Last Week with H. L. Mencken (Jan. 23, 2023 edition)

See how writers were quoting Mencken last week and which quotations they used.

January 16 — From Herb Caen at the Anderson Valley Advertiser: “What I consider the most cynical utterance in the entire literature of Americana — H.L. Mencken’s ‘No one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public’ — presents a point of view I eschew enthusiastically.” 

January 17 — Brian Klaas on conspiratorial thinking among Republicans in the Atlantic: “here is one nugget of wisdom for how to start, drawn from H. L. Mencken: ‘The way to deal with superstition,’ he wrote, ‘is not to be polite to it, but to tackle it with all arms, and so rout it, cripple it, and make it forever infamous and ridiculous.’”

January 18 — Wisdom of the Week at the Midland Daily News: “‘The older I grow, the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.’ – H. L. Mencken (1880-1956), journalist.”

January 19 — Valentine Day jokes at Mamas Uncut: “Love is like war: easy to begin but very hard to stop.” – H. L. Mencken.

January 20 — At The Hill, James H. Hohman opines on the federal deficit: “Early 20th century newspaperman H.L. Mencken quipped that, ‘Government is a broker in pillage, and every election is a sort of advance auction sale of stolen goods.’ It’s the refusal to bend to this crass tendency that keeps the government from becoming Mencken’s caricature.”

January 21 — John Diers comments on the January 6 report for Southwest News Media: “American democracy has its critics. Journalist and satirist H.L. Mencken called it a pathetic belief in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance.’”

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