The Most Devastating Insult

Sinclair Lewis was the first American to win a Nobel Prize in Literature. He has been mostly forgotten, but he once wrote best selling novels, short-stories and plays. He had his own stamp. He was evidentially the inspiration for Howdy Doody.

He also wrote one of the greatest insult passages of all time:

She was a good woman, a kind woman, a diligent woman, but no one, save perhaps Tinka her ten-year-old, was at all interested in her or entirely aware that she was alive.

That passage is describing the titular character’s wife in Babbitt, a spectacular satire of American culture published in 1922. It tells the story of a hardworking man named George Babbitt who is a successful real estate agent, solid citizen and fervent supporter of prohibition (he drinks himself).

Do yourself a favor and read it. The best compliment I can give it is that you would only need to make a handful of changes today and the satire would apply to nearly all conservatives.

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