MODERN WISDOM NUMBER 213 JULY 2016

MODERN WISDOM: AMERICA’S ONLY HUMOR MAGAZINE

NUMBER 213
JULY 2016
Copyright 2016 Francis DiMenno
dimenno@gmail.com
http://www.dimenno.wordpress.com

The American Credo

A Calendar

INTRODUCTORY

These commonplace beliefs of Americans can be found explicated in any number of random and diverse sources: In the comic strips, on the evening news, in the editorial pages of newspapers, in the articles published in popular magazine, in the cartoons of the late Dave Berg, among the man and women of our great land as they gather to drink in taverns, while watching their children cavort in playgrounds, while standing around on the street, or while taking their ease in their own back yards. Talk shows are rife with them, as are, more recently the comments posted in such online venues as Craigslist and Facebook. One can hardly go a single day without seeing one or more examples of these curious and widely-held beliefs. Some of these strenuous illogicalities may contain some small grain of truth, but a great many more are the comforting pabulum consumed unquestioningly and without critical comment by minds conditioned to accept intellectual baby food. This is by no means an encyclopedic or exhaustive list, but merely a sampling.

The American Credo

“It’s better not to know so many things than to know so many things that just ain’t so.” –Artemus Ward

JANUARY

  1. That an ice cream truck driver is a jolly fellow who takes the job

because he loves children and often hands out gratis treats to the

kiddies which he soft-heartedly pays for out of his own pocket.

  1. That foreigners hate Americans out of mere spite and jealousy of our intrinsic greatness.
  2. That a person who has suffered a stroke is as good as dead and will never again speak a coherent sentence.
  3. That a dog understands you when you scream at him to stop barking.
  4. That service workers should be glad they even have a job and should therefore beamingly greet and fawn over all customers, even the most problematic.
  5. That all troublemakers should be shot, because that will teach them.
  6. That when a dog licks your face it is a sign of the animal’s great

affection for you and not merely a craving for salt.

  1. That wars create jobs.
  2. That pollution is the smell of money.
  3. That all lawyers are crooks.
  4. That what this country really needs is a strongman at the helm.
  5. That all pit bulls are a menace, and only low-lifes own and breed them.
  6. That television programming, Hollywood spectaculars, and

advertising are great art forms.

  1. That because of the internet, libraries are now obsolete.
  2. That most intelligent people with just a little bit of training

could perform virtually any high-level executive job.

  1. That owning a restaurant or, better, a bar, is a good investment.
  2. That most of our homeless population could find work if they only wanted to.
  3. That all waitstaff and bartenders make so much money–that they never report to the IRS–that they might not really mind if you fail to tip them.
  4. That if only one can hit a lucky number in the lottery, one could

be set for life.

  1. That there is such a thing as a lucky number which, if played

diligently, will someday hit the jackpot.

  1. That people who wear green eyeshades are always up to no good,
  2. That car salesmen mostly stand around all day, gabbing among themselves and drinking coffee, waiting for some gullible sucker to come strolling through the door.
  3. That a married man is shackled to a ball and chain and never gets to do what he wants to, and wifey always manages to get her way, usually through the use of tears.
  4. That people who “know too much” are always unhappy.
  5. That it is possible for any person to “know too much”.
  6. That too much book-learnin’ ruins your shootin’ eye.
  7. That any man who picks up a gun immediately becomes an expert pistolero,

and can fend off an armed mob.

  1. That vigilantes would do a lot of good for their community, for

they could do the sort of things that policemen do not dare to do,

owing to soft-hearted judges.

  1. That too many prisoners are coddled.
  2. That educating prisoners is a waste of tax dollars.
  3. That few innocent men are executed; surely they were all guilty of something.

FEBRUARY

  1. That every female murderess needs only to bat her eyes at the

juriors to get off scot-free.

  1. That no wealthy man has ever been sentenced to a long prison term, for high-priced lawyers can talk jurors into believing doing anything.
  2. That beating a dog will teach the animal who is boss.
  3. That if the President ever needed a pal who would give him candid advice, we ourselves would fit that bill quite nicely, than you very much.
  4. That the law which states that “every action has an opposite and

equal reaction” is one which is applicable to all situations.

  1. That the chocolate in chocolate ice cream is largely made from

sweepings from the floor of the local chocolate factory.

  1. That torture is justified in a case where millions of lives may

allegedly be at stake, though no such instance of any such occurrence can readily be cited.

