Quotations by George, Henry


The fact is that the work which improves the condition of mankind, the work which extends knowledge and increases power and enriches literature, and elevates thought, is not done to secure a living. It is not the work of slaves, driven to their task either by the lash of a master or by animal necessities. It is the work of men who perform it for their own sake, and not that they may get more to eat or drink, or wear, or display. In a state of society where want is abolished, work of this sort could be enormously increased.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
Progress and Poverty (1879)
Added on 6-Jul-12 | Last updated 29-Jun-12
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What has destroyed every previous civilization has been the tendency to the unequal distribution of wealth and power. This same tendency, operating with increasing force, is observable in our civilization to-day, showing itself in every progressive community, and with greater intensity the more progressive the community. Wages and interest tend constantly to fall, rent to rise, the rich to become very much richer, the poor to become more helpless and hopeless, and the middle class to be swept away.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
Progress and Poverty, “How Modern Civilization May Decline” (1879)
Added on 22-Mar-17 | Last updated 22-Mar-17
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Yet there is still this difference between man and all other animals — he is the only animal whose desires increase as they are fed; the only animal that is never satisfied.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
Progress and Poverty, Book 2, ch. 3 (1879)
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Added on 7-May-18 | Last updated 7-May-18
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There is danger in reckless change, but greater danger in blind conservatism.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
Social Problems, ch. 1 (1883)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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At the bottom of every social problem we will find a social wrong.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
Social Problems, ch. 1 (1883)
Added on 30-Mar-15 | Last updated 30-Mar-15
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Our two great political parties have really nothing more to propose than the keeping or the taking of the offices from the other party.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
Social Problems, ch. 2 (1883)
Added on 11-May-12 | Last updated 11-May-12
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He who sees the truth, let him proclaim it, without asking who is for it or who is against it.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
The Land Question (1881)
Added on 6-Jul-04 | Last updated 6-Jul-04
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In our time, as in times before, creep on the insidious forces that, producing inequality, destroy Liberty. On the horizon the clouds begin to lower. Liberty calls to us again. We must follow her further; we must trust her fully. Either we must wholly accept her or she will not stay. It is not enough that men should vote; it is not enough that they should be theoretically equal before the law. They must have liberty to avail themselves of the opportunities and means of life; they must stand on equal terms with reference to the bounty of nature. Either this, or Liberty withdraws her light! Either this, or darkness comes on, and the very forces that progress has evolved turn to powers that work destruction. This is the universal law. This is the lesson of the centuries. Unless its foundations be laid in justice the social structure cannot stand.

Henry George (1839-1897) American economist
The Law of Human Progress, Book 10, ch. 5 “The Central Truth” (1879)
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Added on 15-Feb-21 | Last updated 15-Feb-21
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