FOR Election Day, here are observations on politics...

salmagundi

November 08, 1994

FOR Election Day, here are observations on politics, citizens and candidates from the Sage of Baltimore, H. L. Mencken:

POLITICS: "It is incredibly gross, Rabelaisian, vulgar, lewd, shocking and revolting . . . I thank God that I am an American, and thus admitted to such barbaric saturnalias. In a genuinely civilized country politics would be prohibited by law, and all politicians would be treated like pickpockets or street-walkers. But here they are honored and prosperous, and so they perform, and I enjoy the peculiar buffoonery that is to my taste."

7+ -- Mencken in Smart Set, February 1921.

THE Citizen: "So long as he remains a mere voter he is full of fine schemes for the quick reformation of the government -- but elect him to high office and he begins to see unsuspected but enormous virtues in the old way of doing things."

0 -- Mencken in The Evening Sun, Oct. 17, 1910

THE Candidates: "No one but an idiot would argue seriously that either candidate is a first-rate man, or even a creditable specimen of second-rate man. Any state in the Union, at least above the Potomac, could produce a thousand men quite as good, and many states could produce a thousand a great deal better."

-- Mencken in The Evening Sun, July 26, 1920

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