23rd Oct: It's time for the second TV Tropes Halloween Avatar Contest, theme: cute monsters! Details and voting here.
"Our country! In her intercourse with foreign nations, may she always be in the right; but still our country, right or wrong."
— Stephen Decatur
"My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right."
— Carl Schurz
"My country, right or wrong," is a thing that no patriot would think of saying. It is like saying, "My mother, drunk or sober."
"But you know as well as I, patriotism is a word; and one that generally comes to mean either my country, right or wrong, which is infamous, or my country is always right, which is imbecile."
— Patrick O'Brian
"Were my heart my master, I would do exactly as you say. But what sort of knight abandons his kingdom-his king!-now, when they need him the most?."
— Camus, Fire Emblem Shadow Dragon
Soldier: "Lord Captain! We are the Red Wings, the pride of Baron! Must we now be thieves, sent to plunder from the weak?"
Soldier: "But, Lord Captain! The Mysidians offered no resistance! And still we cut them down!"
Cecil: "Listen to me. We did no more than what our kingdom's peace and prosperity required us to do. The Mysidians knew too much of the Crystal and its secrets. His Majesty deemed it so. We are the Red Wings of Baron! It is not our place to question the orders of our king."
— Final Fantasy IV DS
American general: "You mean your convictions or your country's convictions?"
General Kuribayashi: "Are they not the same?"
American general: "Spoken like a true soldier."
—>— Letters from Iwo Jima
Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel
— Samuel Johnson
"The world will never know how I struggled with the decision to stay out of the electorial process. Should I have gone on television and told the voters not to elect this man? And what then? If I use my influence — my character and my reputation — to tell people how to vote, what does that make me? I choose to fight for Truth, Justice and the American Way. And for all it's flaws, American democracy does work... The United States doesn't need me to dictate, or worse, deprive her people of that most precious gift. The freedom of choice. Even when I knew in my heart that choice was wrong."
Enoch Powell: No, we do not fight for values. I would fight for this country even if it had a Communist government.
Margaret Thatcher: Nonsense, Enoch. If I send British troops abroad, it will be to defend our values.
Enoch Powell: No, Prime Minister, values exist in a transcendental realm, beyond space and time. They can neither be fought for, nor destroyed.
"Because today I am on state business, and I have no inclination to let private friendship override my public duty."
— Xu Huang, Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Cass: NCR's my country, and I support it. Anyone says otherwise... I'll feed 'em my knee. I know which side of the firing line I'm on in the Mojave, just so you know.
The Courier: There's a "but" in there.
Cass: Yeah, there is. I'm not some blind, flag-saluting, do-as-they-will NCR lover. They're like family, but let me tell ya what family means. You ever had a brother? Some dumbass younger brother, say, who knocked up the pastor's daughter, can't hold down a job and his home-away is a jail cell? That is NCR. Their compass is spinning. All the time.
Unlike Sokolov, the thought of defecting has never once crossed my mind. I love... my country. I love this land. I cannot even imagine living anywhere else. I wish to remain a hero... of the great motherland.
— Aleksandr Leonovitch Granin, Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater