Adventure upon all the tickets in the lottery, and you lose for certain; and the greater the number of your tickets the nearer your approach to this certainty.
All money is a matter of belief.
As soon as the land of any country has all become private property, the landlords, like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed, and demand a rent even for its natural produce.
Capitals are increased by parsimony, and diminished by prodigality and misconduct. By what a frugal man annually saves he not only affords maintenance to an additional number of productive hands…but…he establishes as it were a perpetual fund for the maintenance of an equal number in all times to come.
Consumption is the sole end and purpose of all production.
Consumption is the sole end and purpose of all production; and the interest of the producer ought to be attended to, only so far as it may be necessary for promoting that of the consumer.
Defense is superior to opulence.
Great ambition, the desire of real superiority, of leading and directing, seems to be altogether peculiar to man, and speech is the great instrument of ambition.
Happiness never lays its finger on its pulse.
Humanity is the virtue of a woman, generosity that of a man.
I have never known much good done by those who affected to trade for the public good.
In ease of body, peace of mind, all the different ranks of life are nearly upon a level and the beggar who suns himself by the side of the highway, possesses that security which kings are fighting for.
It is not by augmenting the capital of the country, but by rendering a greater part of that capital active and productive than would otherwise be so, that the most judicious operations of banking can increase the industry of the country.
It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.
Labor was the first price, the original purchase – money that was paid for all things.
Labour was the first price, the original purchase – money that was paid for all things. It was not by gold or by silver, but by labour, that all wealth of the world was originally purchased.
Little else is requisite to carry a state to the highest degree of opulence from the lowest barbarism but peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice: all the rest being brought about by the natural course of things.
Man is an animal that makes bargains: no other animal does this – no dog exchanges bones with another.
No complaint… is more common than that of a scarcity of money.
No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable.
On the road from the City of Skepticism, I had to pass through the Valley of Ambiguity.
Poor David Hume is dying fast, but with more real cheerfulness and good humor and with more real resignation to the necessary course of things, than any whining Christian ever dyed with pretended resignation to the will of God.
Resentment seems to have been given us by nature for a defense, and for a defense only! It is the safeguard of justice and the security of innocence.
Science is the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition.
The common wages of labour depends every where upon the contract usually made between those two parties whose interests are by no means the same… Masters are always and every where in a sort of tacit, but constant and uniform combination, not to raise the wages of labour above their actual rate.
The difference between the most dissimilar characters, between a philosopher and a common street porter, seems to arise not so much from nature, as from habit, custom and education.
The greatest improvement in the productive powers of labour, and the greater part of the skill, dexterity and judgement with which it is any where directed, as applied, seem to have been the effects of the division of labour.
The man whose life is spent in performing a few simple operations of which the effects too are, perhaps, always the same or very nearly the same, has no occasion to exert his understanding, or to exercise his invention. He generally becomes as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to become.
The principle which prompts to save is the desire of bettering our condition – a desire which…comes with us from the womb and never leaves us till we go into the grave.
The propensity to truck, barter and exchange one thing for another is common to all men, and to be found in no other race of animals.
The propensity to truck, barter and exchange one thing for another…is common to all men, and to be found in no other race of animals.
The rate of profit does not, like rent and wages, rise with the prosperity, and fall with the declension, of the society. On the contrary, it is naturally low in rich, and high in poor countries, and it is always highest in the countries which are going fastest to ruin.
The real and effectual discipline which is exercised over a workman is that of his customers. It is the fear of losing their employment which restrains his frauds and corrects his negligence.
The real price of everything, what everything really costs to the man who wants to acquire it, is the toil and trouble of acquiring it. Labour was the first price, the original purchase money that was paid for all things.
The real tragedy of the poor is the poverty of their aspirations.
The theory that can absorb the greatest number of facts, and persist in doing so, generation after generation, through all changes of opinion and detail, is the one that must rule all observation.
The world is ultimately ruled by justice, fairness, & value.
There is a great deal of ruin in a nation.
There is no art which one government sooner learns of another than that of draining money from the pockets of the people.
This is one of those cases in which the imagination is baffled by the facts.
To feel much for others and little for ourselves; to restrain our selfishness and exercise our benevolent affections, constitute the perfection of human nature.
To found a great Empire for the sole purpose of raising up a people of customers, may at first sight appear a project fit only for a nation of shopkeepers. It is, however, a project altogether unfit for a nation of shopkeepers; but extremely fit for a nation that is governed by shopkeepers.
Virtue is more to be feared than vice, because its excesses are not subject to the regulation of conscience.
What can be added to the happiness of a man who is in health, out of debt, and has a clear conscience?
With the greater part of rich people, the chief enjoyment of riches consists in the parade of riches.
Anger and hatred lead to fear; compassion and concern for others allow us to develop self-confidence, which breeds trust and friendship.Dalai Lama