- War and Peace
- Finance Quotes
- Authority and Government
- Fear and Courage
- Slackerism Quotes
- History Quotes
- Kiss Principle
- Perseverance Quotes
- Love and marriage quotes
- Language Design and Programming Quotes
- Latin Quotes
- Psychopaths quotes
- Simplicity and KISS principle
- Software Engeenering
- Stoicism quotes
- Truth and Lie
- Bierce, Ambrose
- Carlin, George
- Churchill, Winston
- Einstein, Albert
- Franklin, Benjamin
- Hemingway quotes
- Hoffer, Eric
- Keynes, John
- Marx, Karl
- Maugham, Somerset
- Shaw, George Bernard
- Stalin, Joseph
- Sun Tzu
- [Apr 04, 2017] Civilisation - Kenneth Clark ( Apr 04, 2017 | jessescrossroadscafe.blogspot.com )
- [Mar 22, 2017] The essence of corporatism
- [Mar 02, 2017] “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” Upton Sinclair, I, Candidate for Governor: And How I Got Licked
- [Feb 26, 2017] Notable Quotes from George Orwells Animal Farm ( Feb 26, 2017 | classiclit.about.com )
- [Feb 26, 2017] Thucydides - Wikiquote ( Feb 26, 2017 | en.wikiquote.org )
- Vae victis ( Wikipedia )
- [Feb 12, 2017] “Be kind, for everyone you meet is carrying a heavy burden.” ~Ian MacLaren
- [Jan 26, 2017] Neoliberals adhere that the old adage: He who dies with the most toys WINS.
- [Jan 26, 2017] "People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage. Intellectual myopia, often called stupidity, is no doubt a reason. But the privileged also feel that their privileges, however egregious they may seem to others, are a solemn, basic, God-given right. The sensitivity of the poor to injustice is a trivial thing compared with that of the rich. - John Kenneth Galbraith "The Age of Uncertainty" 1977
- [Jan 25, 2017] And mentioning "a legitimacy promoted and condoned by our nations leaders" don't forget the role of MSM in this dirty "misunderinformation" business (using the derivative of word invented by unforgettable Bush II) .
- [Jan 25, 2017] "Integrity, once sold, is difficult to repurchase - even at 10x the original sales price." SonOfAHistoryProf
- [Jan 24, 2017] “If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the law and the facts are against you, pound the table and yell like hell” - quoted by an Illinois native, Carl Sandburg, in The People, Yes (1936) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Why_Wikipedia_cannot_claim_the_earth_is_not_flat
- [Jan 17, 2017] Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. ~JFK
- [Jan 17, 2017] "Politicians were mostly people who'd had too little morals and ethics to stay lawyers." ~George R. R. Martin
- [Jan 02, 2017] Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing after they have exhausted all other possibilities. ( hardware.slashdot.org )
- [Dec 28, 2016] Did William Casey (CIA Director) really say, We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false. ? ( Dec 28, 2016 | www.quora.com )
- [Dec 07, 2016] Quotes about our free press
- [Dec 06, 2016] On Trump initial cabinet appointments: It so far looks like he is not draining the swamp, but rather changing out one set of alligators for another. Jesses Café Américain Charts at the Market Close on Hump Day - Dont Worry Baby
- Great Quotations on Power and Corruption - WhoWhatWhy
- [Oct 23, 2016] "There is one political party in this country, and that is the party of money. It has two branches, the Republicans and the Democrats, the chief difference between which is that the Democrats are better at concealing their scorn for the average man." ~ Gore Vidal
- [Oct 22, 2016] At 50, everyone has the face he deserves. ~ George Orwell
- [Oct 13, 2016] When Hillary Clinton declaration of Trump supporters as "basket of deplorables" is just another way of saying white-trash
- [Oct 11, 2016] Have you ever lived through a CIA-sponsored coup, a military invasion, or IMF-sponsored austerity to be certain that living through all that is preferable to the demise of American hegemony?
- [Sep 21, 2016] An interesting view on Russian "intelligencia" by the scientist and writer Zinoviev expressed during "perestroika" in 1991
- [Sep 14, 2016] "A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it." ~Max Planck
- [Sep 11, 2016] The people don’t want a phony Democrat subservient to Wall Street ( March 9, 2016 | nakedcapitalism.com )
- [Sep 04, 2016] “Politics is the art of choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.” - John Kenneth Galbraith
- [Aug 29, 2016] If you dont read the newspaper, youre uninformed. If you read the newspaper, youre misinformed. ~ Mark Twain
- [Aug 29, 2016] “When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in Society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it”. ~ F. Bastiat.
- [Aug 25, 2016] The Real Scandal of Clintons Emails Conducting Foreign Policy In Secret ( Aug 25, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com )
- [Aug 25, 2016] Sure, we want women in power ... but not [like] Madeleine Albright Lee T Loe on Hillary Clinton
- [Aug 24, 2016] The Financial Markets Are the Last Refuge of a Scoundrel
- [Jul 31, 2016] "Nothing wrong with Christianity except that no one ever tried it." ~George Bernard Shaw
- [Jul 25, 2016] Trump quotes
- [Jul 22, 2016] "Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard." H.L. Mencken
- [Jun 23, 2016] Its one of the marvels of American democracy that the voters who often decide close elections are those who pay the least attention to the contest or consequences.
- [Jun 23, 2016] "Terrible things we expect from Donald Trump, we’ve actually already seen from Hillary Clinton," Jill Stein
- [Jun 21, 2016] "Sometimes it is far better to not speak and be thought of as a fool. Than to do so and erase all doubt." Mark Twain The Guardian
- [Jun 20, 2016] Future candidates like Sanders will face same dilemma: Lose, & party apparatchiks dance on your grave. Win, & they’ll try to put you in one.
- [Jun 13, 2016] "One of the greatest tragedies of life is the murder of a beautiful theory by a gang of brutal facts. "– Benjamin Franklin
- [Jun 07, 2016] Katharine Hepburn Quotes (Author of Me)
- [Jun 02, 2016] Hoisted From Comments Neoliberalism Tearing Societies Apart ( naked capitalism )
- [May 28, 2016] Friendship in bohemia meant money borrowed, recriminations, complaints, tears, theft, and deceit. — Mavis Gallant
- [May 25, 2016] Oscar Wilde on Love
- [May 22, 2016] The Moor has done his duty. The Moor can go ( Yahoo Answers )
- [Apr 13, 2016] Well, nobody’s perfect! 40 great quotes about marriage
- [Apr 11, 2016] It is hard for a man to understand something when his paycheck depends on not understanding it. - Upton Sinclair.
- [Apr 11, 2016] Voting for Trump is like playing Russian Roulette with 3 bullets in the revolver. With Hillary, there are 5 bullets and a blank that will probably kill you anyway. ( Reason.com )
- [Mar 03, 2016] Collection of random quotes for March 2016
- [Feb 28, 2016] Random quotes Feb 2016
- [Feb 26, 2016] The first thing we do, lets kill all the lawyers
- [Jan 27, 2016] More Politicians Admitting That Money Controls Politics ( theintercept.com )
- [Jan 14, 2016] The Market Can Remain Irrational Longer Than You Can Remain Solvent ( quoteinvestigator.com )
- [Jan 14, 2016] War Against a Foreign Country Only Happens When the Moneyed Classes Think They Are Going to Profit From It ( Quote Investigator )
- [Jan 14, 2016] Capitalism The Nastiest of Men for the Nastiest of Motives Will Somehow Work for the Benefit of All ( Quote Investigator )
- [Jan 14, 2016] I Think that I Shall Never See a Billboard Lovely as a Tree ( Jan 14, 2016 | Quote Investigator )
- [Dec 25, 2015] Read The Letter That Turned Folk Icon Pete Seeger Into An FBI Target ( Zero Hedge )
- [Dec 18, 2015] Attributed to former U.S. President George H. W. Bush:
- [Dec 16, 2015] It is not inequality that drives innovation and economic growth -- it is the attempt to escape the leveling forces of capitalism.... -- Mark Thoma
- [Dec 07, 2015] “If you don’t read a newspaper every day, you are uninformed. If you do, you are misinformed.” – Mark Twain
- [Dec 02, 2015] Economist's View Links for 12-02-15 ( economistsview.typepad.com )
- [Nov 19, 2015] Random findings Nov 18, 2015
- [Oct 07, 2015] Bismarck said God has a special providence for fools, drunks, and the United States of America. We must be in good shape considering weve had fools like Wolfowitz and drunks like G.W Bush running the country.
- [Oct 02, 2015] "Rudeness is the weak mans imitation of strength" -- Eric Hoffer
- "There are two kinds of realists: those who manipulate facts and those who create them. The West requires nothing so much as men able to create their own reality." -- Henry Kissinger, 1963
- William Shakespeare,
- [Sep 20, 2015] "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -- an epigraph from Jonathan Swift s essay, Thoughts on Various Subjects, Moral and Diverting
- [Sep 18, 2015] There is an old saying on Wall Street that trees don’t grow to the sky. Apparently, not everyone believes this.
- WAR MAKES MORE EVIL PEOPLE THAN IT KILLS—Immanuel Kant
- Random findings
- [Aug 29, 2015] John Kenneth Galbraith on Writing, Inspiration, and Simplicity
- [Aug 24, 2015] A thing long expected takes the form of the unexpected when at last it comes. - Mark Twains Notebook
- [May 30, 2015] Going Off the Rails on a Crazy Train
- [May 24, 2015] Mathematics is the subject that Russians teach chinese and indians in US universities.
- [May 24, 2015] Will Robots Kill the Asian Century The National Interest
- [Apr 22, 2015] Plutarch on inequlity
- [Apr 07, 2015] Keynes Quotes
- Random findings:
- Jack London, The Iron Heel
- Farewell to Empire
- Folly is a more dangerous enemy to the good than evil
- [Feb 24, 2015] “He did not care for the lying at first. He hated it. Then later he had come to like it. It was part of being an insider, but it was a very corrupting business.” Ernest Hemingway, For Whom the Bell Tolls
- [Feb 24, 2015] "Easy is the descent down to hell; Its gates stand open, day and night. But to retrace ones steps, to return To see again the pure clean air, and cheerfulness and life: That is the real task, that is our true labour."
- "The more people rationalize cheating, the more it becomes a culture of dishonesty. And that can become a vicious, downward cycle. Because suddenly, if everyone else is cheating, you feel a need to cheat, too." -- Stephen Covey, The Speed of Trust
- "The greatest crimes of human history are made possible by the most colorless human beings. They are the careerists. The bureaucrats. The cynics. They do the little chores that make vast, complicated systems of exploitation and death a reality... And they do not ask questions." -- Chris Hedges, The Careerists
- Economics is a disgraced profession, what does it matter, when almost all the professions from medicine to law to finance have also given themselves over to the darkness of this world in high places? -- Jamie Galbraith
- [Jan 23, 2015] One way to check who is sell-out
- [Nov 29, 2014] "A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves." ~Henry Ward Beecher
- [Nov 17, 2014] Knowledge Without Wisdom ( Jesse's Café Américain )
- [Oct 03, 2014] Chutzpah of oligarchy
- [Aug 08, 2014] Random findings
- [Aug 07, 2014] Random findings
- Bertolt Brecht Quotes - iz quotes
- Public Debt and Economic Growth There is No ‘Tipping Point’ ( Economist's View )
- [Nov 15, 2013] Random findings
THOUGH it was not understood a century ago, and though as yet the applications
of the knowledge
to the economics of life are not generally realized, life in its physical aspect is fundamentally
for energy, in which discovery after discovery brings life into new relations with the original source.
