On Managing Aristocrats

John Adams:

Your ‘aristocrats’ are the most difficult Animals to manage, of anything in the whole Theory and practice of Government. They will not suffer themselves to be governed. They not only exert all their own Subtilty Industry and courage, but they employ the Commonality, to knock to pieces every Plan and Model that the most honest Architects in Legislation can invent to keep them within bounds.

In a letter to Thomas Jefferson, 9 July 1813. The Adams-Jefferson Letters, p. 352