James Geary once wrote that "Aphorisms are like particle accelerators for the mind." When particles collide inside an accelerator,
new ones are formed as the energy of the crash is converted into matter. Inside an aphorism, it is minds that collide, and what spins
out is that most slippery of things, wisdom.
20180220 : "One cannot observe democracy objectively without being impressed by its curious distrust of itself-it's apparent ineradicable tendency to abandon its philosophy at the first sign of strain. I need not point to what invariably happens in democratic states when the national safety is menaced. All the great tribunes of democracy, on such occasions, convert themselves into instant despots of an almost fabulous ferocity." ~ H.L. Mencken ( Feb 20, 2018 )
20160914 : "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 14, 2016 )
20150224 : "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 ( )
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 a struggle
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] ]
[Feb 15, 2019] "All states can be placed on a continuum which ranges from states whose authority is based on their power to
states whose power is based on their authority." Alexander Solzhenitsyn
The men the American public admire [and reward] most extravagantly are the most daring liars; the men they detest [and punish] most
violently are those who try to tell them the truth. ~ H. L. Mencken 1880-1956 [updated 2019]
[Jan 29, 2019] Ours not to reason why, ours but to do and die. Alfred Lord Tennyson
I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.~Thomas Jefferson~
When a government is dependent upon bankers for money, they and not the leaders of the government control the situation, since
the hand that gives is above the hand that takes Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency;
their sole object is gain." – Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of France, 1815
"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to
create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political
system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be
controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by
secret agreements arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences."
"Money is not humanity's best subject. And although our body of scientific knowledge
grows with each passing year, when it comes to financial matters, we somehow keep
stepping on the same rake -- that inescapable pattern of financial boom and bust."
"There's a verbal tic particular to a certain kind of response to a certain kind of
story about the thinness and desperation of American society; about the person who died
of preventable illness or the Kickstarter campaign to help another who can't afford
cancer treatment even with 'good' insurance; about the plight of the homeless or the
lack of resources for the rural poor; about underpaid teachers spending thousands of
dollars of their own money for the most basic classroom supplies; about train
derailments, the ruination of the New York subway system and the decrepit states of our
airports and ports of entry...
'I can't believe this in the richest country in the world. '
The social wealth of a society is better measured by the quality of its common lived
environment than by a consolidated statistical approximation like GDP, or even an
attempt at weighted comparisons like so-called purchasing power parity. There is a
reason why our great American cities, for all of our supposed wealth, often feel and
look so shabby. The money goes elsewhere...
Poverty -- both individual and social -- is a policy, not an accident, and not some kind of
natural law. These are deliberate choices about the allocation of resources. They are
eminently undoable by modest exercises of political power, although if the state- and
city-level Democratic leaders of New York and northern Virginia are the national mold,
then our nominally left-wing party is utterly, hopelessly beholden to the upward
transfer of social wealth to an extremely narrow cadre of already extremely rich men
"Today, the first and perhaps the only duty of the philosopher is to defend man against
himself: to defend man against that extraordinary temptation toward inhumanity to which
- almost without being aware of it - so many human beings today have yielded."
"Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and
change ordinary opportunities into blessings."
William Arthur Ward
"The blessed John the Evangelist lived in Ephesus until extreme old age. His disciples could
barely carry him to church and he could not muster the voice to speak many words. During
individual gatherings he usually said nothing but, 'Little children, love one another.' The
disciples and brothers in attendance, annoyed because they always heard the same words, finally
said, 'Teacher, why do you always say this?' He replied with a line worthy of John: 'Because it
is the Lord's commandment, and if it alone is kept, it is sufficient.'"
Jerome, Commentary on Galatians , 4th century
"For whosoever will cling to his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my
sake shall find it."
My humble opinion on the subject is, like numismatic coins, typos make the thing
(whatever that is) more valuable.
That opinion helps me, many times, to persist in my laziness to correct.
[Nov 16, 2018] An ideology can provide a satisfying narrative that explains chaotic events and collective misfortunes in a way that
flatters the virtue and competence of believers, while being vague or conspiratorial enough to withstand skeptical scrutiny. ~Steven
You can't fake creativity, competence, or sexual arousal. ~Douglas Coupland
The single most exciting thing you encounter in government is competence, because it's so rare. ~Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Indeed, the woes of Software Engineering are not due to lack of tools, or proper management, but largely due to lack of sufficient
technical competence. ~ Niklaus Wirth
Competence, like truth, beauty, and contact lenses, is in the eye of the beholder. ~Laurence J. Peter
Competence is a narrow ideal. Competence makes the trains run on time but doesn't know where they're going. ~George H.
