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Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:11 PM

Does your idiot conservative uncle send you this quote?

Bonus question: Does your idiot uncle incorrectly attribute the quote to Abraham Lincoln?

I get this all the time from conservatives in both e-mail forwards and on Facebook. If you have a link to a catchy, snarky, funny, or interesting response or critique, please share.

William John Henry Boetcker's "10 Cannots"

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot help little men by tearing down big men.
You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
You cannot establish sound security on borrowed money.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.
You cannot build character and courage by destroying men's initiative and independence.
And you cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they can and should do for themselves.

21 replies, 2026 views

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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Does your idiot conservative uncle send you this quote? (Original post)
Algernon Moncrieff Mar 2016 OP
mahatmakanejeeves Mar 2016 #1
Algernon Moncrieff Mar 2016 #3
mahatmakanejeeves Mar 2016 #6
Dont call me Shirley Mar 2016 #2
gratuitous Mar 2016 #4
Algernon Moncrieff Mar 2016 #9
mahatmakanejeeves Mar 2016 #10
gratuitous Mar 2016 #12
mahatmakanejeeves Mar 2016 #13
nxylas Mar 2016 #5
marble falls Mar 2016 #7
Johonny Mar 2016 #8
Algernon Moncrieff Mar 2016 #11
Johonny Mar 2016 #16
Algernon Moncrieff Mar 2016 #17
flobee1 Mar 2016 #14
madinmaryland Mar 2016 #15
HughBeaumont Mar 2016 #18
ScreamingMeemie Mar 2016 #19
Whiskeytide Mar 2016 #20
hfojvt Mar 2016 #21

Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:13 PM

1. No, for two reasons.

One, the whole family is loaded with Confederate sympathizers (or it was, forty years, but death has had a way of taking care of that), and he would never have quoted Lincoln in a favorable light, and

Two, he's dead.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Reply #1)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:16 PM

3. I've gortten this from cousins and neighbors

They might sympathize with the Confederacy if they gave it much thought. Mostly, they became evangelicals at some point in their lives.

So does your family refer to 1861-1865 as "The War of Northern Aggression?"

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:20 PM

6. No, we didn't go that far. For us,

it was the War Between the States.

My aunt (the one married to my uncle who died a few years back) is one bitter person. You'd think she'd lighten up in her old age, but no.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:14 PM

2. You cannot reason with an unreasonable person by appearing to be reasonable.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:17 PM

4. That trickle down gonna start trickling anytime soon?

We've had a massive re-distribution of wealth upwards to folks like Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton for the last 40 years. Can you tell me when they will finally have enough money to start letting some trickle down to working people whose hours and productivity have increased substantially since 1980, but whose wages have remained stagnant?

Or is it still too soon to have a time estimate on that?

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Response to gratuitous (Reply #4)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:21 PM

9. But Abe Lincoln said you can't lift up the wage earner by tearing down the Kardashians

Otherwise, I suppose Saks 5th Avenue would shut down.

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Response to gratuitous (Reply #4)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:22 PM

10. It seems to me that that's voluntary.

Are people being forced to watch them?

I don't have cable, so I've never seen either one of them for longer than it takes me to reach the power switch or channel-changer.

If it's not on free TV, then I won't see it.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Reply #10)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:26 PM

12. Whether people watch them or not

The wealthy are still grabbing a bigger chunk of the economic output of the country's labor force, and doing no discernible work. The complexities of the tax code and the federal government's spending priorities aren't there by accident.

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Response to gratuitous (Reply #12)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:39 PM

13. Okay. Well, under the circumstances, if I ever start watching them,

I promise I'll stop right away.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:19 PM

5. Never seen it before

Now, that meme about how America had roads and schools before 1913, on the other hand....

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:21 PM

7. Here's the Wiki poop:

William John Henry Boetcker (1873Ė1962) was an American religious leader and influential public speaker.

Born in Hamburg, Germany, he was ordained a Presbyterian minister soon after his arrival in the United States as a young adult. The Rev. Boetcker was ordained in Brooklyn, New York.

He quickly gained attention as an eloquent motivational speaker, and is often regarded today as the forerunner of such contemporary "success coaches" as Anthony Robbins.
The Ten Cannots

An outspoken political conservative, Rev. Boetcker is perhaps best remembered for his authorship of a pamphlet entitled The Ten Cannots that emphasizes freedom and responsibility of the individual on himself. Originally published in 1916, it is often misattributed to Abraham Lincoln. The error apparently stems from a leaflet printed in 1942 by a conservative political organization called the Committee for Constitutional Government. The leaflet bore the title "Lincoln on Limitations" and contained some genuine Lincoln quotations on one side and the "Ten Cannots" on the other, with the attributions switched. The genuine Lincoln quotations may have been from an address on March 21, 1864 in which Lincoln said "Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another; but let him labor diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built." [1] The mistake of crediting Lincoln for "The Ten Cannots" has been repeated many times since, notably by Ronald Reagan in his address to the 1992 Republican National Convention in Houston.[2][3]

