Ministers Of State
The Maxims And Reflections Of Burke selected and edited by F.W. Rafferty

Constitute government how you please, infinitely the greater part of it must depend upon the exercise of the powers which are left at large to the prudence and uprightness of Ministers of State.—Present Discontents (II. 32).

Had he attributed our misfortunes to their true cause, the injudicious tampering of bold, improvident, and visionary ministers at one period, or to their supine negligence and traitorous dissensions at another, the complaint had been just, and might have been useful.— State of the Nation (I. 232).

It is right for every man to preserve his dignity. There is a dignity of station which a man has in trust to preserve; there is a dignity of personal character, which every man by being made man is bound to preserve—Warren Hastings. Speech on the Sixth Charge.

They tell you, sir, that your dignity is tied to it. I know not how it happens, but this dignity of yours is a terrible incumbrance to you; for it has of late been ever at war with your interest, your equity, and every idea of your policy.— American Taxation (II. 102).

Passing from that study he (Grenville) did not go very largely into the world, but plunged into business; I mean into the business of office; and the limited and fixed methods and forms established there. Much knowledge is to he had undoubtedly in that line; and there is no knowledge which is not valuable. But it may be truly said, that men too much conversant in office are rarely minds of remarkable enlargement. Their habits of office are apt to give them a turn to think the substance of business not to be much more important than the forms in which it is conducted. These forms are adapted to ordinary occasions; and therefore persons who are nurtured in office do admirably well as long as things go on in their common order; but when the high roads are broken up, and the waters out, when a new and troubled scene is opened, and the file affords no precedent, then it is that a greater knowledge of mankind and far more extensive comprehension of things is requisite, than ever office gave, or than office can ever give.— A man is generally rendered somewhat a worse reasoner for having been a minister.— State of the Nation (I. 285).