Kyle Nauman > Kyle's Quotes

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  • #1
    H.L. Mencken
    “The most erroneous assumption is to the effect that the aim of public education is to fill the young of the species with knowledge and awaken their intelligence, and so make them fit to discharge the duties of citizenship in an enlightened and independent manner. Nothing could be further from the truth. The aim of public education is not to spread enlightenment at all; it is simply to reduce as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed and train a standardized citizenry, to put down dissent and originality. That is its aim in the United States, whatever the pretensions of politicians, pedagogues and other such mountebanks, and that is its aim everywhere else.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #2
    P.J. O'Rourke
    “The Democrats are the party that says government will make you smarter, taller, richer, and remove the crabgrass on your lawn. The Republicans are the party that says government doesn't work and then they get elected and prove it.”
    P.J. O'Rourke, Parliament of Whores: A Lone Humorist Attempts to Explain the Entire U.S. Government

  • #3
    H.L. Mencken
    “As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”
    H.L. Mencken, On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe

  • #4
    H.L. Mencken
    “Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.”
    H.L. Mencken, A Mencken Chrestomathy

  • #5
    H.L. Mencken
    “If, after I depart this vale, you ever remember me and have thought to please my ghost, forgive some sinner and wink your eye at some homely girl.”
    H. L. Mencken

  • #6
    H.L. Mencken
    “In the present case it is a little inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible to any public office of trust or profit in the Republic. But I do not repine, for I am a subject of it only by force of arms.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #7
    H.L. Mencken
    “A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #8
    H.L. Mencken
    “Democracy is a pathetic belief in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance. No one in this world, so far as I know—and I have researched the records for years, and employed agents to help me—has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people. Nor has anyone ever lost public office thereby.”
    H.L. Mencken, Notes on Democracy

  • #9
    H.L. Mencken
    “The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #10
    H.L. Mencken
    “Where is the graveyard of dead gods? What lingering mourner waters their mounds? There was a time when Jupiter was the king of the gods, and any man who doubted his puissance was ipso facto a barbarian and an ignoramus. But where in all the world is there a man who worships Jupiter today? And who of Huitzilopochtli? In one year - and it is no more than five hundred years ago - 50,000 youths and maidens were slain in sacrifice to him. Today, if he is remembered at all, it is only by some vagrant savage in the depths of the Mexican forest. Huitzilopochtli, like many other gods, had no human father; his mother was a virtuous widow; he was born of an apparently innocent flirtation that she carried out with the sun.

    When he frowned, his father, the sun, stood still. When he roared with rage, earthquakes engulfed whole cities. When he thirsted he was watered with 10,000 gallons of human blood. But today Huitzilopochtli is as magnificently forgotten as Allen G. Thurman. Once the peer of Allah, Buddha and Wotan, he is now the peer of Richmond P. Hobson, Alton B. Parker, Adelina Patti, General Weyler and Tom Sharkey.

    Speaking of Huitzilopochtli recalls his brother Tezcatlipoca. Tezcatlipoca was almost as powerful; he consumed 25,000 virgins a year.

    Lead me to his tomb: I would weep, and hang a couronne des perles. But who knows where it is? Or where the grave of Quetzalcoatl is? Or Xiuhtecuhtli? Or Centeotl, that sweet one? Or Tlazolteotl, the goddess of love? Of Mictlan? Or Xipe? Or all the host of Tzitzimitl? Where are their bones? Where is the willow on which they hung their harps? In what forlorn and unheard-of Hell do they await their resurrection morn? Who enjoys their residuary estates? Or that of Dis, whom Caesar found to be the chief god of the Celts? Of that of Tarves, the bull? Or that of Moccos, the pig? Or that of Epona, the mare? Or that of Mullo, the celestial jackass? There was a time when the Irish revered all these gods, but today even the drunkest Irishman laughs at them.

    But they have company in oblivion: the Hell of dead gods is as crowded
    as the Presbyterian Hell for babies. Damona is there, and Esus, and
    Drunemeton, and Silvana, and Dervones, and Adsullata, and Deva, and
    Bellisima, and Uxellimus, and Borvo, and Grannos, and Mogons. All mighty gods in their day, worshipped by millions, full of demands and impositions, able to bind and loose - all gods of the first class. Men labored for generations to build vast temples to them - temples with stones as large as hay-wagons.

    The business of interpreting their whims occupied thousands of priests,
    bishops, archbishops. To doubt them was to die, usually at the stake.
    Armies took to the field to defend them against infidels; villages were burned, women and children butchered, cattle were driven off. Yet in the end they all withered and died, and today there is none so poor to do them reverence.

    What has become of Sutekh, once the high god of the whole Nile Valley? What has become of:
    Resheph
    Anath
    Ashtoreth
    El
    Nergal
    Nebo
    Ninib
    Melek
    Ahijah
    Isis
    Ptah
    Anubis
    Baal
    Astarte
    Hadad
    Addu
    Shalem
    Dagon
    Sharaab
    Yau
    Amon-Re
    Osiris
    Sebek
    Molech?

    All there were gods of the highest eminence. Many of them are mentioned with fear and trembling in the Old Testament. They ranked, five or six thousand years ago, with Yahweh Himself; the worst of them stood far higher than Thor. Yet they have all gone down the chute, and with them the following:
    Bilé
    Ler
    Arianrhod
    Morrigu
    Govannon
    Gunfled
    Sokk-mimi
    Nemetona
    Dagda
    Robigus
    Pluto
    Ops
    Meditrina
    Vesta

    You may think I spoof. That I invent the names. I do not. Ask the rector to lend you any good treatise on comparative religion: You will find them all listed. They were gods of the highest standing and dignity-gods of civilized peoples-worshiped and believed in by millions. All were omnipotent, omniscient and immortal.

    And all are dead.”
    H.L. Mencken, A Mencken Chrestomathy

  • #11
    H.L. Mencken
    “We must respect the other fellow's religion, but only in the sense and to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart.”
    H.L. Mencken, Minority Report

  • #12
    H.L. Mencken
    “Moral certainty is always a sign of cultural inferiority. The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong. All human progress, even in morals, has been the work of men who have doubted the current moral values, not of men who have whooped them up and tried to enforce them. The truly civilized man is always skeptical and tolerant, in this field as in all others. His culture is based on "I am not too sure.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #13
    H.L. Mencken
    “You can't do anything about the length of your life, but you can do something about its width and depth.”
    H. L. Mencken

  • #14
    H.L. Mencken
    “I am suspicious of all the things that the average people believes.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #15
    H.L. Mencken
    “All government, in its essence, is a conspiracy against the superior man: its one permanent object is to oppress him and cripple him. If it be aristocratic in organization, then it seeks to protect the man who is superior only in law against the man who is superior in fact; if it be democratic, then it seeks to protect the man who is inferior in every way against both. One of its primary functions is to regiment men by force, to make them as much alike as possible and as dependent upon one another as possible, to search out and combat originality among them. All it can see in an original idea is potential change, and hence an invasion of its prerogatives. The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane and intolerable, and so, if he is romantic, he tries to change it. And even if he is not romantic personally he is very apt to spread discontent among those who are.”
    H. L. Mencken, A Mencken Chrestomathy

  • #16
    H.L. Mencken
    “Civilization, in fact, grows more maudlin and hysterical; especially under democracy it tends to degenerate into a mere combat of crazes; the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary. Wars are no longer waged by the will of superior men, capable of judging dispassionately and intelligently the causes behind them and the effects flowing out of them. The are now begun by first throwing a mob into a panic; they are ended only when it has spent its ferine fury.”
    H.L. Mencken, In Defense Of Women

  • #17
    H.L. Mencken
    “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.”
    H.L. Mencken, A Little Book in C Major

  • #18
    H.L. Mencken
    “Equality before the law is probably forever unattainable. It is a noble ideal, but it can never be realized, for what men value in this world is not rights but privileges.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #19
    H.L. Mencken
    “The men the American people admire most extravagantly are the most daring liars; the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #20
    H.L. Mencken
    “The plain fact is that education is itself a form of propaganda - a deliberate scheme to outfit the pupil, not with the capacity to weigh ideas, but with a simple appetite for gulping ideas ready-made. The aim is to make 'good' citizens, which is to say, docile and uninquisitive citizens.”
    H.L. Menchken

  • #21
    H.L. Mencken
    “Every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under.”
    H. L. Mencken

  • #22
    H.L. Mencken
    “Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule—and both commonly succeed, and are right.”
    H. L. Mencken, Minority Report

  • #23
    H.L. Mencken
    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary.”
    H.L. Mencken, In Defense Of Women

  • #24
    H.L. Mencken
    “No one in this world, so far as I know—and I have searched the record for years, and employed agents to help me—has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people.”
    H.L. Mencken, Gist of Mencken

  • #25
    H.L. Mencken
    “A philosopher is a blind man in a dark room looking for a black cat that isn't there. A theologian is the man who finds it.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #26
    H.L. Mencken
    “Democracy is the worship of jackals by jackasses.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #27
    H.L. Mencken
    “The capacity of human beings to bore one another seems to be vastly greater than that of any other animal.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #28
    H.L. Mencken
    “No matter how happily a woman may be married, it always pleases her to discover that there is a nice man who wishes that she were not.”
    H.L. Mencken

  • #29
    H.L. Mencken
    “The basic fact about human existence is not that it is a tragedy, but that it is a bore. It is not so much a war as an endless standing in line. The objection to it is not that it is predominantly painful, but that it is lacking in sense.”
    H.L. Mencken, A Mencken Chrestomathy

  • #30
    H.L. Mencken
    “Don’t overestimate the decency of the human race.”
    H. L. Mencken



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