<snip>

Boetcker also spoke of the "Seven National Crimes":[4]

I donít think.
I donít know.
I donít care.
I am too busy.
I leave well enough alone.
I have no time to read and find out.
I am not interested.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:21 PM

8. You cannot fix stupid, you can only stop giving its voice equal weight

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Response to Johonny (Reply #8)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:25 PM

11. That sounds like "don't dignify it with a response."

That approach does not work. Those who don't respond are seen as having been stumped by superior logic.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Reply #11)

Thu Mar 24, 2016, 11:05 AM

16. No, I didn't say that at all

In America we put a climate scientist on TV or in front of congress and nearly always an equal number if not more climate deniers. Even though the science out put of the two groups and the scientific basis of the two groups is not equal. There is no reason to give stupid an equal voice at the table when they're facts are not equally in validity or valid at all. The goal of American media and American politics these days isn't to inform, it is to keep the controversy alive. From Obama being born in Kenya to the mythical oppression of Christians the stupid have a seat at the table. You could claim they have more than one seat. We as a society don't have to do this, it certainly doesn't serve us, and yet we allow it without question. They claim they are being fair to the other side (as if truth had a side), but the fairness doctrine only works one way, for the stupids favor. When the stupid lose an argument (and they always lose) they never go away because our media and politics guarantees they don't have to.

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Response to Johonny (Reply #16)

Thu Mar 24, 2016, 12:09 PM

17. Sorry to have misunderstood your point

I'm not unlike many Americans: I have a family spread out over several regions of America; I continue Facebook relationships with friends I grew up with; and I work in a big company. So stupid comes to my table and makes itself right at home.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 07:44 PM

14. Since they have chosen to use generalities

So have I
They would sell their own mother if they could get away with it.
They dont want taxes but get angry if their street is not plowed during the winter or they have to pay an arm and a leg if their child want to play sports.
Is against all government aid until they have to start paying for grandpa at the home.

I have found, its all money with these people. You can talk about the most mundane subjects and somehow, the first thing that comes to their minds is money. Tell them you mowed the grass, and they will tell you how their lawn service is overcharging them, and in the same breath, mention how they are looking unsuccessfully for a cheap fitness center, completely missing how those 2 things are connected.
Or how they want all business unregulated but complain how they can't go swimming in the lake due to the toxic water. I just tell them, they better get their strainer out of the kitchen and get busy taking the alge blooms out of the water if they want to go swimming!
Oh, your water pipe broke? Better get your shovel and get your ass digging!

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Wed Mar 23, 2016, 09:32 PM

15. Ok. Here goes...

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. (Sounds like what the Bush Misadminstration did)
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. (Prove it!).
You cannot help little men by tearing down big men. (Actually you can. Economic equality works very well. Trickle down does not work.)
You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. (Another Ayn Rand fantasy. Trickle down does not work.)
You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. (Another Ayn Rand fantasy. No one wants to destroy the rich, the 99% just want equality. Trickle down does not work.)
You cannot establish sound security on borrowed money. (Bush transferred $10trillion to the billionaires and borrowed all of the money on the middle tax payers backs. Vote against Repubicans to keep the money in the hands of the middle class).
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. (Please talk to the Repubicans who have been this class hatred and warfare).
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn. (A no shit comment, that should apply to Repubicans who are raping the country, the Military Industrial Complex, the Prison Industrial Complex)
You cannot build character and courage by destroying men's initiative and independence. (A completely meaningless comment by teabagging douchebags who "I got mine, fuck everyone else"
And you cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they can and should do for themselves. (More meaningless bullshit from Ayn Rand who collected Social Security. Damn Socialist!!)

All in all, what a line of bullshit.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Thu Mar 24, 2016, 12:41 PM

18. I have a response to all of them!

Wingnuts and Austrian Schoolers love this blame-the-victim bullshit and think this cliche garbage actually has merit. Which they do, if you're one of them "temporarily embarrassed millionaires", or worship at the Blessed Temple of the Free Market, or actually think the Re-Branded Feudalism we practice resembles the same Capitalism you grew up with or something.

One of my wingnut relatives posted this meme online and of course I shat all over it. He told me to "shoot myself in the face and end my miserable life". Charming guy. And these are the people I'm supposed to REASON and find middle ground with?

Aaaaaaand the answers . . .

* Uh, you can't bring about prosperity by FORCING thrift either, stupid. You know, unless you think we DON'T live in an economy that's 2/3rds dependent on consumer spending.

