Here’s what we mean:
- He wrote too much. All Sinclair’s foes had to do was look through his 80 books to find an endless supply of quotes that they could use to attack him.
- He forgot that his words could be taken out of context. Sinclair had proposed a far-reaching social program called “End Poverty in California.” As the election neared, Sinclair boasted that the program would be so successful, “half the unemployed people in America” would move to California if he were elected.
That comment sealed his fate: He lost by 220,000 votes.
—Adapted from Radical Innocent: Upton Sinclair, Anthony Arthur, Random House.