The problem with dictatorships—as I read somewhere recently—and with poisonous ideologies, too, is that they are like sharks. They must keep moving forward or die. What caused their aggression is not what you did. It's who they are.

I wonder how harmless such people are? To what extent civilization is retarded by the laughing jackasses, the empty-minded belittlers?

If you are part of a society that votes, then do so. There may be no candidates and no measures you want to vote for ... but there are certain to be ones you want to vote against. In case of doubt, vote against. By this rule you will rarely go wrong.

The duty of His Majesty's Loyal Opposition is to oppose.

A dying culture invariably exhibits personal rudeness. Bad manners. Lack of consideration for others in minor matters. A loss of politeness, of gentle manners, is more significant than is a riot.

It is what it is;...hit,shift, and rotate;... roll with the punch.

Most people can't think, most of the remainder won't think, the small fraction who do think mostly can't do it very well. The extremely tiny fraction who think regularly, accurately, creatively, and without self-delusion, in the long run these are the only people who count.

God is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent – it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these divine attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks, please. Cash and in small bills.

If I've reached the place where I'm a good influence on anybody, it's time I cultivated some new vices.

The Bible is such a gargantuan collection of conflicting values that anyone can "prove" anything from it.

Between two evils, I choose the one I've never tried before.

Because the world has gone nutty and art always paints the spirit of its times.

I never do anything I don't want to. Nor does anyone, but in my case I know it.

A prude is a person who thinks that his own rules of propriety are natural laws.

Indian government seemed as furious over fish as fishermen – but principle of sacredness of all life did not apply to us; they wanted our heads.

Back to these young criminals—They probably were not spanked as babies; they certainly were not flogged for their crimes.

The difference between science and the fuzzy subjects is that science requires reasoning while those other subjects merely require scholarship.

No woman ever ages beyond eighteen in her heart.

Spaceships are for acrobats who are also mathematicians.

Boss, you're nitpicking to avoid admitting that it was your fault, not mine.

All men must die, it was their single common heritage. But a book need never die and should not be killed; books were the immortal part of man.

The notices of change of address and of call code had gone out earlier but it was not until we were here and our comm center reestablished that I was notified that you had not made routine acknowledgment. For the bloody good reason that I did not receive routine notice!

Everybody lies about sex.

The 3-legged stool of understanding is held up by history, languages, and mathematics. Equipped with those three you can learn anything you want to learn. But if you lack any one of them you are just another ignorant peasant with dung on your boots.

Expertise in one field does not carry over into other fields. But experts often think so. The narrower their field of knowledge the more likely they are to think so.

I don't see how an article of clothing can be indecent. A person, yes.

But when I see a black widow, I step on it; I don't plead with it to be a good little spider and please stop poisoning people.

Nevertheless, her own political philosophy could have been stated baldly (which it never was) as a belief that men should rule the world and women should rule men.

To die trying is the proudest humans thing.

Never tease an old dog; he might have one bite left.

A great artist can look at an old woman, portray her exactly as she is ... and force the viewer to see the pretty girl she used to be ... more than that, he can make anyone with the sensitivity of an armadillo see that this lovely young girl is still alive.

Dorcas, for the last twenty or thirty years I've been a worthless, useless, no-good parasite. She nodded and yawned again. Everybody knows that. Never mind the flattery. There comes a time in every man's life when he has to stop being sensible—a time to stand up and be counted—strike a blow for liberty—smite the wicked.

Juvenile delinquent' is a contradiction in terms. 'Delinquent' means 'failing in duty.' But duty is an adult virtue--indeed a juvenile becomes an adult when, and only when, he acquires a knowledge and duty and embraces it more than the self-love he was born with.

I think you were telling the truth, Jill. But a dream is a true experience of a sort and so is a hypnotic delusion.

But you don't have to take his advice. Whether you use his ideas, or whether they spark some different plan—make your decision and snap out orders. The one thing—the only thing!—that can strike terror in the heart of a good platoon sergeant is to find that he's working for a boss who can't make up his mind.

Most things are right or wrong only in their backgrounds; few things are good or evil in themselves.

You can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.

But I will accept any rules that you feel necessary to your freedom. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.

Were you born stupid, Heinrich, or did you have to study?

Nope. Gadflies such as yourself are utterly necessary. Nor am I opposed to ‘turning the rascals out'—it's usually the soundest rule of politics. But it's well to take a look at what new rascals you are going to get before you jump at any chance to turn your present rascals out.

You have to give an editor something to change, or he gets frustrated. After he pees in it himself, he likes the flavor much better, so he buys it.

Men are not potatoes!

I had never been much interested in Pluto, too many facts and too much isolation.

Anywhere is home to the man with a fat bank account—the cops leave him alone.

He's a man by ancestry, a Martian by environment.

One damn sure thing!—he wasn't going to let them be rough with that Smith lad. He was a nuisance, granted, but he was a nice lad and rather appealing in a helpless, half-witted way.

Thou are God, Mike repeated serenely. That which groks. Anne is God. I am God. The happy grasses are God. Jill groks in beauty always. Jill is God. All shaping and making and creating together— He croaked something in Martian and smiled.

A boy who gets a C- in 'Appreciation of Television' can't be all bad.

I was there to see beautiful naked women. So was everybody else. It's a common failing.