20 Great Literature Quotes About Politics

In these trying political times, here are 20 great quotes from authors about politics. 


“Reader, suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.”
― Mark Twain


“A paranoid is someone who knows a little of what’s going on. ”
― William S. Burroughs


“The last thing I ever wanted was to be alive when the three most powerful people on the whole planet would be named Bush, Dick and Colon.”
― Kurt Vonnegut

“All war is a symptom of man’s failure as a thinking animal.” 
― John Steinbeck

“There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that ‘my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.” 
― Isaac Asimov

“I will tell you what I will do and what I will not do. I will not serve that in which I no longer believe, whether it calls itself my home, my fatherland, or my church: and I will try to express myself in some mode of life or art as freely as I can and as wholly as I can, using for my defense the only arms I allow myself to use — silence, exile, and cunning.” 
― James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“One of the penalties of refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” 
― Plato

“Absolute power does not corrupt absolutely, absolute power attracts the corruptible.” 
― Frank Herbert

“Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job.” 
― Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

“He knows nothing; and he thinks he knows everything. That points clearly to a political career.” 
― George Bernard Shaw, Major Barbara


“Our masters have not heard the people’s voice for generations and it is much, much louder than they care to remember.” 
― Alan Moore, V for Vendetta

“No matter how corrupt, greedy, and heartless our government, our corporations, our media, and our religious & charitable institutions may become, the music will still be wonderful.” 
― Kurt Vonnegut, A Man Without a Country

“On Undecided Voter’s: “To put them in perspective, I think of being on an airplane. The flight attendant comes down the aisle with her food cart and, eventually, parks it beside my seat. “Can I interest you in the chicken? ” she asks. “Or would you prefer the platter of shit with bits of broken glass in it?” To be undecided in this election is to pause for a moment and then ask how the chicken is cooked.”
― David Sedaris



“If you can feel that staying human is worth while, even when it can’t have any result whatever, you’ve beaten them.” 
― George Orwell, 1984

“Democracy! Bah! When I hear that I reach for my feather boa!”
― Allen Ginsberg


Stieg Larsson, writer and journalist

“Dear Government… I’m going to have a serious talk with you if I ever find anyone to talk to.” 
― Stieg Larsson, The Girl Who Played with Fire

“It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into.” 
― Jonathan Swift

“Listen, Peaches, trickery is what humans are all about,” said the voice of Maurice. “They’re so keen on tricking one another all the time that they elect governments to do it for them.” 
― Terry Pratchett, The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents

“The State did not own men so entirely, even when it could send them to the stake, as it sometimes does now where it can send them to the elementary school.” 
― G.K. Chesterton, The Well and the Shallows

Feodor Dostoyevsky

“He was one of the numerous and varied legion of dullards, of half-animated abortions, conceited, half-educated coxcombs, who attach themselves to the idea most in fashion  only to vulgarize it and who caricature every cause they serve, however sincerely.”
― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment


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