  1. That depressed people are merely “feeling sorry for themselves” and a bracing six month hike on the Appalachian Trail would very soon put them right.
  2. That any person who hugs a dog or cat has a good heart.
  3. That children are a lot like expensive pets.
  4. That every man who rubs the head of a small boy is a potential

child molester.

  1. That elderly people are mostly incapable of criminal behavior or even shady practices, because their innate wisdom has persuaded them of the folly of such behavior.
  2. That all African Americans will steal if given a chance.
  3. That rap stars are not nearly as talented as other pop musicians.
  4. That rap performers largely appeal solely to defiant suburban adolescents.
  5. That no woman truly “gets” sports.
  6. That all rich people play golf, and all people who play golf are well-to-do.
  7. That tennis is an aristocratic game.
  8. That one beer never hurt anyone.
  9. That marijuana is harmless and non-addictive and actually downright benign.
  10. That among Easterners and Californians there exists a

condescending belief that there is not one intelligent individual west of the Hudson River or east of Riverside, California.

  1. That mob neighborhoods are always the safest, because “the boys” refuse to tolerate any nonsense on their turf.
  2. That anyone can be tipped or bribed into overlooking nearly any transgression, for every man has his price.
  3. That many beggars actually have so much money that when day is done they return to a posh bungalow with a swell car parked in front of it.
  4. That all welfare mothers are milking the system.
  5. That caring for the poor is an enormous drain on the treasury.
  6. That foreign aid is our hard-earned dollars, that should

be used at home, being shoveled down a rathole by pusillanimous

bleeding-hearts and conniving socialists.

  1. That a luxury mansion is a far better use of shore-front property than a Plover sanctuary.

MARCH

  1. That diet soda helps one lose weight.
  2. That people who don’t speak English aren’t very intelligent.
  3. That English is very easy to learn.
  4. That if you shout at a foreigner, he will be forced to understand you.
  5. That humanitarians are invariably stingy tippers.
  6. That the American South is a paradise of ever-balmy weather and unlimited jobs.
  7. That the country would be better off if all illegal immigrants were

sent packing back to their own squalid countries or origin, because

then there would be jobs for all with good pay.

  1. That a dog will never bite a man whose heart is pure, for the dog instinctively knows who his friends are.
  2. That all men in New England and New York are smarter than the average American.
  3. That the History Channel is educational.
  4. That the BBC news service is utterly unbiased and, hence, the

world’s best news source.

  1. That a man can learn a great deal from a daily perusal of the New York Times.
  2. That the New Yorker is the gold standard of short fiction.
  3. That we would all be wealthy today if only our mothers hadn’t

thrown away our collections of comic books and baseball cards.

  1. That one should always carefully examine one’s change, on the off-chance that a valuable rare coin is there.
  2. That any old book is probably quite valuable.
  3. That all weathermen do their own research rather than consult the NOAA.
  4. That postal workers are always dangerously disgruntled.
  5. That all veterans are potential ticking time bombs.
  6. That if Jesus were alive today, he would speak English, drive an SUV, attend Nascar races, and advertise his message on television or the internet.
  7. That the internet is a potential gold mine for any shrewd operator who is “good with computers”.
  8. That all children know far more about computers than any mere adult; that the Pentagon routinely employs savvy fifteen year olds to help keep their websites secure from hackers.
  9. That the smell of the ocean gives a man who is unaccustomed to it a new lease on life.
  10. That people who live by the ocean are far more sedate than the poor suckers who dwell further inland.
  11. That hound dogs are lazy and, given their druthers, would happily sleep 23 1/2 hours a day.
  12. That a hog is constantly eating without so much as stopping to

take a breath.

  1. That there is something intrinsically humorous about individuals who are compelled to purchase clothing at a Fat Man’s Shoppe.
  2. That all foreign women brought to these shores for the purpose of matrimony are so grateful for the chance of a warm bed and a hot meal that they will make a man a splendid, docile wife.
  3. That washing dishes is woman’s work and that a real he-man is doing his partner a great favor when he deigns to so much as help her dry them.
  4. That millions die yearly of food poisoning for lack of a dishwasher.
  5. That a fancy designer range fit for a chef is well worth the money when purchased by the average homeowner.

