Self-referential expression (intentionally?) - "complementary" has two distinct readings:
Accuracy and clarity are complementary.

Niels Bohr

Get your facts straight first. Then you can distort them as you please.

Mark Twain (unconfirmed)

The credibility of any quote is enhanced by attributing it to Mark Twain. -- Mark Twain

Douglas B. Moran

You are only young once,
but you can stay immature forever.

currently unknown (many claimants)

You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother.

Albert Einstein

Fills a much-needed gap.

attribution misplaced

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

Yogi Berra

A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1841)

Faith in a holy cause is to a considerable extent a substitute for the lost faith in ourselves.

Eric Hoffer in The True Believer

Since a politician never believes what he says, he is surprised when others believe him.

Charles de Gaulle

When people feel uncertain, they'd rather have somebody that's strong and wrong than somebody who's weak and right.

William Jefferson Clinton, President, USA, 1993-2000

A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves.

Edward R. Murrow

No one can terrorize a whole nation unless we are all his accomplices.

Edward R. Murrow

A politician is an acrobat: He keeps his balance by saying the opposite of what he does.

Lillian Hellman

A politician is an animal which can sit on a fence and yet keep both ears to the ground.

H. L. Mencken

A democracy is a sheep and two wolves deciding on what to have for lunch. Freedom is a well-armed sheep contesting the results of the decision.

Benjamin Franklin

The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that they be properly armed.

Alexander Hamilton

What a man! A veritable treasure on the first day of the revolution - but on the next day, you have to execute him.
More literary rendering:
On the first day, he was a treasure. On the second day, he should have been shot.

The Chief of the Revolutionary Police in Paris in 1848 on famous Russian anarchist Michail Bakunin.

The meek shall inherit the earth, but the lawyers will get it all in probate.

Douglas B. Moran

If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.

Bernard of Chartres

Precisely constructed models for linguistic structure can play an important role, both negative and positive, in the process of discovery itself. By pushing a precise but inadequate formulation to an unacceptable conclusion, we can often expose the exact source of this inadequacy and, consequently, gain a deep understanding of the linguistic data. More positively, a formalized theory may automatically provide solutions for many problems other than those for which it was explicitly designed.

Noam Chomsky
in preface to Syntactic Structures

...unimaginative, timid, lacking in initiative, spineless, easily dominated, no sense of humour, tedious company and irrepressibly drab and awful. And whereas in most professions these would be considerable drawbacks, in speech technology they are a positive boon.

Unattributed (quoted in news posting 1990 October 05)

Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.

Sir Walter Scott in "Marmion," 6:17

"... professors who wish to be published in the academic press must:
  1. not pick an important problem,
  2. not challenge existing beliefs,
  3. not obtain surprising results,
  4. not use simple methods,
  5. not provide full disclosure of methodology, sources, and findings, and
  6. not write clearly."

Conclusions of J. Scott Armstrong of the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania,
who supposedly conducted his own analysis of academic writing.
Reported in "ProfScam: Professors and the Demise of Higher Education" by Charles J. Sykes.

Corey Wade, research director at Alexander & Associates,
downplaying the impact of the DeCSS hack
on the entertainment industry.

And, uh, now I would like to present the man who made this sign possible by dropping the last of his obstructionist legal challenges, Montgomery Burns.

The Simpsons, episode "Blood Feud" (second season)

This is the difference between us Romans and the Etruscans: We believe that lightning is caused by clouds colliding, whereas they believe that clouds collide in order to create lightning. Since they attribute everything to gods, they are led to believe not that events have a meaning because they have happened, but that they happen in order to express a meaning.

Seneca (Roman Philosopher, first century C.E.)

There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics.

Benjamin Disraeli, popularized in the USA by Mark Twain

You know, the only trouble with capitalism is capitalists. They're too damn greedy.

Herbert Hoover

The people from my country believe - and rightly so - that the only thing separating man from the animals is mindless superstition and pointless ritual.

Latka Gravis (played by Andy Kaufman) in television sitcom Taxi

Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.

Barry LePatner (business author)

If the lessons of history teach us anything it is that nobody learns the lessons that history teaches us.


If you tell people the truth, you better make them laugh or they'll kill you (no authoritative version found - several minor variations)

George Bernard Shaw

We hold elections in November because it is the traditional time for getting (picking out) a turkey.


President Williams, members of the faculty, members of the class of 2006, friends and family of the class of 2006. I want to continue my acknowledgments. I'm very sensitive, I want to make sure that I acknowledge every element of this community. And so let me borrow from Garry Trudeau and continue my acknowledgments: and so I recognize Chairman Bill Haines and members of the board of trustees, bored members of the trustees, those who watch "The Sopranos," those who watch "American Idol," those who still watch the reruns of "Frasier," those who don't like TV. Denizens of Ithaca, denizens of the night, knights of Tompkins County, people of class, classy people, people of height, the vertically constrained, people of hair, the indifferently coiffed, the optically challenged, the temporarily sighted, the insightful, the out of sight, the out-of-towners, the Afrocentrics, the Eurocentrics, the Eurocentrics with Eurail passes, the eccentrically inclined. The sexually disinclined, people of sex, sexy people, earthy people, animal companions, friends of the earth, friends of the boss, the temporarily employed, the differently employed, the differently optioned, people with options, people with stock options, Knick fans, Celtic fans, those who don't have the wisdom to be either Knick or Celtic fans, the divestiturists, the deconstructionists, the home constructionists, the homeless, the temporarily housed at home, and, God save us parents, the permanently housed at home. Good morning!

Bill Bradley (Former US Senator), commencement address at Ithaca College, 2006

I've decided "gerbilism" is a pretty good word for what's been going on in the news media these days. Gerbilism is an apt term for something that's soft and warm and cuddly, safe and timid, with no sharp teeth and no bite whatsoever. Gerbilism, I've decided, is partly responsible for a lot of our nation's problems today.

Doug Bates, The Oregonian, Commencement Address to the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication, 2009 June 13

An educated person is someone who has learned how to acquire, analyze, synthesize, evaluate, understand, and communicate knowledge and information. An educated person has to develop skills that respond to changing professional requirements and new challenges in society and the world at large. He or she must be able to take skills previously gained from serious study of one set of problems and apply them to another. He or she must be able to locate, understand, interpret, evaluate, and use information in an appropriate way and ultimately communicate his or her synthesis and understanding of that information in a clear and accurate manner.

Michigan State University (more specific attribution not available), from essay by Linda Mikels in Do Teachers Need Education Degrees?

These men had been deeply influenced by the lessons of the Cuban Missile Crisis, especially the value of flexible response and controlled escalation. Their success in handling a nuclear showdown with Moscow had created a feeling that no nation as small and backward as North Vietnam could stand up to the power of the U.S. These men were not arrogant in the sense that Sentaor Fullbright and others later accused them of being, but they possessed a misplaced belief that American power could not be successfully challenged, no matter what the circumstances, anywhere in the world.

Clark Clifford, special advisor to President Johnson, about a July 1965 meeting of Johnson's most senior advisors.

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