'For all time to come, the freedom and purity of the press are the test of national virtue and independence. No writer for the press, however humble, is free from the burden of keeping his purpose high and his integrity white. The dignity of communities is largely intrusted to our keeping; and while we sway in the struggle or relax in the rest-hour, we must let no buzzards roost on the public shield in our charge.'
- O'Reilly's speech to the Boston Press Club, 1879
'Well, paternalism is better than intolerable and irresponsible tyranny and there seems to be no other alternative. Paternalism supported by State power is better than Monopoly upheld by the private mercenaries whom Pinkerton lets out to the service of the money kings. Anything is better than the rapacity of the insolent highway robbers who control the total supply of a prime necessary of life, anything even anarchy.'
- O'Reilly criticising the concentration of economic power in the hands of monopolists, 1888