Mark Twain on various issues

First on conscience

If I had the remaking of man, he wouldn’t have any conscience. It is one of the most disagreeable things connected with a person, and although it certainly does a great deal of good, it cannot be said to pay, in the long run; it would be much better to have less good and more comfort.

On how we are generally alike

If you were to strip the nation naked and send a stranger through the crowd, he couldn’t tell the king from a quack doctor nor a duke from a hotel clerk

About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

15 thoughts on “Mark Twain on various issues

  1. jim- says:



  2. He’s one of my heroes.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Swarn Gill says:

    He has so many great quotes. Although I am not certain I agree with the last one completely. You could gather some information about wealth by looking at the healthiness of the person. Particularly the quality of teeth and general hygeine. Although back then it was much more of an equal factor perhaps.

    His first statement is quite interesting. He clearly intuited that our desire to do good, is dependent on what we consider good. People that cause harm often think that they are acting morally in accordance with their conscience. Comfort would probably be better.


    • Nan says:

      Methinks your academic nature is showing, Swarn … 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • makagutu says:

      Yes, you could some idea of wealth but you can’t tell from among those who are wealthy who is the king, the thief, the scoundrel or the head tax man, no?

      I found his comment about conscience interesting. At the end of the day, it is comfort we desire.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Swarn Gill says:

        Isn’t the head tax man the same as the scoundrel? 🙂 No I agree…in a broad sense you might be able to distinguish between some class structures, but finer detail would not be possible. As Nan says, I am being too sciency here. lol

        When you say “at the end of the day, it is comfort we desire” it reminds me of the lyrics from the Pink Floyd song Time:

        “Home, home again,
        I like to be here when I can,
        When I come home cold and tired,
        It’s good to warm my bones beside the fire.”

        Always loved those lines. It does seem some comfort at the end of the day is much more important.


  4. Love Twain, and his quote on naked humanness; but, I disagree with his rejection of conscious. Introspection is an essential quality, IMO, if not taken to excess.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. renudepride says:

    I’m so happy that I’m not alone in my appreciation of his wisdom. It’s indeed a disgrace that so many aren’t as sensible as he was. Naked hugs!


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