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Madison on Access to Government Information

"A popular Government without popular information or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy or perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power knowledge gives."


Letter to W.T. Barry, Aug. 4, 1822,

in G.P. Hunt, ed., IX The Writings of James Madison 103 (1910).

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Carmen Orth-Alfie
University of Kansas Libraries
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