There are two things which cannot be attacked in front: ignorance and narrow-mindedness. They can only be shaken by the simple development of the contrary qualities. They will not bear discussion.
Letter (23 January 1861), published in Lord Acton and his Circle (1906) by Abbot Francis Aidan Gasquet, Letter 24
Every thing secret degenerates, even the administration of justice; nothing is safe that does not show how it can bear discussion and publicity.John ActonLetter (23 January 1861), published in Lord Acton and his Circle (1906) by Abbot Gasquet, Letter 24
The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern. Every class is unfit to govern. The law of liberty tends to abolish the reign of race over race, of faith over faith, of class over class.John ActonLetter to Mary Gladstone (24 April 1881); later published in Letters of Lord Acton to Mary Gladstone (1913) p. 73
There is no error so monstrous that it fails to find defenders among the ablest men. Imagine a congress of eminent celebrities, such as More, Bacon, Grotius, Pascal, Cromwell, Bossuet, Montesquieu, Jefferson, Napoleon, Pitt, etc. The result would be an Encyclopedia of Error.John ActonLetter to Mary Gladstone (24 April 1881)
Liberty is the prevention of control by others. This requires self-control and, therefore, religious and spiritual influences; education, knowledge, well-being.John ActonAs quoted in Faith in Freedom : Libertarian Principles and Psychiatric Practices (2004) by Thomas Stephen Szasz, p. 10
Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end.John Acton"Freedom in Antiquity", in The History of Freedom and Other Essays: And Other Essays? (1907), p. 22.
The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks.John ActonAs quoted in Maxed Out : Hard Times, Easy Credit, and the Era of Predatory Lenders (2007) by James D. Scurlock
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