Sunday, December 12, 2004

It took 84 years but......

It took 84 years but, H.L. Mencken hit it right on the head.

"When a candidate for public office faces the voters he does not face men of sense; he faces a mob of men whose chief distinguishing mark is that they are quite incapable of weighing ideas, or even of comprehending any save the most elemental - men whose whole thinking is done in terms of emotion, and whose dominant emotion is dread of what they cannot understand. ... The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through. ... But when the field's nationwide ... then all the odds are on the man who is intrinsically the most devious and mediocre - the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind's a virtual vacuum. "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 hearts' desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."