Harry S. Truman Quotations

Harry Truman

About the meanest thing you can say about a man is that he means well.

A leader in the Democratic Party is a boss, in the Republican Party he is a leader.

Always be sincere, even if you don't mean it.

How far would Moses have gone if he had taken a poll in Egypt?

If somebody throws a brick at me, I can catch it and throw it back. But when somebody awards a decoration to me, I am out of words.

If you can't convince them, confuse them.

If you tell Congress everything about the world situation, they get hysterical. If you tell them nothing, they go fishing.

I have found the best way to give advice to your children is to find out what they want and then advise them to do it.

I have had enough experience in all my years, and have read enough of the past, to know that advice to grandchildren is usually wasted.

I'm proud that I'm a politician. A politician is a man who understands government, and it takes a politician to run a government. A statesman is a politician who's been dead 10 or 15 years.

I never give them hell; I just tell them the truth and they think it is hell.

I really look with commiseration over the great body of my fellow citizens who, reading newspapers, live and die in the belief that they have known something of what has been passing in their time.

I sit here all day trying to persuade people to do the things they ought to have sense enough to do without my persuading them. That's all the powers of the President amount to.

It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.

It is hot and humid and lonely. Why in hell does anybody want to be a head of state? Damned if I know.

It's a recession when your neighbour loses his job; it's a depression when you lose yours.

It was the same with those old birds in Greece and Rome as it is now. The only thing new in the world is the history you don't know.

Men often mistake notoriety for fame, and would rather be remarked for their vices and follies than not be noticed at all.

My choice in early life was either to be a piano player in a whorehouse or a politician. And to tell the truth, there's hardly any difference.

Never kick a fresh turd on a hot day.

Nixon is one of the few in the history of this country to run for high office talking out of both sides of his mouth at the same time and lying out of both sides.

Study men, not historians.

The White House is the finest prison in the world.

Those who want the Government to regulate matters of the mind and spirit are like men who are so afraid of being murdered that they commit suicide to avoid assassination.

Three things ruin a man: power, money, and women. I never wanted power. I never had any money, and the only woman in my life is up at the house right now.

When a fellow tells me he's bipartisan, I know he's going to vote against me.

Whenever you have an efficient government you have a dictatorship.