Top Incompetence Quotes

Browse top 64 famous quotes and sayings about Incompetence by most favorite authors.

Favorite Incompetence Quotes

1. "In the lead up to the Iraq war and its later conduct, I saw at a minimum, true dereliction, negligence and irresponsibility, at worse, lying, incompetence and corruption."
Author: Anthony Zinni
2. "She could not descend to an existence where her brain would explode under the pressure of forcing itself not to outdistance incompetence. She could not function to the rule of: Pipe down-keep down-slow down-don't do your best, it is not wanted!"
Author: Ayn Rand
3. "I am, as I've said, merely competent. But in an age of incompetence, that makes me extraordinary."
Author: Billy Joel
4. "Some information is classified legitimately; as with military hardware, secrecy sometimes really is in the national interest. Further, military, political, and intelligence communities tend to value secrecy for its own sake. It's a way of silencing critics and evading responsibility - for incompetence or worse. It generates an elite, a band of brothers in whom the national confidence can be reliably vested, unlike the great mass of citizenry on whose behalf the information is presumably made secret in the first place. With a few exceptions, secrecy is deeply incompatible with democracy and with science."
Author: Carl Sagan
5. "I don't think science is hard to teach because humans aren't ready for it, or because it arose only through a fluke, or because, by and large, we don't have the brainpower to grapple with it. Instead, the enormous zest for science that I see in first-graders and the lesson from the remnant hunter-gatherers both speak eloquently: A proclivity for science is embedded deeply within us, in all times, places, and cultures. It has been the means for our survival. It is our birthright. When, through indifference, inattention, incompetence, or fear of skepticism, we discourage children from science, we are disenfranchising them, taking from them the tools needed to manage their future."
Author: Carl Sagan
6. "But the technology was accessible, which suggests incompetence on the part of our counterintelligence community and the Clinton Administration, and may in fact rise to the level of treason."
Author: Charles Bass
7. "For four years, I listened to stories of intelligence failures, and it wasn't due to incompetence of anyone in the system, but that the system is so arcane."
Author: Charles Bass
8. "This was the fall of 2004. The wider world was deeply fucked, and home also. Two American wars raging—bloodbaths each, bloodbath major and bloodbath minor, ugly, squirrelly hateful clandestine wars marked by betrayal, incompetence and corruption. Don't get me started."
Author: Claire Messud
9. "Management cares about only one thing. Paperwork. They will forgive almost anything else - cost overruns, gross incompetence, criminal indictments - as long as the paperwork's filled out properly. And in on time."
Author: Connie Willis
10. "I know the well of my maternal incompetence is deep but I am determined to siphon up a calm and breathing hope for him."
Author: Donna VanLiere
11. "Marriage, laws, the police, armies and navies are the mark of human incompetence."
Author: Dora Russell
12. "He attacked everything in life with a mix of extraordinary genius and naive incompetence, and it was often difficult to tell which was which."
Author: Douglas Adams
13. "Violence is a confession of terrible incompetence."
Author: E.W. Hornung
14. "In short, Israel is the measure of our failings and our incompetence. We have waited for a great leader for years, but none came; we have waited for a mighty military victory, but we were defeated roundly; we have waited for outside powers (the US or,in its time, the Soviet Union), but none came to our aid. The one thing we have not tried in all seriousness is to rely on OURSELVES: until we do that with a full commitment to success there is no chance that we can advance towards self-determination and freedom from aggression.-1998"
Author: Edward W. Said
15. "The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and these are ignorance, superstition and incompetence."
Author: Elbert Hubbard
16. "This too to remember. If a man writes clearly enough any one can see if he fakes. If he mystifies to avoid a straight statement, which is very different from breaking so-called rules of syntax or grammar to make an efffect which can be obtained in no other way, the writer takes a longer time to be known as a fake and other writers who are afflicted by the same necessity will praise him in their own defense. True mysticism should not be confused with incompetence in writing which seeks to mystify where there is no mystery but is really only the necessity to fake to cover lack of knowledge or the inability to state clearly. Mysticism implies a mystery and there are many mysteries; but incompetence is not one of them; nor is overwritten journalism made literature by the injection of a false epic qulaity. Remember this too: all bad writers are in love with the epic."
Author: Ernest Hemingway
17. "The crux of the problem was this: He was at once everything and nothing she needed. Seen from afar, they were picturesque, a symphony of superior genes, a study in storybook promise. But when they were alone together, they were curiously ill suited, sometimes mortifyingly lacking in secrets to share and things to talk about. But common wisdom condoned this, did it not? Was this not the basis of a great partnership: opposition, difference of opinion. Pairing up with someone as practical as she would be terribly boring, just as coupling Tom with another dreamer would result in incompetence; that pair would never make it out of the house. Both combinations would amount to deadening and impractical redundancy. But what if it was equally dangerous to pair up two people who were so different? Were they not signing up for a lifetime of silent dinners or, worse, after-dinner spats?"
Author: Galt Niederhoffer