[Frederick Soddy, WEALTH, VIRTUAL WEALTH AND DEBT, 2nd edition, p. 49]
"I believe order is better than chaos, creation better than destruction. I prefer gentleness to
violence, forgiveness to vendetta. On the whole I think that knowledge is preferable to ignorance,
and I am sure that human sympathy is more valuable than ideology. I believe that in spite of the
recent triumphs of science, men haven't changed much in the last two thousand years; and in consequence
we must try to learn from history. History is ourselves.
Civilisation: A Personal View by Kenneth Clark was a television documentary series outlining
the history of Western art, architecture and philosophy since the Dark Ages. The series was produced
by the BBC and initially aired in 1969 on BBC2.
I believe in courtesy, the ritual by which we avoid hurting other people's feelings, by satisfying
our own egos. And I think we should remember that we are all part of a great whole, which for
convenience we call nature. All living things are our brothers and sisters."
Kenneth Clark, Civilisation
"At the root of America's economic crisis lies a moral crisis: the decline of civic virtue
among America's political and economic elite. A society of markets, laws, and elections is not
enough if the rich and powerful fail to behave with respect, honesty, and compassion toward the
rest of society and toward the world."
The summation of the series.
"When the modern corporation acquires power over markets, power in the community, power over
the state and power over belief, it is a political instrument, different in degree but not in
kind from the state itself. To hold otherwise - to deny the political character of the modern
corporation - is not merely to avoid the reality.
It is to disguise the reality. The victims of that disguise are those we instruct in error."
John Kenneth Galbraith
[Mar 02, 2017] “It is difficult to get a man to understand something,
when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” ― Upton
Sinclair, I, Candidate for Governor: And How I Got Licked
George Orwell's influential, allegorical novel Animal Farm was published in 1945. In the novel, the
overworked and mistreated animals on a farm all begin to follow the precepts of Animalism, rise up against
the humans, take over the farm, and rename the place: Animal Farm. This is something that happened with
open source and Linux. But we are
- "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."
- "The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man
again; but already it was impossible to say which was which."
- "Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does
not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits.
Yet he is lord of all the animals. He sets them to work, he gives back to them the bare minimum
that will prevent them from starving, and the rest he keeps for himself."
- "No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would
be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make
the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?"
- "Several of them would have protested if they could have found the right arguments."
- "This work was strictly voluntary, but any animal who absented himself from it would have
his rations reduced by half."
- "Let's face it: our lives are miserable, laborious, and short."
- "Man serves the interests of no creature except himself."
- "Twelve voices were shouting in anger, and they were all alike. No question, now, what
had happened to the faces of the pigs. The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from
man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which."
- "Can you not understand that liberty is worth more than just ribbons?"
- "Windmill or no windmill, he said, life would go on as it had always gone on--that is,
- "Man is the only real enemy we have. Remove Man from the scene, and the root cause of hunger
and overwork is abolished forever."
- "Four legs good, two legs better! All Animals Are Equal. But Some Animals Are More Equal
- "The distinguishing mark of man is the hand, the instrument with which he does all his
- "Only old Benjamin professed to remember every detail of his long life and to know that
things never had been, nor ever could be much better or much worse--hunger, hardship, and disappointment
being, so he said, the unalterable law of life."
Again, in our enterprises we present the singular spectacle of daring and
deliberation, each carried to its highest point, and both united in the same persons;
although usually decision is the fruit of ignorance, hesitation of reflection.
But the palm of courage will surely be adjudged most justly to those, who best know
the difference between hardship and pleasure and yet are never tempted to shrink from
In generosity we are equally singular, acquiring our friends by
conferring, not by receiving, favours.
- Ἀμαθία μὲν θράσος, λογισμὸς δὲ ὄκνον φέρει
- Ignorance produces rashness, reflection timidity
But the prize for courage will surely be awarded most justly to those who best
know the difference between hardship and pleasure and yet are never tempted to shrink
The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before
them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it.
Vae victis (IPA:
Latin for "woe to the vanquished", or "woe to the conquered".
It means that those defeated in battle are entirely at the mercy of their conquerors and
should not expect—or request—leniency.
Most of the incidents related by ancient
historians about early
Roman history are considered legends, with the
Gaulish sack of Rome one of the first events which modern scholars are confident
actually occurred. According to tradition, in 390 BC, an army of
Gauls led by
capturing all of the city except for the
Capitoline Hill. Brennus besieged the hill, and finally the Romans asked to
ransom their city.
Brennus demanded 1,000
pounds (327 kg) of
and the Romans agreed to his terms.
According to Plutarch's
Ab Urbe Condita (Book 5 Sections 34–49),
the Gauls provided
steelyard balances and
weights which were used to measure the amount of gold. The Romans brought the gold,
but claimed that the provided weights were rigged in the Gauls' favor. The Romans
complained to Brennus, who took his sword, threw it onto the weights, and exclaimed, "Vae
victis!" The Romans thus needed to bring more gold as they had to counterbalance the
sword as well. Livy and Plutarch claim that Camillus subsequently succeeded in defeating
the Gauls before the ransom had to be paid, although
Diodorus Siculus and a later passage from Livy contradict this.
[Feb 12, 2017] “Be kind, for everyone you meet is carrying a heavy burden.” ~Ian MacLaren
[Jan 26, 2017] Neoliberals adhere that the old adage: He who dies with the most toys WINS.
[Jan 26, 2017] "People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than
surrender any material part of their advantage. Intellectual myopia, often
called stupidity, is no doubt a reason. But the privileged also feel that their
privileges, however egregious they may seem to others, are a solemn, basic,
God-given right. The sensitivity of the poor to injustice is a trivial thing
compared with that of the rich.
- John Kenneth Galbraith
"The Age of Uncertainty" 1977
[Jan 25, 2017] And mentioning "a legitimacy promoted and condoned by our nation's leaders"
don't forget the
role of MSM in this dirty "misunderinformation" business (using the derivative of word invented
by unforgettable Bush II) .
[Jan 25, 2017] "Integrity, once
sold, is difficult to repurchase - even at 10x the original sales price."
[Jan 24, 2017] “If the facts
are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the law and the facts
are against you, pound the table and yell like hell” - quoted by an Illinois native,
Carl Sandburg, in The People, Yes (1936)
[Jan 17, 2017] Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.
[Jan 17, 2017] "Politicians were mostly people who'd had too little morals and ethics to stay
lawyers." ~George R. R. Martin
"... "Men and nations behave wisely when they have exhausted all other resources." -- Abba Eban ..."
"... Which is frequently misquoted as, "Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing after they have exhausted all other possibilities." ..."
"... So when the starving mob are at the ruling elites' gates with torches and pitch forks, they'll surely find the resources to do the right thing. ..."
Matt Bury ( 4823023 ) writes:
gtall ( 79522 )
"Men and nations behave wisely when they have exhausted all other resources." -- Abba Eban
Which is frequently misquoted as, "Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing after
they have exhausted all other possibilities."
So when the starving mob are at the ruling elites' gates with torches and pitch forks, they'll
surely find the resources to do the right thing.
The "misquote" is a phrase uttered by Winston Churchill.
A disclaimer: I just like Quorans debunking or showing the
stupidity behind some of the worst FB memes.
A disclaimer: I just like Quorans debunking or showing the
stupidity behind some of the worst FB memes.
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studied at Stanford University
Written Nov 25, 2014
I am the source for
this quote, which was indeed said by CIA Director
William Casey at an early February 1981 meeting
of the newly elected President Reagan with his
new cabinet secretaries to report to him on what
they had learned about their agencies in the
first couple of weeks of the administration.
The meeting was in the Roosevelt Room in the West
Wing of the White House, not far from the Cabinet
Room. I was present at the meeting as Assistant
to the chief domestic policy adviser to the
President. Casey first told Reagan that he
had been astonished to discover that
over 80 percent of the
'intelligence' that the analysis side of the CIA
produced was based on open public sources like
newspapers and magazines.
As he did to all the other secretaries of their
departments and agencies, Reagan asked what he
saw as his goal as director for the CIA, to which
he replied with this quote, which I recorded in
my notes of the meeting
as he said it. Shortly thereafter I told Senior
White House correspondent Sarah McClendon, who
was a close friend and colleague, who in turn
made it public. Barbara Honegger
[Dec 07, 2016] Quotes about our free press
November 26, 2016 at 8:40 am
It's incredible how many otherwise smart people can't think for themselves.
- Once a newspaper touches a story the facts are lost forever, even to the protagonist. -Norman
- I am unable to understand how a man of honor can take a newspaper in his hand without a
shudder of disgust. -Charles Baudelaire
- The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but
newspapers. -Thomas Jeffereson
- Advertisements contain the only truths to be relied on in a newspaper. -Thomas Jefferson
- If you're not careful, the newspaper will have you hating people being oppressed and loving
the people doing the oppressing -Malcolm X
- Journalism is organized gossip. -Edward Egglestone
- If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read it, you are misinformed.
-Mark Twain (allegedly, but it could be misinformation)
It's hard to know what to believe! You can believe your own eyes, but even your mind connects
the dots without you knowing it.
This is not the Washington Post's finest hour - although they probably haven't had one of those
for years at this point. I'm down to the Redskins coverage in the WaPo, which is still quite good
actually. I used to be a Washington Post paper boy, so I'l put one last quote from Charles Osgood
It was while making newspaper deliveries, trying to miss the bushes and hit the porch, that
I first learned about accuracy in journalism -Charles Osgood
(All quotes from quotegarden.com)
Don’t buy a single vote more than necessary. I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay for a landslide.
(Joseph P. Kennedy)
Even the best-intentioned of great men need a few scoundrels around
them; there are some things you cannot ask an honest man to do. (La Bruyere)
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer “Present” or
“Not Guilty.” (Theodore Roosevelt)
It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native American criminal
class except Congress. (Mark Twain)
When one gets in bed with government, one must expect the diseases it spreads. (Ron Paul)
It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it, and
fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it. (Aung San Suu Kyi)
Oddly, submission to powerful, frightening, even terrible persons, like tyrants and generals,
is not experienced as nearly so painful as is submission to unknown and uninteresting persons — which
is what all luminaries of industry are. (Friedrich Nietzsche)
Corruption, the most infallible symptom of constitutional liberty. (Edward Gibbon)
The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think
alike than those who think differently. (Friedrich Nietzsche)
When people are free to do as they please, they usually imitate each other. (Eric Hoffer)
Everyone has observed how much more dogs are animated when they hunt in a pack, than when they
pursue their game apart. We might, perhaps, be at a loss to explain this phenomenon, if we had not
experience of a similar in ourselves. (David Hume)
Never attempt to win by force what can be won by deception. (Niccolò Machiavelli)
The promise given was a necessity of the past. The word broken is a necessity of the present.
If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no
longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful
to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you,
you almost never get it back. (Carl Sagan)
Anyone who can handle a needle convincingly can make us see a thread which is not there. (E.H.
