Quotations to Share


"The cornerstone of a democratic society is the education of its people."


Power has only one duty - to secure the social welfare of the People. 


"I'm incredibly fearful of ignorance!"


" Be noble, and the nobleness that lies in other men — sleeping but never dead — will rise in majesty to meet thine own."

HELEN KELLER ON SIGHT AND VISION [c/o Isaac Lidsky, Author:        Eyes Wide Open]:

"The only thing worse than being blind is having sight with no vision."

JONI MITCHELL, LYRICS, 1970 (Or was it today?):
...You know life is for learning
We are stardust
We are golden
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden
By the time we got to Woodstock
We were half a million strong
And everywhere there was song and celebration
And I dreamed I saw the bombers
Riding shotgun in the sky
And they were turning into butterflies
Above our nation
We are stardust
Billion year old carbon
We are golden
Caught in [a] devil's bargain
And we've got to get ourselves
Back to the garden.


"Understanding is the beginning of peace..."


"Good will comes before peace. This is the threshold of understanding across which humanity must now pass."

NOTE & COMMENT ON THE HISTORY & SIGNIFICANCE OF THIS "MOMENT":  This insight was gained from a state of profound inner silence following practice of the Transcendental Meditation technique — while sitting in the back of a parked car on Green Street in San Francisco — immediately after (and nearby) a good will visit to the Russian Consulate in 1990!  The phrase proved immediately memorable and had an enormous influence on my development as a citizen peace philosopher and thereafter: lifetime proponent of good will. I came to understand over time that good will is not just about charitable giving and good feelings, sweet as these precious things are. Good will must also be a gritty determination to "will for good outcomes" precisely during or following conflictual moments and situations when one feels anything but good as we normally think of it.  It is also about coming back to this important inner choice for good: as soon as possible after occasionally "losing it" more-or-less completely — just as the expression implies, for a few moments or more — under the onslaught of extraordinary negative circumstances, including emotional as well as physical attack.  Good will, in its noblest form, is the desire not to hurt others in frustration and retaliation, but rather to help them heal their wounds at the root cause of this behavior, and one's own, as well as the social environment; even in the face of intense irritation and potential (or actual) threat.  Good will at best is a cherished, specific, and generalized wish to achieve better outcomes — more just, fitting, and ultimately more loving, peaceful, and happy ones — for all parties, especially those engaged in various kinds of conflicts and challenging circumstances, which often impinge on one's own happiness, if one is sensitive and wise. — PBD


"Politics is not the art of the possible, but the enlargement of the possible."

— as recalled by Max Freedman on "We Knew JFK," a radio special with Robert MacNeil. (WeKnewJFK.org)

From the Kennedy Inaugural Address, 1961 January 20th:

"If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich..."

"...So let us begin anew, remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate..."

"...In your hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course...."

"...Can we forge...a grand and global alliance, North and South, East and West, that can assure a more fruitful life for all [human] kind? Will you join in that historic effort?"

"...The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it —and the glow from that fire can truly light the world."

— Inaugural Address, 1961 January 20th • Link to the complete address at NPR.org, video and text (Highly recommended.)


"A lot of times people don't know what they want until you show it to them."

[As recalled by Technation science radio host Moira Gunn on her special segment, Five Minutes, 2016-10-16.]


"If we let our light go out, how dark is it going to get?"


"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little."

— As shared by listener Christine Busch at KQED Forum's comments section, 2015-9-14


[Spoken on National Public Radio’s Talk of the Nation with Neal Conan, 2010 August 12th.  Editor's note: In 2015, at age 66, Diana Nyad completed her dream to swim from Cuba to Key West, Florida, on her fifth try.  On this show she spoke with a caller named Zack who had hiked with a friend all the way from Costa Rica to Chiapas, Mexico — yet he regretted not getting all the way back to the USA.  He was thinking of trying again....]


"In the middle of your sentence...you said we decided to make the commitment.

And honestly, what this swim has done for me...I really committed myself...like you did.

You know, to hike, I mean, eight and a half, nine months...every day. I'm sure you had rain and blisters and...all kinds of challenges to go through, to stick with it like that...

That's what makes us high. That's what gives us a sense of purpose is commitment.

Whether you've decided: I'm going to raise [a] child — this child's going to come first, and I'm going to make this child a good citizen of the world. You know, to me that's the ultimate commitment. 

But you commit yourself...You want to go back and get on that Highway 1 and hike it again.

You know, commitment is what makes us better people. It makes the world a better place. And to me it's just the ecstasy of life is commitment. So congratulations..."


"Justice in the life and conduct of the state is possible only as first it resides in the hearts and souls of the citizens."

— Inscribed on the United States Department of Justice building in Washington, D.C.


Man is God's plaything, and that is the best part of him. Therefore, every man and woman shall live life accordingly, and play the noblest games.... What then is the right way of living? Life must be lived as play.