APRIL

  1. That cartoons used to be so much better than they are today.
  2. That nearly anybody can write a children’s book.
  3. That liquor manufacturers want their customers to drink responsibly.
  4. That ads on television must be true, otherwise “they” wouldn’t let them air.
  5. That heavily advertised products are better because more people buy them.
  6. That children are invariably forever traumatized when they first learn “the facts of life”.
  7. That women are never satisfied.
  8. That the only thing men think about is sex.
  9. That people who work for circuses are very happy.
  10. That all the great writers were crazy geniuses.
  11. That any poet laureate is perforce a great poet.
  12. That toll booth operators have a cushy job.
  13. That a knowledge of computers will make you rich.
  14. That a disgruntled employee is a lazy slacker who doesn’t know how good he has it.
  15. That most Americans blow their tax returns on big-ticket luxury items.
  16. That when it comes right down to it, wives are more logical and

ruthless than their husbands, whom they pityingly regard as sad sacks.

  1. That a man who marries a wealthy woman works harder than any man who marries a poor one.
  2. That there is any such thing as “fun for the whole family”.
  3. That hot young wives don’t care if hubby grows fat, as this

will ensure that he remains faithful to her.

  1. That no woman ever truly enjoys an action movie, nor any man a three-hankie tearjerker.
  2. That no person who is not a regular churchgoer can really be

trusted; that any man who speaks against the church is an unmitigated blackguard.

  1. That tattooes mean that one had a “wild side”.
  2. That Masons exchange a secret sign that enables them to commit all crimes with impunity.
  3. That all American President were Masons, except Kennedy. And Kissinger.
  4. That a young man who is without strong direction will always be straightened out by a stint in the armed services.
  5. That a woman, once safely married, will invariably “let herself

go,” particularly after the birth of her first child.

  1. That no man is ever truly comfortable when compelled to tend the needs of infants and small children.
  2. That open mikes are invariably incubators of great future talents.
  3. That every lad of 15 is just itching to get drunk and plough the

family sedan smack into the nearest oak tree.

  1. That the Panama Canal was “ours” and that, therefore, we should never have given it up.

MAY

  1. That, prior to the ubiquity of air conditioning every year untold

millions died of heat exhaustion.

  1. That a Doctor’s time is far more valuable than that of his or her patient.
  2. That mailmen judge you on the basis of your magazine subscriptions.
  3. That the lingering smell of chemicals exuded by room air fresheners is infinitely preferable to the transient aroma they are employed to mask.
  4. That Mexico’s Cinco de Mayo is a good excuse for Americans to get drunk on Tequila.
  5. That most charitable raffles are fixed, with the prize going to

some sharp “insider”.

  1. That many babies born eight months after a marriage are “premature”.
  2. That old folks have lived for so long that they’ve seen it all and

no longer care what people think of them.

  1. That a murderer always returns to the scene of the crime and in

that way is frequently apprehended.

  1. That murder will out.
  2. That Jesus could have spoken flawless English if he had wanted to, and, in fact, he probably did.
  3. That when his master dies, a faithful hound will eventually pine

away, and also perish, usually at his graveside.

  1. That a peevish barber will often give one a deliberately ridiculous haircut.
  2. That most bestselling works of fiction are actually written in

sweatshops by generously remunerated teams of ghostwriters.

  1. That the New York Times Book Review is an irrefutable arbiter of quality in books.
  2. That nothing satisfies thirst like a carbonated beverage.
  3. That lettuce is rabbit food.
  4. That if a boy is overly influenced by his mother, he will become a sissy, because women always spoil their sons.
  5. That most tomboys grow up to be ravishing beauties who marry the incredulous and lucky boy next door.
  6. That when a dowdy looking steno sheds her glasses and lets down her hair, she becomes a wildcat ready to be wooed and taken.
  7. That all stewardesses are loose.
  8. That all nurses are ready, willing, and able to show a man a good time.
  9. That many bartenders seldom drink, because they know too well from observation what the booze can do to a man.
  10. That people who drive buses for a living like nothing better than to ride in buses during their off hours.
  11. That all policemen are keenly observant at all times, even in

their own homes.

  1. That the wronged husband is always the last to know.
  2. That children always complain about having to go off to summer camp but invariably end up loving it.
  3. That any man who exfoliates his skin is a fop, at best, and

probably a homosexual.

  1. That there are very few gays in the military, because fighting men will not tolerate them.
  2. That it takes an extraordinary degree of intelligence to become a fighter pilot.
  3. That all pilots of commercial jets have southern accents.