We become slaves the moment we hand the keys to the definition of reality entirely over to someone
else, whether it is a business, an economic theory, a political party, the White House, Newsworld
or CNN. (B.W. Powe)
Frank and explicit — this is the right line to take when you wish to conceal your own mind and
to confuse the mind of others. (Benjamin Disraeli)
There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact. (Arthur Conan Doyle)
In politics, stupidity is not a handicap. (Napoleon)
Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are
Revolutionary movements attract those who are not good enough for established institutions as
well as those who are too good for them. (Bernard Shaw)
Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest
in you. (Pericles)
Freedom isn’t free. It shouldn’t be a bragging point that ‘Oh, I don’t get involved in politics,’
as if that makes someone cleaner. No, that makes you derelict of duty in a republic. Liars and panderers
in government would have a much harder time of it if so many people didn’t insist on their right
to remain ignorant and blindly agreeable. (Bill Maher)
The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of
their history. (George Orwell)
I sit on a man’s back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that
I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means — except by getting off his
back. (Leo Tolstoy)
Nothing appears more surprising to those who consider human affairs with a philosophical eye,
than the easiness with which the many are governed by the few. (David Hume)
Power worship blurs political judgment because it leads, almost unavoidably, to the belief that
present trends will continue. Whoever is winning at the moment will always seem to be invincible.
When smashing monuments, save the pedestals — they always come in handy. (Stanislaw Lem)
I have a problem with people who take the Constitution loosely and the Bible literally. (Bill
Religion: a sixteenth-century term for nationalism. (Sir Lewis Namier)
Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers as useful.
All truths that are kept silent become poisonous. (Friedrich Nietzsche)
[Oct 23, 2016] "There is one political party in this country, and that is the party of money.
It has two branches, the Republicans and the Democrats, the chief difference between which is that the
Democrats are better at concealing their scorn for the average man." ~ Gore Vidal
[Oct 22, 2016] At 50, everyone has the face he deserves. ~ George Orwell
[Oct 13, 2016] When Hillary Clinton declaration of Trump supporters as "basket of deplorables"
is just another way of saying 'white-trash'
[Oct 11, 2016] Have you ever lived through a CIA-sponsored coup, a military invasion, or IMF-sponsored
austerity to be certain that living through all that is preferable to the demise of American hegemony?
[Sep 21, 2016] An interesting view on Russian "intelligencia" by the scientist and writer Zinoviev expressed during
"perestroika" in 1991
If intellectuals replace the current professional politicians as the leaders of society the situation
would become much worse. Because they have neither the sense of reality, nor common sense. For
them, the words and speeches are more important than the actual social laws and the dominant
trends, the dominant social dynamics of the society. The psychological principle of the intellectuals is that we could organize everything much better,
but we are not allowed to do it.
But the actual situation is as following: they could organize the life of society as they wish and
plan, in the way they view is the best only if under conditions that are not present now are not
feasible in the future. Therefore they are not able to act even at the level of current leaders
of the society, which they despise. The actual leaders are influenced by social pressures, by the current social situation, but
at least they doing something. Intellectuals are unhappy
that the real stream of life they are living in. They consider it wrong. that makes them
very dangerous, because they look really smart, while in reality being sophisticated professional
[Sep 14, 2016] "A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making
them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that
is familiar with it." ~Max Planck
- “It is a pity that Wall Street, with its ability to control all the wealth of the nation
and to hire the best law brains in the country, has not produced some statesmen, some men who
could see the dangers of bigness and of the concentration of the control of wealth. Instead of
working to meet the situation, they are still employing the best law brains to serve greed and
self-interest. People can only stand so much and one of these days there will be a settlement.”
– Senator Harry S. Truman, Congressional Record, 1937
- “The people don’t want a phony Democrat.” – President Harry Truman, Address at the National
Convention Banquet of the Americans for Democratic Action, 1952
Totally ‘liberating’ these Truman quotes for FB electioneering. Corporate ‘crapification’ of
both Republican and Democratic parties is complete, since the most authentic – like it or not
– candidates in this election are not party members per usual (Trump and Sanders). Think we may
already have our third party… the Up Yours party!
[Sep 04, 2016] “Politics is the art of choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.” - John
[Aug 29, 2016] If you don't read the newspaper, you're uninformed. If you read the newspaper,
you're misinformed. ~ Mark Twain
[Aug 29, 2016] “When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in Society,
they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code
that glorifies it”. ~ F. Bastiat.
"... The clintons are a terminally vulgar and unethical couple ..."
"... Mr. Clinton always had an easy, breezy relationship with wrongdoing. But the Democratic Party overlooked the ethical red flags and made a pact with Mr. Clinton that was the equivalent of a pact with the devil. And he delivered. With Mr. Clinton at the controls, the party won the White House twice. But in the process it lost its bearings and maybe even its soul. ..."
August 25, 2016 at 7:46 am
Jim Haygood ,
August 25, 2016 at 8:10 am
Bob Herbert said it best 15 years ago
The clintons are a terminally vulgar and unethical couple
Out of order quotes:
Mr. Clinton always had an easy, breezy relationship with wrongdoing. But the Democratic
Party overlooked the ethical red flags and made a pact with Mr. Clinton that was the equivalent
of a pact with the devil. And he delivered. With Mr. Clinton at the controls, the party won
the White House twice. But in the process it lost its bearings and maybe even its soul.
August 25, 2016 at 8:23 am
"The clintons are a terminally vulgar and unethical couple "
Wish this forum allowed signatures, so Bob Herbert's deep truth could appear with every post.
That's the money quote for me. Just those 9 words. Sums it up beautifully, perfectly even.
[Aug 25, 2016] Sure, we want women in power ... but not [like] Madeleine Albright
Lee T Loe on Hillary Clinton
[Aug 24, 2016] The Financial Markets Are the Last Refuge of a Scoundrel
One thing you can’t hide – is when you’re crippled inside. John Lennon
[Jul 31, 2016] "Nothing wrong with Christianity except that no one ever tried it." ~George Bernard
[Jul 25, 2016] Trump quotes
- Sometimes by losing a battle you find a new way to win the war. Donald Trump
- Money was never a big motivation for me, except as a way to keep score. The real excitement
is playing the game. Donald Trump
- If you're interested in 'balancing' work and pleasure, stop trying to balance them. Instead
make your work more pleasurable. Donald Trump
- Experience taught me a few things. One is to listen to your gut, no matter how good something
sounds on paper. The second is that you're generally better off sticking with what you know. And
the third is that sometimes your best investments are the ones you don't make. Donald Trump
- “If I were lo run, I’d run as a Republican They’re the dumbest group of voters in the country.
They believe anything on Fox News. I could lie and they’d still eat it up. I bet my numbers would
be terrific.” Donald Trump People Magazine, 1998
[Jul 22, 2016] "Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve
to get it good and hard." H.L. Mencken
This is a beautiful metaphor for after brexit: "This is really a battle between the pimps
of Wall Street and the whores of Wall Street." Redistribution of wealth again to rich again.
Lyndon Johnson famously said of Hoover that he would rather have him inside the tent pissing out
than on the outside pissing in. Comments to
What next for Labour when the party’s civil war is over Letters Politics The Guardian
'We live in a world where anything is possible and nothing is certain... " -- Vaclav Havel
"The EU [neoliberals] has not listened to its constituents. Like other
self-absorbed ruling classes, including those in the United States, it is now paying for its arrogance."
—columnist Stephen Kinzer
[Jun 23, 2016] It's one of the marvels of American democracy that the voters who often decide close
elections are those who pay the least attention to the contest or consequences.
[Jun 23, 2016] "Terrible things we expect from Donald Trump, we’ve actually already seen from Hillary
Clinton," Jill Stein
[Jun 21, 2016] "Sometimes it is far better to not speak and be thought of as a fool. Than to do
so and erase all doubt." Mark Twain
[Jun 20, 2016] Future candidates like Sanders will face same dilemma: Lose, & party apparatchiks
dance on your grave. Win, & they’ll try to put you in one.
[Jun 13, 2016] "One of the greatest tragedies of life is the murder of a beautiful theory by a gang
of brutal facts.
"– Benjamin Franklin
- “The thing about life is that you must survive. Life is going to be difficult, and dreadful
things will happen. What you do is move along, get on with it, and be tough. Not in the sense
of being mean to others, but being tough with yourself and making a deadly effort not to be defeated.”
― Katharine Hepburn
- “life is to be lived.if you have to support yourself, you had bloody well better find some
way that is going to be interesting. And you don't do that by sitting around.” ― Katharine Hepburn
- “If you want to sacrifice the admiration of many men for the criticism of one, go ahead, get
married.” ― Katharine Hepburn
- “If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun” ― Katharine Hepburn
Fascism is a system of political and social order intended to reinforce the unity, energy and
purity of communities in which liberal democracy stand(s) accused of producing division and decline.
. . . George Orwell reminded us, clad in the mainstream patriotic dress of their own place and time,
. . . an authentically popular fascism in the United States would be pious and anti-Black; in
Western Europe, secular and antisemitic, or more probably, these days anti-Islamic; in Russia and
Eastern Europe, religious, antisemitic, and slavophile.
Robert O. Paxton, In The Five Stages of Faschism
"… that eternal enemy: the conservative manipulators of privilege who damn as 'dangerous agitators'
any man who menaces their fortunes" (maybe 'power and celebrity' should be added to fortunes)
Sinclair Lewis It Can't Happen Here page 141
[May 28, 2016] Friendship in bohemia meant money borrowed, recriminations, complaints, tears, theft,
and deceit. — Mavis Gallant
Man Kills The Thing He Loves
Yet each man kills the thing he loves
By each let this be heard.
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word.
The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword!
- A man can be happy with any woman as long as he does not love her.
- One person loves, the other person lets themselves be loved...
Find somebody over 28 who understands and likes being the receiving end of that equation. Somebody
who doesn’t have to use anger and put-down and covert manipulation to justify ‘allowing themselves
to be loved’. Someone who can just sit back and enjoy it. Then maybe, just maybe, I will too.The
Unauthorized Letters of Oscar Wilde - C. Robert Holloway - Google Books
- Everything in the world is about sex except sex. Sex is about power.
- Loveless marriages are horrible. But there is one thing worse than an absolutely loveless
marriage. A marriage in which there is love, but on one side only; faith, but on one side only; devotion,
but on one side only.
- The very essence of romance is uncertainty.
- Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing, it is always from the noblest motives. -- Oscar
Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891
- Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes. Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's Fan,
1892, Act III
- No object is so beautiful that, under certain conditions, it will not look ugly.
- Life is never fair...And perhaps it is a good thing for most of us that it is not.
- Children begin by loving their parents; as they grow older they judge them; sometimes they
forgive them. -- Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891
- Men marry because they are tired; women because they are curious. Both are disappointed.
― Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
- When a woman marries again, it is because she detested her first husband. When a man marries
again, it is because he adored his first wife. Women try their luck; men risk theirs. Oscar Wilde,
The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891
- Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second
marriage is the triumph of hope over experience.
- Men always want to be a woman's first love - women like to be a man's last romance.
- When one is in love one begins by deceiving oneself. And one ends by deceiving others. That is
what the world calls a romance.
- The one charm about marriage is that it makes a life of deception absolutely necessary for both
- Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry,
their passions a quotation. Oscar Wilde, De Profundis, 1905
"The Moor has done his duty. The Moor can go." Where does the expression come from?
In German it sounds: "Der Mohr hat seine Schuldigkeit getan. Der Mohr kann gehen". And it seems
to be from Friedrich Schiller's play "Fiesco". Can anyone tell me please if this phrase is some sort
of reminiscence from or has something to do with Shakespeare's Othello?
- "If you are afraid of loneliness, don't marry" Anton Chekhov (1860-1904), short story writer
and author of the plays The Seagull, Uncle Vanya, Three Sisters and The Cherry Orchard
- "Marriage is neither heaven nor hell, it is simply purgatory." Abraham Lincoln was the
16th President of the United States,
- "A man doesn't know what happiness is until he's married. By then it's too late" Singer Frank
- "A good marriage would be between a blind wife and a deaf husband" Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592)
- "Marriage is the death of hope" Comedian Woody Allen (1935-),
- Adrian Mole's father was so angry that so many people got divorced nowadays. He had been unhappilly
married for 30 years, why should everybody else get away?”
