What I am is something unbearable for the world of journalism and the world of cliches. I'm a realist.

Gore Vidal

Gore Vidal

Profession: Novelist
Nationality: American

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There is only one party in the United States: the Property party... and it has two right wings: Republican and Democrat.

Constant work, constant writing and constant revision. The real writer learns nothing from life. He is more like an oyster or a sponge. What he takes in he takes in normally the way any person takes in experience. But it is what is done with it in his mind, if he is a real writer, that makes his art.

'The Turner Diaries' is a racist daydream by a former physics teacher writing under the pseudonym Andrew Macdonald.

Does one ever read a politician's books?

None of this is quite true but Leggett feels that to be excitingly right in general is better than to be dully accurate in particular. That is why he is such an effective journalist.

So here they are, trying to get us into the army again to get us to fight in Europe, but the country is isolationist. One of the reasons why the world has been demonized is because they had to do it. The average American is an isolationist.

It is true, as Sartre once wrote, referring to French Army atrocities in Algeria, that the real tragedy in our time is that any of us can be, interchangeably, victim or torturer.

As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate, action: you liberate a city by destroying it. Words are to confuse, so that at election time people will solemnly vote against their own interests.

The American people are as devoted to the idea of sin and its punishment as they are to making money—and fighting drugs is nearly as big a business as pushing them. Since the combination of sin and money is irresistible (particularly to the professional politician), the situation will only grow worse. I suppose, if nothing else, I was.

I began life as an absolute monarchist - on condition, of course, that I be that monarch.

For the average American freedom of speech is simply the freedom to repeat what everyone else is saying and no more.

It is not enough merely to win; others must lose.

TV news is not very instructive.

Each youth betrays considerable anxiety about the wedding night ahead.