Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess Salisbury

(Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil)

Quotes
Quote Topics Cited
...if our ancestors had cared for the rights of other people, the British empire would not have been made. Expansionism, Colonialism & Imperialism
...In practice it is found that International Law is always on the side of strong battalions...It is puerile...to apply to the dealings of a nation with its neighbor's territory the morality which would be applicable to two individuals possessing adjoining property, and protected from mutual wrong by a law superior to both. Law, Courts, Jails, Crime & Law Enforcement ;Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
...institutions like the House of Lords must die, like all other organic beings, when their time comes. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
...the common sense of Christendom has always prescribed for national policy principles diametrically opposed to those that are laid down in the Sermon on the Mount. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
...the splitting up of mankind into a multitude of infinitesimal governments, in accordance with their actual differences of dialect or their presumed differences of race, would be to undo the work of civilization and renounce all the benefits which the slow and painful process of consolidation has procured for mankind...It is the agglomeration and not the comminution of states to which civilization is constantly tending; it is the fusion and not the isolation of races by which the physical and moral excellence of the species is advanced. There are races, as there are trees, which cannot stand erect by themselves, and which, if their growth is not hindered by artificial constraints, are all the healthier for twining round some robuster stem. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
...though it is England's right to enforce the law of Europe [i.e. treaties] as between contending states, she has no claim, so long as her own interests are untouched, to interfere in the national affairs of any country, whatever the extent of its misgovernment or its anarchy. Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
...when I am told that my ploughmen are capable citizens, it seems to me ridiculous to say that educated women are not just as capable. Equality & Equal Opportunity
… by a free country I mean a country where people are allowed, so long as they do not hurt their neighbors, to do as they like. I do not mean a country where six men may make five men do exactly as they like. That is not my notion of freedom. Freedom & Liberty
A good deal of the political battle of the future will be a conflict between religion and unbelief: Religion & God
A gram of experience is worth a ton of theory. Detriments & Qualifications ;Public Office: Benefits
A party whose mission is to live entirely upon the discovery of grievances are apt to manufacture the element upon which they subsist. Political Parties & Machines
All those who defend freedom are bound as their first duty to be the champions of minorities, and the danger of allowing the majority, which holds the power of the State, to interfere at its will is that the interests of the minority will be disregarded and crushed out under the omnipotent force of a popular vote Minorities & Women
Conflict in free states is the law of life. Freedom & Liberty
English [foreign] policy is to float lazily downstream, occasionally putting out a diplomatic boat-hook to avoid collisions. Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
First-rate men will not canvass mobs; and if they did, the mobs would not elect the first-rate men. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Her Majesty should accept all his explanations without inquiring too narrowly into the truth of them. Discrimination & Prejudice
I object to Parliament trying to regulate private morality in matters which only affects the person who commits the offence. Privacy, Abortion & Family Planning
In the supreme struggle of social order against anarchy, we cannot deny to the champions of civilized society the moral latitude which is by common consent accorded to armed men fighting for their country against a foreign foe. Legislating & Legislative Process
It is right to be forward in the defense of the poor; no system that is not just as between rich and poor can hope to survive. Poverty
Not the number of noses, but the magnitude of interests, should furnish the elements by which the proportion of representation should be computed...The classes that represent civilization, the holders of accumulated capital and accumulated thought have a right to require securities to protect them from being overwhelmed by hordes who have neither knowledge to guide them nor stake in the Commonwealth to control them. Voters, Voting & Elections
Opinions upon moral questions are more often the expression of strongly felt expediency than of careful ethical reasoning Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
Parliament is a potent engine, and its enactments must always do something, but they very seldom do what the originators of these enactments meant. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
So long as we have government by party, the very notion of repose must be foreign to English politics. Agitation is, so to speak, endowed in this country. There is a standing machinery for producing it. There are rewards which can only be obtained by men who excite the public mind, and devise means of persuading one set of persons that they are deeply injured by another. Political Parties & Machines
Social stability is ensured, not by the cessation of the demand for change – for the needy and the restless will never cease to cry for it – but by the fact that change in its progress must at last hurt some class of men who are strong enough to arrest it. Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
The commonest error in politics is sticking to the carcass of dead policies. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
The days and weeks of screwed-up smiles and laboured courtesy, the mock geniality, the hearty shake of the filthy hand, the chuckling reply that must be made to the coarse joke, the loathsome, choking compliment that must be paid to the grimy wife and sluttish daughter, the indispensable flattery of the vilest religious prejudices, the wholesale deglutition of hypocritical pledges. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
The Government of the United States is not entitled to affirm as a universal proposition, with reference to a number of independent States for whose conduct it assumes no responsibility, that its interests are necessarily concerned in whatever may befall those States simply because they are situated in the Western Hemisphere. Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
The perils of change are so great the promise of the most hopeful theories is so often deceptive, that it is frequently the wiser part to uphold the existing state of things, if it can be done, even though, in point of argument, it should be utterly indefensible. Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
The struggle for power in our day lies not between Crown and people, or between a caste of nobles and a bourgeoisie, but between the classes who have property and the classes who have none. Power
The two parties represent two opposite moods of the English mind, which may be trusted, unless past experience is wholly useless, to succeed each other from time to time. Neither of them, neither the love of organic changes nor the dislike of it, can be described as normal to a nation. In every nation, they have succeeded each other at varying intervals during the whole of the period which separates its birth from its decay. Each finds in the circumstances and constitution of individuals a regular support which never deserts it. Among men, the old, the phlegmatic, the sober-minded, among classes, those who have more to lose than to gain by change, furnish the natural Conservatives. The young, the envious, the restless, the dreaming, those whose condition cannot easily be made worse, will be rerum novarum cupidi. But the two camps together will not nearly include the nation: for the vast mass of every nation is unpolitical. Political Parties & Machines
There can be no finality in politics. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
We are not the same people that we have been, either in our social characteristics, in our patriotic sentiments, or in the tone of our moral and religious feelings. Development & Growth
We must learn this rule, which is true alike of rich and poor — that no man and no class of men ever rise to any permanent improvement in their condition of body or of mind except by relying upon their own personal efforts. The wealth with which the rich man is surrounded is constantly tempting him to forget the truth, ad you see in family after family men degenerating from the position of their fathers because they live sluggishly and enjoy what has been placed before them without appealing to their own exertions. The poor man, especially in these days, may have a similar temptation offered to him by legislation, but this same inexorable rule will work. Human Nature
Wherever democracy has prevailed, the power of the State has been used in some form or other to plunder the well-to-do classes for the benefit of the poor. Democracies & Republics
Wherever it [Democracy] has had free play in the ancient world or in the modern, in the old hemisphere or the new, a thirst for empire, and a readiness for aggressive war, has always marked it. Democracies & Republics