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“Proximity to power deludes some into thinking they wield it.”

- Frank Underwood

"The act that requires the most courage is … simple truthful communication."

- Rollo May

"Some of Locke’s opinions are so odd that I cannot see how to make them sound sensible. He says that a man must not have so many plums that they are bound to go bad before he and his family can eat them; but he may have as much gold and as many diamonds as he can lawfully get, because gold and diamonds do not go bad. It does not occur to him that the man who has the plums might sell them before they go bad.

"He makes a great deal of the imperishable character of the precious metals, which, he says, are the source of money and inequality of fortune. He seems, in an abstract and academic way, to regret economic inequality, but he certainly does not think that it would be wise to take such measures as might prevent it. No doubt he was impressed, as all the men of his time were, by the gains to civilization that were due to rich men, chiefly as patrons of art and letters. The same attitude exists in modern America, where science and art are largely dependent upon the benefactions of the very rich. To some extent, civilization is furthered by social injustice. This fact is the basis of what is most respectable in conservatism."

- Bertrand Russell

"The road to power is paved with hypocrisy, and casualties."

- Frank Underwood

"The idea that Tony Blair – who helped launch the war on a false pretext and now says we need to "liberate ourselves from the notion that ‘we’ have caused this" – remains Middle East peace envoy is beyond parody."

- Seumas Milne, 2014

"The preference of vice to virtue [is] a manifest wrong judgement."

- John Locke

"I come not, friends, to steal away your hearts:
I am no orator, as Brutus is;”

- Mark Antony, Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare

"One of the greatest pains to human nature is the pain of a new idea."

- Walter Bagehot, Physics and Politics, 1872

"From this arises the question whether it is better to be loved rather than feared, or feared rather than loved. It might perhaps be answered that we should wish to be both: but since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved."

- Niccolo Machiavelli

"It is necessary for him who lays out a state and arranges laws for it to presuppose that all men are evil and that they are always going to act according to the wickedness of their spirits whenever they have free scope."

- Niccolo Machiavelli

"In the absence of any serious strategy to protect democracy the right resorts, instead, to a defence of "culture" – reinvented as "tradition", elevated to "heritage" and imagined as immutable. Having evoked the myth of purity it then targets the human pollutants – low-skilled immigrants, Gypsies, Muslims, take your pick. People who wouldn’t know a credit default swap if it ran up and kicked them out of their house, but who are as accessible and identifiable as neoliberal globalisation – that force without a face – is elusive."

- Gary Younge, 2014

“I have felt the wind on the wing of madness.”

- Charles Baudelaire

"Do one thing every day that scares you."

- Eleanor Roosevelt

"The most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property."

- James Madison, 1787