The law does not require a man to cease to be a man, and act without regard to consequences, when he becomes a juror.
The trial by jury is a trial by ‘the country,’ in contradistinction to a trial by the government. The jurors are drawn by lot from the mass of the people, for the very purpose of having all classes of minds and feelings, that prevail among the people at large, represented in the jury.
Legally speaking, the term ‘public rights’ is as vague and indefinite as are the terms ‘public health,’ ‘public good,’ ‘public welfare,’ and the like. It has no legal meaning, except when used to describe the separate, private, individual rights of a greater or less number of individuals.
A man’s ‘original and natural right’ to make all contracts that are ‘intrinsically obligatory,’ and to coerce the fulfillment of them, is one of the most valuable and indispensable of all human possessions.
Men’s moral principles are weak enough without their being made subordinate to selfishness; and their selfishness is quite active enough, without any such effort as Christianity makes to constitute it the mainspring of all their conduct.
Any government, that is its own judge of, and determines authoritatively for the people, what are its own powers over the people, is an absolute government of course. It has all the powers that it chooses to exercise. There is no other or at least no more accurate definition of a despotism than this.
Martyrdom is evidence only of a man’s honesty – it is no evidence that he is not mistaken. Men have suffered martyrdom for all sorts of opinions in politics and in religion; yet they could not therefore have all been in the right; although they could give no stronger evidence that they believed themselves in the right.
To measure prices by a currency that is called by the same names as gold, but that is really inferior in value to gold, and then – because those prices are nominally higher than gold prices – to say that they are inflated, relatively to gold, is a perfect absurdity.
Slavery is a wrong to each individual enslaved; and not merely to the first of a series. Natural law, therefore, as much forbids the enslaving of the child, as if the wrong of enslaving the parent had never been perpetrated.
The right of absolute and irresponsible dominion is the right of property, and the right of property is the right of absolute, irresponsible dominion. The two are identical; the one necessarily implying the other.