“In proportion as the structure of a government gives force to public opinion, it is essential that public opinion should be enlightened.” —George Washington

“Many are destined to reason wrongly; others, not to reason at all; and others to persecute those who do reason.” —Voltaire

“A man should never be ashamed to own that he has been in the wrong, which is but saying that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.” —Alexander Pope

“We cannot afford to differ on the question of honesty if we expect our republic permanently to endure. Honesty is not so much a credit as an absolute prerequisite to efficient service to the public. Unless a man is honest, we have no right to keep him in public life; it matters not how brilliant his capacity.” —Theodore Roosevelt

“It is equally dangerous giving a madman a knife and a villain power.” —Socrates

“This is my sixth Republican National Convention, and I’ve never seen anything remotely like the excitement Palin has unleashed. Some compare it to the enthusiasm for Ronald Reagan in 1976 or 1980. Even among the cynics and nervous strategists, there’s a kind of giddiness over John McCain’s tactical daring in selecting the little-known Alaskan.” —Jonah Goldberg

“If a 44-year-old Alaskan governor lacks experience to be vice president, what does that deficiency say about the credentials of the a 47-year-old sometime community organizer in Chicago and one-term U.S. senator to actually lead the nation and, by inference, much of the world? Nothing very hopeful, is what it says.” —William Murchison

“Barack Obama[’s]… economic program is based on the assumption that the economy is to the president what a marionette is to a puppeteer, requiring his direction and responding to his every wish.” —Steve Chapman

“Now our opponents tell you not to worry about their tax increases. They tell you they are not going to tax your family. No, they’re just going to tax ‘businesses.’ So unless you buy something from a ‘business,’ like groceries or clothes or gasoline… or unless you get a paycheck from a big or a small ‘business,’ don’t worry… it’s not going to affect you. They say they are not going to take any water out of your side of the bucket, just the ‘other’ side of the bucket! That’s their idea of tax reform.” —Fred Thompson

“The more Congress does, the less Americans prosper. Freedom, not legislation and regulation, is what powers the U.S. economy. The old political wisdom is a sound investment guideline, too: That government is best that governs least.” —Jeff Jacoby

“Not only is [Sarah Palin] young, they’re saying she’s the prettiest candidate for vice president since John Edwards.” —Jimmy Kimmel

“The famous Greek amphitheatre didn’t look all Alexander the Great if you were [at the Democrat convention]. It looked instead like the big front display window at Macy’s during Presidents Day Sales Weekend. You expected to see ‘Sofas 40% off!’ in a running line on the bottom of the screen.” —Peggy Noonan

“The U.S. economy—yes, that economy—grew at a 3.3 percent annual rate last quarter. This no doubt caused consternation at the highest levels of the Democratic Party, perhaps forcing some to consider a new convention film at the last minute: ‘Dude, Where’s My Recession?’… The bad news for the throngs in Denver is that Americans aren’t as miserable as the Democrats need them to be.” —Jonah Goldberg

“The Obama campaign was not built for substance, only speed. There was no attempt [in Denver]… to deal with national security, worldwide terrorism or how to do the actual hard work of putting race behind us. It was all hot dogs, cotton candy, bellywash, booing Bush and shouting ‘hurrah for the American Idol.’ Two more months of that and we’ll all want change.” —Wesley Pruden

“If Obama is Hope, God save us from Despair.” —Mac Johnson

Jay Leno: Did you see that Mount Olympus-style backdrop they had for Barack’s speech [at the Democrat convention], with the big columns on it? Little over the top, do you think, huh? Like, when they introduced him as ‘Barack, son of Zeus,’ that seemed over the top. … Bill Clinton promised to do everything he could to help Barack Obama win the election. And then Hillary said, “That’s nice. But you know Bill. Keeping promises is not his strong suit.”