“Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on, or by imbeciles who really mean it.” – Mark Twain (not Twain, likely from the book “The Peter Principle by Laurence F. Peter)
“The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations.” – Thomas Jefferson (not Jefferson, but probably inspired by things he wrote).
“There are men running governments who should not be allowed to play with matches.” – Will Rogers
“The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.” – Winston Churchill
“Democracy substitutes election by the incompetent many, for appointment by the corrupt few.” – George Bernard Shaw
Instead of “Late Night Political Humor” this is political humor from dead (“late”) people. Isn’t it ironic that warnings given even hundreds of years ago are still true and relevant today?
Even more ironically, this gives me hope. Democracy has been a mess for a very long time, and yet we have somehow managed to survive and (generally) prosper.
I realize that politicians and the media do a very good job of scaring people into thinking that the world is about to end. I guess fear is a very potent message for getting votes and selling newspapers. But in the end, the more things change, the more they stay the same.
UPDATE: Ok, the quote from Jefferson wasn’t written by him, but it is similar to things he did say. And the quote from Mark Twain, like many things attributed to Twain, was from someone else. But my point (and optimism) still stands.