Sue Townsend (1946-2014)
- “Men marry women with the hope they will never change. Women marry men with the hope they will
change. Invariably they are both disappointed.”
Physicist Albert Einstein (1879-1955).
- HL Mencken's quip that "Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who would want to live in an
- “She was as sated with him as he was tired of her. Emma had rediscovered in adultery all the
banality of marriage.” Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880), Madame Bovary
- “Marriage is the triumph of imagination over intelligence. Second marriage is the triumph of
hope over experience” Oscar Wilde (1854-1900),
- "Love: a temporary insanity curable by marriage" Ambrose Bierce (1842-c1914)
- “Longed for him. Got him. Shit” Canadian Margaret Atwood (1939-)
- "Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded" Diana, Princess of Wales
(1961-1997), in her interview with Martin Bashir on BBC Panorama in 1995, responding to the question:
"Do you think Mrs Parker Bowles was a factor in the breakdown of your marriage?"
- "Keep your eyes wide open before marriage, and half shut afterwards" Benjamin Franklin (1705-1790)
was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He married Deborah Reed and they had two children
together as well as raising William, Franklin's illegitimate son.
- "That a marriage ends is less than ideal; but all things end under heaven, and if temporality
is held to be invalidating, then nothing real succeeds" American author John Updike (1932-2009),
author of Couples.
- They say all marriages are made in heaven, but so are thunder and lightning” Actor and director
Clint Eastwood (1930-).
- “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages” German philosopher
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)
- "So I began to think maybe it was true that when you were married and had children it was like
being brainwashed, and afterward you went about as numb as a slave in a totalitarian state” Sylvia
Plath (1932-1963), who was married to poet Ted Hughes, was downbeat about marriage in The Bell Jar
and so was fellow author Angela Carter who said: "What is marriage but prostitution to one man instead
of many? No different!”
- "By all means, marry. If you get a good wife, you'll become happy; if you get a bad one, you'll
become a philosopher" Socrates (470/469 – 399 BC)
- "Marriage: the most advanced form of warfare in the modern world” Malcolm Bradbury (1932-2000),
author of The History Man.
[Apr 11, 2016] It is hard for a man to understand something when his paycheck depends on not understanding
it. - Upton Sinclair.
CPADave71|2.28.16 @ 11:54AM|#
It's nice to see Reason actually pointing out Hillary's awfulness for a change. As horrific
as Trump may be, it's hard to imagine that he could be worse than her.
Voting for Trump is like playing Russian Roulette with 3 bullets in the revolver. With Hillary,
there are 5 bullets and a blank that will probably kill you anyway.
Crusty Juggler|2.28.16 @ 11:57AM|#
it's hard to imagine that he could be worse than her.
His cabinet could consist of Sarah Palin, Chris Christie, Newt Gingrich, and Rudy Giuliani, so
that could easily be worse than whatever steaming pile of incompetent corruption Hillary cobbles
There is no better choice.
Reflections|2.29.16 @ 4:32PM|#
The presses purpose is to create chaos. The corporate media's both written and visual, job
is to repeat what the rich and powerful and law enforcement tell them to say. It' all design to
deceive the public with corporate lies. Police officers just doing there job are now coined with
every story as a "hero". The most abused word in the corporate bias media. Giant infomercials
unreadable and unwatchable.
[Mar 03, 2016] Collection of random quotes for March 2016
"... the lower classes are never, even temporarily, successful in achieving their aims ..."
As Orwell correctly stated that "the lower classes are never, even temporarily, successful
in achieving their aims".
Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable.... A
man full of faith is simply one who has lost (or never had) the capacity for clear and realistic
thought. He is not a mere ass: he is actually ill. H. L. Mencken
The most curious social convention of the great age in which we live is the one to the effect
that religious opinions should be respected. Its evil effects must be plain enough to everyone. ...
There is, in fact, nothing about religious opinions that entitles them to any more respect than other
opinions get. On the contrary, they tend to be noticeably silly. ... No, there is nothing notably
dignified about religious ideas. They run, rather, to a peculiarly puerile and tedious kind of nonsense.
At their best, they are borrowed from metaphysicians, which is to say, from men who devote their
lives to proving that twice two is not always or necessarily four. At their worst, they smell of
spiritualism and fortune telling. Nor is there any visible virtue in the men who merchant them professionally.
Few theologians know anything that is worth knowing, even about theology, and not many of them are
honest. ... But the average theologian is a hearty, red-faced, well-fed fellow with no discernible
excuse in pathology. He disseminates his blather, not innocently, like a philosopher, but maliciously,
like a politician. In a well-organized world he would be on the stone-pile. But in the world as it
exists we are asked to listen to him, not only politely, but even reverently, and with our mouths
open. H. L. Mencken
[Feb 28, 2016] Random quotes Feb 2016
For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot
be fooled. ~Richard P. Feynman
There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says,
fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again. ~ Bush II
Bush II proved that "you can fool all of the people some of the time" with "you can fool some
of the people all of the time". And "some of the time" extends to the election year.
“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And
yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be,
because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears
out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now,
you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma —
which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions
drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.
They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary” ― Steve
‘Americans are said to be ignorant of the world. We are, but so are people in other countries.
If people in Bhutan or Bolivia misunderstand Syria, however, that has no real effect. Our ignorance
is more dangerous, because we act on it. The United States has the power to decree the death of nations.
"CYRIL: Lying! I should have thought that our politicians kept up that habit.
VIVIAN: I assure you that they do not. They never rise beyond the level of misrepresentation,
and actually condescend to prove, to discuss, to argue. How different from the temper of the true
liar, with his frank, fearless statements, his superb responsibility, his healthy, natural disdain
of proof of any kind! After all, what is a fine lie? Simply that which is its own evidence. If a
man is sufficiently unimaginative to produce evidence in support of a lie, he might just as well
speak the truth at once. No, the politicians won't do. Something may, perhaps, be urged on behalf
of the Bar. The mantle of the Sophist has fallen on its members. Their feigned ardours and unreal
rhetoric are delightful." - Oscar Wilde, The Decay Of Lying
“Whoever wishes to foresee the future must consult the past; for human events ever resemble those
of preceding times. This arises from the fact that they are produced by men who ever have been, and
ever shall be, animated by the same passions, and thus they necessarily have the same results.” ~
2 days ago (edited)
Good stuff. The full Lord Acton quote, “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority; still
more when you superadd the tendency of the certainty of corruption by authority.” A few more:
“The object of civil society is justice, not truth, virtue, wealth, knowledge, glory or power.
Justice is followed by equality and liberty.” “Men cannot be made good by the state, but they
can easily be made bad. Morality depends on liberty.” “Bureaucracy is undoubtedly [the weapon
and sign of a despotic government, inasmuch as it gives whatever government it serves, despotic
power.” “Despotic power is always accompanied by corruption of morality.”]
Seth Finkelstein firstname.lastname@example.org
Few people are unfamiliar with
the phrase The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyer. Rueful, mocking, it often expresses
the ordinary person's frustration with the arcana and complexity of law. Sometimes it's known known
that the saying comes from one of Shakespeare's plays, but usually there's little awareness beyond
that. This gap in knowledge has inspired a myth of "correction", where it is "explained" that this
is line really intended as a praise of the lawyer's role.
For example, one legal firm states:
"The first thing we do," said the character in Shakespeare's Henry VI, is "kill all the lawyers."
Contrary to popular belief, the proposal was not designed to restore sanity to commercial life.
Rather, it was intended to eliminate those who might stand in the way of a contemplated revolution
-- thus underscoring the important role that lawyers can play in society.
(from Dickstein Shapiro Morin & Oshinsky LLP Firm Profile)
As the famous remark by the plotter of treachery in Shakespeare's King Henry VI shows - "The first
thing we must do is kill all the lawyers," - the surest way to chaos and tyranny even then was
to remove the guardians of independent thinking.
(from THINKING LIKE A LAWYER)
The argument of this remark as in fact being favorable to lawyers is a marvel of sophistry, twisting
of the meaning of words in unfamiliar source, disregard of the evident intent of the original author
and ad hominem attack. Whoever first came up with this interpretation surely must have been
The line is actually uttered by a character "Dick The Butcher". While he's a killer as evil as
his name implies, he often makes highly comedic and amusing statements. The wisecracking villain
is not an invention of modern action movies, it dates back to Shakespeare and beyond.
The setup for the "kill the lawyers" statement is the ending portion of a comedic relief part
of a scene in Henry VI, part 2. Dick and another henchman, Smith are members of the gang
of Jack Cade, a pretender to the throne. The built-up is long portion where Cade make vain boasts,
which are cut down by sarcastic replies from the others. For example:
You can almost hear the rim-shot after everything Dick or Smith say here.
Valiant I am.
'A must needs; for beggary is valiant.
I am able to endure much.
No question of that; for I have seen him whipp'd three market-days together.
I fear neither sword nor fire.
He need not fear the sword; for his coat is of proof.
But methinks he should stand in fear of fire, being burnt i' th'hand for stealing of sheep.
Cade proceeds to go more
and more over the top, and begins to describe his absurd ideal world:
Appreciated and encouraged, he continues on in this vein:
Be brave, then; for your captain is brave, and vows reformation. There shall be in England seven
half-penny loaves sold for a penny: the three-hoop'd pot shall have ten hoops; and I will make
it felony to drink small beer: all the realm shall be in common; and in Cheapside shall my palfrey
go to grass: and when I am king,- as king I will be,-
God save your majesty!
And here is where Dick speaks the famous line.
I thank you, good people:- there shall be no money; all shall eat and drink on my score; and I
will apparel them all in one livery, that they may agree like brothers, and worship me their lord.
The audience must have doubled over in laughter at this. Far from "eliminating those who might stand
in the way of a contemplated revolution" or portraying lawyers as "guardians of independent thinking",
it's offered as the best feature imagined of yet for utopia. It's hilarious. A very rough and simplistic
modern translation would be "When I'm the King, there'll be two cars in every garage, and a chicken
in every pot" "AND NO LAWYERS". It's a clearly lawyer-bashing joke. This is further supported by
the dialogue just afterwards (which is actually quite funny even now, and must have been hilarious
when the idiom was contemporary):
The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
He might just as well have been describing "shrink-wrap" software licensing agreements today in the
last sentence. To understand what Cade is saying here, you have to know that documents of the time
were likely parchment, and sealed with wax. So when he says "Some say the bees stings; but I say,
'tis the bee's wax". he's making an ironic comment somewhat akin to "Some men rob you with a six-gun,
and some with a fountain pen". And the fact that he himself is an evil man only serves to heighten
the irony, not discredit the sentiment - the more evil he is, the more the contrast is apparent.
The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
Nay, that I mean to do. Is not this a lamentable thing, that of the skin of an innocent lamb should
be made parchment? that parchment, being scribbled o'er, should undo a man? Some say the bee stings:
but I say, 'tis the bee's wax; for I did but seal once to a thing, and I was never mine own man
since.- How now! who's there?
It makes as much sense to conclude that since the "kill the lawyers" joke is expressed by villains,
who later commit murderous deeds "there shall be no money; all shall eat and drink on my score" is
an approval of Libertarian thought, and a warning about Communists.
Now, just after this exchange, the scene changes tone. The gang commits the murder of the clerk
of chatham. Here is the second level of Shakespeare's commentary on law and layers, where the murder
is carried out according to scrupulous procedure, a parody of law:
By this contrast Shakespeare thus makes in an alternating, connected, comedic and tragic manner the
age-old point about the difference between *law* (and those who argue it) and *justice*. Cade makes
up his "version" of law to his own ends, to the justification of his evil deeds, which is reminiscent
of the context which commonly provokes "kill the lawyers" (where the phrase is in wry protest of
actions thought to be the same in form, if not in degree). Far from being "out of context" the usage
is more true to the original than most people know.
I am sorry for't: the man is a proper man, of mine honour; unless I find him guilty, he shall
not die.- Come hither, sirrah, I must examine thee: what is thy name?
Now, compares this to the description given by the web page
Lawyers are Our Friends!
Cade's friend Dick the Butcher, being only barely smarter than Cade, knew Cade's scheme could
not succeed if the learned advisors to the real King actually investigated Cade's lineage. So,
Dick the Butcher advised Cade that "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers," hoping
that this tactic would prevent Cade from being discovered as an imposter. At least in Shakespeare's
time, lawyers were regarded as the protectors of truth.
That lawyer is being a protector of some sort, but it doesn't seem to be of the truth!
In fact, Shakespeare used lawyers as figures of derision on several occasions. In "Romeo and Juliet",
Mercutio uses the line "O'er lawyers' fingers, who straight dream on fees;" In "King Lear", the fool
defends a speech in riddles by comparing it to an "unfee'd lawyer":
EARL OF KENT.
There's a very long and lawyer-uncomplimentary passage in Hamlet. Note the similarity of
the "parchment" joke to that seen in Henry VI, part 2.
This is nothing, fool.
Then 'tis like the breath of an unfee'd lawyer,- you gave me nothing for't.- Can you make no use
of nothing, nuncle?
As long as there are lawyer, there will be "lawyer jokes". And lawyers will show how those jokes
ring true by trying to explain how such lampooning really constitutes praise for their profession,
thus by example justifying the jokes more than ever.
There's another: why may not that be the skull of a lawyer? Where be his quiddits now, his quillets,
his cases, his tenures, and his tricks? why does he suffer this rude knave now to knock him about
the sconce with a dirty shovel, and will not tell him of his action of battery? Hum! This fellow
might be in's time a great buyer of land, with his statutes, his recognizances, his fines, his
double vouchers, his recoveries: is this the fine of his fines, and the recovery of his recoveries,
to have his fine pate full of fine dirt? will his vouchers vouch him no more of his purchases,
and double ones too, than the length and breadth of a pair of indentures? The very conveyances
of his lands will hardly lie in this box; and must the inheritor himself have no more, ha?
Not a jot more, my lord.
Is not parchment made of sheep-skins?
Ay, my lord, and of calf-skins too.
They are sheep and calves which seek out assurance in that. I will speak to this fellow.- Whose
grave's this, sirrah?
Seth Finkelstein is a software developer and Internet activist.
"... I think many people have the mistaken impression that Congress regulates Wall Street. … The real truth is that Wall Street regulates the Congress. ..."
"... When some think tank comes up with the legislation and tells you not to fool with it, why are you even a legislator anymore? You just sit there and take votes and youre kind of a feudal serf for folks with a lot of money ..."
"... I firmly believe that we are beginning in this country to look like a Russian-style oligarchy where a couple of dozen billionaires have basically bought the government. ..."
"... Our electoral system is a mess. Powerful financial interests, free to throw money about with little transparency, have corrupted the basic principles underlying our representative democracy ..."
"... Across the spectrum, money changed votes. Money certainly drove policy at the White House during the Clinton administration, and Im sure it has in every other administration too ..."
"... From now on property rights and financial rights will be subordinated to human rights. … The real truth of the matter is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the larger centers has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson. … The country is going through a repetition of Jacksons fight with the Bank of the United States - only on a far bigger and broader basis. ..."
"... Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government, owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to dissolve the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics is the first task of the statesmanship of the day. ..."
Three weeks ago I posted
a collection of quotes from politicians acknowledging the obvious reality that money has a huge
impact on what they do, and asked anyone with more examples to
send them to me .
You really came through. Here are 15 more great examples, with credit to the people who suggested
Please keep them coming; I'm looking specifically for working politicians who describe a tight
linkage between money and political outcomes. And I'd still love to speak directly to current or
former politicians who have an opinion about this.
I'll continue to add all of them to the
original post , so you can bookmark that for the complete collection.
• "I gave to many people, before this, before two months ago, I was a businessman. I give to everybody.
When they call, I give. And do you know what? When I need something from them two years later, three
years later, I call them, they are there for me. And that's a broken system." -
Trump in 2015.
• "This is what's wrong. [Donald Trump] buys and sells politicians of all stripes. … He's used to
buying politicians." -
Paul , R-Ky., in 2015.
• "The millionaire class and the billionaire class increasingly own the political process, and
they own the politicians that go to them for money. … We are moving very, very quickly from a democratic
society, one person, one vote, to an oligarchic form of society, where billionaires would be determining
who the elected officials of this country are." -
Bernie Sanders , I-Vt., in 2015. (Thanks to
Robert Wilson in comments .)
Sanders has also said many similar things,
including : "I think many people have the mistaken impression that Congress regulates Wall Street.
… The real truth is that Wall Street regulates the Congress." (Thanks to ND, via email.)
• "Today's whole political game, run by an absurdist's nightmare of moneyed elites, is ridiculous
- a game in which corporations are people and money is magically empowered to speak; candidates trek
to the corporate suites and secret retreats of the rich, shamelessly selling their political souls."
- Jim Hightower
, former Democratic agricultural commissioner of Texas, 2015. (Thanks to CS, via email.)
• "People tell me all the time that our politics in Washington are broken and that multimillionaires,
billionaires and big corporations are calling all the shots. … It's hard not to agree." -
Russ Feingold , three-term
Democratic senator from Wisconsin, in 2015 announcing he's running for the Senate again. (Thanks
to CS, via email.)
• "I can legally accept gifts from lobbyists unlimited in number and in value … As you might guess,
what results is a corruption of the institution of Missouri government, a corruption driven by big
money in politics." -
Missouri state Sen. Rob Schaaf , 2015. (Thanks to DK, via email.)
• "When some think tank comes up with the legislation and tells you not to fool with it, why are
you even a legislator anymore? You just sit there and take votes and you're kind of a feudal serf
for folks with a lot of money." -
Dale Schultz , 32-year Republican state legislator in Wisconsin and former state Senate Majority
Leader, in 2013 before retiring rather than face a primary challenger backed by Americans for Prosperity.
Several months later
Schultz said : "I firmly believe that we are beginning in this country to look like a Russian-style
oligarchy where a couple of dozen billionaires have basically bought the government."
• "I was directly told, 'You want to be chairman of House Administration, you want to continue
to be chairman.' They would actually put in writing that you have to raise $150,000. They still do
that - Democrats and Republicans. If you want to be on this committee, it can cost you $50,000 or
$100,000 - you have to raise that money in most cases." -
Bob Ney , five-term Republican congressman from Ohio who pleaded guilty to corruption charges
connected to the Jack Abramoff scandal, in 2013. (Thanks to
ratpatrol in comments .)
• "American democracy has been hacked. … The United States Congress … is now incapable of passing
laws without permission from the corporate lobbies and other special interests that control their
campaign finances." -
Al Gore , former vice president, in his 2013 book The Future. (Thanks to
anon in comments .)
• "I will begin by stating the sadly obvious: Our electoral system is a mess. Powerful financial
interests, free to throw money about with little transparency, have corrupted the basic principles
underlying our representative democracy." -
Chris Dodd , five-term Democratic senator from Connecticut, in 2010 farewell speech. (Thanks
to RO, via email.)
• "Across the spectrum, money changed votes. Money certainly drove policy at the White House during
the Clinton administration, and I'm sure it has in every other administration too." -
Joe Scarborough , four-term Republican congressman from Florida and now co-host of "Morning Joe,"
in the 1990s. (Thanks to
rrheard in comments .)
• "We are the only people in the world required by law to take large amounts of money from strangers
and then act as if it has no effect on our behavior." -
Frank , 16-term Democratic congressman from Massachusetts, in the 1990s. (Thanks to RO, via email.)
• "Money plays a much more important role in what is done in Washington than we believe. … You've
got to cozy up, as an incumbent, to all the special interest groups who can go out and raise money
for you from their members, and that kind of a relationship has an influence on the way you're gonna
vote. … I think we have to become much more vigilant on seeing the impact of money. … I think it's
wrong and we've got to change it." -
, then the Republican candidate running against Ted Kennedy for Senate, in 1994. (Thanks to LA,
• "I had a nice talk with Jack Morgan [i.e., banker J.P. Morgan, Jr.] the other day and he seemed
more worried about [Assistant Secretary of Agriculture Rexford] Tugwell's speech than about anything
else, especially when Tugwell said, 'From now on property rights and financial rights will be subordinated
to human rights.' … The real truth of the matter is, as you and I know, that a financial element
in the larger centers has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson. … The country
is going through a repetition of Jackson's fight with the Bank of the United States - only on a far
bigger and broader basis." -
Franklin D. Roosevelt in a 1933 letter to Edward M. House. (Thanks to LH, via email.)
• "Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government, owing no allegiance
and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to dissolve
the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics is the first task of the statesmanship
of the day." -
1912 platform of the Progressive Party, founded by former president Theodore Roosevelt. (Thanks
to LH, via email.)
In 2007 an article in BusinessWeek credited Keynes with the saying [BWMK]:
The trickiest part of putting your money into a bearish bet is the timing. You can be right
that a market or sector is overvalued but wrong on the timing. That's essentially what economist
John Maynard Keynes meant when he said, "The market can stay irrational longer than you can stay
< < In 1984 the journal "Encounter" printed an article
titled "Will George Orwell Survive 1984?" by Leopold Labedz which included
excerpts from Orwell's writings which traced his evolving opinions. The passage
from 1937 was slightly compressed. The ellipsis was in the quoted text:
28 August 1937: "War against a foreign country only happens when the
moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it. . . . Every
war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as war but as an act
of self-defence against a homicidal maniac ('militarist' Germany in 1914,
'Fascist' Germany next year or the year after). The essential job is to get
people to recognise war propaganda when they see it, especially when it is
disguised as peace propaganda."
The earliest known attribution of the saying to Keynes was found by the outstanding researcher Ken
Hirsch who shared his knowledge via Wikiquote [WJK]. The words appeared in 1951 in the book "Christianity
and Human Relations in Industry" within a discussion of free markets and "the doctrine of the hidden
… as J. M. Keynes used to put it, 'the astonishing belief that the nastiest motives of the
nastiest men somehow or other work for the best results in the best of all possible worlds'.
The subphrase "the best results in the best of all possible worlds" alludes to Voltaire's satirical
character Dr. Pangloss and his philosophy in "Candide". Indeed, the entire statement credited to
Keynes has a satirical edge. However, Keynes died in 1946 and this statement has not been found in
Dear Quote Investigator: April is National Poetry Month in the U. S., and Arbor
Day also occurs in this month. A famous poem by Joyce Kilmer begins with the following couplet:
I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A comical riff on this work begins with the following lines:
I think that I shall never see
A billboard lovely as a tree.
... ... ....Quote Investigator: The October 15, 1932 issue of "The New Yorker" published a poem
titled "Song of the Open Road" by Ogden Nash who was a popular wordsmith of light verse. This was
the earliest publication known to QI:
I think that I shall never see
A billboard lovely as a tree.
Perhaps, unless the billboards fall,
I'll never see a tree at all.
