Edward Abbey Quotes
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To the intelligent man or woman, life appears infinitely mysterious. But the stupid have an answer for every question.
The duty of a patriot is to protect his country from its government.
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.
I hold no preference among flowers, so long as they are wild, free, spontaneous.
Society is like a stew. If you don't stir it up every once in a while then a layer of scum floats to the top.
A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government.
Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell.
Civilization is a youth with a molotov cocktail in his hand. Culture is the Soviet tank or L.A. cop that guns him down.
Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit.
There is science, logic, reason; there is thought verified by experience. And then there is California.
Why is it that the destruction of something created by humans is called vandalism, yet the destruction of something created by God is called development?
The only thing worse than a knee-jerk liberal is a knee-pad conservative.
The ideal society can be described, quite simply, as that in which no man has the power of means to coerce others.
If the end does not justify the means - what can?
Life is too short for grief. Or regret. Or bullshit.
How to Overthrow the System: brew your own beer; kick in your Tee Vee; kill your own beef; build your own cabin and piss off the front porch whenever you bloody well feel like it.
In the dog-eat-dog economy, the Doberman is boss.
I’m tired of doing what I don’t want to do to live the way I don’t want to live.
A world without huge regions of total wilderness would be a cage; a world without lions and tigers and vultures and snakes and elk and bison would be - will be - a human zoo. A high-tech slum.
Power is always dangerous. Power attracts the worst and corrupts the best.
Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul.
Truth is always the enemy of power. And power the enemy of truth.
Anarchism is founded on the observation that since few men are wise enough to rule themselves, even fewer are wise enough to rule others.
Only the half-mad are wholly alive.
If people persist in trespassing upon the grizzlies' territory, we must accept the fact that the grizzlies, from time to time, will harvest a few trespassers.
Defiance is beautiful. The defiance of power, especially great or overwhelming power, exalts and glorifies the rebel.
It is not enough to understand the natural world; the point is to defend and preserve it.
The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders.
I choose to listen to the river for a while, thinking river thoughts, before joining the night and the stars.
Walking takes longer... than any other known form of locomotion except crawling. Thus it stretches time and prolongs life. Life is already too short to waste on speed.
Abolition of a woman's right to abortion, when and if she wants it, amounts to compulsory maternity: a form of rape by the State.
A leader leads from in front, by the power of example. A ruler pushes from behind, by means of the club, the whip, the power of fear.
The most common form of terrorism in the U.S.A. is that carried on by bulldozers and chain saws.
You can't study the darkness by flooding it with light.
In the Soviet Union, government controls industry. In the United States, industry controls government. That is the principal structural difference between the two great oligarchies of our time.
I want my body to help fertilize the growth of a cactus or cliff rose or sagebrush or tree.
So I lived alone. The first thing I did was take off my pants. Naturally.
The extreme clarity of the desert light is equaled by the extreme individuation of desert life forms. Love flowers best in openness and freedom.
Homosexuality, like androgyny, might be an instinctive racial response to overpopulation, crowding, and stress. Both flourish when empire reaches its apogee.
From the point of view of a tapeworm, man was created by God to serve the appetite of the tapeworm.
Are people more important than the grizzly bear? Only from the point of view of some people.
There never was a good war or a bad revolution.
When the philosopher's argument becomes tedious, complicated, and opaque, it is usually a sign that he is attempting to prove as true to the intellect what is plainly false to common sense.
Whenever I see a photograph of some sportsman grinning over his kill, I am always impressed by the striking moral and esthetic superiority of the dead animal to the live one.
The longest journey begins with a single step, not with a turn of the ignition key.
Hierarchical institutions are like giant bulldozers -- obedient to the whim of any fool who takes the controls.
There is beauty, heartbreaking beauty, everywhere.
"If my decomposing carcass helps nourish the roots of a juniper tree or the wings of a vulture--that is immortality enough for me. And as much as anyone deserves." E.Abbey
Baseball serves as a good model for democracy in action: Every player is equally important and each has a chance to be a hero.
Counterpart to the knee-jerk liberal is the new knee-pad conservative, always groveling before the rich and the powerful.