"Half of the American people have never read a newspaper. Half never voted for president. One hopes it is the same half." — Gore Vidal, the novelist and essayist who died July 31 at 86. Among Vidal's best-known books were Julian, Burr and Myra Breckinridge. Regarding presidential elections, Vidal also said, "Any American who is prepared to run for president should automatically by definition be disqualified from ever doing so."