JUNE

  1. That the Chinese put lead in baby toys to poison our nation’s toddlers.
  2. That a fellow who drives a foreign car is not sufficiently patriotic.
  3. That the wearing of a flag pin in one’s lapel proves that one is a patriot.
  4. That all Italian men wear little crucifixes around their necks.
  5. That Jews should not take offense at a swastika because it is

actually an ancient symbol.

  1. That African Americans should not mind Confederate flags because they are merely a sign of pride in Southern heritage.
  2. That Eisenhower was rather stupid.
  3. That LBJ spent all of his time zooming around his ranch throwing beer cans out the window, showing people his appendectomy scars, and lifting his beagles by their ears.
  4. That Truman was an unmitigated success as President, with the

possible exception of the Korean war.

  1. That JFK wanted to end the Vietnam war and that was why “they” killed him.
  2. That there was no way Oswald, a marine sharpshooter, could have gotten off three shots with a cheap mail-order Italian rifle.
  3. That UFOs are real and the government doesn’t want us to know it for fear of inciting mass panic.
  4. That General Washington was always cool, calm and collected.
  5. That Calvin Coolidge never said more than three words in public.
  6. That Herbert Hoover was responsible for the Great Depression.
  7. That locked away in a vault somewhere is the identity of JFK’s true killer or killers, but the truth will not be revealed in our lifetimes.
  8. That John Wilkes Booth acted alone.
  9. That George Washington chopped down a cherry tree, threw a silver dollar across the Potomac, and stood up in the boat while crossing the Delaware–quite possibly all on the same day.
  10. That Lincoln was possibly gay.
  11. That Jefferson fathered hordes of mulatto progeny.
  12. That Warren G. Harding was a Negro.
  13. That John Adams was a cheerful, witty fellow.
  14. That Indians regarded Andrew Jackson as their great white father.
  15. That nobody ever mentioned during his entire Presidential term that FDR was a cripple confined to a wheelchair.
  16. That FDR knew in advance about Pearl Harbor, but, for reasons of national security, it was hushed up.
  17. That LBJ knew who really killed JFK, but carried the secret to his grave.
  18. That Andrew Johnson was a drunk.
  19. That President Grant was probably drunk every day.
  20. That J. Edgar Hoover was utterly incorruptible, but was quite

possibly light in the loafers.

  1. That most he-man Hollywood actors of the old school were probably closeted gays.

JULY

  1. That northern men are suckers for a woman with a southern accent, who can always wrap them around her finger.
  2. That one can ward off a fever by vigorous exercises that will “sweat it out”.
  3. That New York City is the only place in the world in which works of literary merit can be written.
  4. That fashion designers hate women and their monstrous designs prove it.
  5. That abstract artists are utterly without talent.
  6. That major professional sporting contests such as baseball,

football, and basketball are sacrosanct, and never fixed.

  1. That most female Olympians are actually secretly males.
  2. That a woman who chews gum is very likely a slattern.
  3. That Abu Ghraib was an unfortunate aberration and will never be repeated.
  4. That millions of ungrateful Americans spat on returning Vietnam veterans.
  5. That the CIA is America’s only foreign intelligence agency.
  6. That actors succeed because they are privy to great truths about the human condition that ordinary men can never understand.
  7. That rock and roll is all about the music.
  8. That the presence of signage in Spanish is a portent that the

United States is being overrun by Hispanics.

  1. That the proprietors of ethnic restaurants save the choicest

morsels for their fellow countrymen.

  1. That all fat society matrons own yappy toy dogs whom they dote upon as though they were babies.
  2. That a childless woman or man is an incomplete human being.
  3. That all judges strive to be scrupulously fair.
  4. That anybody can write poetry.
  5. That nearly anyone could write up an idea they have as a lucrative Hollywood screenplay, if only they had the right connections.
  6. That stamp collecting is an educational hobby, as it teaches you all about geography.
  7. That you can find the answer to any question on the internet.
  8. That the Olympics are special because they are only held once

every four years.

  1. That sharks devour hundreds of people yearly.
  2. That spell check has put a great many proofreaders out of business.
  3. That someday every job will be outsourced overseas.
  4. That one may successfully fool the Chinese into thinking you speak their language by incanting “Ching chong ling long.”
  5. That all Japanese secretly despise Americans.
  6. That all Muslims are, by definition, anti-Semites.
  7. That having a friend who is a member of a racial minority

inoculates you from a charge of racism.