"The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic" that's a problematic
statement as the stability of government is an important thing and radicals even if he loves his country
work against the stability. Right or wrong he is a destabilizing force.
All government, in its essence, is a conspiracy against the superior man: its one permanent
object is to oppress him and cripple him… The most dangerous man to any government is the man who
is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos.
Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane
and intolerable, and so, if he is romantic, he tries to change it. And even if he is not romantic
personally he is very apt to spread discontent among those who are.
The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naïve and usually idiotic. He is,
more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than
the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good
citizen driven to despair.
– H.L. Mencken
[Dec 18, 2015] Attributed to former U.S. President George H. W. Bush:
New World Order is the consolidation of more power and money into tighter, fewer, righter hands.
"If the people were to ever find out what we have done, we would be chased down the streets and
lynched." -- George H. W. Bush, cited in the June, 1992 Sarah McClendon Newsletter
[Dec 16, 2015] It is not inequality that drives innovation and economic growth -- it is the attempt
to escape the leveling forces of capitalism.... --
Donald Trump’s Divisiveness Is Bad for the Economy The Fiscal Times
White House spokesperson Josh Earnest described Donald Trump as “offensive and toxic,” though
that only begins to describe the corrosive effect his bigotry, divisiveness, and xenophobia have
on our society. It is at odds with our values as a nation.
It’s also bad for the economy.
A divided society cannot function optimally, especially when the divisions erect walls between groups
that are difficult to cross
... ... ...
It is not inequality that drives innovation and economic growth--it is the attempt to escape
the leveling forces of capitalism. If we truly wanted to produce the most economic growth, everyone
should start off equal to the extent possible. That way, everyone would have the incentive to differentiate
themselves from others, and the means to do so. Inheritance taxes would be 100 percent; schools would
be assigned randomly to ensure there’s an incentive to equalize resources, and so on, and so on.
Of course, that will never happen. As we’re seeing in the presidential election, those with means
are trying to make the divisions larger rather than break them down. They tell us inequality drives
our economy, when in fact inequality is an outcome, the driving force behind it is the desire to
escape the equalizing forces of competition. Inequality as a starting point takes away opportunity
from the children of the poor, and it dulls incentives for the children of the rich. It’s not hard
to understand why recent research has found that high and persistent inequality is associated with
lower economic growth.
[Dec 07, 2015] “If you don’t read a newspaper every day, you are uninformed. If you do, you are
misinformed.” – Mark Twain
"... It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it. ..."
RGC said in reply to EMichael...
"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding
it."... ... ...
As Hemingway and F. SCott Fitzgerald exchanged in their writings (the reputed face-to-face conversation
may not have happened):
The rich are different.
Yes, they have more money.
Combine elite and rich and you get a toxic combination.
[Nov 19, 2015] Random findings Nov 18, 2015
[Oct 07, 2015] Bismarck said 'God has a special providence for fools, drunks, and the United States
of America.' We must be in good shape considering we've had fools like Wolfowitz and drunks like G.W
Bush running the country.
[Oct 02, 2015] "Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength" -- Eric Hoffer
"There are two kinds of realists: those who manipulate facts and those who create them. The West
requires nothing so much as men able to create their own reality." -- Henry Kissinger, 1963
"There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
On such a full sea are we now afloat, And we must take the current when it serves
Or lose our ventures."
-- Julius Caesar
"But in these cases
We still have judgment here, that we but teach
Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice
To our own lips..."
[Sep 20, 2015] "When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the
dunces are all in confederacy against
him." -- an
from Jonathan Swift's
Thoughts on Various Subjects, Moral and Diverting
[Sep 18, 2015] There is an old saying on Wall Street that trees don’t grow to the sky. Apparently,
not everyone believes this.
MORE EVIL PEOPLE THAN IT KILLS—Immanuel Kant
The single greatest waste
of human resources is war related activities. In the period from 1945 until 1985 the United states
had consumed through its military expenditures enough to build a second United States—from factories,
roads to homes and consumer items.
- “Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future.” ― Oscar Wilde
- Clinton is transparently Fake....
- The future is already here — it's just not very evenly distributed. Johnny Mnemonic (1981) -
- To launch a building project in New York, you need to be a ruthless, egotistical bully: intimidating
bureaucrats, buying politicians and unions, and selling your dream by spinning the local media like
a top. But to finish it, you need to be adaptable. If you hit unexpected bedrock, you change the
- Never ask a question to which you do not already have an answer.
- “In the land of Gibberish, the (person) who makes sense, the (person) who speaks clearly, clearly
speaks nonsense.”― Jarod Kintz, This Book Has No Title
- “I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it's the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures
a multitude of ills. It's probably the most important thing in a person.”― Audrey Hepburn
“I can believe things that are true and things that aren't true and I can believe things
where nobody knows if they're true or not.
I can believe in Santa Claus and the Easter
Bunny and the Beatles and Marilyn Monroe and Elvis and Mister Ed. Listen - I believe
that people are perfectable, that knowledge is infinite, that the world is run by secret
banking cartels and is visited by aliens on a regular basis, nice ones that look like
wrinkled lemurs and bad ones who mutilate cattle and want our water and our women.
I believe that the future sucks and I believe that the future rocks and I believe
that one day White Buffalo Woman is going to come back and kick everyone's ass. I believe
that all men are just overgrown boys with deep problems communicating and that the decline
in good sex in America is coincident with the decline in drive-in movie theaters from
state to state.
I believe that all politicians are unprincipled crooks and I still believe that they
are better than the alternative. I believe that California is going to sink into the
sea when the big one comes, while Florida is going to dissolve into madness and alligators
and toxic waste.
I believe that antibacterial soap is destroying our resistance to dirt and disease
so that one day we'll all be wiped out by the common cold like martians in War of the
I believe that the greatest poets of the last century were Edith Sitwell and Don Marquis,
that jade is dried dragon sperm, and that thousands of years ago in a former life I was
a one-armed Siberian shaman.
I believe that mankind's destiny lies in the stars. I believe that candy really did
taste better when I was a kid, that it's aerodynamically impossible for a bumble bee
to fly, that light is a wave and a particle, that there's a cat in a box somewhere who's
alive and dead at the same time (although if they don't ever open the box to feed it
it'll eventually just be two different kinds of dead), and that there are stars in the
universe billions of years older than the universe itself.
I believe in a personal god who cares about me and worries and oversees everything
I do. I believe in an impersonal god who set the universe in motion and went off to hang
with her girlfriends and doesn't even know that I'm alive. I believe in an empty and
godless universe of causal chaos, background noise, and sheer blind luck.
I believe that anyone who says sex is overrated just hasn't done it properly. I believe
that anyone who claims to know what's going on will lie about the little things too.
I believe in absolute honesty and sensible social lies. I believe in a woman's right
to choose, a baby's right to live, that while all human life is sacred there's nothing
wrong with the death penalty if you can trust the legal system implicitly, and that no
one but a moron would ever trust the legal system.
I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens
when you're alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.”
― Neil Gaiman, American Gods I think one of the greatest gifts you can give to someone is just access to the possibility
of freedom that you don't have to be totally depressed and enslaved by your own environment.
Read more at
Amanda Palmer Quotes“The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.”― Gloria Steinem
man is nothing but a poor man with money." -- W.C. Fields
Never try to impress a woman, because if you do she'll expect you to keep up the standard for
the rest of your life. -- W. C. Fields
“Heard joke once: Man goes to doctor. Says he's depressed. Says life
seems harsh and cruel. Says he feels all alone in a threatening world where what lies
ahead is vague and uncertain. Doctor says, "Treatment is simple. Great clown
Pagliacci is in town tonight. Go and see him. That should pick
you up." Man bursts into tears. Says, "But doctor...I am Pagliacci.”
― Alan Moore, Watchmen
A central thesis of "What's the Matter with Kansas?" is that the GOP has become quite sophisticated
at convincing people to vote against their own interest.
“I think of myself as an intelligent, sensitive human being with the soul of a clown
which always forces me to blow it at the most important moments.”
― Jim Morrison"But the parade must go on."
“Humanity is a parade of fools, and I am at the
front of it, twirling a baton.”
― Dean Koontz
"I’m a rude dude, but I’m the real deal. Lean and mean! Cocked, locked and ready-to-rock.
Rough, tough and hard to bluff. I take it slow, I go with the flow, I ride with the tide.
I’ve got glide in my stride. Drivin and movin, sailin and spinin, jiving and groovin,
wailin and winnin. I don’t snooze, so I don’t lose. I keep the pedal to the metal and
the rubber on the road. I party hearty and lunch time is crunch time. I’m hangin in,
there ain’t no doubt and I’m hangin tough, over and out!”
― George Carlin
"...A major contribution of JK
Galbraith was the principle of countervailing power which did not depend on the niceties of detailed
microeconomic analysis of market or government power. Galbraith paralleled the book, The Modern Corporation
and Private Property by Berle and Means, 1932."
"..."In the case of economics there are no important propositions that cannot be stated in plain
That's the acid test, the one that macro-types fail. Their mathiness and their rhetorical obfuscations
damn them all - that kind of tripe doesn't work at all in front of a judge or a jury, but it's good
as gold in academia and bureaucracy. Their miserable record of delivered failure doesn't help either.
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." (Einstein)"
From Tim Taylor:
John Kenneth Galbraith on Writing, Inspiration, and Simplicity: John Kenneth Galbraith (1908-2006)
was trained as an economist, but in books like The Affluent Society (1958) and The
New Industrial State (1967), his found his metier as a social critic. In these books and
voluminous other writings, Galbraith didn't propose well-articulated economic theories, and carry
out systematic empirical tests, but instead offered big-picture perspectives of the economy and
society of his time. His policy advice was grindingly predictable: big and bigger doses of progressive
liberalism, what he sometimes called "new socialism."
For a sense of how mainstream and Democratic-leaning economists of the time dismissed Galbraith's
work, classic example is
this scathing-and-smiling review of The New Industrial State by Robert Solow in the
Fall 1967 issue of The Public Interest.
Galbreath's response appears in the same issue. Connoisseurs of academic blood sports will
enjoy the exchange.
Here, I come not to quarrel with Galbraith's economics, but to praise him as one of the finest
writers on economics and social science topics it has ever been my pleasure to read. I take as
my text his essay on
"Writing, Typing, and Economics," which appeared in the March 1978 issue of The Atlantic
and which I recently rediscovered. Here are some highlights:
"All writers know that on some golden mornings they are touched by the wand — are on intimate
terms with poetry and cosmic truth. I have experienced those moments myself. Their lesson is
simple: It's a total illusion. And the danger in the illusion is that you will wait for those
moments. Such is the horror of having to face the typewriter that you will spend all your time
waiting. I am persuaded that most writers, like most shoemakers, are about as good one day
as the next (a point which Trollope made), hangovers apart. The difference is the result of
euphoria, alcohol, or imagination. The meaning is that one had better go to his or her typewriter
every morning and stay there regardless of the seeming result. It will be much the same. ..."
"My advice to those eager students in California would be, "Do not wait for the golden moment.
It may well be worse." I would also warn against the flocking tendency of writers and its use
as a cover for idleness. It helps greatly in the avoidance of work to be in the company of
others who are also waiting for the golden moment. The best place to write is by yourself,
because writing becomes an escape from the terrible boredom of your own personality. It's the
reason that for years I've favored Switzerland, where I look at the telephone and yearn to
hear it ring. ..."
