“It isn’t”

The Massachusetts General Court was in the midst of debate on a bill that drew spirited support from one especially long-winded legislator. He elaborated each point of the legislation and detailed its merits. Having introduced each argument for it with the affirmation, “It is,” the legislator was sure he had thoroughly made his case to the House.

Then Representative Coolidge was given the floor. He stood up and, with the room absolutely quiet, replied, “Mr. Speaker: It isn’t,” immediately sitting back down. A relieved House went up with laughter.

Needless to say, for all the words spent on the bill by the previous legislator, Coolidge’s simple refutation illustrates how the true course to follow is often the most direct, forthright and obvious. It does not take an expert to discern truth for us, it is within everyone’s reach to see and understand it. The bill died upon call of the roll.

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