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I believe that it is better to tell the truth than a lie.
by H.L. Mencken

I believe that it is better to tell the truth than a lie.
I believe it is better to be free than to be a slave.
And I believe it is better to know than to be ignorant.
- H.L. Mencken

Related topics: Values

We must respect the other fellow's religion,
but only in the sense and to the extent
that we respect his theory that
his wife is beautiful and his children smart.
- H. L. Mencken

Legend: A lie that has attained the dignity of age.
- H. L. Mencken

It takes a long while for a naturally trustful person
to reconcile himself to the idea that
after all God will not help him
- H. L. Mencken

 

A good politician is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar.
- H. L. Mencken

War will never cease until babies begin to come into
the world with larger cerebrums and smaller adrenal glands.
- H. L. Mencken

The urge to save humanity is almost always
a false front for the urge to rule.
- H. L. Mencken

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For every complex problem,
there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong.
- H.L. Mencken

Love is like war: easy to begin but very hard to stop.
- H. L. Mencken

The worst government is often the most moral.
One composed of cynics is often very tolerant and humane.
But when fanatics are on top there is no limit to oppression.
- H. L. Mencken

Morality is the theory that every human act
must be either right or wrong,
and that 99 % of them are wrong.
- H. L. Mencken

Love is the delusion that one woman differs from another.
- H. L. Mencken

It is impossible to imagine the universe run by a wise,
just and omnipotent God, but it is quite easy to imagine
it run by a board of gods.
- H. L. Mencken

Conscience is a mother-in-law whose visit never ends.
- H. L. Mencken

The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.
- H. L. Mencken

The believing mind is eternally impervious to evidence.
- H. L. Mencken

The basic fact about human existence is not that it is a tragedy,
but that it is a bore.
It is not so much a war as an endless standing in line.
- H. L. Mencken

It is now quite lawful for a Catholic woman to avoid
pregnancy by a resort to mathematics,
though she is still forbidden to resort to physics or chemistry.
- H. L. Mencken

Life is a constant oscillation
between the sharp horns of dilemmas.
- H. L. Mencken

Happiness is the china shop; love is the bull.
- H. L. Mencken

Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief
in the occurrence of the improbable.
- H. L. Mencken

Historian: an unsuccessful novelist.
- H. L. Mencken

For centuries, theologians have been explaining
the unknowable in terms of the-not-worth-knowing.
- H. L. Mencken

A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers,
looks around for a coffin.
- H. L. Mencken

Bachelors know more about women than married men;
if they didn't they'd be married too.
- H. L. Mencken

Love is the triumph of imagination over intelligence.
- H. L. Mencken

The objection to Puritans is not that
they try to make us think as they do,
but that they try to make us do as they think.
- H. L. Mencken

In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for;
as for me,
I rejoice that I am not a Republican.
- H. L. Mencken

Strike an average between what a woman thinks of her husband
a month before she marries him
and what she thinks of him a year afterward,
and you will have the truth about him.
- H. L. Mencken

Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage.
- H. L. Mencken

Criticism is prejudice made plausible.
- H. L. Mencken

Nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public.
- H. L. Mencken

Marriage is a wonderful institution,
but who would want to live in an institution?
- H. L. Mencken

It is even harder for the average ape to believe that
he has descended from man.
- H. L. Mencken

Men have a much better time of it than women.
For one thing, they marry later; for another thing,
they die earlier.
- H. L. Mencken

Puritanism. The haunting fear that
someone, somewhere, may be happy.
- H. L. Mencken

Whenever you hear a man speak of his love for his country,
it is a sign that he expects to be paid for it.
- H. L. Mencken

If, after I depart this vale, you ever remember me
and have thought to please my ghost,
forgive some sinner and wink your eye at some homely girl.
- H. L. Mencken

Self-respect: the secure feeling that no one,
as yet, is suspicious.
- H. L. Mencken

Whenever a husband and wife begin to discuss their
marriage they are giving evidence at a coroner's inquest.
- H. L. Mencken

Before a man speaks it is always safe to assume that he is a fool.
After he speaks, it is seldom necessary to assume it.
- H. L. Mencken

Every man sees in his relatives, and especially in his cousins,
a series of grotesque caricatures of himself.
- H. L. Mencken

I never lecture, not because I am shy or a bad speaker,
but simply because I detest the sort of people who
go to lectures and don't want to meet them.
- H. L. Mencken

I never smoked a cigarette until I was nine.
- H. L. Mencken

A society made up of individuals who were all capable
of original thought would probably be unendurable.
- H. L. Mencken

All government, of course, is against liberty.
- H. L. Mencken

Poetry has done enough when it charms,
but prose must also convince.
- H. L. Mencken

There is a saying in Baltimore that crabs may be prepared
in fifty ways and that all of them are good.
- H. L. Mencken

Archbishop - A Christian ecclesiastic of a rank superior
to that attained by Christ.
- H. L. Mencken

Women have simple tastes.
They get pleasure out of the conversation of children in arms and men in love.
- H. L. Mencken

Temptation is an irresistible force at work on a movable body.
- H. L. Mencken

No one in this world has ever lost money by underestimating
the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people.
Nor has anyone ever lost public office thereby.
- H. L. Mencken

Every normal man must be tempted, at times,
to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag,
and begin slitting throats.
- H. L. Mencken

It doesn't take a majority to make a rebellion;
it takes only a few determined leaders and a sound cause.
- H. L. Mencken

It is hard to believe that a man is telling the truth
when you know that you would lie if you were in his place.
- H. L. Mencken

A bad man is the sort who weeps every time he speaks of a good woman.
- H. L. Mencken

A politician is an animal which can sit on a fence
and yet keep both ears to the ground.
- H. L. Mencken

A man may be a fool and not know it,
but not if he is married.
- H. L. Mencken

There is always an easy solution to every problem -
neat,
plausible, and wrong.
- H. L. Mencken

A professor must have a theory as a dog must have fleas.
- H. L. Mencken

No married man is genuinely happy if he has to drink
worse whisky than he used to drink when he was single.
- H. L. Mencken

Injustice is relatively easy to bear;
what sting is justice.
- H. L. Mencken

Wealth - any income that is at least one hundred dollars
more a year than the income of one's wife's sister's husband.
- H. L. Mencken

I go on working for the same reason that a hen goes on laying eggs.
- H. L. Mencken

Conscience is the inner voice that warns us that someone might be looking.
- H. L. Mencken

It is impossible to imagine Goethe or Beethoven being
good at billiards or golf.
- H. L. Mencken

Man is a beautiful machine that works very badly.
- H. L. Mencken

Women always excel men in that sort of wisdom which comes from experience.
To be a woman is in itself a terrible experience.
- H. L. Mencken

A prohibitionist is the sort of man one couldn't care to drink with,
even if he drank.
- H. L. Mencken

The only cure for contempt is counter-contempt.
- H. L. Mencken

The theory seems to be that as long as a man is a failure
he is one of God's children,
but that as soon as he succeeds he is taken over by the Devil.
- H. L. Mencken


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