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Something Else I Wish I’d Written

h-l-mencken-amusedI've long been delighted by the fact that, along with Maria Muldaur, Barry White and Syracuse's Sam Young, I share a birthday with Maurice Chevalier and H.L. Mencken. I've long liked to think of myself as a sort of  combination of these latter two greats, a boulevardier who could skewer the booboisie while remaining ambivalent about the Jews. The difference is that I can do it in Yiddish.

Here's one of Mencken's better passages:

Moral certainty is always a sign of cultural inferiority. The more uncivilized the man, the surer he is that he knows precisely what is right and what is wrong. All human progress, even in morals, has been the work of men who have doubted the current moral values, not of men who have whooped them up and tried to enforce them. The truly civilized man is always skeptical and tolerant. 

And here's Bob Dylan, who vocal reminds of my grandfather at the seder, saying something similar:


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