Presidents in wartime, embattled presidents, unpopular presidents, they all look to Lincoln. He’s their patron saint because no president was more embattled or more unpopular than Lincoln was during his presidency. We think he was born on Mount Rushmore. Not so.
The minute you got the Nobel Peace Prize, things that I said yesterday, with nobody paying too much attention, I say the same things after I got it – oh! It was quite crucial for people, and it helped our morale because apartheid did look invincible.
Old age realizes the dreams of youth: look at Dean Swift; in his youth he built an asylum for the insane, in his old age he was himself an inmate.
It’s wrong to look at what we call ‘Enlightenment values’ as some fad of the 18th century. It’s deeply rooted in ancient history.
All poets’ wives have rotten lives Their husbands look at them like knives.
The greatest magnifying glasses in the world are a man’s own eyes when they look upon his own person.
One must look for one thing only, to find many.
I don’t believe in a golden mean; I don’t believe you find policy wisdom between two polar points. I don’t dismiss that possibility, but I look at the platform that’s so ideologically based, that’s so dismissive of facts, of evidence, of science, and it’s frankly hard to take seriously.
With the Truman book, I wrote the entire account of his experiences in World War I before going over to Europe to follow his tracks in the war. When I got there, there was a certain satisfaction in finding I had it right – it does look like that.
I’m always disappointed when people don’t live up to their potential. I know that a number of people look down on themselves and consequently on everybody who looks like them. But that, too, can change.