Did Mark Twain Know Kellyanne Conway or Robbie Mook??

Adding humor to your speech - pondering on it

Written by Conor Cunneen

Published October 25, 2016


Did Mark Twain Know Kellyanne Conway or Robbie Mook??

Mark Twain railed against what he saw as the lack of integrity and honesty in politics. (And you thought this was a new phenomenon!)

In his 1907 book Christian Science, Twain doesn’t hold back on his views of party politics and its practitioners. Lord alone knows what he would think of what is going on today! His comments below brought to mind spin merchants Kellyanne Conway and Robbie Mook.

Man may soil his honor

“It is an accepted law of public life that in it a man may soil his honor in the interest of party expediency—must do it when party expediency requires it. In private life those men would bitterly resent—and justly—any insinuation that it would not be safe to leave unwatched money within their reach; yet you could not wound their feelings by reminding them that every time they vote ten dollars to the pension appropriation nine of it is stolen money and they the marauders.

They have filched the money to take care of the party; they believe it was right to do it; they do not see how their private honor is affected; therefore their consciences are clear and at rest.

By vote they do wrongful things every day, in the party interest, which they could not be persuaded to do in private life. In the interest of party expediency they give solemn pledges, they make solemn compacts; in the interest of party expediency they repudiate them without a blush. They would not dream of committing these strange crimes in private life.”


twain-front-180-10-27Keynote speaker Conor Cunneen is author Suppose You Were An Idiot… Mark Twain on Politics and PoliticiansTwain once wrote “Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a Congressman. But I repeat myself.”


“Whiskey is taken into the committee rooms in demijohns and carried out in demagogues.”

Mark Twain Notebook

Conor Cunneen is also author

What Mark Twain Learned Me ’bout Public Speakin’

“When I say I’ll learn (‘Teach’ is not in the river vocabulary) a man the river, I mean it. And you can depend on it, I’ll learn him or kill him.” Life on the Mississippi  – Mark Twain

Utilizing a unique and memorable MARK TWAIN acronym, author Conor Cunneen demonstrates what the Dean of American Humorists learned him bout public speakin !

Message preparation

Audience research and knowledge

Relate to audience

Know your objective

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