  1. That something about New Hampshire makes unsuccessful presidential candidates want to break down and cry.

AUGUST

  1. That all radioactivity is deadly.
  2. That the fact that the people of the United States elected a black man proves they are not racists.
  3. That ethnic stereotyping is largely a thing of the past.
  4. That a talented musician can make a fortune by posting a video on youtube and becoming an overnight sensation.
  5. That if you could make an airplane out of the stuff the black box

is made of, it would never crash.

  1. That we could have had electric cars years ago, only “they”

wouldn’t allow it.

  1. That high school transgressions go on one’s permanent record, with devastating consequences for the future.
  2. That bar codes are the sign of the beast of the Biblical prophecy, without which, one can neither buy nor sell.
  3. That public officials should feel obligated to serve us because our taxes pay their salary.
  4. That any current or recent President that we strongly dislike was or is the worst President since Harding or Grant.
  5. That many celebrities allegedly deceased have actually faked their deaths and are now living in happy anonymity.
  6. That to live to be 100 is a goal to be ardently admired and sought after.
  7. That most southerners are happy, carefree folks who like to go

fishing and hunting and don’t have a worry in the world.

  1. That illegal Mexicans should be driven out of places like Arizona, New Mexico and California, because they simply want to take over.
  2. That a lawyer never gets sued.
  3. That everyone who claims Indian blood is probably telling the

truth, even if they don’t know their federally designated tribe number.

  1. That a chemical in turkey induces sleepiness.
  2. That people who regularly eat yogurt live to be 116.
  3. That every person of 100 attributes their longevity to a daily

glass of wine.

  1. That fish feel no pain, and flop around on the bottom of the boat for fun.
  2. That any man can stop drinking any time he wants to.
  3. That hatcheck girls get to keep all their tips.
  4. That all Italian gangsters wear pinstriped suits, pinky rings, and

snappy fedora hats, and pass out C-notes like they were dollar bills.

  1. That any highway patrolman can be induced to tear up a ticket by proffering a twenty dollar bill.
  2. That one needn’t tip furniture deliverymen, because they are all well-paid, and the service should be free anyway.
  3. That no Belgian has ever distinguished himself.
  4. That all ostensible prudes are secretly titillated by wanton

sexual displays.

  1. That sparking wine is every bit as good as so-called French Champagne.
  2. That checking into a hotel with a woman not your wife under a

false name is actually a federal crime.

  1. That a woman can never tell when her thrifty swain offers he a

bouquet that was rescued from the trash can.

  1. That to read “War and Peace” is a great accomplishment.

SEPTEMBER

  1. That all country girls who venture into the big city for the first

time invariably go wild.

  1. That a person with an odd first name is probably a very odd individual.
  2. That H.G. Wells invented science fiction and was a prophetic genius.
  3. That all thick books, especially the so-called classics, are

excruciatingly dull.

  1. That bearded men have something to hide and might even be ex-cons.
  2. That many truckers are actually quite devout.
  3. That to spend one’s golden years seeing America first in an RV is a laudable goal.
  4. That a restaurant area with a crackling fireplace is the ne plus

ultra of classiness.

  1. That no good Oriental food is to be found outside of New York or California.
  2. That one can buy a painting at a flea market or garage sale that is actually a lost masterpiece worth many thousands of dollars.
  3. That old issues of the National Geographic magazine are “worth something”.
  4. That when a drunk driver who doesn’t wear a seat belt crashes his car, he is always thrown clear of the wrecked vehicle and staggers away without a scratch, because his muscles are relaxed from all that booze.
  5. That if you have a nightmare of something awful happening to you, a day or two later, the awful dream will come true.
  6. That horoscopes in certain newspapers are infallibly oracular.
  7. That the newspaper comics are funny.
  8. That if you get your name and picture in the newspaper, you are famous.
  9. That there are certain places in LA where actresses are routinely “discovered”.
  10. That every waitress in California is a budding starlet, or aspires to be.
  11. That riding in first class on an airplane is infinitely more

pleasurable than suffering in coach, only who can afford it?

  1. That it is a sign of good breeding to always leave a little food

on the plate.

