Robert A. HeinleinRobert A. Heinlein, (1907-1988) American writer

Famous Robert A. Heinlein Quote

“Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny.”

Robert A. HeinleinRobert A. Heinlein
~ Robert A. Heinlein

Ratings and Comments

Don, Canada

Could it be any other way?

Logan, Memphis, TN

Let all things be done by the voice of the people, in agency AND limit to each individual right as granted by the Creator! Transparency is a thing of the past, unless we are willing to do more than talk and post blogs about it.

J Carlton, Calgary

Policies too vile to be publicly known shouldn't exist anyway.

Mike, Norwalk

Secrecy in the right place, at the right time, under certain circumstances is requisite to the functions of defense from foreign invaders, at just about all else "Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny."

Waffler, Smith, Arkansas

Hank Williams, Jr. said it best "my private life is my private life" but when friends and neighbors have stockpiles of explosives and other controlled substances I want to know about it. Tyranny does not just come from government. In fact a democratic government is the safeguard against the tyranny of a few with closely kept secrets.

E Archer, NYC

Rights belong to the People, not the government -- the government has no 'rights' of its own. Privacy belongs to the People -- secret police, secret foreign policies, secret financing all bypass lawful governing. The People are the boss, so nothing is to be kept from them. Waffler may be concerned about others, but I suggest the lyrics to Hank Williams, SR. are apropos here: "If you are minding your own business, you won't be minding mine." The classification of private property as 'controlled substances' has allowed these militant arms of the government to pry into every corner of our lives while their own activities are kept secret -- this is ass backwards.

Ben, Springfield, MO

Waffler, your idea of democracy is so screwed up I am not sure where to begin with you. Democracy is NOT a safeguard against tyranny. Democracy can be just as tyrannical as a dictatorship. It is not just the form of government that is important but its essence. Freedom is not inherent in democracy. A Monarchy can be just as free as a "democracy". The "trick" and miracle in the Constitution is that it was to protect against BOTH democracy AND tyranny, as well as provide for the political involvement of each individual (which does NOT mean democracy by the way).

warren, olathe

I have picked on Waffler at times but I don't see the beef here. His reasoning in this case seems pretty good to me. Personally I think we are getting a little too technical with the definitions of things. A democracy may be capable of tyranny but a democratically elected governing body such as ours gives us the power to remove those that get out of line. This gives us a check against any mistakes we make in the electoral process. Granted we haven't had much to choose from in 20 years, but the way our leaders are treated, and the lack of respect we give them even when they are honestly trying to do what they think is best, who would want the job.

Dougmcr8, Springfield, VA

Absolutely right.

Logan, Memphis, TN

This is not a battle of semantics; it's a battle of entire philosophical thought, ideas, and paradigms. Why the differentiations between monarchies and dictatorships? Why the differentiation between oligarchies and autocracies? Why the differentiation between democracies and republics? Words are the means to meaning, and without them entire ideas are lost within a societal paradigm. Thomas Moore argued this point as he was sentenced to death for not taking a mere vow -- while those around him clamored for him to sputter a few nonsensical words to save his life, he knew the importance of words and what they meant. He gave his life for words, and sealed his legacy as an honest man. Sadly, as is so readily present our society, words are no longer important. Could this be a direct correlation to why men like Thomas Moore do not exist anymore?

  • Reply
    Anonymous    3/2/08

    we are heading into tyranny


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