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Quote Author Cited
At present … the best part of the land is not private property; the landscape is not owned, and the walker enjoys comparative freedom. But possibly the day will come when it will be partitioned off into so-called pleasure-grounds, in which a few will take a narrow and exclusive pleasure only,—when fences shall be multiplied, and man-traps and other engines invented to confine men to the public road, and walking over the surface of God’s earth shall be construed to mean trespassing on some gentleman’s grounds. To enjoy a thing exclusively is commonly to exclude yourself from the true enjoyment of it. Let us improve our opportunities, then, before the evil days come. Henry David Thoreau
Our government has done nothing effective with its forests, though the best in the world, but is like a rich and foolish spendthrift who has inherited a magnificent estate in perfect order, and then has left his rich fields and meadows, forests and parks, to be sold and plundered and wasted at will … John Muir
To those who say that our expenditures for Public Works and other means for recovery are a waste that we cannot afford, I answer that no country, however rich, can afford the waste of its human resources. Demoralization caused by vast unemployment is our greatest extravagance. Morally, it is the greatest menace to our social order. Franklin D. Roosevelt
A most powerful objection always arises to propositions of public works. It is that public undertakings are carelessly managed and much money spent to little purpose Thomas Jefferson
This island is almost made of coal and surrounded by fish. Only an organizing genius could produce a shortage of coal and fish in Great Britain at the same time. Aneurin Bevan
Any property, any enterprise, the running of which has or acquires the character of a national public service or of a de facto monopoly, must become public property. France
The great effort of my administration was to mature into a permanent and regular system the application of all the superfluous revenue of the Union into internal improvement which at this day would have afforded high wages and constant employment to hundreds of thousands of laborers, and in which every dollar of the public lands would have repaid itself fourfold in the enhanced value of the public lands. John Quincy Adams
There's no shortage of projects we want to build. There's a shortage of money. Paul Andrews
People's lives do not have to be drab and dreary and wrapped in old newspapers. The deserve something for the soul and noble visions. Jean Drapeau
Water is the basis for Jewish existence in the Land of Israel. Levi Eshkol
There is nothing more permanent than a temporary government building—unless it's a temporary tax. C. P. Howe
I believe in municipal ownership of all public service monopolies for the same reason that I believe in the municipal ownership of waterworks, of parks, of schools. I believe in the municipal ownership of these monopolies because if you do not own them, they will own you. They will rule your politics, corrupt your institutions, and finally destroy your liberties. Tom L. Johnson
Programs have to be developed by the people in the community. Robert Kennedy
I'm just a senior ditch digger. Robert Moses
If God had wanted these two rivers to be navigable, he could have effected it simply by a fiat, and it would be an infringement of the rights of providence to improve that which, for reasons not to be understood, it had wished to remain imperfect. Catholic Church
The levee system on the Mississippi River is now in a position to protect the Mississippi River Basin from flooding. Corps of Engineers
In all the world there is not, perhaps, now concentrated in any single spot so much swindling and villainy, so much foul disease, such a hideous dung-heap of moral and physical abomination as in the scene of this far-famed undertaking of nineteenth-century engineering James Anthony Froude
Water is the worst thing to privatize. It’s what we need to live. Clair Muler
The substitute of oil for coal is impossible because oil does not exist in this world in sufficient quantities. William Waldegrave Palmer
[Describing Iraq:] … floats on a sea of oil. Paul Wolfowitz
Everybody was talking of “Gold! gold!!” until it assumed the character of a fever. Some of our soldiers began to desert; citizens were fitting out trains of wagons and pack-mules to go to the mines. We heard of men earning fifty, five hundred, and thousands of dollars per day, and for a time it seemed as though somebody would reach solid gold. Some of this gold began to come to Yerba Buena [San Francisco] in trade, to disturb the value of merchandise, particularly of mules, horses, tin pans, and articles used in mining. William Tecumseh Sherman
Every seaport as far south as San Diego, and every interior town, and nearly every rancho from the base of the mountains in which the gold has been found, to the Mission of San Luis, south, has become suddenly drained of human beings. Americans, Californians, Indians and Sandwich Islanders, men, women and children, indiscriminately. Johann Augustus Sutter
We shall never desist from working for the common good, helping one another, and even our enemies, till our helping hand is stricken with age Lucius Annaeus Seneca
Since the growing worldwide population is increasingly straining the world's supply of food, minerals, and water and sharpening international tensions, the reduction of the rate of consumption of resources by the affluent and the reduction of current world population growth rates have become imperative. People have the duty to consider the impact on the total world community of their decisions regarding childbearing and should have access to information and appropriate means to limit their fertility United Methodist Church
People are prejudiced but water isn’t. The Katrina flood went everywhere. Mary Landrieu
A few years ago nationalization was the solution to most of our problems. Now, and keep this to yourself, it is an utter flop. Winston Churchill
The whole surface of our globe can afford room and support only to such a number of all sorts of creatures, and by their doubling, trebling or any other multiplication of their kind, they must starve or devour one another. The world is now well-peopled ... neither too full nor too empty and if too many the length of life will be reduced …. plague and war may be, not only a just punishment of the sins of men, but also a wise means to keep the balance of mankind even. John Derham
There are obvious problems and tensions, emanating from the plural legal system. The varied nature of the cultural, ethnic and linguistic composition of the various communities of the population means that the customary law differs significantly from community to community. This poses serious challenges to policy-makers bent on developing the institutions of the modern state amongst a population that is largely illiterate. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
The produce of the earth, all that is derived from its surface by the united application of labour, machinery and capital is divided among three classes of the community; namely, the proprietor of the land, the owner of the stock or capital necessary for its cultivation, and the labourers by whose industry it is cultivated David Ricardo
The soil of no country is rich enough to attain a great mass of wealth, merely by the exchange and exportation of its own natural product. Charles D'Avenant
On no one country, on no one region, on no one route … must we depend for our oil supply. Winston Churchill
The reason you have high oil prices in the United States is that you do not have enough refineries to refine the oil. Do you know that there has not been a refinery built in America in 15 years. Bandar Bin Sultan
Inadequate infrastructure has social as well as economic consequences. Lack of full access to vital networks—whether roads or broadband or running water—serves to reinforce existing patterns of economic growth and stagnation. It threatens to create new classes of haves and have-nots. Bruce E. Seely
This is Arizona, Barry Goldwater’s state. It’s dry country out here. Water is priceless. That’s why they’re building this dam. It’s a federal dam. Federal taxes build it. It was sponsored by, uhh, Barry Goldwater. Now here’s the funny part. Barry sponsored this dam in his state, but he wanted to sell the TVA dams in Tennessee. He voted against the Hell’s Canyon Dam in Idaho, against the Hanford atomic power project in Washington, against public works all over the country. In Barry’s book, this kind of thing is “creeping Socialism,” except when it creeps into Arizona. Anonymous
Among the means of advancing the public interest the occasion is a proper one for recalling the attention of Congress to the great importance of establishing throughout our country the roads and canals which can best be executed under the national authority. No objects within the circle of political economy so richly repay the expense bestowed on them; there are none the utility of which is more universally ascertained and acknowledged James Madison
Are we going to fix our infrastructure? It is aging. Arnold Schwarzenegger
In 1818 I had the pleasure to congratulate the Legislature on the auspicious commencement and successful progress of the contemplated water communication between the great western and northern lakes and the Atlantic ocean, and I now have the peculiar gratification to felicitate you on their completion. On the 26th of October last, the Western Canal was in a navigable state, and vessels passed from Lake Erie to the Atlantic Ocean. In about eight years, artificial communications, near 428 miles in length, have been opened to the Hudson River from Lake Champlain by the Northern Canal; to Lake Ontario by the Oswego River and the Western Canal; and to Lake Erie and the other western lakes by the latter Canal – thus affording an extent of inland navigation unparalleled in the experience of mankind. The expense of these works and of some auxiliary, connected, and incidental operations, amounts to $9,130,373.80 … DeWitt Clinton
The enhancement of the profits of agriculture, the excitement of manufacturing industry, the activity of internal trade, the benefits of lucrative traffic; the interchange of valuable commodities – the commerce of fertile, remote, and wide-spread regions, and the approximation of the most distant parts of the Union, by the facility and rapidity of communication that will result from the completion of these stupendous works, will spread the blessings of plenty and opulence to an immeasurable extent. The resources of the State are fully adequate without extraneous aid; and when we consider that every portion of the nation will feel the animating spirit and vivifying influences of these great works; that they will receive the benediction of posterity and command the approbation of the civilized world; we are required to persevere by every dictate of interest, by every sentiment of honor, by every injunction of patriotism, and by every consideration which ought to influence the councils and govern the conduct of a free, high-minded, enlightened, and magnanimous people. DeWitt Clinton
It (the proposal to build the Erie Canal) is a splendid project and may be executed a century hence. Thomas Jefferson
Unwholesome trades, slaughter-houses, operations offensive to the senses, the deposit of powder, the application of steam power to propel cars, the building with combustible materials, and the burial of the dead, may all, be interdicted by law, in the midst of dense masses of population, on the general and rational principle, that every person ought so to use his property as not to injure his neighbors. James Kent
What most astonishes me in the United States, is not so much the marvelous grandeur of some undertakings, as the innumerable multitude of small ones. Alexis de Tocqueville
Useful undertakings which require sustained attention and vigorous precision in order to succeed often end up by being abandoned, for, in America, as elsewhere, the people move forward by sudden impulses and short-lived efforts. Alexis de Tocqueville
Kashmir runs in our blood. No Pakistani can afford to sever links with Kashmir. The entire Pakistan and the world knows this Pervez Musharraf
No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the greater part of the members are poor and miserable. It is but equity, besides, that they who feed, clothe and lodge the whole body of the people, should have such a share of the produce of their own labor as to be themselves tolerably well fed, clothed and lodged. Adam Smith
A gold mine is a hole in the ground with a liar at the bottom. Mark Twain
Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not every man’s greed Mohandas K. Gandhi
The average citizen doesn’t give buried water pipes a thought until they burst and faucets run dry. James Salzman
Nationwide, more than 10 percent of public water is lost through leaks. On average, a major water pipe bursts somewhere in the country every 2 minutes. James Salzman
The ancient city Aqpu, where kings who had preceded me had built, had deteriorated and turned into ruined hills. I rebuilt the city completely, decorated it and made it bigger than it was before. I then built my palace. Adad Nirari II
Potholes know no party. Robert Byrd
Countries that are rich in petroleum have less democracy, less economic stability, and more frequent civil wars. Michael L. Ross
The problem is that the good Lord didn’t see fit to put oil and gas reserves where there are democratic governments. Dick Cheney
When charity perpetuates dependency and subordination, it is unjust…. You can help desperately needy people in ways that disempower them and turn them into permanent clients, or you can help them in ways that promote their independence and enable them to help themselves. Michael Walzer
When you travel across America, when you take the trains and drive on its roads, when you visit cities in the middle of the country, the dismal—even rotting—state of American infrastructure is surprising. Bernard-Henri Levy
Each year some 1,400 square miles of land in Northern China turns into desert …. Civilization can survive the loss of its oil reserves, but it cannot survive the loss of its soil reserves. Wang Tao
No nation has ever aggressively and intensely exploited national resources over such a great area as has the United States. Josiah Edward Spurr
Swapping the current program out for an untested system may be a pretty bad deal … Saxbe Chambliss
Our forest policy is not to preserve forests because they are beautiful—though that is a good in itself—not to preserve them because they are refuges for wild creatures of the wilderness—though that is a good in itself—but rather to conserve them in order to guarantee a steady and continuous supply of timber, grass, and above all, water. Theodore Roosevelt
A state becomes “rentier” if oil, gas, and mineral rents constitute over 40 percent of its revenues…. This maintains the rulers. Ahmet T. Kuru
I found Rome built of bricks; I leave her clothed in marble. Julius Caesar Augustus
I propose for the sake of the city I love an effective way of cleaning the streets. Benjamin Franklin
Many internal improvements of primary magnitude might be promoted by an authority operating throughout the Union which cannot be effected as well, if at all, by the authority confirmed within the limits of a single state. Alexander Hamilton