Competence doesn't seem like a big deal until you are forced to realize that your own government has none. ~Bruce Sterling
Remember, 'Rome was not built in a day.' Instant success is never possible. Competence results only from sustained, consistent,
self-disciplined effort over an extended period of time. ~ Bud Wilkinson
Obscurity and competence - that is the life that is best worth living ~Mark Twain
Morally, a philosopher who uses his professional competence for anything except a disinterested search for truth is guilty
of a kind of treachery ~Bertrand Russell
Look for competence not claims. Anthony de Mello
Sincerity does not equal competence. Isaac Bonewits
Friendships are nice. So is competence. ~Michael Crichton
Churches often confuse loyalty with competence. ~Phil Cooke
Creativity is not a substitute for competence. ~ Mason Cooley
The test of true competence is the end result. ~ L. Ron Hubbard
...true self-esteem comes from competence, not the other way around. ~Susan Cain
To know one's own limitations is the hallmark of competence. ~Dorothy L. Sayers
When your team questions your competence, your ability to influence is shot. ~John Fairclough
Maturity is largely about acquiring the confidence and the competence to make your own decisions. ~Susan Maushart
There are three qualities a leader must exemplify to build trust: competence, connection, and character. ~John C. Maxwell
All conversation, in addition to whatever else it does, displays, and asks for recognition of, our competence. ~Deborah Tannen
People value honesty. They value integrity. They value competence and courage and all those kinds of things. ~Richard A. Kidd
One of the best uses of your time is to increase your competence in your key result areas. ~Brian Tracy
A moment of choice is a moment of truth. It's the testing point of our character and competence. ~Stephen Covey
I mistrust total competence. I've always felt life is a series of small disasters we try to get through. ~Michael Palin
Trust has two dimensions: competence and integrity. We will forgive mistakes of competence. Mistakes of integrity are harder
to overcome. ~Simon Sinek
What would you call the highest happiness? Wratislaw was asked. The sense of competence, was the answer, given without hesitation.
The older I get the more I admire and crave competence, just simple competence, in any field from adultery to zoology. ~H.
Discipline is the habit of taking consistent action until one can perform with unconscious competence. Discipline weighs ounces
but regret weighs tons. ~Jhoon Goo Rhee
An intellectual may be defined as a man who speaks with general authority about a subject on which he has no particular
competence. ~Irving Kristol
If you want to be successful, don't seek success - seek competence, empowerment; do nothing short of the best that you can
do. ~Jaggi Vasudev
Everybody's got a different circle of competence. The important thing is not how big the circle is. The important thing is
staying inside the circle. ~Warren Buffett
If you have competence, you pretty much know its boundaries already. To ask the question (of whether you are past the boundary)
is to answer it. ~Charlie Munger
If we have a strength, it is in recognizing when we are operating well within our circle of competence and when we are approaching
the perimeter. ~Warren Buffett
We now operate in a world in which we can assume neither competence nor good faith from the authorities. The consequences
of this simple, devastating realization define American life. ~ Chris Hayes
Every discipline develops standards of professional competence to which its workers are subject... Every scientific community
is a society in the small, so to speak, with its own agencies of social control. ~Abraham Kaplan
1."I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more
titan knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world."
-- Albert Einstein
2. One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one
-- Elbert Hubbard, The Rovcroft Dictionary' and Book of Epigrams, 1923
3. The production of too many useful things results in too many useless people.
4. Education makes machines which act like men and produces men who act like machines.
-- Erich Fromm
5. Man is the lowest-cost, 150-pound, nonlinear, all-purpose computer system which can
mass-produced by unskilled labor.
-NASA in 1965
... ... ...
11. "Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do
manage, and those who manage what they do not understand."
-- Archibald Putt
12. "For years there has been a theory that millions of monkeys typing at random on millions
typewriters would reproduce the entire works of Shakespeare. The Internet has proven this
theory to be untrue."
-- Robert Wilensy
13. "If the automobile had followed the same development cycle as the computer, a Rolls
would today cost $100, get a million miles per gallon, and explode once a year, killing
"Your national greatness, swelling vanity; your denunciation of tyrants, brass-fronted
impudence; your shouts of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your prayers and hymns, your
sermons and thanksgivings, with all your religious parade and solemnity, are, to Him, mere
bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy-a thin veil to cover up crimes which would
disgrace a nation of savages. There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices more
shocking and bloody than are the people of the United States, at this very hour."
