Beliefs[ edit ] In his capacity as editor, Mencken became close friends with the leading literary figures of his time, including Theodore DreiserF. He also championed artists whose works he considered worthy. For example, he asserted that books such as Caught Short!
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.
Corbis Historical 3 of 28 To sum up: The cosmos is a gigantic fly-wheel making 10, revolutions a minute. Man is a sick fly taking a dizzy ride on it. Religion is the theory that the wheel was designed and set spinning to give him the ride.
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. Wikimedia Commons 8 of 28 A good politician is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar. Wikimedia Commons 10 of 28 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.
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. Wikimedia Commons 12 of 28 The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it.
Wikimedia Commons 14 of 28 The fact is that the average man's love of liberty is nine-tenths imaginary, exactly like his love of sense, justice and truth. He is not actually happy when free; he is uncomfortable, a bit alarmed, and intolerably lonely. The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong.
Wikimedia Commons 16 of 28 Every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under. Getty Images 18 of 28 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.
No virtuous man — that is, virtuous in the Y. It merely means that the politicians have two ways of milking the taxpayer where they had one before. Wikimedia Commons 22 of 28 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. It was a fixed moral code and a fixed theology which robbed the human race of a thousand years by wasting them upon alchemy, heretic-burning, witchcraft and sacerdotalism.
Corbis Historical 25 of 28 Whenever you hear a man speak of his love for his country, it is a sign that he expects to be paid for it.
It is the chief occupation of mankind.Apr 11, · Posts about journalism written by louisproyect.
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Henry Louis Mencken, author of The American Language: An Inquiry into the Development of English in the United States and the ed- itor of The Baltimore Sun, a position that gave him fame and notoriety, has been.
Henry Louis Mencken was born in Baltimore, Maryland, in The importance of education was much stressed in the Mencken home. Young Harry, as he was called by his family, attended Professor Friedrich Knapp's Institute, a private school for children of German descent.
attended Professor Friedrich Knapp's Institute, a private school. Mencken begins his comments by pointing out that government expenditures on the public schools had grown from about $ 5 per pupil in to $ per pupil in (now in excess of $12,).
He then questions what these gun-run schools have accomplished.