Perhaps I shouldn't call it shit. That's a bit crude. I don't really despise Christianity or even the Roman Church, and certainly not the incontrovertible glory of the Middle Ages. What I do despise is the contemporary inclination to flop to the knees and crawl back into the past, to shy from what seem like impossible problems in order to bury the head, asshole aloft and twitching, in the Sands of Time. Cowardice, I calls it. Illusion-seeking. Womb-crawling. And treason. Desertion in the face of the enemy. Strong words indeed. But I've always been rather a blunt, tough, plain-spoken type . . .
In this respect the differences between the USA and the USSR are those of evangelical dinosaurs competing for domination on one small planet: the first deifies Jesus Christ, the other Karl Marx. Neither has much practical interest in what those two sincere and hard-working fellows actually preached.
The more we learn of outer space and inner space, of quasars and quarks, of Big Bangs and Little Blips, the more remote, abstract and intellectually inconsequential it all becomes.
What we need now are heroes and heroines, about a million of them, one brave deed is worth a thousand books. Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul.
Readers, not critics, are the people who determine a book's eventual fate.
I would not sacrifice a single living mesquite tree for any book ever written. One square mile of living desert is worth a hundred 'great books' - and one brave deed is worth a thousand.
Love implies anger. The man who is angered by nothing cares about nothing.
Power is always dangerous. Power attracts the worst and corrupts the best.
When a man's best friend is his dog, that dog has a problem.
Say what you like about my bloody murderous government,' I says, 'but don't insult me poor bleedin' country.
One man alone can be pretty dumb sometimes, but for real bona fide stupidity, there ain't nothin' can beat teamwork.
For myself I hold no preferences among flowers, so long as they are wild, free, spontaneous. Bricks to all greenhouses! Black thumb and cutworm to the potted plant!
Climbing K2 or floating the Grand Canyon in an inner tube; there are some things one would rather have done than do.
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.
Civilization is a youth with a molotov cocktail in his hand. Culture is the Soviet tank or L.A. cop that guns him down.
The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders.
Society is like a stew. If you don't stir it up every once in a while then a layer of scum floats to the top.
You can't study the darkness by flooding it with light.
Our culture runs on coffee and gasoline, the first often tasting like the second.
That which today calls itself science gives us more and more information, and indigestible glut of information, and less and less understanding.