04 July 2013

Happy Fourth of July

1. Here is a YouTube clip (audio only) on how signatures were obtained for the Declaration of Independence. (The part of the clip that I'm recommending is 6:30 long; another section comes after that, which you can listen to or ignore as you wish.)

2. Feeling patriotic? These will help. Selected from a webpage at Democratic Underground.


Never was a patriot yet, but was a fool. – John Dryden

A patriot is a fool in ev’ry age. – Alexander Pope.

Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel. – Samuel Johnson

In Dr. Johnson’s famous dictionary, patriotism is defined as the last resort of a scoundrel. With all due respect to an enlightened but inferior lexicographer, I beg to submit that it is the first. – Ambrose Bierce

Patriotism is as fierce as a fever, pitiless as the grave, blind as a stone, and irrational as a headless hen. – Ambrose Bierce

That pernicious sentiment, “Our country, right or wrong.” – James Russell Lowell

Patrioism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it. – George Bernard Shaw

Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious. – George Bernard Shaw

Patriotism is a pernicious, psychopathic form of idiocy. – George Bernard Shaw

The Athenian democracy suffered much from that narrowness of patriotism which is the ruin of all nations. – H.G. Wells

Nationalism is our form of incest, is our idolatry, is our insanity. “Patriotism” is its cult. . . . Just as love for one individual which excludes the love for others is not love, love for one’s country which is not part of one’s love for humanity is not love, but idolatrous worship. – Erich Fromm

One of the great attractions of patriotism–it fulfills our worst wishes. In the person of our nation we are able, vicariously, to bully and cheat, Bully and cheat, what’s more, with a feeling that we are profoundly virtuous. – Aldous Huxley

Many studies have discovered a close link between prejudice and “patriotism” . . . Extreme bigots are almost always super-patriots – Gordon Allport

It seems like the less a statesman amounts to, the more he loves the flag. – Elbert Hubband

Every miserable fool who has nothing at all of which he can be proud, adopts, as a last resource, pride in the nation to which he belongs; he is ready and glad to defend all its faults and follies tooth and nail, thus reimbursing himself for his own inferiority. – Arthur Schopenhauer

Patriotism is the passion of fools and the most foolish of passions. – Arthur Schopenhauer

Patriotism corrupts history. – Goethe

Into the cultural and technological system of the modern world, the patriotic spirit fits like dust in the eyes and sand in the bearings. Its net contribution to the outcome is obscuration, distrust, and retardation at every point where it touches the fortunes of modern mankind. – Thorstein Veblen

Patriotism and War

At the bottom of all patriotism is war: that is why I am no patriot. – Jules Renard

No other factor in history, not even religion, has produced so many wars as has the clash of national egotisms sanctified by the name of patriotism. – Preserved Smith

Naturally the common people don’t want war . . . (but they) can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders . . . All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism. – Hermann Goering.

Patriotism and Religion

Patriotism is a kind of religion; it is the egg from which wars are hatched. – Guy de Maupassant

God and Country are an unbeatable team; they break all records for oppression and bloodshed. – Luis Buñuel

To be patriotic, hate all nations but your own; to be religious, all sects but your own; to be moral, all pretenses but your own. – Lionel Strachey

The American Syndrome:

If you have a weak candidate and a weak platform, wrap yourself up in the American flag and talk about the Constitution. – Matt Quay

How much longer are we going to think it necessary to be “American” before (or in contradistinction to) being cultivated, being enlightened, being humane, & having the same intellectual discipline as other civilized countries? It is really too easy a disguise for our shortcomings to dress them up as a form of patriotism. – Edith Wharton

The 100 percent American is 99 percent an idiot. – George Bernard Shaw

Treason is in the air around us everywhere. It goes by the name of patriotism. – Thomas Corwin

No comments: