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   Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations.  1989.
 
 
NUMBER:741
AUTHOR:John Stuart Mill (1806–73)
QUOTATION:Thus, a people may prefer a free government, but if, from indolence, or carelessness, or cowardice, or want of public spirit, they are unequal to the exertions necessary for preserving it; if they will not fight for it when it is directly attacked; if they can be deluded by the artifices used to cheat them out of it; if by momentary discouragement, or temporary panic, or a fit of enthusiasm for an individual, they can be induced to lay their liberties at the feet even of a great man, or trust him with powers which enable him to subvert their institutions; in all these cases they are more or less unfit for liberty: and though it may be for their good to have had it even for a short time, they are unlikely long to enjoy it.
ATTRIBUTION:JOHN STUART MILL, Considerations on Representative Government, p. 6 (1861).
SUBJECTS:Government
WORKS:John Stuart Mill Collection
 
 
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