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 Post subject: Looking for source
PostPosted: Wed Jul 31, 2002 2:12 pm 
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I'm trying to find origins of the quote: "I know that you believe that you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure that you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." I have seen it attributed to former U.S. Ambassador Robert MCCloskey. Any further info greatly appreciated. :?


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 31, 2002 3:07 pm 
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Wow, this one's familiar -- I'm sure I've seen it here before, but maybe on the "old" forum. Anyone remember?


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 31, 2002 4:01 pm 
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I frankly am very surprised to see this attributed to anybody at all.
I personally do not believe any of them.
It's in mgm's (this website right here) collection at
http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/Robert_McCloskey/

Also found attributed thusly:
I know you believe you understand what it is you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what I said is not what I meant.
~President Richard M. Nixon to the International Press Corps
http://www.acsu.buffalo.edu/~chalufu/test.html
"I know you believe you understand what you think I said. But I am not sure you realise that what you heard is not what I meant."
~ Alan Greenspan
http://www.info.gov.hk/hkma/eng/viewpt/20010201e.htm

I know you think you understand what I said, but what you heard is not what I meant.
http://www.juggling.org/~kparsons@nlnet ... klers.html

The Word Game:
“Now you think you understand what I said, but do you realize that what you think you heard me say is not what I meant?"

Another version:
"I believe that you think you understand what I said, but I fear, that you don´t realize, that what I say is not always what I really mean"


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 31, 2002 5:50 pm 
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Hmmm. Here's a more detailed attribution from someone's site:
Quote:
I know that you believe that you understood what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
Robert McCloskey
U.S. State Department spokesman at one of his regular noon briefings during the worst days of the Vietnam War.
Marvin Kalb in TV Guide, Mar. 31, 1984.


I still have my doubts. This one's all over the Web and I'm not sure where it came from. (Not my fault this time, it was only recently added here.)

BTW, I checked the old forum - nothing there.

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Michael Moncur
Owner and maintainer, The Quotations Page


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2002 12:00 pm 
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Thanks for the help with this one. I've seen it around for years and have used it often when doing training on communication skills. The McCloskey attribution seems plausible - it sounds like something a State Department spokesman could say when put on the spot during a press briefing.
An apt response might be John Weakland's: "'The meaning of any communication is the response that it gets."


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 Post subject: Re: Looking for source
PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:10 am 
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Hello,

My grandparents had this quote in their house for years. I remember it as a small child visiting them. They lived real close, so I have seen the plaque for a long time. When researching, I found this website http://www.voxinghistory.com/?cat=23. This site had this to say:
I see it attributed to Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, citing an unspecified Capital Hill hearing. But I rather doubt that he is responsible for originating the phrase, since he was not nominated to the Federal Reserve until 1987, and this was hanging on my dorm room wall in 1974. Besides, Wikiquote states this is misattributed to Greenspan, and states the “earliest known print reference” to Robert McCloskey, U.S. State Department spokesman, during a Vietnam-era press briefing. That’s a possibility, as is another Vietnam-era attribution to Richard Nixon. But if we really want to go back a long ways, I see it attributed to Oscar Wilde. I kind of like that, but the Web sites devoted to Wilde do not mention it, and that does not help the credibility of this reference.
Vox’s Take: I guess I have to side with the quote sites that admit defeat and attribute it to “Unknown”, whoever he was.

Sources:
[1] Viewpoint: Alan Greenspan and the Federal Reserve, Joseph Yam
[2] Alan Greenspan, Wikiquote
[3] PUBLIC RELATIONS Quote View, Schipul, The Web Marketing Company
[4] The Official Web Site of Oscar Wilde

My plaque says it is copyrighted. How do find who copyright it? Does anyone know?

Thanks


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