Parroting / Aping that "Stalin" red-rag quote betrays a woeful ignorance or else deviousness. There is a great abundance of
evidence that it was coined in the early 20c by the German playwright Tucholsky, based on earlier similar expressions, and subsequently
recycled by many, including for example, Remarque.
Furthermore, close reading of almost all recorded sources of that and similar observations shows that has usually been used
an an expression of hopelessness or fortification, and not of cruelty or indifference.
That the erroneous attribution to Stalin originated in the Washington Post in the 'forties ought to tell even the dim-witted
among us something useful about gullibility and skepticism.
It would be easy for us, if we do not learn to understand the world and appreciate the rights, privileges and duties of all
other countries and peoples, to represent in our power the same danger to the world that Fascism did." ~Ernest Hemingway
"Americans are too broadly under informed to digest nuggets of information that seem to contradict what they know of the world.
Instead, news channels prefer to feed Americans a constant stream of simplified information, all of which fits what they already
know. That way they don't have to devote more air time or newsprint space to explanations or further investigations... Politicians
and the media have conspired to infantilize, to dumb down, the American public. At heart, politicians don't believe that Americans
can handle complex truths, and the news media, especially television news, basically agrees." ~Tom Fenton
"The easiest way to gain control of a population is to carry out acts of terror. The public will clamor for such laws if their
personal security is threatened." ~Josef Stalin
"Governments don't want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking, That is against their interests.
They want obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork, and just dumb enough to
passively accept it." ~George Carlin
"As news organizations are increasingly driven by a bottom-line mentality, the news we get becomes more and more sensational.
What is the difference between Time and Newsweek? Between ABC, NBC, and CBS News? Between the Washington Post and the New York
Times? For all practical purposes, none. The concentration of media power means that Americans increasingly get their information
from a few sources who decide what is "news." ~Oliver Stone
"The major news media serve at the pleasure of a commercial oligarchy that pays them, and pays them handsomely, for their
pretense of speaking truth to power... The prominent figures in our contemporary Washington press corps regard themselves as government
functionaries, enabling and codependent." ~Lewis H. Lapham
"Most newspapers are part of huge conglomerates, and the policy that comes down is that you don't rock any boats. You can't
make the government upset because the value of the company is the broadcast licenses, and the government will not renew them,
and we can't make our corporate owners mad because they will fire us, and we can't make the advertisers mad or they will pull
their advertising. So the media can't say anything that will upset the power structure. And that's what has happened to the press."
~Paul Craig Roberts
"The war against a foreign country only happens when the moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it." ~George
"Power concedes nothing without demand. It never did and it never will." Frederick
"There are three classes of citizens. The first are the rich, who are indolent and yet
always crave more. The second are the poor, who have nothing, are full of envy, hate the rich,
and are easily led by demagogues. Between the two extremes lie those who make the state secure
and uphold the laws."
[Oct 14, 2018] "After all, what is your hosts' purpose in having a party? Surely not for you to enjoy yourself; if that were their
sole purpose, they'd have simply sent champagne and women over to your place by taxi" ~ P.J. O'Rourke
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got
it." ~ George Bernard Shaw, Irish Dramatist & Socialist
"We [corporations] are the government!" ~Actor John Colicos (1978)
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.--Aristotle
If there is no struggle there is no progress. ~Frederick Douglass
Pretty much anything that is happening in politics today is a distraction from something
else that is essential to our survival. One needs to choose their battlefields, carefully.
The drama of the deep state in full factional meltdown makes Mario Puzo look like a dime
"If you want revolution, be it." ~Caitlin Johnstone
America's two mainstream political parties agree furiously with one another on war,
neoliberalism, Orwellian surveillance, and every other agenda which increases the power and
profit of the plutocratic class which owns them both. The plutocrat-owned mass media plays up
the differences between Democrats and Republicans to hysterical proportions, when in reality
the debate over which one is worse is like arguing over whether a serial killer's arms or legs
are more evil.
A very shrewd observation, widely misattributed to Voltaire, states that "To learn who rules
over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize." Or put another way,
individuals are reluctant to publicly challenge those whose power they fear. Certainly, this
simple standard helps to explain many important aspects of America's severely malfunctioning
Napoleon Bonaparte was a French political leader as well as military general. He was the
first military general who became the emperor of France and rose to the prominence during the
French Revolution. Below is a list of some the famous quotes by Napoleon Bonaparte.
