A Man Without a Country - Kurt Vonnegut
Kurt Vonnegut, the sassy brilliant thoughtful man, at his finest. First book that I have read where he talks about his own life and experiences.
If you want to really hurt your parents, and you don’t have the nerve to be gay, the least you can do is go into the arts. Im not kidding. The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heavens sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.
I turned eighty-two on November 11, 2004. Whats it like to be this old? I cant parallel park worth a damn anymore, so please don’t watch while I try to do it. And gravity has become a lot less friendly and manageable than it used to be.
That war only made billionaires out of millionaires. Todays war is making trillionaires out of billionaires. Now I call that progress.
Many years ago I was so innocent I still considered it possible that we could become the humane and reasonable America so many members of my generation used to dream of. We dreamed of such an America during the Great Depression, when there were no jobs. And then we fought and often died for that dream during the Second World War, when there was no peace. But I know now that there is not a chance in hell of America becoming humane and reasonable. Because power corrupts us, and absolute power corrupts us absolutely. Human beings are chimpanzees who get crazy drunk on power. By saying that our leaders are power-drunk chimpanzees, am I in danger of wrecking the morale of our soldiers fighting and dying in the Middle East? Their morale, like so many lifeless bodies, is already shot to pieces. They are being treated, as I never was, like toys a rich kid got for Christmas.
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