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Famous quotes by Gore Vidal:Sort:PopularA - Z

Never have children, only grandchildren.
It is not enough to succeed. Others must fail.
A good deed never goes unpunished.
Any American who is prepared to run for president should automatically, by definition, be disqualified from ever doing so.
Apparently, a democracy is a place where numerous elections are held at great cost without issues and with interchangeable candidates.
Every time a friend succeeds, I die a little.
For certain people after 50, litigation takes the place of sex.
For certain people after fifty, litigation takes the place of sex.
Half of the American people have never read a newspaper. Half never voted for President. One hopes it is the same half.
I can understand companionship. I can understand bought sex in the afternoon. I cannot understand the love affair.
I find in most novels no imagination at all. They seem to think the highest form of the novel is to write about marriage, because that's the most important thing there is for middle-class people.
I'm a born-again atheist.
It is difficult to find a reputable American historian who will acknowledge the crude fact that a Franklin Roosevelt, say, wanted to be President merely to wield power, to be famed and to be feared. To learn this simple fact one must wade through a sea of
It is not enough to succeed; others must fail.
It is the spirit of the age to believe that any fact, no matter how suspect, is superior to any imaginative exercise, no matter how true.
Of ex-President Eisenhower at the Republican convention of 1964 Reading a speech with his usual sense of discovery.
On 16 September 1985, when the Commerce Department announced that the United States had become a debtor nation, the American Empire died.
Style is knowing who you are, what to say, and not giving a damn.
Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say and not giving a damn.
Teaching has ruined more American novelists than drink.
The corporate grip on opinion in the United States is one of the wonders of the Western World. No First World country has ever managed to eliminate so entirely from its media all objectivity -- much less dissent.
The genius of our ruling class is that it has kept a majority of the people from ever questioning the inequity of a system where most people drudge along, paying heavy taxes for which they get nothing in return.
The last best hope of earth, two trillion dollars in debt, is spinning out of control, and all we can do is stare at a flickering cathode-ray tube as Ollie answers questions on TV while the press, resolutely irrelevant as ever, asks politicians if they have committed adultery. From V-J Day 1945 to this has been, my fellow countrymen, a perfect nightmare.
The more money an American accumulates, the less interesting he becomes.
The theater needs continual reminders that there is nothing more debasing than the work of those who do well what is not worth doing at all.
There is hardly an American male of my generation who has not at one time or another tried to master the victory cry of the great ape as it issued from the androgynous chest of Johnny Weissmuller, to the accompaniment of thousands of arms and legs snapping during attempts to swing from tree to tree in the backyards of the Republic.
There is no human problem which could not be solved if people would simply do as I advise.
There is something about a bureaucrat that does not like a poem.
Today's public figures can no longer write their own speeches or books, and there is some evidence that they can't read them either.
Whenever a friend succeeds a little something in me dies.

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