"Victory belongs to the most persevering." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Four hostile newspapers are more to be feared than a thousand bayonets." –
"Ability is of little account without opportunity." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"From the heights of these pyramids, forty centuries look down on us." – Napoleon
"Riches do not consist in the possession of treasures, but in the use made of them."
– Napoleon Bonaparte
"A leader is a dealer in hope." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able to decide."
– Napoleon Bonaparte
"If you want a thing done well, do it yourself." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"A true man hates no one." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Courage is like love; it must have hope to nourish it." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"The best cure for the body is a quiet mind." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"It is the cause, not the death that makes the martyr." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Chance is the providence of adventurers." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Among those who dislike oppression are many who like to oppress." – Napoleon
"In politics, an absurdity is not a handicap." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"The people to fear are not those who disagree with you, but those who disagree with you
and are too cowardly to let you know." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"In politics never retreat, never retract never admit a mistake." – Napoleon
"I love power. But it is as an artist that I love it. I love it as a musician loves his
violin, to draw out its sounds and chords and harmonies." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Power is my mistress. I have worked too hard at her conquest to allow anyone to take her
away from me." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"The surest way to remain poor is to be an honest man." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"When small men attempt great enterprises, they always end by reducing them to the level
of their mediocrity." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"The strong man is the one who is able to intercept at will the communication between the
senses and the mind." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"A celebrated people lose dignity upon a closer view." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"An order that can be misunderstood will be misunderstood." – Napoleon
"If you wish to be success in the world, promise everything, deliver nothing." –
"Vengeance has no foresight." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"When firmness is sufficient, rashness is unnecessary." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"The greatest general is he who makes the fewest mistakes." – Napoleon
"In politics, an absurdity in public business is going into it." – Napoleon
"The best way to keep one's word is not to give it." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"Incidents should not govern policy; but, policy incidents." – Napoleon
"The most insupportable of tyrannies is that of inferiors." – Napoleon
"Every private in the French army carries a Field Marshall wand in his knapsack." –
"There is no place in a fanatic's head where reason can enter." – Napoleon
"The torment of precautions often exceeds often exceeds the dangers to be avoided. It is
sometimes better to abandon one's self to destiny." – Napoleon Bonaparte
"One must change one's tactics every ten years if one wishes to maintain one's
superiority." – Napoleon Bonaparte
The really dangerous American fascist... is the man who wants to do in the United States in
an American way what Hitler did in Germany in a Prussian way. The American fascist would
prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels of public information.
With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how
best to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money
or more power...
They claim to be super-patriots, but they would destroy every liberty
guaranteed by the Constitution. They demand free enterprise, but are the spokesmen for
monopoly and vested interest.
Their final objective, toward which all their deceit is
directed, is to capture political power so that, using the power of the state and the power
of the market simultaneously, they may keep the common man in eternal subjection.
"So far as the consequences of ticking off Jews are concerned: I was making particular
reference to respectable rightwing journalism, most especially in the U.S. I can absolutely
assure you that anyone who made general, mildly negative, remarks about Jews would NOT -- not
ever again -- be published in the Wall Street Journal opinion pages, The Weekly Standard,
National Review, The New York Sun, The New York Post, or The Washington Times. I know the
actual people, the editors, involved here, and I can assert this confidently."
-- Joey Kurtzman, Jew editor of Jewcey.com. Read that back and let the overwhelming arrogance
of Jewdom sink in and think exactly about what he's bragging on.
As: This articles Writer, and several other UNZ Writers can confirm, from their personal
experience of daring to write and speak out, about the too many to count or list here, issues
regarding Jews, and Jewish agendas that have been and continue to be so destructive
to...EVERYBODY else that are, Non-Jewish Goyim gentiles. Wakey, Wakey, You Whitey's. Them
Guys -- A recent Gerard Menuhin article quotes the German writer
Theodor Fontane: 'The reason people are silenced is not because they lie, but because they
tell the truth. When people lie, their own words can be used against them. When they tell the
truth, there is no other countermeasure except violence.'
Before mass leaders seize the power to fit reality to their lies, their propaganda is
marked by its extreme contempt for facts as such, for in their opinion fact depends entirely
on the power of man who can fabricate it."
"Clichés, stock phrases, adherence to conventional, standardized codes of
expression and conduct have the socially recognized function of protecting us against
reality, that is, against the claim on our thinking attention that all events and facts make
by virtue of their existence."
"The common prejudice that love is as common as "romance" may be due to the fact that we
all learned about it first through poetry. But the poets fool us; they are the only ones to
whom love is not only a crucial, but an indispensable experience, which entitles them to
mistake it for a universal one."
