„So long as we have held fast to voluntary principles and have been actuated and inspired by the spirit of service, we have sustained our forward progress, and we have made our labor movement something to be respected and accorded a place in the councils of the Republic. Where we have blundered into trying to force a policy or decision, even though wise and right, we have impeded if not interrupted the realization of our own aims.“

[AF of L Convention Proceedings, 1924, http://books.google.com/books?id=OvQtIfC_MBIC&pg=PA29, 5–6, American Federation of Labor]

Samuel Gompers photo
Samuel Gompers
1850 - 1924

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Contexto: When you have the majority of a country up to the age of 55 already voting for independence, then I think the writing's on the wall for Westminster. I think Scots of my generation and above should be looking at themselves in the mirror and wonder if we by majority, as a result of our decision, have actually impeded progress for the next generation, something no generation should do. The destination is pretty certain – we're only now debating the timescale and the method. I'll contribute to that debate, but I think it's time for new leadership. There are a number of political opportunities coming up. For many, many years, a referendum route wasn't the chosen route of the SNP or Scotland. For many years, there was a gradual attitude to independence. You establish a parliament and establish successively more powers until you have a situation where you're independent in all but name, and then presumably declare yourself to be independent. Many countries have proceeded through that route – there is a parliamentary route where people can make their voice heard as well – so a referendum is only one of a number of routes. I think that’s the best route. That’s always been my opinion but my opinion is only one of many.

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„We are able to be incredibly creative or to be incredibly destructive. We have that decision to make, to create something. It could be grotesque and ugly, but it is monstrously beautiful, so it inspires people.“

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