Fans of politics will enjoy these William F. Buckley quotes.
William F. Buckley, Jr. was born in New York City in 1925 and died in Stamford, Connecticut, in 2008 at the age of 82.
Buckley grew up moving around to different parts of the U.S. and even different countries with his parents and four siblings.
In 1944 he graduated from the U.S. Army Officer Candidate School and served during World War II before attending Yale.
At Yale, Buckley studied political science and became a masterful debater, and was an active member of the Conservative Party of the Yale Political Union.
Upon graduating from Yale, he joined the CIA before leaving and becoming an editor at The American Mercury.
Buckley later founded the magazine National Review and hosted the public affairs television show Firing Line from 1966 to 1999.
Take a look at these William F. Buckley quotes to learn more about the man who was influential in the conservative political movement.
Best William F. Buckley Quotes
Check out some of the best quotes from William F. Buckley Jr.
1. “All adventure is now reactionary.” — William F. Buckley
2. “Some of my instincts are reprehensible.” — William F. Buckley
3. “If only the left hated crime as much as they hated hate.” — William F. Buckley
4. “A Conservative is a fellow who is standing athwart history yelling ‘Stop!’” — William F. Buckley
5. “Idealism is fine, but as it approaches reality, the costs become prohibitive.” — William F. Buckley
6. “The best defense against usurpatory government is an assertive citizenry.” — William F. Buckley
7. “It is not a sign of arrogance for the king to rule. That is what he is there for.” — William F. Buckley
8. “I would like to take you seriously but to do so would affront your intelligence.” — William F. Buckley
9. “What was wrong with communism wasn’t aberrant leadership; it was communism.” — William F. Buckley
10. “I believe that the duel between Christianity and atheism is the most important in the world.” — William F. Buckley
Political William F. Buckley Quotes
As a strong conservative writer, Buckley had many things to say about politics.
11. “The socialized state is to justice, order, and freedom what the Marquis de Sade is to love.” — William F. Buckley
12. “One must bear in mind that the expansion of federal activity is a form of eating for politicians.” — William F. Buckley
13. “Decent people should ignore politics if only they could be confident that politics would ignore them.” — William F. Buckley
14. “Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views.” — William F. Buckley
15. “I’d rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University.” — William F. Buckley
16. “The amount of money and of legal energy being given to prosecute hundreds of thousands of Americans who are caught with a few ounces of marijuana in their jeans simply makes no sense.” — William F. Buckley
17. “Liberals, it has been said, are generous with other peoples’ money, except when it comes to questions of national survival when they prefer to be generous with other people’s freedom and security.” — William F. Buckley
Thought-Provoking William F. Buckley Quotes
Here are some quotes from Buckley that will make you think and ponder.
18. “The more complicated and powerful the job, the more rudimentary the preparation for it.” — William F. Buckley
19. “I will not willingly cede more power to anyone, not to the state, not to General Motors, not to the CIO.” — William F. Buckley
20. “Life can’t be all bad when for ten dollars you can buy all the Beethoven sonatas and listen to them for ten years.” — William F. Buckley
21. “A sterner way to put it is that it is an outrage, an imposition on basic civil liberties and on the reasonable expenditure of social energy.” — William F. Buckley
22. “Truth is a demure lady, much too ladylike to knock you on your head and drag you to her cave. She is there, but people must want her and seek her out.” — William F. Buckley
23. “How much we have received from the great wellsprings of human talent and concern that gave us Shakespeare, Abraham Lincoln, Mark Twain, our parents, our friends.” — William F. Buckley
24. “What yells out at the US public is the incandescent hypocrisy of so many people who, in the name of free speech, persecute its practitioners if their opinions are conservative.” — William F. Buckley
25. “Back in the thirties, we were told we must collectivize the nation because the people were so poor. Now we are told we must collectivize the nation because the people are so rich.” — William F. Buckley
William F. Buckley’s Personal Life
Buckley married Patricia Taylor in 1950, and they stayed married until she died in 2007.
They had one child together, Christopher Buckley, and lived in Stamford, Connecticut, but had an apartment in Manhattan and stayed in Switzerland for six or seven weeks each year.
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