Arbitrary Quotes

Be just and if you can't be just, be arbitrary.

William Seward Burroughs

The arbitrary rule of a just and enlightened prince is always bad. His virtues are the most dangerous and the surest form of seduction: they lull a people imperceptibly into the habit of loving, respecting, and serving his successor, whoever that successor may be, no matter how wicked or stupid.

Denis Diderot

The whole history of science has been the gradual realization that events do not happen in an arbitrary manner, but that they reflect a certain underlying order, which may or may not be divinely inspired.

Stephen W. Hawking

But if it not be true, the myth itself requires to be explained, and every principle of philosophy and common sense demand that the explanation be sought, not in arbitrary allegorical categories, but in the actual facts of ritual or religious custom to which the myth attaches.

William Robertson Smith

Certainly one of the chief guarantees of freedom under any government, no matter how popular and respected, is the right of the citizens to keep and bear arms. This is not to say that firearms should not be carefully used and that definite safety rules of precaution should not be taught and enforced. But the right of the citizens to bear arms is just one guarantee against arbitrary government and one more safeguard against a tyranny which now appears remote in America, but which historically has proved to be always possible

Hubert H. Humphrey

We must confine ourselves to the powers described in the Constitution, and the moment we pass it, we take an arbitrary stride towards a despotic Government

James Jackson

The Constitution was framed fundamentally as a bulwark against governmental power, and preventing the arbitrary administration of punishment is a basic ideal of any society that purports to be governed by the rule of law.

William Joseph Brennan, Jr.

Patriotism is often an arbitrary veneration of real estate above principles.

George Jean Nathan

Nip the shoots of arbitrary power in the bud, is the only maxim which can ever preserve the liberties of any people.

John Quincy Adams

The custom and fashion of today will be the awkwardness and outrage of tomorrow - so arbitrary are these transient laws

Alexandre Dumas PĖre

[C]ensorship in any form is the opening wedge for fascism, since it places arbitrary and unwarranted power in the hands of individuals.

Jack Parsons

If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse gift will find a fitting place.

Margaret Mead

All media exist to invest our lives with artificial perceptions and arbitrary values

Marshall McLuhan

Carbon dioxide, Mister Speaker, is a natural byproduct of nature. Carbon dioxide is natural. It occurs in Earth. It is a part of the regular lifecycle of Earth. In fact, life on planet Earth can't even exist without carbon dioxide. So necessary is it to human life, to animal life, to plant life, to the oceans, to the vegetation that's on the Earth, to the, to the fowl that that flies in the air, we need to have carbon dioxide as part of the fundamental lifecycle of Earth...There isn't one such study because carbon dioxide is not a harmful gas, it is a harmless gas. Carbon dioxide is natural. It is not harmful. It is part of Earth's life cycle...And yet we're being told that we have to reduce this natural substance and reduce the American standard of living to create an arbitrary reduction in something that is naturally occuring in the earth.

Michele Bachmann

All the proliferating falsifications of what I and everyone I know experienced once in what it is now so convenient to call the "fifties" or "sixties," as if life was really measured or lived in arbitrary decades, when the history books are sold like comix.

Lester Bangs

You are the descendant of a tiny cell of primordial protoplasm washed up on an empty beach three and a half billion years ago. You are the blind and arbitrary product of time, chance, and natural forces. You are a mere grab-bag of atomic particles, a conglomeration of genetic substance. You exist on a tiny planet in a minute solar system in an empty corner of a universe. You are a purely biological entity, different only in degree but not in kind from a microbe, virus, or amoeba. You have no essence beyond your body, and at death you will cease to exist entirely. In short you come from nothing and are going to nowhere.

Alcorn, Randy

I am an anarchist, a political and social Huguenot; I deny everything and affirm naught but myself: because the sole truth of which I have material and moral proof and tangible, comprehensible and intelligible evidence, the only real, startling, non-arbitrary truth not susceptible to interpretation, is myself. I am. There I have a positive fact. Everything else is abstraction and, in mathematics, would be designated as "x", and unknown quantity; and I need not trouble myself with it.

Anselme Bellegarrigue

A final moral concerns terminology. Why did such serious people take so seriously axioms which now seem so arbitrary? I suspect that they were misled by the pernicious misuse of the word measurement in contemporary theory. This word very strongly suggests the ascertaining of some preexisting property of some thing, any instrument involved playing a purely passive role. Quantum experiments are just not like that, as we learned especially from Bohr. The results have to be regarded as the joint product of system and apparatus, the complete experimental set-up.

John Stewart Bell

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