Quotes by Theodore Roosevelt

Both the preachers of an unrestricted individualism, and the preachers of an oppression which would deny to able men of business the just reward of their intuitive and business sagacity, are advocating policies that would be fraught with the greatest harm to the whole country. To permit every lawless capitalist, every law-defying corporation, to take any action, no matter how iniquitous, in the effort to secure an improper profit and to build up privilege, would be ruinous to the Republic and would mark the abandonment of the effort to secure in the industrial world, the spirit of democratic fair dealing. On the other hand, to attach these wrongs in that sprit of demagogy, which can see wrong only when committed by the man of wealth, and is dumb and blind in the presence of wrong committed against men of property or by men of no property, is exactly as evil as corruptly to defend the wrongdoing of men of wealth. The war we wage must be waged against misconduct, against wrong-doing wherever it is found; and we must stand heartily for the rights of every decent man, whether he be a man of great wealth or a man who earns his livelihood as a wage-worker or as a tiller of the soil.

Eighth Annual Message to Congress, December 9, 1908

It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause.

To announce that there must be no criticism of the president is morally treasonable to the American public.

Probably the greatest harm done by vast wealth is the harm that we of moderate means do ourselves when we let the vices of envy and hatred enter deep into our own natures.

If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.