  1. That rich people routinely shop at Goodwill and at dollar stores, because their thrifty habits were how they got rich in the first place.
  2. That wealthy people are invariably the stingiest restaurant

tippers and often fail to leave any tip at all.

  1. That when two foreigners speak in a waiting room in a foreign

tongue, they are always making derogatory remarks, probably about you.

  1. That certain Chinese restaurants conceal a maze of tunnels in

their basements in which are housed untold illegal Chinese persons who are held as virtual slaves.

  1. That ghastly things happen in the back rooms of Chinese restaurants.
  2. That all bankers are die-hard Republicans and pillars of their community.
  3. That a person who is pro-choice is invariably a Democrat, and very wicked.
  4. That when a barber hangs a closed sign on his window during

business hours, he’s probably off taking a few medicinal nips from a brown jug in the back room.

  1. That supermarket offers to buy one and get one free are always great bargains.
  2. That all wars could be settled by the two leaders of the warring

countries going mano a mano.

OCTOBER

  1. That a man doesn’t need to see a psychiatrist, because a barber and a bartender provide the identical service for the price of a haircut and a drink.
  2. That barbers buy the stinkum they lave on the back of your neck

from vendors who charge three dollars a gallon for it.

  1. That old folk in their sunset years invariably take to gardening.
  2. That men, immediately upon retiring, mope around the house and drive their poor wives crazy.
  3. That British people are all very smart; so smart that, when they

come to America, they tend to become arrogant scolds whom you love to hate.

  1. That illegal immigrants flock to this country solely to take

advantage of subsidized housing and free quality medical care.

  1. That a man slipping on a banana peel is funny.
  2. That a woman getting a custard pie in the face is a scream.
  3. That if kids today got a thorough grounding in the 3 Rs, there

wouldn’t be so many High School dropouts.

  1. That all people who work in the State Department are

cookie-pushers who would faint dead away if they ever had to do a real job of work.

  1. That intellectuals have pointy heads and can’t even park their

bicycles straight.

  1. That funeral home directors are always genuinely solicitous.
  2. That a shrewd man would do well to have a cabin in the woods well stocked with firewood and vittles in case the shit ever really goes down and the whole country goes down the toilet.
  3. That it is possible to win the grand prize at carnival games.
  4. That not a few serial killers are actually rather quite dashing and delightful fellows, except for their unfortunate compulsion to

murder innocent strangers.

  1. That the poor, and the rich, have always been with us.
  2. That something on youtube called “rare” really is.
  3. That something on youtube designated as “banned” really was.
  4. That ethanol rescues us from dependence on foreign oil; that

maintaining a monumental transportation grid is better than

maintaining agricultural sustainability.

  1. That the Dust Bowl could never happen again.
  2. That World War 2 “got us out of” the Great Depression.
  3. That the American health system is the envy of the world.
  4. That a garrulous old man is wise but a garrulous old woman is

merely a biddy.

  1. That women are always, without exception, secretly ashamed of their men whenever they appear with them in any public place.
  2. That a person who uses “big words” is invariably a poseur.
  3. That a woman’s smile can always bewitch a hapless male.
  4. That when a woman cries, she always does so to “get her way”.
  5. That female detainees are seldom handcuffed.
  6. That foreigners envy us because we are the land of the free and the home of the brave.
  7. That on Halloween evil witches roam the land, kidnapping children for blood sacrifices to their evil Master.
  8. That every Halloween for the last 50 years, legions of fiends have been spiking the children’s treats with poison and razor blades.

NOVEMBER

  1. That we were in a race with Germany to get the atomic bomb, even though by 1940 they had largely abandoned the effort.
  2. That the dropping of the bomb saved a great many Japanese and American lives, even though Japan was already on the verge of surrender.
  3. That the Vietnam conflict could have been tidily concluded by the dropping of a few low-yield nukes.
  4. That the military “lost” Vietnam because their hands were tied by craven politicians and peaceniks.
  5. That all crime would immediately cease if police were issued the

power to perform summary executions.

  1. That executing prisoners saves the state money.
  2. That compulsive gambling is not really an addiction, but merely a failure of will and a character flaw.
  3. That alcohol is not really a drug; that an alcoholic is not really

a drug addict.