"Love, by its very nature, is unworldly, and it is for this reason rather than its rarity
that it is not only apolitical but antipolitical, perhaps the most powerful of all
"When all are guilty, no one is; confessions of collective guilt are the best possible
safeguard against the discovery of culprits, and the very magnitude of the crime the best
excuse for doing nothing. "
"Caution in handling generally accepted opinions that claim to explain whole trends of
history is especially important for the historian of modern times, because the last century
has produced an abundance of ideologies that pretend to be keys to history but are actually
nothing but desperate efforts to escape responsibility."
"And the distinction between violent and non-violent action is that the former is
exclusively bent upon the destruction of the old, and the latter is chiefly concerned with
the establishment of something new."
"For politics is not like the nursery; in politics obedience and support are the
"Only crime and the criminal, it is true, confront us with the perplexity of radical
evil; but only the hypocrite is really rotten to the core."
"Action, as distinguished from fabrication, is never possible in isolation; to be
isolated is to be deprived of the capacity to act."
"The new always happens against the overwhelming odds of statistical laws and their
probability, which for all practical, everyday purposes amounts to certainty; the new
therefore always appears in the guise of a miracle."
When the Tories talk about 'free markets', they are talking about markets free from
May's rhetoric is laughable .basically all her speeches read : 'the sky is green, the snow
is black etc etc' -- totally detached from reality and a spent political force, as their
recent membership numbers showed, with more revenues from legacies left in wills than from
actual living members.
Once the spy agencies become the controlling element a government degenerates into a
regime or imperium depending upon its level of power.
The rule of law is sidelined and a cynical form of dictatorship develops.
Britain, the US and all anglophone countries are exhibiting the results of this sort of
It is more dangerous now than when the historical odious tyrannies ran riot during the
'30s and '40s of last century because technology has advanced to the point that their
continuance is a threat to our survival as a species.
When was the last time that happened? For any party?
ReplyLarcoMarco , August 16, 2018 at 12:35 pm
" Everything in Washington has been a lie It's all big lie. " -- Donald Trump at
his height of lucidity. Unfortunately, that YouTube clip was from 2007.
"We now live in a nation where doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, universities destroy knowledge, governments destroy
freedom, the press destroys information, religion destroys morals, and our banks destroy the economy" ~Chris Hedges
"... For all his flaws, Mencken had a keen insight into the American political scene. If you doubt that, finish by pondering this observation: "On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron." ..."
"... Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard. ..."
Mencken turned his scathing wit and rhetoric of ridicule on the political elite of American society with a sense of humor missing
from today's political journalism.
President Wilson was "the archangel Woodrow," Harding "that numskull Gamaliel," Hoover "Lord Hoover." William Jennings Bryan was
"a charlatan, a mountebank, a zany with no sense of dignity. His career brought him into contact with the first men of his time;
he preferred the company of rustic ignoramuses."
Electing Calvin Coolidge, he wrote, was like being presented with a sumptuous banquet and "staying your stomach by plucking flies
out of the air." When once asked why if he despised politics so much he wasted his time writing about it, Mencken answer was simple:
"why do people go to zoos."
... ... ...
For all his flaws, Mencken had a keen insight into the American political scene. If you doubt that, finish by pondering this observation:
"On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be
adorned by a downright moron."
" an essayist from almost a century ago who generally isn't addressing directly any issues people today care about."
His comments about politics and politicians are just as relevant today as they were then.
"In our system of government, everybody gets what the majority deserve."
Because of the large percentage of bogus and misattributed quotes found online, I always research a quote before I store it away
in my "quotes" document. Although it sounds like something Mencken would say, I can't find that one.
Here are a few I have which I agree with completely:
"Democracy is a pathetic belief in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance."
"Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage."
"The government consists of a gang of men exactly like you and me. They have, taking one with another, no special talent for the
business of government; they have only a talent for getting and holding office. Their principal device to that end is to search out
groups who pant and pine for something they can't get and to promise to give it to them. Nine times out of ten that promise is worth
nothing. The tenth time is made good by looting A to satisfy B. In other words, government is a broker in pillage, and every election
is sort of an advance auction sale of stolen goods." Colin Chattan , says:
9, 2018 at 11:47 am
I AM THE MASTER OF THE UNIVERSE. MY IQ IS 300. ANYONE WITH AN IQ < 300 MUST DIE. ANYONE WHO DISAGREES WITH MY VIEWS AS OF THE
CURRENT PICOSECOND IS A SOYBOY WEAKLING LOSER LIVING IN MOMMY'S BASEMENT AND MUST DIE.
