P.J. O’Rourke Quotes

P. J. O’Rourke (born 1947) is an American political journalist, satirist, and writer.

O’Rourke is the author of seventeen books. The latest one (“Holidays in Heck”) was published in 2011. “Don’t Vote!” (2010) and “Driving Like Crazy” (2009) are some of the most recent ones. O’Rourke is the most quoted living person, according to “60 Minutes”. He is also a regular correspondent for the Weekly Standard, the American Spectator, and the Atlantic Monthly.

P.J. O’Rourke Quotes

Politics are a lousy way for a free man to get things done.

— P.J. O’Rourke

Politics is the business of getting power and privilege without possessing merit. A politician is anyone who asks individuals to surrender part of their liberty — their power and privilege — to State, Masses, Mankind, Planet Earth, or whatever. This state, those masses, that mankind, and the planet will then be run by … politicians.

— P.J. O’Rourke

When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators.

— P.J. O’Rourke

Collectivism doesn’t work because it’s based on a faulty economic premise. There is no such thing as a person’s ‘fair share’ of wealth. The gross national product is not a pizza that must be carefully divided because if I get too many slices, you have to eat the box. The economy is expandable and, in any practical sense, limitless.

— P.J. O’Rourke, How to Explain Conservatism

Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.

— P.J. O’Rourke

When politics are used to allocate resources, the resources all end up being allocated to politics.

— P.J. O’Rourke

At the core of liberalism is the spoiled child – miserable, as all spoiled children are, unsatisfied, demanding, ill-disciplined, despotic and useless. Liberalism is a philosophy of sniveling brats.

— P.J. O’Rourke

There are just two rules of governance in a free society: Mind your own business. Keep your hands to yourself.

— P.J. O’Rourke

There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences.

— P.J. O’Rourke

America wasn’t founded so that we could all be better. America was founded so we could all be anything we damn well please.

— P.J. O’Rourke

The mystery of government is not how Washington works but how to make it stop.

— P.J. O’Rourke

If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it’s free.

— P.J. O’Rourke

There is no virtue in compulsory government charity, and there is no virtue in advocating it. A politician who portrays himself as “caring” and “sensitive” because he wants to expand the government’s charitable programs is merely saying that he’s willing to try to do good with other people’s money. Well, who isn’t? And a voter who takes pride in supporting such programs is telling us that he’ll do good with his own money – if a gun is held to his head.

— P.J. O’Rourke