The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse.
The people are the only legitimate fountain of power, and it is from them that the constitutional charter, under which the several branches of government hold their power, is derived
Knowledge will forever govern ignorance; and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.
The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted.
The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny
I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.
All men having power ought to be distrusted to a certain degree.
Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power.
Where an excess of power prevails, property of no sort is duly respected. No man is safe in his opinions, his person, his faculties, or his possessions.
Wherever there is interest and power to do wrong, wrong will generally be done.
The legislative department is everywhere extending the sphere of its activity and drawing all power into its impetuous vortex.
The government of the United States is a definite government, confined to specified objects. It is not like the state governments, whose powers are more general. Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government.