William F. Buckley Jr.? Apocryphal?
Dear Quote Investigator: I am trying to verify a quotation from the conservative commentator and novelist William F. Buckley Jr. It goes something like this:
I would rather be governed by the first 1,000 people listed in the phone book than by the faculty members from an Ivy League University.
I do not recall if the phone book was for a particular city, and I do not know whether a specific university was named. Could you please help me to find a citation?
Quote investigator: William F. Buckley attended Yale University as an undergraduate, and he wrote critically about the institution in his book “God and Man at Yale”; however, a different school of higher learning appeared in his saying about governance. The earliest instance located by QI appeared in a profile and interview of Buckley in “Esquire” magazine in January 1961: 1961 January, Esquire magazine, William F. Buckley, Jr.: Portrait of a Complainer by Dan Wakefield, Quote Page 50, Esquire, Inc., New York. (Verified with microfilm)
“I would rather be governed by the first 2,000 people in the telephone directory,” he said, “than by the Harvard University faculty.”
Below are additional selected citations in chronological order.
|↑1||1961 January, Esquire magazine, William F. Buckley, Jr.: Portrait of a Complainer by Dan Wakefield, Quote Page 50, Esquire, Inc., New York. (Verified with microfilm)|