  1. That people on maintenance doses of antidepressants are not really drug addicts, because these are medications prescribed by doctors in order to “fix” imbalances in the brain.
  2. That Clinton would have been regarded as a great President if only he could have kept his membrum virile inside his pantaloons.
  3. That Monica Lewinsky profited enormously from her liaison with Bill Clinton.
  4. That, had JFK lived, he would have established a Kennedy dynasty.
  5. That, had RFK lived, he would have become President, and would have been a great one, who would have united a fractured country.
  6. That the media either has it in for the President, or fawns all

over him, based exclusively on the personal likes and dislikes of

individual reporters.

  1. That in America, unpopular opinions are never censored, but merely ignored.
  2. That people who sell illegal drugs are all enormously rich.
  3. That people become dentists because they simply do not have what it takes to become real doctors.
  4. That pharmacists make a great many important decisions and are well paid because they hold the power of life and death in their

hands.

  1. That “health nuts” often drop stone dead at age 57 or some other absurdly premature age, owing to their strenuous exercise and dietary regimes.
  2. That an occasional brisk walk is all the exercise a man needs,

provided he is not too busy to take the time.

  1. That God created man, and a man who suggests otherwise is not only a wicked scoffer but quite possibly an agent of Lucifer.
  2. That there is something vaguely satanic about deviled ham.
  3. That all women are needy and all men ate heedless and that the two conditions may somehow be connected but no man living can fathom it because women are all crazy anyway.
  4. That “even” Einstein “couldn’t understand” women.
  5. That all architects are individualists of genius.
  6. That when a child asks “why” the best response is always “Because I said so.”
  7. That when Americans mock foreign accents, it is all in good fun.
  8. That all bullies are cowards and that if you fight back, they will run away.
  9. That all reformers are impractical because they fail to realize that corruption has always been with us, and that there’s nothing “we” can do about it.
  10. That to be chosen to complete a consumer survey is a signal honor.

DECEMBER

  1. That we dropped two on Japan, but we could have and maybe damn well should have dropped 100.
  2. That we should have destroyed the Soviet Union when we had a

monopoly on atomic might, instead of waiting for the regime to destroy itself.

  1. That the untold billions squandered on proxy wars against the

Soviets and Chinese were dollars well spent.

  1. That the Republican tax cuts of the 1980s led to untold prosperity, and that the ensuing 8.5 trillion deficit was an unfortunate and utterly unanticipated result.
  2. That Reagan was in every instance a great statesman who never erred and deserves a place on Mount Rushmore.
  3. That Nixon was a good foreign policy President and we would all have been better off if Watergate were treated as a second-rate burglary.
  4. That if Nixon had never been President, the United States would

have been a pitiful, helpless giant.

  1. That spiders lay their eggs exclusively upon the scalps of women with beehive hairdos.
  2. That, 20, or 40, or 60 years ago popular music used to be “good,” but nowadays it all sounds like noise because it is being made by untalented nonentities.
  3. That adolescents are secretly pleased when their parents express an interest in their music and extracurricular activities but they will never admit it.
  4. That adolescents secretly long for their parents to be stern

disciplinarians.

  1. That Country stars all adopt deliberately outlandish names such as that of the late Ferlin Husky, as that is a part of their showmanship.
  2. That virtually anybody can become a Country and Western star, as it requires but little talent.
  3. That all New Yorkers are hyperactive because they all daily drink gallons of devilishly strong iced coffee strong enough to float an egg.
  4. That when children do stupid things, it is inevitably all for the attention.
  5. That the most important attribute a President can have is common sense.
  6. That all bachelors are slobs who instantly clean up their acts

once they enter the hallowed state of matrimonial bliss.

  1. That women always want to faint dead away when first they spy the squalor of their boyfriend’s bachelor pad.
  2. That all women are secretly flattered when men regard them solely as sexual objects.
  3. That we are infinitely more civilized than people who lived 10,000 years ago.
  4. That no man who becomes involved in the theatrical world is a

heterosexual, or remains one for long.

  1. That virtue is its own reward.
  2. That a soft answer invariably turneth away wrath.
  3. That there is something magical about a child’s belief in Santa, or Mickey Mouse.
  4. That there is something magical about any mass delusion.
  5. That Walt Disney was a great artist.
  6. That philanthropists deserve little credit because they are, after

all, only returning what they have stolen over the years.

  1. That the Pope is always a great man.
  2. That poor people are always more kind and generous than the

well-to-do, because they know what it’s like to be up against it.

  1. That all dogs go to heaven.
  2. That only the amateur drinkers celebrate on New Year’s Eve.
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