14 George Carlin Quotes: Everything You Need To Know About Education & Kids

You might not think Carlin knew much about kids, but remember, he was Mr. Conductor.

by Drew Wood
Originally Published: 

Perhaps no comic before or since has so ruthlessly and perfectly reflected society’s absurdity back on itself like the legendary George Carlin. Everyone remembers Carlin as the crass, hilarious, bearded master of wordplay and speaker of truth. Fewer remember him as the most improbably cast Mr. Conductor ever to command Shining Time Station. Almost no one remembers him as parenting’s moral compass, which is damn shame because the late comedian dropped some of the most pointed insights in the child-rearing game. (And F-bombs. So many F-bombs.) Among those who might is his lone daughter, Kelly, who just released A Carlin Home Companion, a rare glimpse into what it’s like being raised by an icon. Now you can finally see what made George Carlin the dad tick. Before, all you had to go by were these 14 quotes.

On The Simple Solution To Parenthood’s Most Difficult Question

“Parents are burning these kids out on structure. I think every day all children should have 3 hours of daydreaming. Just daydreaming. You could use a little of it yourself, by the way. Just sit at the window, stare at the clouds. It’s good for ya. If you want to know how you can help your children: leave them the f—k alone!

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-ryuJDTpEc expand=1]

On How Hovering Parents Smother The Childhood Out Of Children

“Today’s professional parents; these obsessive diaper sniffers are over-scheduling and over-managing their children and robbing them of their childhoods. Even the simple act of playing has been taken away from children and put on mommy’s schedule in the form of play dates.”

On How Everything Is Now Considered Dangerous

“Next stop, grade school, where [a kid] won’t be allowed to play tag because it encourages victimization and [they] won’t be allowed to play dodgeball because it’s exclusionary and it promotes aggression. Standing around is still OK. Standing around is still permitted but it won’t be for long because sooner or later some kid is going to be standing around and his foot will fall asleep and his parents will sue the school and it will be goodbye f—king standing around.”

On How Participation Trophies Were Ruining Kids Even Before James Harrison

“No matter what the game or sport or competition, everybody wins. No child these days ever gets to hear those important character-building words, ‘You lost, Bobby.” … A lot of these kids never get to hear the truth about themselves until they’re in their 20s when their boss calls them into their office and says, ‘Bobby, clean the shit outta your desk and get the f—k outta here, you’re a loser.'”

On The Sterilization Of The Summer Camp Experience

“Today’s child will be sent to fat camp, or violin camp, or ceramics camp, or computer camp, or to leadership camp, whatever the f—k that is. Leadership camp; isn’t that where Hitler went? Gotta keep the little fucker busy. Wouldn’t want him to sneak any unstructured time in the woods. God knows he might start jacking off.”

On A Better Alternative To Honor Roll Bumper Stickers

“Here’s a bumper sticker I’d like to see: Proud parents of a child whose self-esteem is sufficient that he doesn’t need us promoting his minor scholastic achievements on the back of our car.”

On The Negative Consequences Of The Self-Esteem Movement

“The Self-Esteem Movement began in 1970 and I’m happy to say it’s been a complete failure because studies have repeatedly shown that having high self-esteem does not improve grades, does not increase career achievement, does not limit the use of alcohol, and certainly does not reduce the incidence of violence of any sort because as it turns out, extremely aggressive, violent people think very highly of themselves.”

On The True Mozart Effect

“This practice of playing Mozart during the pregnancy so the fetus could hear it. It was supposed to increase intelligence. Didn’t work. All it did was sell a lot of CDs and piss off a lot of fetuses.”

On Modern Play Not Being What It Used To Be

“When does a kid ever get to sit in the yard with a stick anymore? You know, just sit there with a f—king stick. Do today’s kids even know what a stick is? You sit in the yard with a f—king stick and you dig a f—king hole … I don’t think there are any sticks left. I think all the sticks have been recalled because of lead paint.

On The Brutal Reality That Maybe Not Every Kid Is Special

“Every child is clearly not special. Did you ever take a close look at one of these f—king kids? They’re f—king goofy looking. They’re too small. They’re mal-proportioned. They can’t walk across the room in a straight line. And when they talk they talk like they’ve got a mouth full of shit … P.T. Barnum might think they’re special, but not me. I have standards.”

On Being Wary Of Putting The Cart Before The Horse

“There are places that have kindergarten entrance exams. The poor little f—k, he can barely locate his dick.”

On How To Test The Job You’re Doing As A Parent

“Easiest thing in the world, to raise a kid, if you follow the steps. First step: you take the kid and you put him out on the street corner, and you leave him there. You come back a week later. If the kid is still there, you’ve got yourself a stupid f—king kid.”

On Why Children Make Really Bad Secretaries

“Parents who let their kids record their [answering machine] message. Ugh. You can’t understand a word of it because the kid’s a f—king imbecile.”

On What Everyone Is Actually Thinking When People Show Off Pictures Of Their Kids

“These are the same parents who at Christmas time send you pictures of their children that you didn’t ask for because you don’t want it. But it is fun throwing them away. ‘Lu-Ann is 12 this year.’ F—k Lu-Ann!”

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