Summary of the eRumor:
Alleged quotes from Abraham Lincoln about the poor,
the weak, prosperity, workers, class hatred, and character.
These words are often attributed to Abraham Lincoln,
but according to the book They Never Said it: A Book of Fake Quotes,
Misquotes, & Misleading Attributions, they are not from Lincoln.
The quotes were published in 1942 by William J. H. Boetcker, a Presbyterian
minister. He released a pamphlet titled Lincoln On Limitations, which
did include a Lincoln quote, but also added 10 statements written by Boetcker
1. You cannot bring about
prosperity by discouraging thrift.
2. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong
3. You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich.
4. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
5. You cannot build character and courage by taking away man's initiative and
6. You cannot help small men by tearing down big men.
7. You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
8. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income.
9. You cannot establish security on borrowed money.
10 You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they will not do for
People who got
the pamphlet thought the 10 statements were written by Lincoln and they have
been distributed widely under Lincoln's name.