John Galbraith (1908 – 2006):
To a very large extent … we associate truth with convenience — with what most closely accords with self-interest and personal well-being or promises best to avoid awkward effort or unwelcome dislocation of life.
(The Affluent Society, 4th Edition, Penguin, 1984, p 7)
Al Gore (1948):
[Human] nature makes us vulnerable to confusing the unprecedented with the improbable …
Wishful thinking and denial lead to dead ends. …
(Climate of Denial, Rolling Stone, 22 June 2011)
The is no investment that gives a higher return on investment than political influence. …
Instead of companies innovating, coming up with better products, serving society better, it's cheaper for them to buy politicians.
Jim Hightower (1943):
A corporation isn't a person until Texas executes one!
We must shift America from a needs to a desires culture …
People must be trained to desire, to want new things, even before the old have been entirely consumed.
We must shape a new mentality.
Man's desires must overshadow his needs.
John Keynes (1883 – 1946):
Consumption, of course, is the sole end of economic activity.
Theodore Roosevelt (1858 – 1919):
The Republican party is now facing a great crisis.
It is to decide:
- whether it will be, as in the days of Lincoln, the party of the plain people, the party of progress, the party of social and industrial justice; or
- whether it will be the party of privilege and of special interests, the heir to those who were Lincoln's most bitter opponents, the party that represents the great interests within and without Wall Street which desire through their control over the servants of the public to be kept immune from punishment when they do wrong and to be given privileges to which they are not entitled.
William Niskanen (1933 – 2011) [Chairman Emeritus, Cato Institute, 2008-11]:
[Corporations] have become sufficiently powerful to pose a threat to governments …
[In particular,] multinational corporations, who will have much less dependence upon the positions of particular governments, much less loyalty in that sense. …
Lee Raymond [CEO, ExxonMobil, 1999-2005]:
[We are] not a US company and I don't make decisions based on what's good for the US.
James Madison (1751 – 1836):
A zeal for different opinions [has] divided mankind into parties, inflamed them with mutual animosity, and rendered them much more disposed to vex and oppress each other than to co-operate for their common good.
(Federalist No 10)
Thomas Jefferson (1743 – 1826):
[The] selfish spirit of commerce … knows no country, and feels no passion or principle but that of gain. …
I hope we shall take warning from the example and crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country. …
Al Gore (1948):
The tainted election of 1876 (deadlocked on election night by disputed electoral votes in the state of Florida) was … settled in secret negotiations in which corporate wealth and power played the decisive role …
Rutherford B Hayes [19th President of the United States, 1877-81]:(The Future, 2014)
[This] is a government of the people, by the people and for the people no longer.
It is a government of corporations, by corporations, and for corporations.