Saturday, November 05, 2005

Will Rogers on War, Ours and Others'

As duly noted, yesterday was Will Rogers' birthday. Here now are a few more poignantly relevant quotations from the man who, on the one hand, said he 'never met a man he didn't like,' and who, on the other hand, knew how to skewer the political and the powerful... with a smile.

Here now, some things Rogers said that relate to America's war in Iraq.

"We do more talking progress than we do progressing."

'Liberty don't work nearly as good in practice as it does in speeches."

"Rumor travels faster, but it don't stay put as long as truth."

"A remark generally hurts in proportion to its truth."

"What degree of egotism is it that makes a nation or a religious organization think theirs is the very thing for the Chinese or the Zulus [or the Iraqis]? Why, we can't even Christianize our own legislators."

"If we can just let other people alone and do their own fighting, we would be in good shape. When you get in trouble five thousand miles away from home you've got to have been looking for it."

"I have a scheme for stopping war. It's this: no nation is allowed to enter a war until they have paid for the last one."

"There is only one way in the world to prevent war, and that is, FOR EVERY NATION TO TEND TO ITS OWN BUSINESS. Trace any war that ever was and you will find some nation was trying to tell some other nation how to run their business."

"We are always saying, 'Let the law take its course.' But what we mean is "Let the law take OUR course.'"

"We could never understand why Mexico [and can you name a few other countries?] wasn't just crazy about us, for we had always had their good will and oil and coffee and minerals at heart."

"We will never have true civilization until we have learned to recognize the rights of others."

Perhaps I'll be brave enough to end here with a quotation that sort of lets these dunce and mad-hatted cronies of imperialism off the hook, just a bit.

"Let's stop blaming the President and the Republicans for all this. Why, they're not smart enough to have thought of all that's been happening to us lately."


But then, I ask you, when it comes to high office, when high crimes are at stake, and high mindedness is supposed to trump high and heavy handedness, since when has ignorance been an excuse?

Alas, oh, what a world. Thank you, Mr. Rogers.


At 10/15/2006 8:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Will Rogers made jokes about all politcians and parties. It is reported that he never joined any politaical party and did not vote as he did not to be wnat to pushed to any particular political bias that would negate or slant hie hunor in one direction.

"I do not belong to an organized political party. I'm a Democrat." - Will Rogers

At 10/16/2006 8:43 AM, Blogger Lawrence said...

I love that quotation from Mr. Rogers, and thanks for commenting at A Better Nation.

I'd say the closest person we have to Will Rogers now is Garrison Keillor, whom I happened to meet last Monday in Minneapolis, taking about his newly revised book, "Homegrown Democrat". Other political humorists, such as Jon Stewart and Bill Maher, are less folksy, more mod-cynical, edgy and darkly demeaning than either Rogers or Keillor.


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