When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.
Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.
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 little.
The point in history at which we stand is full of promise and danger. The world will either move forward toward unity and widely shared prosperity – or it will move apart.
Confidence… thrives on honesty, on honor, on the sacredness of obligations, on faithful protection and on unselfish performance. Without them it cannot live.
It is an unfortunate human failing that a full pocketbook often groans more loudly than an empty stomach.
True individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made.
It takes a long time to bring the past up to the present.
Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country.
The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize.
The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
In politics, nothing happens by accident.
If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way.
A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.
A reactionary is a somnambulist walking backwards.
Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds.
It is common sense to take a method and try it.
If it fails, admit it frankly and try another.
But above all, try something.
If civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships – the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together, in the same world at peace.
I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made.
There is nothing I love as much as a good fight.
Happiness lies in the joy of achievement and the thrill of creative effort.
I am neither bitter nor cynical but I do wish there was less immaturity in political thinking.
There are as many opinions as there are experts.
Physical strength can never permanently withstand the impact of spiritual force.
I think we consider too much the good luck of the early bird
and not enough the bad luck of the early worm.
I’m not the smartest fellow in the world,
but I can sure pick smart colleagues.
There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of standing still.
The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.
Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.
I do not look upon these United States as a finished product. We are still in the making.
Rules are not necessarily sacred, principles are.
If I went to work in a factory the first thing I’d do is join a union.
Whoever seeks to set one religion against another seeks to destroy all religion.
Remember you are just an extra in everyone else’s play.
A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however,
has never learned how to walk forward.
In our seeking for economic and political progress, we all go up – or else we all go down.
The truth is found when men are free to pursue it.
The overwhelming majority of Americans are possessed of two great qualities a sense of humor and a sense of proportion.
It is fun to be in the same decade with you.
We must lay hold of the fact that economic laws are not made by nature. They are made by human beings.
The virtues are lost in self-interest as rivers are lost in the sea.
We have always held to the hope, the belief, the conviction that there is a better life,
a better world, beyond the horizon.
Self-interest is the enemy of all true affection.
Competition has been shown to be useful up to a certain point and no further, but cooperation, which is the thing we must strive for today, begins where competition leaves off.
Yesterday, December seventh, 1941, a date which will live in infamy, the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.
If you treat people right they will treat you right… ninety percent of the time.
Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting.
More than an end to war, we want an end to the beginning of all wars – yes, an end to this brutal, inhuman and thoroughly impractical method of settling the differences between governments.
It isn’t sufficient just to want – you’ve got to ask yourself what you are going to do to get the things you want.
One thing is sure.
We have to do something.
We have to do the best we know how at the moment…
If it doesn’t turn out right, we can modify it as we go along.
The United States Constitution has proved itself the most marvelously elastic compilation of rules of government ever written.
We continue to recognize the greater ability of some to earn more than others. But we do assert that the ambition of the individual to obtain for him a proper security is an ambition to be preferred to the appetite for great wealth and great power.
Those newspapers of the nation which most loudly cried dictatorship against me would have been the first to justify the beginnings of dictatorship by somebody else.