"There may be inspired writers for whom the first draft is just right. But anyone who is not
certifiably a Milton had better assume that the first draft is a very primitive thing. The
reason is simple: Writing is difficult work. Ralph Paine, who managed Fortune in my time, used
to say that anyone who said writing was easy was either a bad writer or an unregenerate liar.
Thinking, as Voltaire avowed, is also a very tedious thing which men—or women—will do anything
to avoid. So all first drafts are deeply flawed by the need to combine composition with thought.
Each later draft is less demanding in this regard. Hence the writing can be better. There does
come a time when revision is for the sake of change—when one has become so bored with the words
that anything that is different looks better. But even then it may be better. ..."
"Next, I would want to tell my students of a point strongly pressed, if my memory serves, by
Shaw. He once said that as he grew older, he became less and less interested in theory, more
and more interested in information. The temptation in writing is just the reverse. Nothing
is so hard to come by as a new and interesting fact. Nothing is so easy on the feet as a generalization.
I now pick up magazines and leaf through them looking for articles that are rich with facts;
I do not care much what they are. Richly evocative and deeply percipient theory I avoid. It
leaves me cold unless I am the author of it. ..."
"In the case of economics there are no important propositions that cannot be stated in plain
language. Qualifications and refinements are numerous and of great technical complexity. These
are important for separating the good students from the dolts. But in economics the refinements
rarely, if ever, modify the essential and practical point. The writer who seeks to be intelligible
needs to be right; he must be challenged if his argument leads to an erroneous conclusion and
especially if it leads to the wrong action. But he can safely dismiss the charge that he has
made the subject too easy. The truth is not difficult. Complexity and obscurity have professional
value—they are the academic equivalents of apprenticeship rules in the building trades. They
exclude the outsiders, keep down the competition, preserve the image of a privileged or priestly
class. The man who makes things clear is a scab. He is criticized less for his clarity than
for his treachery.
"Additionally, and especially in the social sciences, much unclear writing is based on unclear
or incomplete thought. It is possible with safety to be technically obscure about something
you haven't thought out. It is impossible to be wholly clear on something you do not understand.
Clarity thus exposes flaws in the thought. The person who undertakes to make difficult matters
clear is infringing on the sovereign right of numerous economists, sociologists, and political
scientists to make bad writing the disguise for sloppy, imprecise, or incomplete thought. One
can understand the resulting anger."
I must say I enjoyed reading and listening to Galbraith, but if I am honest, I will also say
that I didn't learn much from him.
His most important contribution is the sentence "The modern conservative is engaged in one
of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification
for selfishness." That clings as true today, as it ever did, and should always be used as a
guide towards an appropriate level of scepticism.
"In the case of economics there are no important propositions that cannot be stated in plain
That's the acid test, the one that macro-types fail. Their mathiness and their rhetorical obfuscations
damn them all - that kind of tripe doesn't work at all in front of a judge or a jury, but it's
good as gold in academia and bureaucracy. Their miserable record of delivered failure doesn't
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." (Einstein)
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough."
Though the passage is attributed to Einstein, there is no evidence that the passage is by Einstein.
anne -> anne...
The New Industrial State or Son of Affluence
By ROBERT M. SOLOW
[ An absolutely shameful review, empty and mean-spirited and designed to be intimating for
teachers or students who would otherwise teach or read Galbraith's "New Industrial State."
Galbraith's work in my experience was routinely mocked and dismissed by teaching economists,
a dismissal that was even reflected in unfair remarks made by Paul Krugman many years after
this review by Solow. ]
Second Best said...
September 1, 1996
Review of John Kenneth Galbraith's 'The Good Society: The Humane Agenda'
By Paul Krugman - Washington Monthly
To be both a liberal and a good economist you must have a certain sense of the tragic--that
is, you must understand that not all goals can be attained, that life is a matter of painful
tradeoffs. You must want to help the poor, but understand that welfare can encourage dependency.
You must want to protect those who lose their jobs, but admit that generous unemployment benefits
can raise the long-term rate of unemployment. You must be willing to tax the affluent to help
those in need, but accept that too high a rate of taxation can discourage investment and innovation.
To the free-market conservative, these are all arguments for government to do nothing, to accept
whatever level of poverty and insecurity the market happens to produce. A serious liberal does
not reply to such conservatives by denying that there are any trade-offs at all; he insists,
rather, that some trade-offs are worth making, that helping the poor and protecting the unlucky
may have costs but will ultimately make for a better society.
The revelation one gets from reading John Kenneth Galbraith's "The Good Society" is that
Galbraith--who is one of the world's most celebrated intellectuals, and whom one would expect
to have a deeper appreciation of the complexity of the human condition than a mere technical
economist would--lacks this tragic sense. Galbraith's vision of the economy is one without
shadows, in which what is good for social justice always turns out to have no unfavorable side
effects. If this vision is typical of liberal intellectuals, the ineffectuality of the tribe
is not an accident: It stems from a deep-seated unwillingness to face up to uncomfortable reality....
RC AKA Darryl, Ron
-> Second Best...
A major contribution of JK Galbraith was the principle of countervailing power which
did not depend on the niceties of detailed microeconomic analysis of market or government power.
Galbraith paralleled the book, The Modern Corporation and Private Property by Berle and Means,
The essential point of Berle and Means was owners of private property as stockholders no
longer controlled the means of production, taken over by the managers. A key contemporary marker
of this effect is how CEO pay and control is completely immune from stockholder influence.
It was the mother of the principal-agent problem but never caught on.
Countervailing power among the economic powers became the determinant focal point of economic
outcomes. All of whatever free markets under capitalism were ever meant to be evolved accordingly.
At the highest level countervailing power meant government power versus private property
power. Since private market power itself was systematically stripped from its owners as stockholders
early on, and the managerial elite went on to confiscate government power as well, this undermined
the fundamental notion of countervailing power itself.
The pinnacle of the elaborate systemic hoax of ownership of private property by the masses
before it collapsed with the housing bubble and Great Recession, emerged under George W Bush
as the ownership society.
By then not even the SCOTUS that appointed Bush was a countervailng power to the other branches
of government, much less the private corporate and billionaire power at the apex of if all.
Well said. You are correct. This is no joke.
Galbraith didn't propose well-articulated economic theories, and carry out systematic empirical
tests, but instead offered big-picture perspectives of the economy and society of his time.
His policy advice was grindingly predictable: big and bigger doses of progressive liberalism,
what he sometimes called "new socialism."
-- Tim Taylor
[ So much for Keynes. The disdain for and dismissal of actually liberal ideas by a range
of economists is continually shocking, but evidently allows for no discussion. So we find the
failing policy applications before and following the great recession, still essentially unchallenged.
Economists are insecure, occupying the uncertain territory between philosophy and science.
Economists on the right have an incentive to make economics a science, with its mathematical
certainty, because, well, there can't be certainty in economics, at least not in math, thereby
confirming that markets should be left alone to do their magic. Economists on the left are,
well, just insecure. Galbraith excepted.
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> rayward...
In economics, the majority is always wrong.
John Kenneth Galbraith
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron...
[JKG was a very funny guy of the ironic sort, the best sort in my book.]
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron...
Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.
John Kenneth Galbraith
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron...
Economics is extremely useful as a form of employment for economists.
John Kenneth Galbraith
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron...
The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable.
John Kenneth Galbraith
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> RC AKA Darryl, Ron...
Politics is the art of choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.
John Kenneth Galbraith
[Aug 24, 2015] A thing long expected takes the form of the unexpected when at last it comes. -
Mark Twain's Notebook
Jesse's Café Américain
And what happens when PR turns a profit, and truth goes penniless?" -- Bill Moyers
"Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, and expecting different results." -- Albert
[May 24, 2015] Mathematics is the subject that Russians teach chinese and indians in US universities.
OWEN HARRIES, the first editor, together with Robert Tucker, of The National Interest,
once reminded me that experts—economists, strategists, business leaders and academics alike—tend
to be relentless followers of intellectual fashion, and the learned, as Harold Rosenberg famously
put it, a “herd of independent minds.”
An imbalance between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics.
"Give me control of a nations money supply & I care not who makes its laws"
- When the capital development of a country becomes a by-product of the activities of a casino,
the job is likely to be ill-done, JM Keynes, General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money
Ch 12, p142 in Google Book edition, Atlantic Publishers
- The long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we are all dead.
Economists set themselves too easy, too useless a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only tell
us that when the storm is past the ocean is flat again.
- A Tract on Monetary Reform (1923) Ch. 3; many have thought this meant Keynes supported
short terms gains against long term economic performance, but he was actually criticizing the
belief that inflation would acceptably control itself without government intervention.
between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics."
- "Crush humanity out of shape once more, under similar hammers, and it will twist itself into
the same tortured forms. Sow the same seed of rapacious license and oppression over again, and it
will surely yield the same fruit according to its kind." -- Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities
- "Flagrant evils cure themselves by being flagrant." -- John Henry Newman
- "The great masquerade of evil has played havoc with all our ethical concepts. For evil to appear
disguised as light, as charity, as historical necessity, or social justice is quite bewildering to
anyone raised on traditional ethical concepts. But for the Christian who builds his life on the word
of God, it merely confirms the fundamental perversity of evil." -- Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Jack London, The Iron Heel
"You have repeatedly confessed to-night, by direct avowal or ignorant statement, that you do not
know the working class. But you are not to be blamed for this. How can you know anything about the
working class? You do not live in the same locality with the working class. You herd with the capitalist
class in another locality. And why not? It is the capitalist class that pays you, that feeds you,
that puts the very clothes on your backs that you are wearing to-night. And in return you preach
to your employers the brands of metaphysics that are especially acceptable to them; and the especially
acceptable brands are acceptable because they do not menace the established order of society.
Be true to your salt and your hire; guard, with your preaching, the interests of your employers;
but do not come down to the working class and serve as false leaders. You cannot honestly be in the
two camps at once. The working class has done without you. Believe me, the working class will continue
to do without you. And, furthermore, the working class can do better without you than with you."
Jack London, The Iron Heel
Farewell to Empire
The Capitol stuffs its ears when it hears you; the world reviles you. I can blush for you no longer,
and I have no wish to do so.
The howls of Cerberus, the dog of the underworld, though resembling your speeches, will be less
offensive to me, for I have never been associated with Cerberus, and I need not be ashamed of his
Farewell, but make no music; commit murder, but write no verses; poison people, but do not dance;
be an incendiary, but play no harp. This is the wish and the last friendly advice sent to you by
Petronius, Arbiter Elegantiae, Farewell to His Emperor
Folly is a more dangerous enemy to the good than evil
"Folly is a more dangerous enemy to the good than evil. One can protest against evil; it can be
unmasked and, if need be, prevented by force. Evil always carries the seeds of its own destruction,
as it makes people, at the least, uncomfortable. Against folly we have no defence. Neither protests
nor force can touch it; reasoning is no use; facts that contradict personal prejudices can simply
be disbelieved — indeed, the fool can counter by criticizing them, and if they are undeniable, they
can be just pushed aside as trivial exceptions.
So the fool, as distinct from the scoundrel, is completely self-satisfied; in fact, he can easily
become dangerous, as it does not take much to make him aggressive. A fool must therefore be treated
more cautiously than a scoundrel; we shall never again try to convince a fool by reason, for it is
both useless and dangerous."
[Feb 24, 2015] “He did not care for the lying at first. He hated it. Then later he had come to like
it. It was part of being an insider, but it was a very corrupting business.” Ernest Hemingway, For Whom
the Bell Tolls
[Feb 24, 2015] "Easy is the descent down to hell;
Its gates stand open, day and night.
