that government is a grantor of rights. Instead, government is a protector of rights.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: right  government 
     
    In keeping Americans ill-educated, ill-informed and constitutionally ignorant, the education establishment has been the politician's major and most faithful partner. It is in this sense that American education can be deemed a success.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Democracy and liberty are not the same. Democracy is little more than mob rule, while liberty refers to the sovereignty of the individual.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: rules  democracy  liberty 
     
    Powerful government tends to draw into it people with bloated egos, people who think they know more than everyone else and have little hesitance in coercing their fellow man. Or as Nobel Laureate Friedrich Hayek said, "in government, the scum rises to the top".
    — Walter E. Williams
    Despite the miracles of capitalism, it doesn't do well in popularity polls. One of the reasons is that capitalism is always evaluated against the non-existent, non-realizable utopias of socialism or communism. Any earthly system, when compared to a Utopia, will pale in comparison. But for the ordinary person, capitalism, with all of its warts, is superior to any system yet devised to deal with our everyday needs and desires.
    — Walter E. Williams
    How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively? Furthermore, does legality establish morality? Slavery was legal; apartheid is legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of moral people.
    — Walter E. Williams
    No matter how worthy the cause, it is robbery, theft, and injustice to confiscate the property of one person and give it to another to whom it does not belong.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: people  property 
     
    Prior to capitalism, the way people amassed great wealth was by looting, plundering and enslaving their fellow man. Capitalism made it possible to become wealthy by serving your fellow man.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: men  people  wealth  capitalism 
     
    I prefer a thief to a Congressman. A thief will take your money and be on his way, but a Congressman will stand there and bore you with the reasons why he took it.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: money 
     
    Here's Williams' roadmap out of poverty: Complete high school; get a job, any kind of a job; get married before having children; and be a law-abiding citizen. Among both black and white Americans so described, the poverty rate is in the single digits.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: poverty  job  american  black 
     
    (F)or 50 years, the well-meaning leftist agenda has been able to do to blacks what Jim Crow and harsh discrimination could never have done: family breakdown, illegitimacy and low academic achievement.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: achievement  black  year 
     
    There are people in need of help. Charity is one of the nobler human motivations. The act of reaching into one's own pockets to help a fellow man in need is praiseworthy and laudable. Reaching into someone else's pocket is despicable and worthy of condemnation.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: men  people  human  help  charity 
     
    Three-fifths to two-thirds of the federal budget consists of taking property from one American and giving it to another. Were a private person to do the same thing, we'd call it theft. When government does it, we euphemistically call it income redistribution, but that's exactly what thieves do - redistribute income. Income redistribution not only betrays the founders' vision, it's a sin in the eyes of God.
    — Walter E. Williams
    But let me offer you my definition of social justice: I keep what I earn and you keep what you earn. Do you disagree? Well then tell me how much of what I earn belongs to you - and why?
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: definition 
     
    Government is about coercion. Limiting government is the single most important instrument for guaranteeing liberty. We're working on a third generation which has little in the way of education about what our Constitution means and why it was written. Thus, we've fallen easy prey to charlatens, quacks, and hustlers.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Students who are alien and hostile to the education process ought to be removed. You say, "What will we do with them?" I say that's a secondary issue. The first priority is to stop thugs from making education impossible for everyone else.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Liberals believe government should take people's earnings to give to poor people. Conservatives disagree. They think government should confiscate people's earnings and give them to farmers and insolvent banks. The compelling issue to both conservatives and liberals is not whether it is legitimate for government to confiscate one's property to give to another, the debate is over the disposition of the pillage.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Try this thought experiment. Pretend you're a tyrant. Among your many liberty-destroying objectives are extermination of blacks, Jews and Catholics. Which would you prefer, a United States with political power centralized in Washington, powerful government agencies with detailed information on Americans and compliant states or power widely dispersed over 50 states, thousands of local jurisdictions and a limited federal government?
    — Walter E. Williams
    Government income redistribution programs produce the same result as theft. In fact, that's what a thief does; he redistributes income. The difference between government and thievery is mostly a matter of legality.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: facts  government 
     
    What we call the market is really a democratic process involving millions, and in some markets billions, of people making personal decisions that express their preferences. When you hear someone say that he doesn't trust the market, and wants to replace it with government edicts, he's really calling for a switch from a democratic process to a totalitarian one.
    — Walter E. Williams
    The bottom line is that if politicians weren't in the business of granting favors and exacting tribute, every single issue surrounding campaign finance reform would be irrelevant. After all, why would anyone spend money for influence, access, favors and tribute if the only thing that politicians do is to live up to their oaths to uphold and defend the Constitution?
    — Walter E. Williams
    Charity is reaching into one's own pockets to assist his fellow man in need. Reaching into someone else's pocket to assist one's fellow man hardly qualifies as charity. When done privately, we deem it theft, and the individual risks jail time.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: time  men  risk  charity 
     
    Most of what Congress does fits the description of forcing one American to serve the purposes of another American. That description differs only in degree, but not in kind, from slavery.
    — Walter E. Williams
    Saying the Constitution is a living document is the same as saying we don't have a Constitution.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: living  saying 
     
    We should view our government the way we should a friendly, cuddly lion. Just because he's friendly and cuddly shouldn't blind us to the fact that he's still got teeth and claws.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: facts  government 
     
    It was not until the Abraham Lincoln administration that an income tax was imposed on Americans. Its stated purpose was to finance the war, but it took until 1872 for it to be repealed. During the Grover Cleveland administration, Congress enacted the Income Tax Act of 1894. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional in 1895. It took the Sixteenth Amendment (1913) to make permanent what the Framers feared - today's income tax.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: war  tax  american  congress 
     
    The idea that even the brightest person or group of bright people, much less the U.S. Congress, can wisely manage an economy has to be the height of arrogance and conceit.
    — Walter E. Williams
    One of the wonderful things about free markets is that the path to greater wealth comes not from looting, plundering and enslaving one's fellow man, as it has throughout most of human history, but by serving and pleasing him.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: men  human  path  wealth 
     
    Having children is not an act of God. It's not like you're walking down the street and pregnancy strikes you; children are a result of a conscious decision. For the most part, female-headed households are the result of short-sighted, self-destructive behavior of one or two people.
    — Walter E. Williams
    However, if we wish to be compassionate with our fellow man, we must learn to engage in dispassionate analysis. In other words, thinking with our hearts, rather than our brains, is a surefire method to hurt those whom we wish to help.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: men  heart  hurt  brain  wishes  help  thinking  learn 
     
    Whether we want to own up to it or not, the welfare state has done what Jim Crow, gross discrimination and poverty could not have done. It has contributed to the breakdown of the black family structure and has helped establish a set of values alien to traditional values of high moral standards, hard work and achievement.
    — Walter E. Williams
    The public good is promoted best by people pursuing their own private interests. This bothers some people because they're more concerned with motives than with results.
    — Walter E. Williams
    tags: people 
     
    If we're ignorant of the historical sacrifices that made our liberties possible, we will be less likely to make the sacrifices again so that those liberties are preserved for future generations. And, if we're ignorant, we won't even know when government infringes on our liberties. Moreover, we'll happily cast our votes for those who'd destroy our liberties.
    — Walter E. Williams
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