We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

“England has saved herself by her exertions, and will, as I trust, save Europe by her example.”

William Pitt, the Younger

35 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Paul Marks


    One of the worst points of the campaign was when Boris Johnson was attacked for making a perfectly respectable historical argument – that the European Union was one in a long line of efforts to recreate the Roman Empire.

    Whether it is Philip II of Spain, Louis the XIV of of France, Napoleon (again of France – to whom Pitt the Younger was referring), Imperial Germany, or National Socialist Germany – the dream is always the to “unite Europe” recreate the Roman Empire. In all its stagnation and then decline of civilisation.

    This was reduced to “Boris says E.U. is like the Nazis”.

    That was the response of people such as Mr Cameron – who do not even know what year the United States entered World War II.

    Rather less time reading Keynes and rather more time reading Aristotle might have served Mr Cameron better.

  • I don’t think there is any other way of looking at this.

    By the narrowest of margins, we have won and in so doing have shown that the “Road to ever closer union” is not inevitable. That those who fundamentally object to being dragged down the road by unelected, unaccountable and unremoveable elite of Europe have a way forward.

    Yesterday the Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty changed from being a technical procedure, implemented to provide the illusion of an exit to something very real and very substantial.

    Where Britain goes others can follow and I firmly believe once we do, then in a very few short years you will see how successful the UK can be outside of the European Union.

    As with the gradual lead up to the fall of the Berlin wall, the cracks have appeared and a brick is falling lose, where we have gone others can and probably will follow.

    This is not just freedom for the UK, it is freedom for Europe as well.

  • llamas

    Funniest comment so far on this side of the water, responding to the woeful tide of horror opinion pieces in the Guardian about how racist xenophobic chavvery has now inundated the UK and the world will officially end, next Thursday at 7.15 pm:

    ‘Guardian columnists unite to condemn savage act of democracy’



  • George

    God Save The Queen’s Realm as a free land, that all good persons may prosper.

    As a descendant of many English, a few Irish, and many others over the last few centuries, and as an American, I am happier than I have been in years, since the Brexit vote was for leaving.

    I want now to prefer for trade and cooperation British over Germans and French, and British companies and persons that supported Brexit rather than with those that favored


  • William H. Stoddard

    Since we’re doing historical quotations, and since you guys have just declared independence, here’s a bit from Thomas Jefferson doing the same:

    For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
    For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
    For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences; . . .
    For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
    For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

    That sounds a lot like what I’ve been hearing here on Samizdata. . . .

  • staghounds

    Say all this stuff when the exit happens. The fight is just beginning.

  • Runcie Balspune

    If I go there will be trouble, and if I stay it will be double

    M.Jones & J. Strummer

  • TK

    Never in the field of British voting was so much owed by so many to 52%.

    Well done, lads and ladies.

  • stef

    Texians approve. We added a discount to our online store:

    [UK flag image] Brexit Sale
    Prices reduced to 52% (48% discount) on Products shipped to the United Kingdom.

  • shlomo maistre

    This has never happened before.

    Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is purposely vague and brief. The negotiations between the UK and EU in coming months & years will be PRECEDENT-SETTING.

    Think broadly.

    Assuming dismantling the EU is a good thing, then there is probably no better country that could be the first member-state to vote to LEAVE the EU. Why? Because the UK is strong.

    The UK has uniquely strong ties with the world’s only superpower, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia based on shared culture, history and language. The UK is the largest economy in Europe besides Germany. The UK has a formidable military and intelligence service in her own right. The UK has arguably the most important city in all of Europe – London. The UK is fairly large and relatively stable financially (at least compared to many other European nations like Italy, Spain, Greece, etc).

    The negotiations on Exit will last for years. We can probably expect the EU to want to make an example of the UK by punishing it to deter other countries from following the UK’s lead – but the UK is STRONG so it will difficult for the EU to punish the UK all that much.

    I’m personally happy a member of the EU voted to Leave the EU. And because the UK is strong the UK is probably the BEST EU country to make it as painful as possible for the EU to punish the UK in precedent-setting negotiations.

  • TK

    Actually, after seeing the pic Liz Hurley posted yesterday on Twitter, I need to amend my earlier comment.

    Never in the field of British voting was so much owed by so many to one stupendously hot 51 year old.

    KBO, Liz, KBO.

  • Gary Kayser

    Well, Thomas Jefferson was British by birth.

  • the other rob

    Here in Texas, 240 years after 1776, people are smiling, nodding and saying “Now y’all get it.”

