A Few Words from the Founders on Liberty...

'Tis our true policy to steer clear of permanent Alliances, with any portion of the foreign world...
Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.
Let me now take a more comprehensive view, and warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the Spirit of Party generally.... A fire not to be quenched, it demands a uniform vigilance to prevent its bursting into a flame, lest, instead of warming, it should consume.

-George Washington, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth.
-George Washington, letter to James Madison, March 2, 1788

The establishment of Civil and Religious Liberty was the Motive which induced me to the Field — the object is attained — and it now remains to be my earnest wish & prayer, that the Citizens of the United States could make a wise and virtuous use of the blessings placed before them.
-George Washington, letter to the Reformed German Congregation of New York City, November 27, 1783

The liberty enjoyed by the people of these states of worshiping Almighty God agreeably to their conscience, is not only among the choicest of their blessings, but also of their rights.
-George Washington, to the Annual meeting of Quakers, September 1789

A free people [claim] their rights as derived from the laws of nature, and not as the gift of their chief magistrate.
Thomas Jefferson, Rights of British America, 1774

The bold effort the present (central) bank had made to control the government ... are but premonitions of the fate that await the American people should they be deluded into a perpetuation of this institution or the establishment of another like it.
-Andrew Jackson, to Congress, closed the second Federal Bank (est. 1816) with these comments in 1836

You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out,and by the grace of the Eternal God, will rout you out!
-Andrew Jackson, evicting from the Oval Office a delegation of international bankers discussing the Bank Renewal Bill, 1832

I am one of those who do not believe that a national debt is a national blessing, but rather a curse to a republic; inasmuch as it is calculated to raise around the administration a moneyed aristocracy dangerous to the liberties of the country.
-Andrew Jackson, in a letter to T. H. Colman, 26 April 1824

There never was a good war or a bad peace.
-Ben Franklin, Letter to Josiah Quincy, 9 September, 1783

Those who would sacrifice Liberty for temporary safety deserve neither Liberty nor safety.
-Ben Franklin, notes for a proposition at the Pennsylvania Assembly, 17 February, 1755

Sell not virtue to purchase wealth, nor Liberty to purchase power.
-Ben Franklin, in Poor Richard's Almanac, 1738

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