On the dubious theory that you can’t get too much of a good thing, I’m going to follow up I’VE GOT A SECRET and TO TELL THE TRUTH (my last post) with a take-off from another old radio (1940s) and TV (1950s) panel show called IT PAYS TO BE IGNORANT. Never let it be said, however, that I don’t have standards. Thus, I found 1940s-50s IGNORANT clips to be a bit beneath my readers’ level of sophistication, so I have opted instead for an updated 2013 spoof of the original program (the word “Alawite” in the clip refers to a religious sect in Syria):

Now, friends, we’ve all heard the old saying that ignorance is the sincerest form of flattery (or something to that effect). Therefore, in order to showcase certain public figures, past and present, in the revealing light of their own words, let us take a look at some of the more outstanding (though not necessarily funny) examples of why it pays to be ignorant (except when it doesn’t):

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the dumbest of you all? –Anne Robinson, British TV host, who “asked for it” when she left herself open to the answer on her own show:

Adolf Hitler was a Jeanne d’Arc, a saint. He was a martyr. Like many martyrs, he held extreme views. –Ezra Pound

Rural Americans are real Americans. There’s no doubt about that. You can’t always be sure with other Americans. Not all of them are real.Dan Quayle, former U.S. V Pres

My fear is that the whole island [Guam] will become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize. –Hank Johnson, Democratic Congressman from Georgia

Everything that can be invented has been invented. –Charles H. Duell, Commissioner, U.S. Patent Office, 1899

Hurray, Boys! We’ve got them. We’ll finish them up and then go home to our station. –General George Armstrong Custer, before battle at Little Big Horn

I don’t feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from them. There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves. –John Wayne

Son, looks to me like you’re spending too much time on one subject. –Shelby Metcalf, former Texas A&M Head Coach to one of his players who got a D and four F’s.

Saving the most classless and gratuitous example for last, this comes with our best wishes for a full recovery from brain cancer for the object of this quote:






Today, December 5th, is the birthday of one of the most famous three-named people in history, George Armstrong Custer, who I probably should’ve found a way to include in my November 24 post (titled THREE FOR ONE) about such persons.

They say Custer died at Little Big Horn on June 25, 1876, but he has lived on in film more than anyone I know of. Wikipedia lists over 30 movies centered around Custer, and I found at least one more not on their list: LITTLE BIG HORN (1951) starring Lloyd Bridges. Other stars who have portrayed Custer include Ronald Reagan in SANTA FE TRAIL (1940), Errol Flynn in THEY DIED WITH THEIR BOOTS ON (1941) and, believe it or not, Leslie Nielsen in THE PLAINSMAN (1966) – not to be confused with the 1936 film of the same named starring Gary Cooper (but NOT as Custer). Another unlikely portrayal listed by Wikipedia is by Italian movie star Marcello Mastroianni “depicting Custer as vain” in DON’T TOUCH THE WHITE WOMAN (1974). I’ve seen several Custer movies, but somehow I missed that one.

Speaking of someone who will live on, I just learned (after writing the above) that Nelson Mandela has died, so I will let Custer go now out of respect for the man who lived 95 years and left the world a better place. May the man of peace rest in peace.