We already have Bezos and Elon and Zuck and Republicans and Democrats and all the other monstrous Randian self-proclaimed "gods".
We don't need another one.
On many levels, Mencken exposed government for what it is. Among writers today, this just isn't done. From big-government progressives
to small-government conservatives, political writers today tend to love government and somehow they have faith it can work. So,
of course they all reject Mencken – he makes them all look like the fools they are.
Emperor Septimius Severus said to his sons: "Be harmonious, enrich the soldiers, scorn all
This is the stage the American Empire is at today. Except now the "soldiers" include the
FBI, CIA and NSA. The deep state/permanent govt has the state security organs and Trump is
trying to hold on to the loyalty of the uniformed military.
"... "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, Towards a Canada of Light ..."
"... "And if all others accepted the lie which the Party imposed -- if all records told the same tale -- then the lie passed into history and became truth. 'Who controls the past' ran the Party slogan, 'controls the future: who controls the present controls the past." ― George Orwell, 1984 ..."
"... "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary." ― H.L. Mencken, In Defense Of Women ..."
"... The British press is extremely centralised, and most of it is owned by wealthy men who have every motive to be dishonest on certain important topics. ..."
"The American people are free to do exactly what they are told." ― Ward Churchill
"Before mass leaders seize the power to fit reality to their lies, their propaganda is
marked by its extreme contempt for facts as such, for in their opinion fact depends entirely on
the power of man who can fabricate it." ― Hannah Arendt, The Origins of
"The really frightening thing about totalitarianism is not that it commits atrocities but
that it attacks the concept of objective truth; it claims to control the past as well as the
future." -- George Orwell, 'As I Please' Tribune (4 February 1944)
"The chief function of propaganda is to convince the masses, whose slowness of understanding
needs to be given time so they may absorb information; and only constant repetition will
finally succeed in imprinting an idea on their mind." -- Adolf Hitler, 1925
"The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of
their history." ― George Orwell
"But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought." ― George
"Popular culture is a place where pity is called compassion, flattery is called love,
propaganda is called knowledge, tension is called peace, gossip is called news, and auto-tune
is called singing." ― Criss Jami, Killosophy
"Propaganda is to a democracy what the bludgeon is to a totalitarian state." ― Noam
Chomsky, Media Control: The Spectacular Achievements of Propaganda
"The press is a gang of cruel faggots. Journalism is not a profession or a trade. It is a
cheap catch-all for fuckoffs and misfits -- a false doorway to the backside of life, a filthy
piss-ridden little hole nailed off by the building inspector, but just deep enough for a wino
to curl up from the sidewalk and masturbate like a chimp in a zoo-cage." ― Hunter S.
Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
"Those who are capable of tyranny are capable of perjury to sustain it." ― Lysander
"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, Towards a Canada of Light
"You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince
one man by logic." ― Robert A. Heinlein, Revolt in 2100/Methuselah's Children
"And if all others accepted the lie which the Party imposed -- if all records told the same
tale -- then the lie passed into history and became truth. 'Who controls the past' ran the
Party slogan, 'controls the future: who controls the present controls the past." ― George
"All art is propaganda. It is universally and inescabably propaganda; sometimes unconsciously,
but often deliberately, propaganda."
― Upton Sinclair
"The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to
be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary." ― H.L.
Mencken, In Defense Of Women
"The whole purpose of propaganda is to make the obvious seem obscure, or offensive" ―
"Unpopular ideas can be silenced, and inconvenient facts kept dark, without the need for any
official ban. Anyone who has lived long in a foreign country will know of instances of
sensational items of news -- things which on their own merits would get the big headlines-being
kept right out of the British press, not because the Government intervened but because of a
general tacit agreement that 'it wouldn't do' to mention that particular fact. So far as the
daily newspapers go, this is easy to understand. The British press is extremely centralised,
and most of it is owned by wealthy men who have every motive to be dishonest on certain
important topics. But the same kind of veiled censorship also operates in books and
periodicals, as well as in plays, films and radio. At any given moment there is an orthodoxy, a
body of ideas which it is assumed that all right-thinking people will accept without question.
It is not exactly forbidden to say this, that or the other, but it is 'not done' to say it,
just as in mid-Victorian times it was 'not done' to mention trousers in the presence of a lady.
