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Every man is a consumer, and ought to be a producer. He fails to make his place good in the world, unless he not only pays his debt, but also adds something to the common wealth.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) American essayist, lecturer, poet
“Wealth,” The Conduct of Life, ch. 3 (1860)
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Added on 7-Apr-20 | Last updated 22-Feb-22
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You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot help small men by tearing down big men.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich.
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot establish security on borrowed money.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away men’s initiative and independence.
You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.

William J. H. Boetcker (1873-1962) German-American religious leader, author, public speaker [William John Henry Boetcker]
“The Industrial Decalogue” (1916)


Often referred to as "The Ten Cannots," and also often misattributed to Abraham Lincoln.
 
Added on 14-Mar-17 | Last updated 14-Mar-17
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The real “haves” are they who can acquire freedom, self-confidence, and even riches without depriving others of them. They acquire all of these by developing and applying their potentialities. On the other hand, the real “have nots” are those who cannot have aught except by depriving others of it. They can feel free only by diminishing the freedom of others, self-confident by spreading fear and dependence among others, and rich by making others poor.

Eric Hoffer (1902-1983) American writer, philosopher, longshoreman
The Passionate State of Mind, Aphorism 115 (1955)
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Added on 2-Apr-14 | Last updated 23-Jun-22
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That the greatest of evils is idleness, that the poor are the victims, not of circumstances, but of their own “idle, irregular, and wicked courses,” that the truest charity is not to enervate them by relief, but so to reform their characters that relief may be unnecessary — such doctrines turned severity from a sin into a duty, and froze the impulse of natural pity with an assurance that, if indulged, it would perpetuate the suffering which it sought to allay.

R. H. Tawney (1880-1962) English writer, economist, historian, social critic [Richard Henry Tawney]
Religion and the Rise of Capitalism, ch. 4, sec. 4 (1926)
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Added on 7-Jan-13 | Last updated 17-Apr-20
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