Potent Quotables

Eastwood Wales

I’ve always loved that quote from Charles Austin Beard about earning a reputation as a “dangerous citizen” by quoting the founding fathers. This quote is from the man who made the “dangerous citizen” a cinematic icon, including in one of my all time favorite movies The Outlaw Josey Wales:

I don’t pay attention to either side,” he claims. “I mean, I’ve always been a libertarian. Leave everybody alone. Let everybody else do what they want. Just stay out of everybody else’s hair. So I believe in that value of smaller government. Give politicians power and all of a sudden they’ll misuse it on ya.

When asked about his current political leaning, Eastwood declares that he’s undecided (”It’s kind of a zoo out there right now. So I think I’ll kinda let things percolate.”), but also claims that he and his wife have had some affinity for McCain in the past.

I’m cognizant of the seeming double standard in quoting a Hollywood A-Lister about a political point when I would likely deride such a person making a point I disagreed with (if it were George Clooney, for example). The difference is that I don’t offer the quote as some sort of proof as to the validity of its subject. Instead, I’m impressed that libertarianism was directly connected with smaller government and a check on political power (“Give politicians power and all of a sudden they’ll misuse it on ya.”). Usually the ideology (if you can call it that) is paired by quotable persons with either the war in Iraq or smoking pot. In this case, a silver screen star directly connected personal liberty and smaller government, AND got quoted in a left-wing newspaper.

And c’mon, it’s Clint Eastwood who said it. That’s worth something isn’t it? [/toungueincheek]

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One Response to “Potent Quotables”

  1. on 06 Jun 2008 at 5:31 pm Don

    Nice quote.

    And I also liked The Outlaw Josey Wales. Saw it in the theator back in ‘76 when I was 13 or so.

    Eastwood seems to bounce between being a moderate and a libertarian/conservative. In the past (for example, when Unforgiven came out) he’s indicated that he might be willing to support some additional gun control, although he probably wouldn’t be down with an outright ban or such.

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