Libertarian Quotes from Thomas Jefferson

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it. – Thomas Jefferson

Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none. –Thomas Jefferson

When the people fear their government, their is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty. -Thomas Jefferson

The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground. –Thomas Jefferson

The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it always to be kept alive. -Thomas Jefferson

I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. -Thomas Jefferson

To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical. – Thomas Jefferson

[Political] offices are as acceptable here as elsewhere, and whenever a man cast a longing eye on them, a rottenness begins in his conduct. – Thomas Jefferson (1799)

Timid men prefer the calm of despotism to the tempestuous sea of Liberty.–Thomas Jefferson

I have sworn upon the altar of god, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man. – Thomas Jefferson (1800)

The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg. – Thomas Jefferson (1781)

A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government. – Thomas Jefferson (1801)

Religious institutions that use government power in support of themselves and force their views on persons of other faiths, or of no faith, undermine all our civil rights. Moreover, state support of an established religion tends to make the clergy unresponsive to their own people, and leads to corruption within religion itself. Erecting the ‘wall of separation between church and state,’ therefore, is absolutely essential in a free society. – Former US President Thomas Jefferson

Confidence is everywhere the parent of despotism. Free government is founded in jealousy, and not in confidence. – Thomas Jefferson


6 Responses to Libertarian Quotes from Thomas Jefferson

  1. Lauren says:


  2. Audrey says:

    These are some of the best quotes ever

  3. Bill says:

    Great quotes. Thanks for putting this together.

  4. gary says:

    forgive us Thomas we took our eye off the ball!

  5. Gary says:

    Excellent . . . We so desperately need another Jefferson today.

  6. Gary L Rounds says:

    Oh, do we ever need a Jefferson right now !

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