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Lincoln Steffens - Quotes

There are 38 quotes by Lincoln Steffens at 95quotes.com. Find your favorite quotations and top quotes by Lincoln Steffens from this hand-picked collection . Feel free to share these quotes and sayings on Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr & Twitter or any of your favorite social networking sites.

The longer I live, the more I feel that the individual is not so much to blame - not even the worst individuals, not even the 'best' citizens - as the system of corruption which has grown up about us, and which rewards an honest man with a mere living and a crook with all the magnificence of our magnificent modern life. ---->>>

Art is like a border of flowers along the course of civilization. ---->>>

Power is what men seek and any group that gets it will abuse it. ---->>>

Morality is only moral when it is voluntary. ---->>>

The misgovernment of the American people is misgovernment by the American people. ---->>>

The commercial spirit is the spirit of profit, not patriotism; of credit, not honor; of individual gain, not national prosperity; of trade and dickering, not principle. ---->>>

In all cities, the better classes - the business men - are the sources of corruption, but they are so rarely pursued and caught that we do not fully realize whence the trouble comes. ---->>>

You ask men in office to be honest; I ask them to serve the public. ---->>>

One improvement I have learned from my childhood experience with my father: I do not threaten punishment in the morning. That was awful. Late into the night I would lie awake tossing and wondering what he was going to do to me. Usually he did nothing. A quiet, impressive 'talking to' was all I got. ---->>>

My father, the practical joker, did not care for practical jokes on himself; he did not encourage the practice in me. ---->>>

If we would vote in mass on the more promising ticket, or, if the two are equally bad, would throw out the party that is in, and wait till the next election and then throw out the other party that is in - then, I say, the commercial politician would feel a demand for good government and he would supply it. ---->>>

Boston has carried the practice of hypocrisy to the n-th degree of refinement, grace, and failure.

Boston has carried the practice of hypocrisy to the n-th degree of refinement, grace, and failure.

I am really puzzled to understand myself. ---->>>

Revolt is not reform, and one revolutionary administration is not good government.

Revolt is not reform, and one revolutionary administration is not good government.

If our political leaders are to be always a lot of political merchants, they will supply any demand we may create. All we have to do is to establish a steady demand for good government.

If our political leaders are to be always a lot of political merchants, they will supply any demand we may create. All we have to do is to establish a steady demand for good government.

My mother would thump me sharply on the head with a thimble or a spoon if I became too noisy with the whistle when I was playing I was a steamboat captain. She had no sense of the dignity of command. ---->>>

Nothing fails like success. ---->>>

I have been over into the future, and it works.

I have been over into the future, and it works.

I let my boy go and do and say pretty much as he likes, as, and perhaps because, my father kept no string on me. ---->>>

The spirit of graft and of lawlessness is the American spirit. ---->>>

Chicago will give you a chance. The sporting spirit is the spirit of Chicago. ---->>>

I have been contending all my life, and always with God. ---->>>

I never heard a Christian sermon preached in a church. ---->>>

If my father could watch my son for a while, he might realize his own immortality. ---->>>

The Russian people, sober, are said to be a gentle people. ---->>>

Most men think graft a sporadic evil, breaking out here and there, with no connection between outbreaks. I shared the same opinion, but very soon I discovered that the graft in the cities always leads to the graft in the State. ---->>>

My father would invite me sweetly to come and sit on a stool at his feet, and, as I let myself trustingly down, he would gently kick the seat from under me - and laugh. ---->>>

Whenever anything extraordinary is done in American municipal politics, whether for good or for evil, you can trace it almost invariably to one man. The people do not do it. Neither do the 'gangs,' 'combines,' or political parties.

Whenever anything extraordinary is done in American municipal politics, whether for good or for evil, you can trace it almost invariably to one man. The people do not do it. Neither do the 'gangs,' 'combines,' or political parties.

If we would leave parties to the politicians, and would vote not for the party, not even for men, but for the city, and the State, and the nation, we should rule parties, and cities, and States, and nation. ---->>>

My father made with me one serious mistake which I see parents about me making. He got himself somehow into the awkward position of an authority; I thought he knew and was right on everything - for a while. ---->>>

The Soviet government sprouted and grew out of the habits, the psychology, and the condition of the Russian people. It fitted them. They understand it. ---->>>

The typical American citizen is the business man. The typical business man is a bad citizen; he is busy. If he is a 'big business man' and very busy, he does not neglect; he is busy with politics, oh, very busy and very businesslike. ---->>>

It is possible to get an education at a university. It has been done; not often. ---->>>

My father required me to honor my father and my mother too much to put up games on them. I did on occasion. ---->>>

My father seemed always to know not only what I was doing, but what I was being. ---->>>

My father was slower, but he was severer than my mother, who was quick but light and irregular in discipline. ---->>>

The doctrine of Jesus is the most revolutionary propaganda that I have ever encountered. ---->>>

We need some great failures. Especially we ever-successful Americans - conscious, intelligent, illuminating failures. ---->>>

Biography

Nationality: American
Born: April 6, 1866
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, US
Die: 08-09, 1936
Occupation: Journalist
Website:

Lincoln Joseph Steffens (April 6, 1866 – August 9, 1936) was a New York reporter who launched a series of articles in McClure's, called Tweed Days in St. Louis, that would later be published together in a book titled The Shame of the Cities. He is remembered for investigating corruption in municipal government in American cities and for his early support for the Soviet Union (wikipedia)