18. "I think every chef, not just in America, but across the world, has a double-edged sword - two jackets, one that's driven, a self-confessed perfectionist, thoroughbred, hate incompetence and switch off the stove, take off the jacket and become a family man."
Author: Gordon Ramsay
19. "Arrogance, ignorance, and incompetence. Not a pretty cocktail of personality traits in the best of situations. No sirree. Not a pretty cocktail in an office-mate and not a pretty cocktail in a head of state. In fact, in a leader, it's a lethal cocktail."
Author: Graydon Carter
20. "My mother is a big fan of precision, and tries her best to maintain it. Unfortunately, her own incompetence gets in the way. Dinner is served, except when a can won't open. That's the way she is: fine unless something goes wrong and that minor obstacle becomes a huge wall she can't scale. She becomes helpless whenever things don't go smoothly, or exactly as she imagined them."
Author: Gregory Galloway
21. "The whole gospel of Karl Marx can be summed up in a single sentence: Hate the man who is better off than you are. Never under any circumstances admit that his success may be due to his own efforts, to the productive contribution he has made to the whole community. Always attribute his success to the exploitation, the cheating, the more or less open robbery of others. Never under any circumstances admit that your own failure may be owing to your own weakness, or that the failure of anyone else may be due to his own defects - his laziness, incompetence, improvidence, or stupidity."
Author: Henry Hazlitt
22. "I hate to admit it, but governmental deviousness is usually better explained by incompetence, vanity, and the need to protect one's job at all costs."
Author: Jasper Fforde
23. "Wait. You work for me?""I prefer to think of it as managing your incompetence."
Author: Jim Butcher
24. "Evil turned out not to be a grand thing. Not sneering Emperors with their world-conquering designs. Not cackling demons plotting in the darkness beyond the world. It was small men with their small acts and their small reasons. It was selfishness and carelessness and waste. It was bad luck, incompetence, and stupidity. It was violence divorced from conscience or consequence. It was high ideals, even, and low methods."
Author: Joe Abercrombie
25. "The problem is with men. I know I shouldn't say this, but they've shrouded and hidden women to hide their incompetence."
Author: John Galliano
26. "The incompetence regarding body and vehicle armor rises almost to a level of criminal negligence."
Author: John Olver
27. "Why do we love the idea that people might be secretly working together to control and organise the world? Because we don't like to face the fact that our world runs on a combination of chaos, incompetence and confusion."
Author: Jonathan Cainer
28. "I was recently asked what it takes to become a writer. Three things, I answered: first, one must cultivate incompetence at almost every other form of profitable work. This must be accompanied, second, by a haughty contempt for all the forms of work that one has established that one cannot do. To these two must be joined, third, the nuttiness to believe that other people can be made to care about your opinions and views and be charmed by the way you state them. Incompetence, contempt, lunacy--once you have these in place, you are set to go."
Author: Joseph Epstein
29. "Laziness has become the chief characteristic of journalism, displacing incompetence."
Author: Kingsley Amis
30. "Is puppy love the reason so many Americans are blind to the incompetence and waste of Republicans - who at a minimum are supposed to be good money managers - running Iraq reconstruction?"
Author: Margaret Carlson
31. "The sooner we associate long hours and multitasking with incompetence and carelessness the better. The next time you hear boasts of executives pulling an all-nighter or holding conference calls in their cars, be sure to offer your condolences; it's grim being stuck in sweatshops run by managers too ignorant to understand productivity and risk. Working people like this is as smart as running your factory without maintenance. In manufacturing and engineering businesses, everyone learns that the top priority is asset integrity: protecting the machinery on which the business depends. In knowledge-based economies, that machinery is the mind."
Author: Margaret Heffernan
32. "Burning dinner is not incompetence but war."
Author: Marge Piercy
33. "A king, realizing his incompetence, can either delegate or abdicate his duties. A father can do neither. If only sons could see the paradox, they would understand the dilemma."
Author: Marlene Dietrich
34. "The threat posed by Bank of America isn't just financial - it's a full-blown assault on the American dream. Where's the incentive to play fair and do well, when what we see rewarded at the highest levels of society is failure, stupidity, incompetence and meanness? If this is what winning in our system looks like, who doesn't want to be a loser?"
Author: Matt Taibbi
35. "I don't want to be kept safe! I don't want to have someone constantly trying to keep me from tripping on my own incompetence. I want to live in a world where I know the rules, where people are just people. Not one where they keep trying to eat me. That's the reason I left the city in the first place. I don't want to be kept, not by anyone."
Author: Meagan Spooner
36. "If people could climb higher in the social hierarchy in proportion to their incompetence, I guarantee the world would not go round the way it does. But that's not even the problem. What his sentence means isn't that incompetent people have found their place in the sun, but that nothing is harder or more unfair than human reality: humans live in a world where it's words and not deeds that have power, where the ultimate skill is mastery of language."
Author: Muriel Barbery
37. "Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence."
Author: Napoleon Bonaparte
