Old Wives' Tales
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Claim: H. L. Mencken once wrote that eventually "the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."
Example: [Collected on the Internet, 2004]
Origins: The statement quoted above, attributed to
In this case the attribution to Henry Louis Mencken, a prominent newspaperman and political commentator during the first half of the
The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through, carrying even the mob with him by force of his personality. But when the field is nationwide, and the fight must be waged chiefly at second and third hand, and the force of personality cannot so readily make itself felt, then all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocreLast updated: 14 November 2004
The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. 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.
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