“THE shorter (John Bartlett`s “Familiar Quotations” is a compact new edition based on one of the most treasured books in American life. (It is) as rich and varied storehouse of the wit and wisdom of mankind. Bartlett`s is unique. As a definitive guide and reference volume Bartlett is unsurpassed” (The Chicago Tribune).

Bartlett’s book, “Familiar Quotations” is a “Collection of Passages, Phrases and Proverbs traced to their sources in ancient and modern literature” was copyrighted way back in 1910. Its “shorter” abridged edition for conveniences was copyrighted in 1937.

Some of Bartlett’s quotations with my brief commentary which are very relevant in our times are presented below:

  • Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely. (John Emerich Edward Dalberg, Lord Action, 1887)

Despite the check and balance system in a democratic government, great abuse of political power still occurs. How to modify democracy to effectively minimize such excess is the 24 dollar question.

  • Yesterday the greatest question was decided which was delivered in America, and a greater perhaps never was, nor will be decided among men. A resolution was passed without one dissenting colony, that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent States. (John Adams, 1776)

Currently, this Union of States or democracy is being threatened by Trump`s right-wing republicans and their cohorts.

  • The object of government in peace and in war is not the glory of rules or of races, but the happiness of the common man. (Sir William Beveridge, 1879)

Calling the attention of Russia’s President Vladimir Putin on this matter. His “Greater Russia Vision” has saddened millions of innocent people, to say the least. Putin, indeed, deserves the title of “Hitler of the 21st Century”.

  • An expert is one who knows more and more about less and less (Nicolas Murray Butter, 1937)

Our public education was of high quality before. Now that we have more Doctors of Education, our public education quality has deteriorated. What an anomaly indeed!

  • To make a mountain of a molehill (Henry Ellis, 1869)

Political candidates are experts in blowing up their little good deeds if any. If none, they invent.

  • Let us remember that revolutions do not always establish freedom. (Millard Fillmore, 1852)

Two glaring examples are the two (2) EDSA People Power Peaceful revolutions. Russia`s and China`s led to dictatorship.

  • The bigger they come, the harder they fall. (Robert Fitzsimmous, 1917)

Boxing undefeated heavy weight champion Rocky Marciano proved this several times with taller and bigger challengers. Our former President “Erap” Estrada badly failed from his highest political position due to abuse of power. Filipino oligarchs beware of this adage.

  • Why should the devil have all the good tunes? (Anonymous)

Because on the last Judgment the devil will be thrown to everlasting fire. If we don`t deny ourselves on earth and carry our own cross, we might end up like the devil.

  • A wise government knows how to enforce with temper or to conciliate with dignity. (George Grenville, 1770)

May our new President in 2022 have this wisdom.

  • Diplomacy is to do and say the nastiest thing in the nicest way. (Isaac Goldberg, 1774)

Perhaps this is what our new administration should do regarding the West Philippines Sea issue.

  • God, who took away my eyes, that my soul can see. (Marguerite Radelyfffe hall, 1943)

Isurmise this likewise happened to our Fatima Soriano.

  • What people say behind your back is your standing in the community. (Edgard Walson Howe, 1937)

I think this will depend on the motive of the one who is gossiping.

  • That action is best which produces the greatest happiness for the greatest numbers. (Francis Butchesen, 1746)

This is the principle of the common good. Our politicians should adopt this criterion in the policies and programs they formulate. Sad to say, we have an oligarchic society where most of our politicians are self-serving and influenced by vested interest groups at the expense of the greatest numbers.

  • As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. Thus expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is noy democracy. (Abraham Lincoln, 1832)

The Philippines is constantly a failing democracy due to our exclusive Unitary Systems of Government and our Patronage Politics. “Will our new President in 2022 do the needful to rectify this anomaly?” is the big question. Continued status quo will further worsen our brokenness. Authentic renewal of our people and nation is the call of the times.

  • I`ve never met anybody who wasn`t against war. Even Hitler and Mussolini were, according to themselves. (David Low 1946)

Putin, according to himself, is against the Ukraine war. He calls this merely a special operation to protect Ukrainian from (fake news) of Nazism and abate the threat to the Russian people.

  • We are all clever enough at envying a famous man. While he is yet alive, and at praising him when he is dead. (Mimnermus, 600 a.c.)

My former boss, Gov. Prospero Amatong, bless his soul, did not want to say any Eulogy. He strongly believed that people must be praised of their good works while they are still living, not when they are already dead.

More of these interesting and laden lessons of quotations in the future.


Source: Mindanao Times ( https://mindanaotimes.com.ph/2022/06/10/random-thoughts-quotable-quotes-2/#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=random-thoughts-quotable-quotes-2)