Anyone who challenges the prevailing orthodoxy finds himself silenced with surprising
effectiveness. A genuinely unfashionable opinion is almost never given a fair hearing, either
in the popular press or in the highbrow periodicals." ― George Orwell, Animal Farm
"The obvious types of American fascists are dealt with on the air and in the press. These
demagogues and stooges are fronts for others. Dangerous as these people may be, they are not so
significant as thousands of other people who have never been mentioned.
The American fascist would prefer not to use violence. His method is to poison the channels
of public information.
With a fascist the problem is never how best to present the truth to the public but how best
to use the news to deceive the public into giving the fascist and his group more money or more
― Henry A. Wallace
"I did not say anything. I was always embarrassed by the words sacred, glorious, and
sacrifice and the expression in vain. We had heard them, sometimes standing in the rain almost
out of earshot, so that only the shouted words came through, and had read them on proclamations
that were slapped up by billposters over other proclamations, now for a long time, and I had
seen nothing sacred, and the things that were glorious had no glory and the sacrifices were
like the stock yards at Chicago if nothing was done with the meat except to bury it." ―
Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms
"The media -- stenographers to power." ― Amy Goodman
"Why of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk
his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece?
Naturally the common people don't want war neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that
matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who
determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a
democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship.
Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is
easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for
lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
― Hermann Göring
"Propaganda is as powerful as heroin; it surreptitiously dissolves all capacity to think."
― Gil Courtemanche, A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali
"The truth is not in the commercial media because the truth is a dagger pointed at its
heart, which is its pocketbook." ― George Seldes, Facts and Fascism
"We feel this is a matter of free speech, people should have the right to put alternative
views across and criticise multinationals, especially those who spend a fortune pushing their
own propaganda." ― Helen Steele
have the guts to say outright that art and propaganda are the same thing."
― George Orwell , Essays "Social media was
initially created to communicate and then became a tool to propagate."
― Sindhu Biswal
It is in the moment of defeat that the inherent weakness of totalitarian propaganda becomes
visible. Without the force of the movement, its members cease at once to believe in the dogma
for which yesterday they still were ready to sacrifice their lives. ― Hannah Arendt , The Origins of
"Propaganda campaigns in general have been closely attuned to elite interests. The Red scare
of 1919-20 have served well to abort the union-organizing drive that followed World War I in
the sell and other industries. The Truman-McCarthy Red scare helped inaugurate the Cold War and
the permanent war economy, and it also served to weaken the progressive coalition of the New
Deal years. The chronic focus on the plight of Soviet dissidents, on enemy killings in
Cambodia, and on the Bulgarian Connection helped weaken the Vietnam syndrome, justify a huge
arms buildup and a more aggressive foreign policy, and divert attention from upward
redistribution of income that was the heart of Reagan's domestic economic program. ―
Chomsky , Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of
the Mass Media
"The corporate controlled government is the real enemy." ― Steven Magee
"Totalitarian propaganda perfects the techniques of mass propaganda, but it neither invents
them nor originates their themes. These were prepared for them by fifty years of imperialism
and disintegration of the nation-state, when the mob entered the scene of European politics.
Like the earlier mob leaders, the spokesmen for totalitarian movements possessed an unerring
instinct for anything that ordinary party propaganda or public opinion did not care or dare to
touch. Everything hidden, everything passed over in silence, became of major significance,
regardless of its own intrinsic importance. The mob really believed that truth was whatever
respectable society had hypocritically passed over, or covered up with corruption."
― Hannah Arendt , The Origins of Totalitarianism
tags: 1969 , fake-news , imperialism , post-truth , propaganda , totalitarian-movement ,
0 likesLike "The
second role is "the task of the public," which should be very limited. It is not for the
public, Lippman observes to "pass judgment on the intrinsic merits" of an issue or to offer
analysis or solutions, but merely, on occasion, to place "its force at the disposal" of one or
another group of "responsible men" from the specialized class. The public "does not reason,
investigate, invent, persuade, bargain or settle." Rather, "the public acts only by aligning
itself as the partisan of someone in a position to act executively," once he has given the
matter at hand sober and disinterested thought. "The public must be put in its place," so that
we "may live free of the trampling and the roar of a bewildered herd." The herd "has its
function": to be "the interested spectators of action," not the participants; that is the duty
of "the responsible man."
