America I saw the freest and most enlightened men placed in the
happiest circumstances that the world affords, it seemed to me as if a
cloud habitually hung upon their brow, and I thought them serious and
almost sad, even in their pleasures.
chief reason for this contrast is that the former do not think of the
ills they endure, while the latter are forever brooding over advantages
they do not possess. It is strange to see with what feverish ardor the
Americans pursue their own welfare, and to watch the vague dread that
constantly torments them lest they should not have chosen the shortest
path which may lead to it.
"First Things means, first, that the first thing to be said about public life is that public life is not the first thing. First Things means, second, that there are first things, in the sense of first principles, for the right ordering of public life."
“A free society cannot survive if we are so free that nothing is expected of us.”