* RIGHT, because the whole "Strengthening the Strong" thing we've been doing for the past 40 years is just working out GANGbusters for the weak. COME on.

* My GOD . . . anyone who thinks America's winner-take-everything economics "tears down big men" really just needs to shut the fuck up like Silent Bob. Look at how America's wealthy live. Are you shitting me on this?? This one is absolutely insulting and despicable.

* If it wasn't for the wage earner, there would be no wage payer. Chicken or egg, guy?

* See "tearing down big men" response above. COME on. Tax those shits until their ears bleed; I don't want to hear a damned thing about how they can't afford it. No one's holding a gun to their head when they buy multiple vehicles or homes.

* Don't tell the M.I.C., the wealthy or the corporate welfare queens that!!!

* Read Buffett, Warren regarding "class warfare", please and thank you.

* Don't tell Republicans that. They're the borrow and waste kings.

* . . . . said the winner-burn-everything Republicans . . . .

* . . . and if, after degree upon degree, trade upon trade, skill upon skill, cert after cert they're told "Well, sometimes it's not about how hard you work, it's how much you're going for . . . and you simply cost too much money.", WHAT THEN, FREE MARKET SNAKE WAVERS???

OWN UP. Your religion is a sham.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Thu Mar 24, 2016, 12:57 PM

19. Here's a short, to the point, catchy response...

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Thu Mar 24, 2016, 12:57 PM

20. Turn them around into the "Ten CANs" and they are just as relevant ...

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.

You CAN discourage thrift among the middle class and bring about great prosperity for the 1% - See the financial system.

You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.

You CAN further strengthen the strong by allowing them to weaken and prey upon the weak and voiceless.

You cannot help little men by tearing down big men.

You CAN help the big man by simultaneously tearing down many little men.

You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.

You CAN lift the profit margin of the wage payer by diminishing the wages of the wage earner.

You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.

You CAN help the rich by destroying the poor - at least in the short term.

You cannot establish sound security on borrowed money.

You CAN establish great security, wealth and power by lending money to others at high interest rates and under oppressive terms.

You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.

You CAN benefit from the incitement of class hatred if your goal - to further enrich yourself and deflect blame for it - has nothing to do with furthering the brotherhood of man.

You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn.

You CAN keep the middle and lower classes in perpetual trouble by paying them less than a living wage and further widening the gap between the 1% and the 99%.

You cannot build character and courage by destroying men's initiative and independence.

You CAN destroy courage and character by stagnating initiative and independence - lemmings have no time nor stomach for courage and character.

And you cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they can and should do for themselves.

You CAN make it more and more difficult for people to do for themselves and thereby keep them in a permanent state of needing help.


And our society does all of these "CANs" quite well, I think.

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Response to Algernon Moncrieff (Original post)

Thu Mar 24, 2016, 02:01 PM

21. I tend to not hate those

1. I love thrift

2. I'm not trying to weaken or tear down or pull down or destroy anybody, so not sure why I should get excited about the 2,3,4, or 5

6. Not a huge fan of borrowed money, but it is kinda typical. For example, I gained great benefit by borrowing $28,000 in Oct. 2001. Even though that amount ended up being over 200% of my yearly income. By going into debt, I was able to avoid paying $500 a month in rent, instead making $300 a month in house payments (including insurance and taxes). However, by paying back my debt quickly, I was also able to save thousands in interest costs. I would probably still be paying $800 a year in interest if I hadn't paid off the house in 2005. Still, I agree, it is better to tax the rich than borrow from the rich.

7. In general, I try to avoid hatred (except "I try, I really try, but dammit Jim, I hate cops" said by a female detective to Jim Rockford after getting a parking ticket) I don't hate the upper classes, I just want to reduce their after tax income by a fair amount. Or heck, these days I might even consider a huge political victory if MY side could just STOP giving them big tax cuts. http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=439x1996802

8. Again, why should I dispute this? At least for an individual it seems like sound advice. No so, though, for an organization, especially an organization, like my Credit Union or my Kiwanis district, which has money in reserve. The people in charge of those organizations seem wrongly concerned with a) having a large reserve, and b) increasing the reserve. Which seems wrong headed to me, I feel that both organizations would be better off if they spent some of their reserve (the credit union would be giving it back to their members rather than piling up reserve funds). And it would be lunacy for our nation to NOT have increased our debt to provide an economic stimulus back in 2009. Had we not done so, I agree with the economists who feel we would be much worse off.

9. I am not against initiative and independence. However, I am in favor of more cooperation and more compassion. We are on this planet for less than 120 years, let's try to enjoy our lives instead of making them harder than they need to be.

10. Nothing is permanent. But I also agree that some people should be working more. Some of the laziness and mooching I see does annoy me, but you see a fair amount of that at the top too, and then for THOSE people to wag their fingers at others?

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