Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Samuel Clemens: A Man Beyond His Time



"When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years."


"I have never let my schooling interfere with my education."


"In the beginning of a change the patriot is a scarce man and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."


"The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin."


"No country can be well governed unless its citizens as a body keep religiously before their minds that they are the guardians of the law and that the law officers are only the machinery for its execution, nothing more."


"My kind of loyalty was to one's country, not to its institutions or its officeholders. The country is the real thing, the substantial thing, the eternal thing; it is the thing to watch over, and care for, and be loyal to; institutions are extraneous, they are its mere clothing, and clothing can wear out, become ragged, cease to be comfortable, cease to protect the body from winter, disease, and death."


"For in a Republic, who is "the country?" Is it the Government which is for the moment in the saddle? Why, the Government is merely a servant -- merely a temporary servant; it cannot be its prerogative to determine what is right and what is wrong, and decide who is a patriot and who isn't. Its function is to obey orders, not originate them."


"No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the congress is in session."


"Fleas can be taught nearly anything that a Congressman can."


"Reader, suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself."


"The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin."


"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society."

2 comments:

Stephen Boyd said...

Samuel Clemens is one of my heroes!

"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society."

One of my favorites, but actually, no longer true.

Son3 said...

Yep, he's mine too.

If he was a politician, you can be sure he'd be on my poll.

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