„I cannot…perceive any ground for hoping that any practical good would, while the funding system exists in its present extent, result from the adoption of any of those projects, which have professed to have in view what is called Parliamentary Reform…when the funding system, from whatever cause, shall cease to operate upon civil and political liberty, there will be no need of projects for parliamentary reform. The parliament will, as far as shall be necessary, then reform itself.“

—  William Cobbett, Political Register (15 March 1806), quoted in Karl W. Schweizer and John W. Osborne, Cobbett and His Times (Leicester: Leicester University Press, 1990), p. 11.
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William Cobbett
1763 - 1835
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„What was the conduct of the minister in the year 1782, when his pretended sincerity for a parliamentary reform had been defeated in that House, by a motion for the order of the day? He had abandoned it for ever. William Pitt, the reformer of that day, was William Pitt the prosecutor, aye, and persecutor too, of reformers now… What was object of these people? "Their ostensible object," said the minister, "is parliamentary reform; but their real object is the destruction of the government of the country." How was that explained? "By the resolutions," said the minister, "of these persons themselves; for they do not talk of applying to parliament, but of applying to the people for the purpose of obtaining a parliamentary reform." If this language be criminal, said Mr. Grey, I am one of the greatest criminals. I say, that from the House of Commons I have no hope of a parliamentary reform; that I have no hope of a reform, but from the people themselves; that this House will never reform itself, or destroy the corruption by which it is supported, by any other means than those of the resolutions of the people, acting on the prudence of this House, and on which the people ought to resolve. This they only do by meeting in bodies. This was the language of the minister in 1782.“

—  Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland 1764 - 1845
1790s, Speech in the House of Commons (17 May 1794), reported in The Parliamentary History of England, from the Earliest Period to the Year 1803. Vol. XXXI (London: 1818), pp. 532-533.

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„For I cannot but regard it as the same spirit which, with whatever profession of zeal, and for whatever ends of supposed piety or obedience, strives to subvertthe natural evidences of morals, - the existence of a Supreme Intelligent Cause. There is a scepticism which repudiates all belief; there is also a scepticism which seeks to escape from itself by a total abnegation of the understanding, and which, in the pride of its new-found security, would recklessly destroy every internal ground of humant trust and hope… Now to this, as to a former development of the sceptical spirit, Science stands in implied but real antagonism.“

—  George Boole English mathematician, philosopher and logician 1815 - 1864
1850s, Context: The scepticism of the ancient world left no department of human belief unassailed. It took its chief stand upon the conflicting nature of the impressions of the senses, but threw the dark shade of uncertainty over the most settled convictions of the mind; over men's belief in an external world, over their consciousness of their own existence. But this form of doubt was not destined to endure. Science, in removing the contradictions of sense, and establishing the consistent uniformity of natural law, took away the main pillars of its support. The spirit, however, and the mental habits of which it was the roduct, still survive; but not among the votaries of science. For I cannot but regard it as the same spirit which, with whatever profession of zeal, and for whatever ends of supposed piety or obedience, strives to subvertthe natural evidences of morals, - the existence of a Supreme Intelligent Cause. There is a scepticism which repudiates all belief; there is also a scepticism which seeks to escape from itself by a total abnegation of the understanding, and which, in the pride of its new-found security, would recklessly destroy every internal ground of humant trust and hope... Now to this, as to a former development of the sceptical spirit, Science stands in implied but real antagonism. George Boole (1851), "The Claims of Science, especially as founded in its relation to Human Nature". Published in Boole, GeorgeStudies in Logic and Probability. 2002. p. 201-202

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„We are a democracy, where the majority are the masters, or all the hopes and purposes of the men who founded this government have been defeated and forgotten. In America there is but one way by which great reforms can be accomplished and the relief sought by classes obtained, and that is through the orderly processes of representative government. Those who would propose any other method of reform are enemies of this country.“

—  Woodrow Wilson American politician, 28th president of the United States (in office from 1913 to 1921) 1856 - 1924
1910s, Context: There are those in this country who threaten direct action to force their will, upon a majority. Russia today, with its blood and terror, is a painful object lesson of the power of minorities. It makes little difference what minority it is; whether capital or labor, or any other class; no sort of privilege will ever be permitted to dominate this country. We are a partnership or nothing that is worth while. We are a democracy, where the majority are the masters, or all the hopes and purposes of the men who founded this government have been defeated and forgotten. In America there is but one way by which great reforms can be accomplished and the relief sought by classes obtained, and that is through the orderly processes of representative government. Those who would propose any other method of reform are enemies of this country. America will not be daunted by threats nor lose her composure or calmness in these distressing times. We can afford, in the midst of this day of passion and unrest, to be self - contained and sure. The instrument of all reform in America is the ballot. The road to economic and social reform in America is the straight road of justice to all classes and conditions of men. Men have but to follow this road to realize the full fruition of their objects and purposes. Let those beware who would take the shorter road of disorder and revolution. The right road is the road of justice and orderly process. Woodrow Wilson: "7th Annual Message", December 2, 1919. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=29560#axzz2g0trF1OV

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„Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause; and I was not without hopes that the enlightened and liberal policy of the present age would have put an effectual stop to contentions of this kind.“

—  George Washington first President of the United States 1732 - 1799
1790s, Letter to Sir Edward Newenham (22 June 1792) http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/etcbin/toccer-new2?id=WasFi32.xml&images=images/modeng&data=/texts/english/modeng/parsed&tag=public&part=69&division=div1 as published in The Writings of George Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources (1939) as edited by John Clement Fitzpatrick

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„I cannot consent to take the position that the door of hope — the door of opportunity — is to be shut upon any man, no matter how worthy, purely upon the grounds of race or color. Such an attitude would, according to my convictions, be fundamentally wrong.“

—  Theodore Roosevelt American politician, 26th president of the United States 1858 - 1919
1900s, Context: I do not intend to appoint any unfit man to office. So far as I legitimately can I shall always endeavor to pay regard to the wishes and feelings of the people of each locality, but I cannot consent to take the position that the door of hope — the door of opportunity — is to be shut upon any man, no matter how worthy, purely upon the grounds of race or color. Such an attitude would, according to my convictions, be fundamentally wrong. Letter to James Adger Smythe http://www.theodorerooseveltcenter.org/Research/Digital-Library/Record.aspx?libID=o266191 (26 November 1902), as quoted in speech by Edward de Veaux Morrell https://cdn.loc.gov/service/rbc/lcrbmrp/t2609/t2609.pdf (April 1904)

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