Sunday, August 19, 2012

I Wish I'd Said That

The advent of the internet, with blogs and such sites as Google and Wikipedia, has been destructive regarding the historical record, nowhere more so than in the realm of reported quotes. Some people apparently feel that *they* can make a quote better, snappier, funnier, whatever, if they modify it juuuuuust a bit. Usually, the result provided by the vandal is not as good, not as snappy, not as funny. Always, the quote becomes historically inaccurate.

So . . . I've researched the quotes that follow, but they may not be precisely accurate, not word for word matches with the original spoken versions. The versions I chose were those that I first heard closest in time to their being said, or those that I found at sites I consider more likely to be reliable than others. In any event, it is the flavor that counts here.
  • Just prior to the US assault on Baghdad, a news reporter asked Marine Major General John F. Kelly whether he had contemplated defeat. You may recall that those opposed to the war had predicted dire consequences - door-to-door fighting and very high casualty rates.

    "We are Marines. The Marines took Iwo Jima. Baghdad ain't shit."

  • William F. Buckley Jr., during a debate at Harvard University: "I would sooner be governed by the first hundred names in the Boston telephone directory than by the faculty of Harvard."

  • This crossed my mind when Nancy Pelosi told reporters that the health care bill had to be passed so we could find out what's in it.

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

  • In 2006, a bail skipper was pulled over for speeding by a Polk County (Florida) deputy. The driver ran into the woods, was followed by the deputy and a backup deputy and police dog. The driver shot the dog and the second deputy, wounding him six times. He then approached the deputy and finished him off with two bullets to the head. He subsequently wounded the first deputy, who called for help.

    A SWAT team was called in and located the murderer the next morning, hiding under a fallen tree. He raised a hand containing a gun, the SWAT team opened fire, and he was hit and killed by 68 bullets.

    Asked why the killer was shot 68 times, the Sheriff replied, "That's all the bullets we had."

  • Attributed to various generals: ""When you men get home and face an anti-war protester, look him in the eyes and shake his hand. Then, wink at his girlfriend, because she knows she's dating a pussy."

  • Josef Stalin, prior to WWII, disussing the usefulness of acquiring Pope Pius XI as an ally: "The Pope? How many divisions does he have?" When he heard of this later, the Pope said, "Tell my son Josef that he will meet my divisions in eternity."

No comments: