The Best Thomas Sowell quotes

Thomas Sowell quotes thumbnail

Thomas Sowell is one of the most renowned economists in the world. Though he didn’t always want to be an economist, he has made a big impact on the field. This quotes compilation will explore his life and how he became one of the most respected economists today. It will also look at some of his famous works and what makes him so interesting and unique as an economist.

Here are the most inspiring Politics, Power, Price, Money, Time, World, Welfare, Politician Moral Superiority quotes from Thomas Sowell, and much more.


Test your habit in 4-mins


stop digital addiction course
This Course Breaks Your Digital Habits

About Thomas Sowell

birth of the author

June 30, 1930

movement of the author

School Or Tradition:
Chicago School

college of the author

Alma Mater:
Harvard University

award of the author

Francis Boyer Award, National Humanities Medal, Bradley Prize, Getabstract International Book Award

country of the author

United States

date of the author

Years Of Service:


Much of what sophisticates loftily refer to as the “complexityof the real world is in fact the inconsistency in their own minds. — Thomas Sowell

What ‘multiculturalism’ boils down to is that you can praise any culture in the world except Western culture–and you cannot blame any culture in the world except Western culture. — Thomas Sowell

I suspect that even most conservatives would prefer to live in the kind of world conjured up in the liberals’ imagination rather than in the kind of world we are in fact stuck with. — Thomas Sowell

American prosperity and American free enterprise are both highly unusual in the world, and we should not overlook the possibility that the two are connected. — Thomas Sowell

reality is not optional Thomas Sowell quote

Isolation is a recurring factor in poverty and backwardness around the world, whether that is physical isolation or cultural isolation, for any number of particular reasons — Thomas Sowell

The welfare state is the oldest con game in the world. First you take people’s money away quietly and then you give some of it back to them flamboyantly. — Thomas Sowell

Much of the social history of the western world over the past three decades has involved replacing what worked with what sounded good. — Thomas Sowell

Most of the founders of this country had day jobs for years. They were not career politicians. … We need leaders with experience in the real world, not experience in the phony world of politics. — Thomas Sowell

We need laws written by people who have confronted life in the real world, not in the sheltered world of trust fund recipients of the insulated cocoon of academia. — Thomas Sowell

Tariffs that save jobs in the steel industry mean higher steel prices, which in turn means fewer sales of American steel products around the world and losses of far more jobs than are saved. — Thomas Sowell

When your response to everything that is wrong with the world is to say, ‘there ought to be a law,’ you are saying that you hold freedom very cheap. — Thomas Sowell


Tolerating imperfections is the price of freedom. — Thomas Sowell


Test your habit in 4-mins

Lunches don’t get free just because you don’t see the prices on the menu. And economists don’t get popular by reminding people of that. — Thomas Sowell

Eternal vigilance is only part of the price of freedom. The maturity to live with imperfections is another crucial part of the price of freedom. — Thomas Sowell

tolerating imperfections is the price of freedom Thomas Sowell quote

Creating whole departments of ethnic, gender, and other ‘studies’ was part of the price of academic peace. All too often, these ‘studies’ are about propaganda rather than serious education. — Thomas Sowell

Asking liberals where wages and prices come from is like asking six–year–olds where babies come from. — Thomas Sowell

Freedom has cost too much blood and agony to be relinquished at the cheap price of rhetoric. — Thomas Sowell

Prices are important not because money is considered paramount but because prices are a fast and effective conveyor of information through a vast society in which fragmented knowledge must be coordinated. — Thomas Sowell

As an economist, whenever I hear the word shortage I wait for the other shoe to drop. That other shoe is usually price control. — Thomas Sowell

A shortage is a sign that somebody is keeping the price artificially lower than it would be if supply and demand were allowed to operate freely. — Thomas Sowell

The desire of businessmen for profits is what drives prices down unless forcibly prevented from engaging in price competition, usually by governmental activity. — Thomas Sowell


There is nothing so bad that politics cannot make it worse. — Thomas Sowell

The first lesson of economics is scarcity: there is never enough of anything to fully satisfy all those who want it. the first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics. — Thomas Sowell

All the political angst and moral melodrama about getting ‘the rich’ to pay ‘their fair share’ is part of a big charade. This is not about economics, it is about politics. — Thomas Sowell

there is nothing so bad that politics cannot make it worse Thomas Sowell quote

You have to have a sense of humor if you follow politics. Otherwise, the sheer fraudulence of it all will get you down. — Thomas Sowell

