Sullivan’s Sting

Sanders, Lawrence

Berkeley, 1990

p. 310

“Why, there were people who believed wearing a copper bracelet would prevent arthritis, people who believed they could beat a three-card-monte dealer, people who believed in astrology, flying saucers, and the power of crystals. There were even people who believed professional wrestling was on the up-and-up. How could you respect the intelligence of the populace when a con woman could travel the country collecting contributions by claiming to be the penniless widow of the Unknown Soldier? Rathbone came to regard this mass stupidity as a great natural resource. Just like oil in the ground, gold nuggets in a stream, or a stand of virgin forest, it was there to be exploited. The ignorance and greed of most people were simply inexhaustible, and a man would be a fool not to harvest that bounty.”