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Chapter XIV WASHINGTON WITCH HUNT
And lest some one should persuade ye, lords and commons, that these arguments of learned men’s discouragement at this your order are mere flourishes, and not real, I could recount what I have seen and heard in other countries, where this kind of inquisition tyrannizes . . . There it was I found and visited the famous Galileo, grown old, a prisoner to the inquisition, for thinking in astronomy otherwise than the Franciscan and Dominican licensers thought.
John Milton, Areopagitica, 1644
The country will swarm with informers, spies, delators, and all the odious reptile tribe that breed in the sunshine of despotic power. The hours of the most unsuspected confidence, the intimacies of friendship, or the recesses of domestic retirement, afford no security . . . Do not let us be told that we are to excite fervor against a foreign aggression to establish a tyranny at home; and that we are absurd enough to call ourselves free and enlightened while we advocate principles that would have disgraced the age of Gothic barbarity.
Congressman Edward Livingston, speaking in the U. S. House of Representatives in opposition to the Sedition Act of 1798
Are your friends and associates intelligent, clever?
A question put by a U. S. Loyalty Board in 1948 to a government employee accused of disloyalty