Anyone who does not understand the utter cynicism of politics does not understand politics. — Thomas Sowell

In politics, the truth is strictly optional and that also seems to be true in parts of the media. — Thomas Sowell

It is truly a triumph of rhetoric over reality when people can believe that going into politics is ‘public service,’ but that producing food, shelter, transportation, or medical care is not. — Thomas Sowell

There are few talents so richly rewarded–especially in politics and the media–as the ability to portray parasites as victims, and portray demands for preferential treatment as struggles for equal rights. — Thomas Sowell

Politics is the art of making your selfish desires seem like the national interest. — Thomas Sowell

The first rule of economics is that there is an infinite number of desires chasing a finite number of goods, services and resources. The first rule of politics is to ignore the first rule of economics. — Thomas Sowell

Politics is largely the process of taking credit and putting the blame on others–regardless of what the facts may be. — Thomas Sowell


There is no bigger waste of time than doing 90% of what is necessary. — Thomas Sowell

Time was when people used to brag about how old they were–and I am old enough to remember it. — Thomas Sowell

there is no bigger waste of time than doing 90 of what is necessary Thomas Sowell quote

The next time some academics tell you how important diversity is, ask how many Republicans there are in their sociology department. — Thomas Sowell

If we spend our time with regrets over yesterday, and worries over what might happen tomorrow, we have no today in which to live. — Thomas Sowell

One of the most pervasive political visions of our time is the vision of liberals as compassionate and conservatives as less caring. — Thomas Sowell

Some people say that taxes are the price we pay for civilization. But the runaway taxes of our time are the price we pay for being gullible. — Thomas Sowell

How you treat the helpless is the real test of morality. Lots of people are flunking that test big time. — Thomas Sowell

One of the most important reasons for studying history is that virtually every stupid idea that is in vogue today has been tried before and proved disastrous before, time and again. — Thomas Sowell

Racism does not have a good track record. It’s been tried out for a long time and you’d think by now we’d want to put an end to it instead of putting it under new management. — Thomas Sowell

People who have time on their hands will inevitably waste the time of people who have work to do. — Thomas Sowell


France has never gotten over the fact that it was once a great power and is now just a great nuisance. — Thomas Sowell

Those government officials who want more power are not going to stop unless they get stopped. — Thomas Sowell

government s power to bully people who have broken no law is dangerous to all of us Thomas Sowell quote

Intellectuals may like to think of themselves as people who “speak truth to power” but too often they are people who speak lies to gain power. — Thomas Sowell

Everyone may be called “comrade,” but some comrades have the power of life and death over other comrades. — Thomas Sowell

Redundant Thematics

In Thomas Sowell Statements


Clearly, only very unequal intellectual and moral standing could justify having equality imposed, whether the people want it or not, as Dworkin suggests, and only very unequal power would make it possible. — Thomas Sowell

As history has also shown, especially in the twentieth century, one of the first things an ideologue will do after achieving absolute power is kill. — Thomas Sowell

An independent judiciary does not mean judges independent of the Constitution from which they derive their power or independent of the laws that they are sworn to uphold. — Thomas Sowell

Government’s power to bully people who have broken no law is dangerous to all of us. — Thomas Sowell

Mystical references to ‘society’ and its programs to ‘help’ may warm the hearts of the gullible but what it really means is putting more power in the hands of bureaucrats. — Thomas Sowell

While rationalism at the individual level is a plea for more personal autonomy from cultural norms, at the social level it is often a claim–or arrogation–of power to stifle the autonomy of others. — Thomas Sowell


Politics is not about facts. It is about what politicians can get people to believe. — Thomas Sowell

The fact that so many successful politicians are such shameless liars is not only a reflection on them, it is also a reflection on us. When the people want the impossible, only liars can satisfy. — Thomas Sowell

politics is not about facts it is about what politicians can get people to believe Thomas Sowell quote

Right after liberal Democrats, the most dangerous politicians are country club Republicans. — Thomas Sowell

The idea that money is corrupting innocent politicians would be laughable if it did not lead to such dangerous legislation. — Thomas Sowell

There is nothing that politicians like better than handing out benefits to be paid for by someone else. — Thomas Sowell