But to retrace one's steps, to return
To see again the pure clean air, and cheerfulness and life:
That is the real task, that is our true labour."
"The more people rationalize cheating, the more it becomes a culture of dishonesty. And that can become
a vicious, downward cycle. Because suddenly, if everyone else is cheating, you feel a need to cheat,
too." -- Stephen Covey, The Speed of Trust
"The greatest crimes of human history are made possible by the most colorless human beings. They
are the careerists. The bureaucrats. The cynics. They do the little chores that make vast, complicated
systems of exploitation and death a reality... And they do not ask questions." -- Chris Hedges, The
Economics is 'a disgraced profession,' what does it matter, when almost all the professions from
medicine to law to finance have also given themselves over to the darkness of this world in high places?
-- Jamie Galbraith
[Jan 23, 2015] One way to check who is sell-out
James Galbraith: It's one of the old stories. Shaw turned to Lady Astor at a dinner party and
said, “Madame, would you sleep with me for a million pounds?”, and she said, “I'd consider it”. Then
he said, “How about ten pounds?”, and she said, “What do you think I am?” Then he said, “Well we've
established that, now we're just haggling over the price.” Having established that we need the investment
program, we can now talk about how to achieve it. Economist's
View (was not it attributed to Winston Churchill as well ?)
[Nov 29, 2014] "A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he
deserves." ~Henry Ward Beecher
“The evil effect of science upon men is principally this, that by far the greatest number of those
who wish to display a knowledge of it accomplish no improvement at all of the understanding, but
only a perversity of it. It serves most of them as a tool of vanity.”
“Knowledge without wisdom is a load of books on the back of an ass”
Chutzpah: shameless audacity; impudence, unmitigated effrontery or impudence; gall.
Robert Johnson at Culture Project's IMPART 2012 Festival
Oligarchy now is audacious. They don't really care if they are legitimate. "Legitimate if you
can, coerce if you have to, and accommodate if you must."
[Aug 08, 2014] Random findings
- A cynic is a person searching for an honest man, with a stolen lantern. ~Edgar A. Shoaff
- I love mankind - it's people I can't stand. ~Charles M. Schulz, Go Fly a Kite, Charlie Brown
- Sarcasm is the sour cream of wit. ~Author Unknown
- There is no such thing as inner peace. There is only nervousness and death. ~Fran Lebowitz
- A cynic knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. ~Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's
- I've always been interested in people, but I've never liked them. ~W. Somerset Maugham
- [I] put the question directly to myself: "Suppose that all your objects in life were realized;
that all the changes in institutions and opinions which you are looking forward to, could be completely
effected at this very instant: would this be a great joy and happiness to you?" And an irrepressible
self-consciousness distinctly answered, "No!" ~John Stuart Mill, Autobiography, 1909
- Life is one long process of getting tired. ~Samuel Butler
- Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody's face but their
own. ~Jonathan Swift, The Battle of the Books, 1704
- Of the demonstrably wise there are but two: those who commit suicide, and those who keep their
reasoning faculties atrophied by drink. ~Mark Twain, Note-Book, 1935
- The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it. ~George
- The Bible tells us to love our neighbors, and also to love our enemies; probably because they
are generally the same people. ~G.K. Chesterton
- We can destroy ourselves by cynicism and disillusion, just as effectively as by bombs. ~Kenneth
- Men hate to be misunderstood, and to be understood makes them furious. ~Edgar Saltus
- Things are not as bad as they seem. They are worse. ~Bill Press
- I advise you to go on living solely to enrage those who are paying your annuities. It is the
only pleasure I have left. ~Voltaire
- He had the uneasy manner of a man who is not among his own kind, and who has not seen enough
of the world to feel that all people are in some sense his own kind. ~Willa Cather
- Nothing begins, and nothing ends, that is not paid with moan; for we are born in other's pain,
and perish in our own. ~Francis Thompson
- Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know. ~Ernest Hemingway (Thanks, Schanna)
- Sometimes you wake up in the morning and wish your parents had never met. ~Bill Fitch
- We are adhering to life now with our last muscle - the heart. ~Djuna Barnes
- The dignity of man lies in his ability to face reality in all its meaninglessness. ~Martin Esslin
- [T]he army of wrongness rampant in the world might as well march over me. ~Truman Capote, Breakfast
at Tiffany's, 1958
- I see it all perfectly: there are two possibilities, one can either do this or do that. My honest
opinion and friendly advice is this: do it or do not do it, you will regret both. ~Kierkegaard
- Comfort, or revelation: God owes us one of these, but surely not both. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The
Neurotic's Notebook, 1960
- Janie's a pretty typical teenager - angry, insecure, confused. I wish I could tell her that's
all going to pass, but I don't want to lie to her. ~Alan Ball, American Beauty, 1999
- I like long walks, especially when they're taken by people who annoy me. ~Fred Allen
- My pessimism extends to the point of even suspecting the sincerity of the pessimists. ~Jean Rostand
- You're obliged to pretend respect for people and institutions you think absurd. You live attached
in a cowardly fashion to moral and social conventions you despise, condemn, and know lack all foundation.
It is that permanent contradiction between your ideas and desires and all the dead formalities and
vain pretenses of your civilization which makes you sad, troubled and unbalanced. In that intolerable
conflict you lose all joy of life and all feeling of personality, because at every moment they suppress
and restrain and check the free play of your powers. That's the poisoned and mortal wound of the
civilized world. ~Octave Mirbeau, Torture Garden
- Youth is a blunder; Manhood a struggle; Old Age a regret. ~Benjamin Disraeli, Coningsby
- Happy endings are only stories that haven't finished yet. ~Simon Kinberg, Mr. & Mrs. Smith
- It must be admitted that there are some parts of the soul which we must entirely paralyze before
we can live happily in this world. ~Sébastien-Roch Nicolas de Chamfort
- Idealism is what precedes experience; cynicism is what follows. ~David T. Wolf
- The only thing that could spoil a day was people. People were always the limiters of happiness
except for the very few that were as good as spring itself. ~Ernest Hemingway
- I do not believe in revealed religion - I will have nothing to do with your immortality; we are
miserable enough in this life, without speculating on another. ~Lord Byron, 1778-1824, letter to
Rev. Francis Hodgson, 1811
- Many of us go through life feeling as an actor might feel who does not like his part, and does
not believe in the play. ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic's Notebook, 1960
- The enthusiastic, to those who are not, are always something of a trial. ~Alban Goodier
- I never knew whether to pity or congratulate a man on coming to his senses. ~William Makepeace
- Man is the cruelest animal. At tragedies, bullfights, and crucifixions he has so far felt best
on earth; and when he invented hell for himself, behold, that was his very heaven. ~Friedrich Nietzsche,
Thus Spake Zarathustra, 1892
- A satirist is a man who discovers unpleasant things about himself and then says them about other
people. ~Peter McArthur
- God made everything out of nothing. But the nothingness shows through. ~Paul Valéry, Mauvaises
pensées et autres, 1942
- Oftentimes, when people are miserable, they will want to make other people miserable, too. But
it never helps. ~Lemony Snicket
- The better I get to know men, the more I find myself loving dogs. ~Charles de Gaulle
- Paradoxical as it sounds, many intellectuals prefer life in the mud to life in clear water. ~Martin
[Aug 07, 2014] Random findings
Anyone can do any amount of work, provided it isn't the work
he is supposed to be doing. --Humorist Robert Benchley, quoted in The Algonquin Wits, 1968
--[This may seem the ultimate in cynicism, but the second half of the quotation
(about trying honesty once in a while) seems foreign to many US politicians.]
Honesty may not be the best policy, but it is worth trying
once in a while. --Richard Nixon, in a meeting, 1970
Three percent exceeds 2 percent by 50 percent, not by 1 percent.
--Edward Denison, in conversation, about 1960
"It isn't what we don't know that gives us trouble, it's what we know
that ain't so.”
Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge
we have lost in information? --T.S. Eliot, The Rock, 1934
- “Intelligence is not to make no mistakes, but quickly to see how to make them good.”―Bertolt
- “What they could do with 'round here is a good war. What else can you expect with peace running
wild all over the place? You know what the trouble with peace is? No organization.”―Bertolt Brecht
- “First comes a full stomach, then comes ethics.”―Bertolt Brecht
- “The law is simply and solely made for the exploitation of those who do not understand it or
of those who, for naked need, cannot obey it.” ―Bertolt Brecht
Sandwichman said in reply to btg...
"these 'zombie' ideas, as Krugman calls them, require some sort of massive public education
No. "Man is born ignorant; he is not born a fool; and it is not even without labour that he is
made one." - Helvetius, "A Treatise on Man: His Intellectual Faculties and His Education" (usually
attributed to Benjamin Franklin in the following form: "We are all born ignorant but one must
work hard to remain stupid.")
Sandwichman said in reply to Sandwichman...
"The man who knows nothing may learn; it is only requisite to excite in him the desire of knowledge.
But he who is falsely learned, and has by degrees lost his reason when he thought to improve it,
has purchased his stupidity at too dear a rate ever to renounce it."
Sandwichman said in reply to DrDick...
Ha, ha, ha! You know about that one, then? Will Rogers or Mark Twain or Frank "Kin" Hubbard
or Josh Billings or Artemus Ward...
BRIEFING; What Folks Don't Know
By James F. Clarity and Warren Weaver Jr.
New York Times
October 18, 1984
"Various suggestions of authorship emerged after it was reported here that research at the archives
of the Will Rogers Memorial, at Claremore, Okla., and elsewhere, could not affirm that Rogers
ever said anything resembling what Mr. Mondale attributes to him. The research has continued,
and the Library of Congress reports it is still unable to nail down the source. One suggestion
says the author is Artemus Ward, a 19th-century American humorist, who supposedly wrote, ''It's
not so much what folks don't know that causes problems, it's what they do know that ain't so.''
Others cite Josh Billings, also a 19th-century American humorist, who apparently said it several
ways. One of them: ''It is better to know nothing than to know what ain't so.'' Still another
attribution is to Frank Hubbard, said to be a 20th century American journalist, who wrote '' 'Taint
what a man don't know that hurts him; it's what he knows that just ain't so.'' All of which could
lead to the conclusion that it's not so much what was said, as who ain't going to get credit for
saying it in the first place."
[Nov 15, 2013] Random findings
- The great nations have always acted like gangsters, and the small nations like prostitutes.
Stanley Kubrick (b. 1928), U.S. filmmaker. Guardian (London, June 5, 1963).
- In this world, shipmates, sin that pays its way can travel freely, and without a passport; whereas
Virtue, if a pauper, is stopped at all frontiers. --MOBY DICK, Chapter IX
- "For the great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie -- deliberate, contrived and dishonest--but
the myth--persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forebears.
We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without
the discomfort of thought."
- You don't write because you want to say something, you write because you've got something to
say. – F. Scott Fitzgerald, 1896-1940, American Author
- A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on. – Carl Sandburg, 1878-1967, American Poet/Historian/Pulitzer
- Memory is the diary that we all carry about with us. – Oscar Wilde, 1854-1900, Irish Dramatist/Novelist/Poet
- Shared joys make a friend, not shared sufferings. – Friedrich Nietzsche, 1844-1900, German Philosopher
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Humor Bulletin, 2012 :
Financial Humor Bulletin,
2013 : Java Humor : Software
Engineering Humor : Sun Solaris Related Humor :
Education Humor : IBM
Humor : Assembler-related Humor :
VIM Humor : Computer
Viruses Humor : Bright tomorrow is rescheduled
to a day after tomorrow : Classic Computer
The Last but not Least
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Last modified: April 09, 2017