One of the books I contemplated buying at the book sale I previously wrote about was a nice Penguin edition of Ambrose Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary. But from reading the preface I noticed that the book was in the public domain, so I figured it must be available online, and thus didn’t ultimately buy the book. Sure enough, it is available online (here, here, here, here, here, and here, for starters).

I was hoping “hubris” might be in it, but as an alternative, I’ll offer up these two back-to-back entries:

PATRIOT, n. One to whom the interests of a part seem superior to those of the whole. The dupe of statesmen and the tool of conquerors.

PATRIOTISM, n. Combustible rubbish read to the torch of any one ambitious to illuminate his name.


2 Responses to Patriotism as read by the devil

  1. Ambrose Bierce is really good, isn’t he? Should be required reading for all political pundits.

    Thanks for the links. Long live the public domain!

  2. nils says:

    “I still can’t believe they named that thing the fuckin’ USA PATRIOT ACT. Grown-ups did that. Never forget that.” Get Your War On’s schtick is getting old, but he’s got a good point there.

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