  • Stephen W. Houghton

    This American, wishes you all the best and is writing his congress people to support the UK with a generious free trade agreement. Also post this youtube video.

  • John Galt III

    Rush Limbaugh on US Radio Today – paraphrasing

    “Watch out Brexiters. Everything and anything that goes wrong going forward economically, politically, socially in Great Britain will be blamed on leaving the EU. Count on it.”

  • PeterT

    Thomas Jefferson was British by birth.

    No he wasn’t. Top dude all the same.

  • AndrewZ

    Thomas Jefferson once said that the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of tyrants. But sometimes the tears of bureaucrats will suffice.

  • Cal

    >Thomas Jefferson once said that the tree of liberty must be watered with the blood of tyrants. But sometimes the tears of bureaucrats will suffice.

    Did you steal that? Ist good.

  • AndrewZ

    Cal, those are my own words. But “Ist” is not a word, unless you are writing some sort of fantasy novel. If you are, then the key to success appears to be gratuitous nudity, dragons and horrible murders.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    Jefferson’s exact quote is “the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. it is it’s natural manure.”

    cite: http://tjrs.monticello.org/letter/100

  • AndrewZ


    Jefferson’s original words are actually rather clumsy. The colloquial misquoting and simplification of the original version renders it more effective. If the original was all we had then it would soon have been forgotten. The quote has only survived because the public got the sense of it and repeated it in a more pithy form.

  • I wish we could have a pithier 2nd Amendment.

  • Cal

    >But “Ist” is not a word, unless you are writing some sort of fantasy novel. If you are, then the key to success appears to be gratuitous nudity, dragons and horrible murders.

    Ist even gooder! Hurrazah!

  • AndrewZ

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear the tissue in the stems of vascular plants, shall not be infringed.

  • AndrewZ

    Cal, that may be a perfectly cromulent word but does it embiggen the soul?

  • Cal

    You ist sum sortte of word Wizzard. Begone, suzpishuz word witcher. Unevil this worlde no morezon.

  • Thailover

    John Galt,

    Indeed, freedom for Europe as well. I suspect that if the fingernail-thin margin vote went the other way, Turkey would soon be part of the EU (Even though Turkey isn’t Europe), and GB would be flooded with migrating Turks as well as the floodgates from Africa and the crappiest dirt-pile nations of the continent would poor in as well at an increasing rate and Britain’s populous would have been powerless to oppose the decimation of their nation, as is happening today in Germany and other countries.

    GB and Germany has been doing the heavy lifting in the EU, with GB getting the raw end of the deal and Merkel being a pampered bully. And now the roll that GB used to fill now falls on France and other major European nations, and I suspect they will choose a ‘stay or leave’ referendum of their own, especially when faced with countless hordes of invaders that don’t give a rat’s ass about the accommodating nations, their people, their culture or their relatively advanced state of civility.

    Barbarian hordes don’t care about civility.

    Oh, and a thank you to GB for giving our President Abomination the middle finger with the Brexit vote.

    Fuck that goddamned marxist rat bastard.

  • Regional

    There is contention in the BBC and MSM that Westminster won’t act in accordance the plebiscite, there are a lot of lamp posts in London that need decorating.

  • Michael Staab

    Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. While I offer my heartfelt congratulations to those who voted for their independence, and their country, the reaction is going to be probably quite dramatic. In view of that possibility, and since it seems to be the proverbial “time to strike while the iron is hot”, perhaps the citizens of Britain may act to enact their own version of the USA’s 2nd amendment?
    An armed, law abiding people cannot be bullied or made to submit to tyrants.

  • Stonyground

    I think that you mean ‘word wizard’ Cal.

    Wizzard was a seventies pop group from Birmingham in the UK. They combined the Spectre sound into a sort of rocky pop and had a breif run of hits. They are best remembered for their Christmas anthem ‘I wish it could be Christmas every day’.

  • Cal

    Wizzard are no longer mentioned in polite company, Stony.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    June 24, 2016 at 10:11 pm


    Jefferson’s original words are actually rather clumsy.

    Agreed. In fact, unconsciously tightening it up a bit, I remembered it as “the blood of tyrants and patriots is the natural manure of the tree of liberty.”

  • TimR

    Stonyground, is breif the conditional form of bre xit?

  • Mr Ed

    Well Gibraltar are now talking to the Scots about avoiding Brexit, it is hinted with Northern Ireland interested, cutting out England and Wales.

    Bye bye Gibraltar, you’ll be under Spanish rule within weeks of you try this.

    But just expel England and Wales from the UK, job done.