38. "And so a miserable but possible scenario is that countries in the bottom billion oscillate between the traps and limbo, perhaps switching in the process from one trap to another..Let me be clear: we cannot rescue them. The societies of the bottom billion can only be rescued from within. In every society of the bottom billion there are people working for change, but usually they are defeated by the powerful internal forces stacked against them. We should be helping the heroes. So far, our efforts have been paltry: through inertia, ignorance, and incompetence, we have stood by and watched them lose.Let me be clear: we cannot rescue them. These societies of the bottom billion can only be rescued from within."
Author: Paul Collier
39. "My son, your ineptitude is so vast, your incompetence so profound, that I am certain you are inhabited by greater power than I have ever known. Unfortunately, it seems to be working backward at the moment, and even I can find no way to set it right. It must be that you are meant to find your own way to reach your power in time; but frankly, you should live so long as that will take you. Therefore I grant it that you shall not age from this day forth, but will travel the world round and round, eternally inefficient, until at last you come to yourself and know what you are. Don't thank me. I tremble at your doom."
Author: Peter S. Beagle
40. "It has become almost a cliche to remark that nobody boasts of ignorance of literature, but it is socially acceptable to boast ignorance of science and proudly claim incompetence in mathematics."
Author: Richard Dawkins
41. "Any historian of warfare knows that it is in good part a comedy of errors and a museum of incompetence; but if for every error and every act of incompetence one can substitute an act of treason, we can see how many points of fascinating interpretation are open to the paranoid imagination: treason in high places can be found at almost every turning -- and in the end the real mystery, for one who reads the primary works of paranoid scholarship, is not how the United States has been brought to its present dangerous position, but how it has managed to survive at all."
Author: Richard Hofstadter
42. "Sometimes incompetence is useful. It helps you keep an open mind."
Author: Roberto Cavalli
43. "I know the word "incompetent" from my father. He uses it when there's something political on TV, or when he and Uncle Miki are quarreling about something political they've seen on TV. Incompetence means doing something even though you haven't the faintest idea how to--like governing Yugoslavia, for instance."
Author: Saša Stanišić
44. "You asked my opinion and I gave it. Of course you have to remember that if I'd been on the island with Gilligan, he'd have been killed ten minutes into the first episode. Where I come from, incompetence and stupidity are reasons for justifiable homicide. (Varyk)"
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon
45. "My niceness has a very low threshold and that little girl just sucked it dry, so don't push me, Olympain. I don't want so much as a single Atlantean stone overturned. Guard it with your life because the next time I come here, that's the price I'm going to demand for your incompetence. (ZT)Nice talking to you, ZT. I so look forward to your visits. Next time we'll do pastries, ‘kay? (Kat)"
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon
46. "Varyk slid his gaze over to the fire that was blazing in the ornate Victorian hearth. "You asked my opinion and I gave it. Of course you have to remember that if I?d been on the island with Gilligan, he?d have been killed ten minutes into the first episode. Where I come from, incompetence and stupidity are reasons for justifiable homicide."
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon
47. "I have not yet witnessed a spontaneous recovery from incompetence."
Author: Susan Scott
48. "The Tea Party represents stakeholders in the American system; people who were never involved in politics or thought they had to be, yet realized that political corruption and incompetence threatened not only their families, but the future of the nation itself."
Author: Tammy Bruce
49. "The train swung around the curve, the engine puffing with short, heavy blasts, and they passed smoothly from sight that way, with that quality about them of shabby and timeless patience, of static serenity: that blending of childlike and ready incompetence and paradoxical reliability that tends and protects them it loves out of all reason and robs them steadily and evades responsibility and obligations by means too barefaced to be called subterfuge even and is taken in theft or evasion with only that frank and spontaneous admiration for the victor which a gentleman feels for anyone who beats him in a fair contest, and withal a fond and unflagging tolerance for whitefolk's vagaries like that of a grandparent for unpredictable and troublesome children, which I had forgotten."
Author: William Faulkner
50. "George Bernard Shaw once said: "Capitalism has destroyed ourbelief in any effective power but that of self interest backed by force."When liberals make the argument that capitalism is the cause of allof our problems, they are either speaking out of abject ignoranceor being totally disingenuous to protect their own political interests.We have not had true free-market capitalism in this country on anywide scale. Where we have had economic successes in this nation'shistory, it has been those times when people have done somethingoutside of the government's involvement. Every single time the federalgovernment has been involved, it has created chaos, waste, andcorruption. The historical record is overwhelmingly one of grossincompetence."
Author: Ziad K. Abdelnour

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The life of a man is like a flower, blooming so gaily in a field. Then, along comes a goat, he eats it and the flower is gone!"
Author: Anton Chekhov

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