Is sloppiness in speech caused by ignorance or apathy? I don't know and I don't care.

William Safire on speeches

Never assume the obvious is true.

William Safire on assume

Last, but not least, avoid cliches like the plague.

William Safire on avoid

Knowing how things work is the basis for appreciation, and is thus a source of civilized delight.

William Safire on delight

The right to do something does not mean that doing it is right.

William Safire on mean

I think we have a need to know what we do not need to know.

William Safire on quote

Your column is a pack of damn lies, a reader wrote to William Safire about a political piece he did in the New York Times.Brushing aside the stern criticism, Safire immediately debated whether it should be damn, the way it sounds, or damned, as the past participle of the verb, to damn. The ed on some words is simply slipping away, he points out. We're seeing more barbecue chicken, whip cream and corn beef. His conclusion: Ears are sloppy and eyes are precise; accordingly, speech can be loose but writing should be tight.

William Safire on grammar

To know your place is a good idea in politics.

That is not to say stay in your place or hang on to your place, because ambition or boredom may dictate upward or downward mobility, but a sense of place -- a feel for one's own position in the control room -- is useful in gauging what you should try to do.

William Safire on politics

About William Safire

Name William Safire
Quotes 8 quotations
Nationality American
Profession Author
Birthday October 16
About William Lewis Safire was an American author, columnist, journalist and presidential speechwriter.He was perhaps best known as a long-time syndicated political columnist for the New York Times and a regular contributor to "On Language" in the New York Times Magazine, a column on popular etymology, new or unusual usages, and other language-related topics.
Top topics politics, quote, place, idea, hang