Thomas Sowell is currently Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. Sowell received a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University in 1958 and a master’s degree from Columbia University in 1959. In 1968, he earned his doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago. Sowell has served on the faculties of several universities, including Cornell University and University of California. He has written more than thirty books and his work has been widely anthologized. He is a National Humanities Medal recipient for innovative scholarship which incorporated history, economics and political science.
* Too much of what is called “education” is little more than an expensive isolation from reality.
* There are few things more dishonorable than misleading the young.
* The most fundamental fact about the ideas of the political left is that they do not work. Therefore we should not be surprised to find the left concentrated in institutions where ideas do not have to work in order to survive.
* Much of the social history of the Western world, over the past three decades, has been a history of replacing what worked with what sounded good.
* What is ominous is the ease with which some people go from saying that they don’t like something to saying that the government should forbid it. When you go down that road, don’t expect freedom to survive very long.
* It is amazing that people who think we cannot afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, and medication somehow think that we can afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, medication and a government bureaucracy to administer it.
* Elections should be held on April 16th- the day after we pay our income taxes. That is one of the few things that might discourage politicians from being big spenders.
* The real goal should be reduced government spending, rather than balanced budgets achieved by ever rising tax rates to cover ever rising spending.
* Life in general has never been even close to fair, so the pretense that the government can make it fair is a valuable and inexhaustible asset to politicians who want to expand government.
* As for gun control advocates, I have no hope whatever that any facts whatever will make the slightest dent in their thinking – or lack of thinking.
* The problem isn’t that Johnny can’t read. The problem isn’t even that Johnny can’t think. The problem is that Johnny doesn’t know what thinking is; he confuses it with feeling.
* Each new generation born is in effect an invasion of civilization by little barbarians, who must be civilized before it is too late.
* The first lesson of economics is scarcity: there is never enough of anything to fully satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.
* Mistakes can be corrected by those who pay attention to facts but dogmatism will not be corrected by those who are wedded to a vision.