You may scoff at the Tooth Fairy if you like. But the Tooth Fairy’s approach has gotten more politicians elected than any economist’s analysis. — Thomas Sowell

Life in general has never been even close to fair, so the pretense that the government can make it fair is a valuable and inexhaustible asset to politicians who want to expand government. — Thomas Sowell

People who refuse to accept unpleasant truths have no right to complain about politicians who lie to them. What other kind of candidates would such people elect? — Thomas Sowell

What is history but the story of how politicians have squandered the blood and treasure of the human race? — Thomas Sowell

It is amazing how many of the intelligentsia call it “greed” to want to keep what you have earned, but not greed to want to take away what somebody else has earned, and let politicians use it to buy votes. — Thomas Sowell

Compassion is good but politicians have turned compassion into the welfare state. — Thomas Sowell

How long do politicians have to keep on promising heaven and delivering hell before people catch on and stop getting swept away by rhetoric? — Thomas Sowell

Any politician who starts shouting election–year demagoguery about the rich and the poor should be asked, “What about the other 90 percent of the people?” — Thomas Sowell

The biggest myth about labor unions is that unions are for the workers. Unions are for unions, just as corporations are for corporations and politicians are for politicians. — Thomas Sowell

If politicians stopped meddling with things they don’t understand, there would be a more drastic reduction in the size of government than anyone in either party advocates. — Thomas Sowell

Any politician who can be elected only by turning Americans against other Americans is too dangerous to be elected. — Thomas Sowell

If you have been voting for politicians who promise to give you goodies at someone else’s expense, then you have no right to complain when they take your money and give it to someone else, including themselves. — Thomas Sowell

Racism is not dead, but it is on life support––kept alive by politicians, race hustlers and people who get a sense of superiority by denouncing others as ‘racists’ — Thomas Sowell

In liberal logic, if life is unfair then the answer is to turn more tax money over to politicians, to spend in ways that will increase their chances of getting reelected. — Thomas Sowell


The more people who are dependent on government handouts, the more votes the left can depend on for an ever–expanding welfare state. — Thomas Sowell

The welfare state is not really about the welfare of the masses. It is about the egos of the elites. — Thomas Sowell

The welfare state has always been judged by its good intentions, rather than its bad results. — Thomas Sowell

There are no dead–end jobs. There are no dead–end jobs. There are only dead–end people. Our current social philosophy, and the welfare state apparatus based on it, are creating more dead–end people. — Thomas Sowell

The welfare state shields people from the consequences of their own mistakes, allowing irresponsibility to continue and to flourish among ever wider circles of people. — Thomas Sowell

The biggest and most deadly ‘tax’ rate on the poor comes from a loss of various welfare state benefits–food stamps, housing subsidies and the like–if their income goes up. — Thomas Sowell

The black family survived centuries of slavery and generations of Jim Crow, but it has disintegrated in the wake of the liberals’ expansion of the welfare state. — Thomas Sowell


I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money. — Thomas Sowell

People who decry the fact that businesses are in business “just to make money” seldom understand the implications of what they are saying. You make money by doing what other people want, not what you want. — Thomas Sowell

Being willing to donate the taxpayers’ money is not the same as being willing to put your own money where your mouth is. — Thomas Sowell

People who identify themselves as conservatives donate money to charity more often than people who identify themselves as liberals. They donate more money and a higher percentage of their incomes. — Thomas Sowell

In politics, throwing the taxpayers’ money at disasters is supposed to show your compassion. But robbing Peter to pay Paul is not compassion. It is politics. — Thomas Sowell

How much more of an injustice is it that people who work get more money than people who don’t work? — Thomas Sowell

THOMAS SOWELL Quotes Take Away

Eugene Stoner was an engineer and designer who is best known for his design of the AR-15 rifle. He also created other firearms, including the AR-10 which was used in the Vietnam War. What makes Stoner so interesting is that he wasn’t motivated by money or fame. In fact, he refused to patent any of his designs because he believed that they belonged to everyone. His quotes reflect this belief and are a testament to his innovative mind: “I refuse to accept limits because I don’t know what’s possible.” “Invention is not discovery; it is creation.” “Design must be honest.” These inspiring words should give you a new perspective on invention and innovation.

Wasting Life?


Test your habit in 4-mins