If a picture is worth a thousand words, then so, perhaps, is a quip. Instead of a collection of long essays, I have written for you a set of time-saving epigrams — pithy, pulpy, sardonic — about politics, government, and the American purpose. Some will make you laugh; some will sting. All are designed to prime the pump of thought. So think! And laugh, and growl, and have fun:
LIBERALS and CONSERVATIVES
–Liberals are consumed with envy; conservatives are consumed with contempt.
–Liberals despise conservatives for their wealth, which surely they stole; conservatives despise poor gay immigrant weed-smoking abortionist whiners.
–Liberals think conservatives keep their money in piles of doubloons in the basement; conservatives think liberals are plotting to put Satan in charge.
–Liberals don’t understand economics; conservatives don’t understand people.
–Liberals want to remove restrictions on their lifestyles but increase restrictions on business; conservatives want to remove restrictions on their businesses but increase restrictions on liberals.
–Liberals will get us out of wars, overturn blue laws, hogtie business, and increase taxes; conservatives will reduce taxes, liberate business, add to blue laws, and get us into wars.
–Liberals free up the bedroom; conservatives free up the boardroom.
–If you’re a liberal, you’re bad at making money but good at accepting others; if you’re a conservative, you’re good at making money but bad at being open-minded.
–If liberals win, the government gets bigger; if conservatives win, the government gets bigger.
–The more lawyers we have, the more we need.
–Regulation pulls us down, but we don’t notice because our ingenuity keeps making us richer, which keeps pulling us out of the hole dug by regulation.
–Businesses really don’t have secret piles of cash in the basement, so when we increase the minimum wage, we increase unemployment.
–When we tighten regulation, only the fat cats can survive, whereupon they solidify their monopolies and become even richer.
–Regulation is the liberals’ revenge. But mostly it is they who suffer.
–If the law must force people to act morally, they still aren’t moral.
–Trying to make people be unselfish is like forcing a tiger to eat carrots.
–If you drink a toast to “just say no to drugs,” you’re a hypocrite.
–Banning drugs is like opening the door to shoo out the flies.
–If adults consent to a private act, it’s none of your business.
–If God says it’s wrong, then God will deal with the offender. So stay out of it.
–Legislating morals is the conservatives’ revenge. But it is they who are tormented when the laws make things worse.
–Demanding entitlements is like a two-year old screaming in the candy aisle.
–It’s a safety net, not a crutch — it’s for bouncing out of, not lying in forever.
–If I must pay your costs when you screw up, then everything I own belongs to you.
–If all are entitled to housing, why not a mansion?
–Taxing your income to pay for entitlements is like a charity pulling a gun on you.
–If we ran the environment the way we run everything else, we’d instruct Ranger Rick to install sprinklers in the desert and plant forests, replace the reptiles with cute, furry animals, and hire lots of laborers to weed out the rest.
–You can’t smoke; you can’t use plastic bags; you shouldn’t use plastic bottles; you must recycle; you shouldn’t drive your gas-guzzling car; you need a permit to walk in the forest; clearly, you’re the one part of the ecosystem that’s a mistake and doesn’t belong.
–If the wilderness is a commons, then nobody owns it, so no one cares what they do to it.
–The more anti-pollution laws we pass, the costlier things get and the longer it takes to pay for improvements, so the environment stays fouled up longer.
–If liberals can swallow their disgust and let conservatives profit from the oceans, then conservatives can drop their contempt and farm the sea and replenish it.
–Wolves are a part of the forest, but they’re wise to stay off my ranch.
–Going to war to make another country better is like improving people by beating them up.
–We can’t force freedom on others; they must take it for themselves.
–If terrorists hate freedom, and we restrict our liberties to fight them, then they win.
–The government that protects us is the thing that attracts the enemy.
–It’s not “freedom or security”; it’s “freedom and security.”
–Government gets bigger by failing: every time it screws up, we increase its funding.
–Like an addiction, the worse government gets, the more we want.
–Taxes aren’t the price of liberty; they are the cost of the addiction.
–When the government spends to stimulate the economy, taxpayers must do with less, so the economy gets worse.
–There’s a technical term when leaders claim they’ve cut spending but instead merely cut the rate of increase: it’s called lying.
–If reducing government leads to increased chaos, then going to AA meetings makes alcoholics worse.
–The way to get a bailout is to work hard and invest in your Congressman.
–We hate taxes but love our entitlements, so Washington, D.C. is borrowing its way toward becoming Greece.
–Government is a parasite, and the host is your tax form.
–Thinking your party will always dominate politics is like thinking your team will win every championship.
–How is it that your political enemies — who espouse bad things and should be restrained — get to vote, too?
–If government is a force for good, then your political enemies can’t possibly win elections.
–When you search for someone to govern you, you’re telling the world you’re incompetent.
–We learn politics at the dinner table while fighting with our siblings over dessert.
–Politics is mostly about being offended.
–When we get offended, we stop thinking and start fighting; our punishment is bureacracy.
–Government is the problem pretending to be the solution.
–Limited government is like limited cancer.
–If people are bad and must be governed, who will govern the government?
–If “that government is best which governs least,” the logical end point is no government at all.
THE AMERICAN PURPOSE
–The first Americans told government what to do; now government tells us what to do.
–America rose to be the best, but Europe looked down on us, so we discarded our strengths and adopted their habits of governance and became mediocre. And they still look down on us.
–Our country began as a mutual-protection society and twisted into a mutual-takings society.
–The Second Amendment isn’t about crime prevention; it’s about remembering who’s in charge.
–We told our government to ride shotgun, but now it’s a back-seat driver. With a weapon.
–If the government grants you freedom, you aren’t free.
–America is not about being rich; America is about being yourself.