Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.
H. L. Mencken
Every election is a sort of advance auction sale of stolen goods.
Nine times out of ten, in the arts as in life, there is actually no truth to be discovered there is only error to be exposed.
Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.
Men have a much better time of it than women. For one thing, they marry later, for another thing, they die earlier.
Husbands never become good; they merely become proficient.
On one issue at least, men and women agree; they both distrust women.
Bachelors know more about women than married men if they didn't they'd be married too.
It is business to get and hold his job at all costs. If he can hold it by lying, he will hold it by lying; if lying peters out, he will try to hold it by embracing new truths. His ear is ever close to the ground.
The professor must be an obscurantist or he is nothing; he has a special and unmatchable talent for dullness, his central aim is not to expose the truth clearly, but to exhibit his profundity, his esotericity - in brief to stagger sophomores and other professors.
I have often argued that a poet more than thirty years old is simply an overgrown child. I begin to suspect that there may be some truth in it.
Science, at bottom, is really anti-intellectual. It always distrusts pure reason, and demands the production of objective fact.
The truth, indeed, is something that mankind, for some mysterious reason, instinctively dislikes. Every man who tries to tell it is unpopular, and even when, by the sheer strength of his case, he prevails, he is put down as a scoundrel.
What is not true, as everyone knows, is always immensely more fascinating and satisfying to the vast majority of men than what is true. Truth has a harshness that alarms them, and an air of finality that collides with their incurable romanticism.
For centuries, theologians have been explaining the unknowable in terms of the-not-worth-knowing.
To be in love is merely to be in a perpetual state of anesthesia.
Love is the delusion that one man or woman differs from another.
Life is a dead-end street.
Lying is not only excusable; it is not only innocent; it is, above all, necessary and unavoidable. Without the ameliorations that it offers, life would become a mere syllogism and hence too metallic to be borne.
The truth that survives is simply the lie that is pleasantest to believe.
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