— Laws

* * * * *

NPR's 2015-12-10 Fresh Air broadcast with anchor Terry Gross and guest, actor Jeffrey Tambor, star of the Amazon series, Transparent: 

"This final question...You’ve been sober for…15 years...I wonder if it’s liberating to be sober, as an actor…If it’s [actually] easier…Even though people think that it’s freeing to be high?"

Jeffrey Tambor:

"Actually, I can only speak for myself: in my life, I find that in sobriety, I can feel much more, and I have much more depth…I also feel that in being a parent of five kids, I can bring much more to my acting…So, I’m all about anything that gives you more feeling, more depth.  In sobriety, you also feel more, and in feeling more, the waters can get rough. But, so what? Let the waters be rough. If it weren’t for sobriety, I don’t even think I would even be around for Transparent.…Your resources ARE feeling; your resources ARE depth; your resources ARE learning; your resources ARE touching and feeling,……To me, sobriety helps all of them."

* * * * *

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."  

— Margaret Meade, Ph.D., Cultural Anthropologist

* * * * *

"Nothing is so strong as gentleness...Nothing is so gentle as true strength."

— From a banner made by a Telegraph Avenue street artist,  Berkeley, California, 1969-'70.

* * * * * 

 "All things work together for good for those who seek to do good."

— From a traditional biblical theme — a variation gleaned from street philosopher Charles of Berkeley, 2014 December, who adds: "When we have that attitude, things that are helpful help us; things that seem unhelpful can guide us."

* * * * * 

"For world peace to happen, everyone must become a refugee.   That is: 

Everyone of good will should have a refuge."

— Peter Bruce DuMont, with Husain Muzaffar of Pakistan and the United States            2014 November 3rd, at home in Berkeley, California (updated 2014-11-14) 

* * * * * 

"The real measure of your wealth is how much you'd be worth if you lost all your money."

— Jerry Smith

* * * * * 

"Hate cannot drive out hate.  Only love can do that."

— Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

[Editor's comments: These ten words must rank among the most important ever uttered.  This is because they capture succinctly and with great power the crucial importance of choosing good will over ill will — even when attempting to fight and "overcome" ill will!  In other words, it is generally better to fight fire with water.

But how do "We, the People, Everywhere" define love, and in whose name (as necessary or helpful) do we invoke love and attempt to apply it?  

These are important and perennial questions.  

We at STAR ALLIANCE suggest that global society can best define genuine love and peace inclusive of all the "Highest Common Ideals" we declare together as civic principles of good relationship and social behavior.  

While respecting and appreciating one another's deep historical religious traditions (which often seem to focus on historical and/or living proponents of peace and love as objects of inspiration and devotion) we can also consider a whole body of pure civic principles of good will and peace, as worthy objects of a growing, potentially "universal" social understanding and commitment.  

Great historical examples of love and peace in thought and action will still very much serve as inspirational and complementary examples for all — with different special strengths, features, and nuances in their particular, exemplary stories and expressions.

— PBD, on the 2014 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Holiday, USA.  Update edits at 2014-2-22; 2014-4-18; 2015-4-8.]

* * * * *

"In six months [U.S.] Secretary of State [John Kerry] has proven himself the Energizer Bunny of American foreign policy."  

— Commentator Aaron David Miller on public broadcast media 2013-11-25

* * * * *

"If success or failure of this planet and of human beings depended on how I am and what I do...How would I be?  What would I do?" 

— R. Buckminster Fuller (c/o the Buckminster Fuller Institute)

* * * * * 

"Maybe the thing is not so much to see through each other, as to see each other through."

— Author Anne LaMott 

* * * * *

"Everyone is the World's Authority on his(her) own point of view."

— Author Unknown. (I saw this in Reader's Digest or some such many years ago, and have appreciated it ever since. — Peter DuMont)

* * * * *

"The feminine genius is needed wherever we make important decisions."

 — Pope Francis (Interview published in "America — National Catholic Review," 2013-9-30 edition; excerpted online in "The New York Times," 2013 September 19.) 

* * * * *

"The advancement and diffusion of knowledge is the only guardian of true liberty."

— James Madison (c/o National Geographic, Vol. 172, No. 3, September 1987: "James Madison, Architect of the Constitution," by Alice J. Hall.)

* * * * *

"I never wanted to discourage people about life. I just wanted them to be prepared."
— Attributed to Murphy of Murphy's Law

* * * * *

"Oh!  You're going to de-unclarify it!"

— Broadcast comic banter from Click & Clack, The Tappett Brothers, NPR radio mechanic auto sleuths, 2014-2-22 broadcast enjoyed via KQED in San Francisco.

* * * * *

"Legality is never a substitute for morality."

— Edward Snowden, City Arts & Lectures, San Francisco, 2017 February 26th

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