I know that I have never been so well pleased as when I could shift power from my own, on the shoulders of others; nor have I ever been able to conceive how any rational being could propose happiness to himself from the exercise of power over others.

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) American political philosopher, polymath, statesman, US President (1801-09)
Letter to Destutt de Tracy (26 Jan 1811)

Often just the second clause is quoted: "I have never been able to conceive how ..."

Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Aug-22
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