"It [the State] has taken on a vast mass of new duties and responsibilities; it has spread out its powers until they penetrate to every act of the citizen, however secret; it has begun to throw around its operations the high dignity and impeccability of a State religion; its agents become a separate and superior caste, with authority to bind and loose, and their thumbs in every pot. But it still remains, as it was in the beginning, the common enemy of all well-disposed, industrious and decent men. "
H. L. Mencken
(1880-1956) American Journalist, Editor, Essayist, Linguist, Lexicographer, and Critic
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Reader comments about this quote:
Self explanatory and true.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
  • 6
    H.L. Mencken was an idividual with vision,insight and wisdom.We would be blessed to have more individuals of his/her caliber in positions of policy makeing for this crumbling Republic.
     -- My Name, Your Town,USA.     
  • 6
     -- J Carlton, Calgary      
    I just wish that Mencken was around to comment on this group of duds running for president.
     -- jim k, austin, tx     
  • 6
     -- RobertSRQ      
    Astonishing how well H.L. describes our current administration.
     -- Joe, North Caldwell, NJ     
  • 6
    Mencken hits the nail on the head.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
  • 6
    As true to day as it was in Mechken's time, i.e. The Great Depression and FDR's socializing of America.
     -- GunnyCee, Duryham, NC     
  • 6
    Spot on..
     -- Vexari, Chappaqua     
  • 5
    Alas, more often than not....
     -- Robert, Somewhere in Europe     
  • 5
     -- Ronw13, Yachats Or      
    Been told but not confirmed that this quote is from a 1926 issue of The American Mercury
     -- BornLib, Columbus     
  • 4
    A real prophet who forsaw what was coming for America and the world.
     -- Bill Hastings, Nashville IN     
  • 5
    The noblest of our Noblemen of Nature Founders well understood that the process of the aggrandizement of the State is inherently inimical to the enterprise of the securing of the Blessings of Liberty.
     -- Patrick Henry, Red Hill     
  • 3
    We men are not to perceive the state as the evil enemy, but the errant child who must be set correct
     -- Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown     
  • 1
    I would agree that the state is the 'child' of the People who founded it, not the nanny-state that treats the people like perpetual children.

    The best way to correct the de facto nanny-state is to bind it with the chains of the Constitution.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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