John C. CalhounJohn C. Calhoun, (1782-1850) American statesman

John C. Calhoun Quote

“A power has risen up in the government greater than the people themselves, consisting of many and various powerful interests, combined in one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in banks.”

John C. CalhounJohn C. Calhoun
~ John C. Calhoun

Ratings and Comments

Melanie K. Wooten, University Park, IA

If this does not accurately describe our government of special interests and banks, I don't know what does.

Logan, Memphis, TN

Yet another example how our Republic has been destroyed, wherein we see that the powerful few have taken control and the individual sovereign's (the people's) inalienable right has been usurped. Such is the frailty of democracy--when the majority becomes too lazy or ignorant to pay attention to what's going on in their government, such principles and ideas will be lost out of the thoughts and perceptions of the people.

Waffler, Smith, Arkansas

Glad to hear you have a kind word for the majority Logan. Isn't it amazing that Calhoun had such sentiment about banking and power 77 years before the Federal Reserve system? Seems to be that it is human nature to trust no one but self.

J Carlton, Calgary

Andrew Jackson said "The International bankers are a pit of vipers and must be routed from these United States" And he was right too. Patriots to the principles the US was founded on will be offended by what the government is, and has been doing. Loyalists will defend their actions. There is a difference between the two...

warren, olathe

Iwould have a hard time calling him a statesman. He supported slavery and called it a positive good. He was instrumental in getting the debate heated up to the point that violence actually broke out on the senate floor. He maintained that the states had the right to nullify any federal law that they disagreed with. His arguments for slavery were centered on "states rights". He got his way on legislation regarding slavery often with the threat of secession. His inspiration led to the secession of many of the slave states from the union after his death. A rabble rouser yes statesman no. I would want to know what the full text of what this man was talking about before I would want to rate this quote.

Mike, Norwalk

Disagreeing with much of who the messenger was, I here agree with the message. The democracy that now enslaves its progony incoporates organized bodies as part of its sphere of influence in commiting tyranny.

E Archer, NYC

Listen, folks, if the newly created nation of America lived up to its true ideals from day one, there would have been no slavery and women would have been treated as equals to men -- that didn't happen, and it is not just the fault of the southern States, so get over it. No country can survive on hypocrisy. Slavery would have to be abolished in a free nation. The very reason against slavery is the very reason FOR sovereignty FOR ALL. So, we free the slaves and enslave everyone to the government? NO! And that is what the War Between the States was all about -- sovereign power of the individuals and the States comprised of them. Remember, it was not a majority vote for Independence, it was a unanimous decision -- that is the foundation of a republican form of government. The alliance of the states was 100% voluntary and agreed by all -- no one could be forced into this alliance against their will -- and it was understood that any state could dissolve their participation in this voluntary accord. When the Federal government ignored the south's right to secede, they attacked, and eventually won, thus the Federal government usurped its subservient position to the states from that point forward. There have been a number of central banks established for the USA -- all with the same effect. Only now we are in a global economy with the banksters running the currencies of nearly all the 'states' of the world. The crash will come again, and the revolution will occur again, because you can't fool all the people all the time.

Mike, Norwalk

Archer, said well. Waffler, a question. What would you call a government where the majority, and/or the minority did not (could not) make law but rather, was limited only to passing codes, rules, statutes that preserved, enhanced, and protected the law, life, liberty, property, happiness, authority, power, rights, privileges, etc. of the sovereign individual. A government that could not participate in: activities against an individual that an individual could not lawfully perform for himself, compelled compliance, license, theft of any kind including that of the noble laborer's fruits, societal slavery, victimless crimes, torture for information, suspension of habeas corpus, forced ID/insurance/charity, suspension of religious expression in public, etc. Again, what would you call it? And, as the quote here addresses a portion of the demise of what several here would call a Republic, a follow up question would be/ are you against such a Republic, and if so why?

Logan, Memphis, TN

In a democracy, 10 people can legally gang up on 1 person to do whatever they want to that person. Any "laws" that are derived out of a democracy are derived from those 10 people. In a democracy, those 10 men define and tell that 1 person what his rights, liberties, and freedoms are. Since these rights, liberties, and freedoms come from those 10 men-- that means that tomorrow, those 10 men can take those rights, liberties, and freedoms away. There is no REAL protection of the individual in a democracy. This violates the premise of "inalienable rights." There are no inalienable rights in a democracy, because in a democracy the majority can vote away/alienate any rights that they gave the individual. Those 10 men can legally rape, pillage, plunder, beat, or murder that 1 man in a democracy, and it's okay. After all, the majority said it was okay, and in a democracy they are right. Democracy is one of the purest forms of anarchy, and the foundation for socialism/communism. In a purely democratic system (direct or representative), businesses would be at the whim of the employees. 10 employees of the business would be able to vote out the owner, and take over the business. This would make all businesses entities of the employees--it would turn all all business into direct-public entities. You can argue the rightness or wrongness of such a system, but such system of direct-public entities (as taken OVER by the people) is the basis of socialism/communism. Democracies really are "mob" rule. The reason most people don't see this is because they're still enamored and dependent on a Republican form of government (the philosophy, not the party), because they believe that the majority cannot violate their inalienable rights. People don't look down the corridor of time to see the fatal outcome of their choices, nor do they look to see the historic outcomes of past democracies. People still largely believe in the rights of the individual and that there are things that even in a system where the voice of the people define the laws, the majority cannot do certain things to oppress the individual. This is not a democratic paradigm, but a Republican perception. People are not ready yet to give up their individuality for the onslaught of what the majority is willing to give them. Our rights are individually inalienable-- I do not have my rights because the majority says I do, I have them because I'm "endowed by [my] Creator with certain inalienable rights" and that AMONG these rights are "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." The majority did not give these rights to me, my Creator did. Democracies are vile foundations that quickly lead to totalitarian and tyrannical government. Thank God our founders were wise enough to give us a Republican form of Government.

Kimo, USA
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Kimo, USA    11/10/11

Long live the Republic!! It lives!! It will NOT be torn down without a fight. Those that seek to destoy it, will have thier day. There is a road, it is called the grand army of the republic hyway, it was built by men of honor, in honor to those who sacrificed thier lives for the principals we hold dear.

Robert, Somewher in the USA

I just wish we had a Republic. Go back to the true liberal and socialist ideals of our founding fathers. But it's to late for that, the system has become rotten to the core and corrupted. The ONLY wealth this country (and the UK) now creates is out of debt, held together by the spending of the MIC, Healthcare, the legal profession, and insurance - they don't contribute to the economy one bit... money is printed out of thin air to keep it all going....

Mike, Norwalk
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Mike, Norwalk Robert, Somewher in the USA 3/13/23

Robert, WHAT? ? ? hahahaha lolololol You know I'm laughing out loud while shaking my lowered head ! ! !  I do have to agree with you  the "true liberal" during the founders period was ANTI-socialist (including the "Woke" religion of today, fascism, communism and collectivism of any/all types)  along with - "Democracy" ("Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for supper, liberty is a well armed lamb contesting the vote."  (attributed to Benjamin Franklin)) and, pro-nature's law ("a republican form of government" (Article IV, Section 4 U.S. Constitution) The system you mention that is rotten to the core and corrupted; and, as Calhoun here references, "combined in one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in banks.” (SVP for 1 example) is truly an atrocity to humanity and is antithetical to the individual sovereign (individually and in concert).

E Archer, NYC

Robert, please, name 3 socialist ideals of the founders. Nonsense.

Cal, Lewisville, Texas

Warren, you are judging the man by today's standards-not the times he lived in.


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