Tag Archives: James Wilson

First Principles: Without Law, Liberty Becomes Licentiousness

“Without law, liberty … loses its nature and its name, and becomes licentiousness.” – James Wilson (1790)      

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First Principles: Mankind Is Equal Before God and Law but Not In Talents, Abilities and Application of These

“When we say, that all men are equal; we mean not to apply this equality to their virtues, their talents, their dispositions, or their acquirements.” – James Wilson, Man as a Member of Society, 1791      

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First Principles: Resistance To Malevolence Is A Right and Duty

“Has force, exerted for the purposes of malevolence, a right to command? Can it impose an obligation to obey? No. Resistance to such force is a right, and, if resistance can prove effectual, it is a duty also.”  – James … Continue reading

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First Principles: The Chief Aim of Criminal Jurisprudence Is to Prevent Crimes

“To prevent crimes, is the noblest end and aim of criminal jurisprudence. To punish them, is one of the means necessary for the accomplishment of this noble end and aim.” – James Wilson (1790)            

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First Principles: Without Liberty, Law Becomes Oppression; Without Law Liberty Become Licentiousness

“Without liberty, law loses its nature and its name, and becomes oppression. Without law, liberty also loses its nature and its name, and becomes licentiousness.”  – James Wilson, Lectures on Law, 1790 An excellent resource with respect to this work … Continue reading

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First Principles: Be Deliberate In Planning and Implementing Laws

“In planning, forming, and arranging laws, deliberation is always becoming, and always useful.” – James Wilson      

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First Principles: All Governments Eventually Go Back To Their First Principles

“There is not in the whole science of politics a more solid or a more important maxim than this — that of all governments, those are the best, which, by the natural effect of their constitutions, are frequently renewed or … Continue reading

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First Principles: Self Defense Is A Primary Law Of Nature

“The defense of one’s self, justly called the primary law of nature, is not, nor can it be abrogated by any regulation of municipal law. This principle of defense is not confined merely to the person; it extends to the … Continue reading

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First Principles: The Sanctity of Life Begins In the Womb

“With consistency, beautiful and undeviating, human life from its commencement to its close, is protected by the common law. In the contemplation of law, life begins when the infant is first able to stir in the womb. By the law, … Continue reading

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First Principles: Good and Wise Government Is Dependent On Family

“[T]hat important and respectable, though small and sometimes neglected establishment, which is denominated a family…[The family is] the principle of the community; it is that seminary, on which the commonwealth, for its manners as well as its numbers, must ultimately … Continue reading

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