Chomsky , On
Anarchism tags: democracy , freedom , indoctrination , propaganda , society0
properly functioning system of indoctrination has a variety of tasks, some rather delicate. One
of its targets is the stupid and ignorant masses. They must be kept that way, diverted with
emotionally potent oversimplifications, marginalized, and isolated. Ideally, each person should
be alone in front of the TV screen watching sports, soap operas, or comedies, deprived of
organizational structures that permit individuals lacking resources to discover what they think
and believe in interaction with others, to formulate their own concerns and programs, and to
act to realize them. They can then be permitted, even encouraged, to ratify the decisions made
by their betters in periodic elections. The "rascal multitude" are the proper targets of the
mass media and a public education system geared to obedience and training in needed skills,
including the skill of repeating patriotic slogans on timely occasions."
Chomsky , On
"Our market-intensive societies measure material progress by the increase in the volume and
variety of commodities produced. And taking our cue from this sector, we measure social
progress by the distribution of access to these commodities. Economics has been developed as
propaganda for the takeover by large-scale commodity producers."
Illich , The Right
to Useful Unemployment and Its Professional Enemies
"Privilege is when you contribute to the oppression of others and then claim
that you are the one being discriminated against."
― DaShanne Stokes
"Politicized science is like a prostitute with an STD. You know she has been fucked by a dirty
politician." ― A.E. Samaan
"Those with unearned privileges often spin things as 'political correctness' to further
silence those they wish to oppress." ― DaShanne Stokes
"History has been stolen from us and replaced with guilt inducing lies." ― Stefan
"NATO bombing of Serbia was undertaken by the 'international community,' according to
consistent Western rhetoric -- although those who did not have their heads buried in the sand
knew that it was opposed by most of the world, often quite vocally. Those who do not support
the actions of wealth and power are not part of 'the global community." ― Noam Chomsky ,
"The point of Political Correctness is not and has never been merely about any of the items
that it imposes, but about the imposition itself. (The Rise of Political Correctness)" ―
"People afraid of outsiders are easily manipulated. The warrior caste, supposedly society's
protectors, often become protection racketeers. In times of war or crisis, power is easily
stolen from the many by the few on a promise of security. The more elusive or imaginary the
foe, the better for manufacturing consent. The Inquisition did a roaring trade against the
Devil." ― Ronald Wright , A Short History of
At very least, a leader should be able to tell right from wrong... and sadly, too often in
this world, "nice guys finish last".
"There are three classes of men; lovers of wisdom, lovers of honor, and lovers of gain."
"When a myth is shared by large numbers of people, it becomes a reality."
"Convince enough people of a lie, and it becomes truth."
A lie that can be passed off as truth becomes truth
"Love is the basis for all the values. Action with love is right conduct. Speak with
love, and it becomes truth . Thinking with love results in peace. Understanding with love
leads to non-violence. For everything, love is primary. Where there is love there is no place
for hatred." ~Sathya Sai Baba, discourse of 20-5-1995
This has both the Lenin quote and Goebbels expansion that is presumably based on it.
Ironic isn't it that the extreme right and left of the political spectrum have such close
thoughts. Perhaps its more of an indication of the similarity of totalitarian regimes,
regardless of the ideology.
Volume 1, chapter 10, it seems. The context of the comments is always worth checking. The
English translation is here .
"This most of all shows the assertion that the lost War was the cause of the German
collapse to be a lie. No, this military collapse was itself only the consequence ... of an
ethical and moral poisoning, of a diminution in the instinct of self-preservation and its
preconditions, which for many years had begun to undermine the foundations of the people and
"It required the whole bottomless falsehood of the Jews and their Marxist fighting
organization to lay the blame for the collapse on that very man who alone, with superhuman
energy and will power, tried to prevent the catastrophe he foresaw and save the nation from
its time of deepest humiliation and disgrace By branding Ludendorff as guilty for the loss of
the World War they took the weapon of moral right from the one dangerous accuser who could
have risen against the traitors to the fatherland. In this they proceeded on the sound
principle that the magnitude of a lie always contains a certain factor of credibility, since
the great masses of the people in the very bottom of their hearts tend to be corrupted rather
than consciously and purposely evil, and that, therefore, in view of the primitive simplicity
of their minds they more easily fall a victim to a big lie than to a little one, since they
themselves lie in little things, but would be ashamed of lies that were too big. Such a
falsehood will never enter their heads and they will not be able to believe in the
possibility of such monstrous effrontery and infamous misrepresentation in others; yes, even
when enlightened on the subject, they will long doubt and waver, and continue to accept at
least one of these causes as true. Therefore, something of even the most insolent lie will
always remain and stick-a fact which all the great lie-virtuosi and lying-clubs in this world
know only too well and also make the most treacherous use of."
Apparently we've always been corrupt, just not so brazen.
Just another example of the fact that all power corrupts absolutely. (Lord Acton understated it.)
"The only rule of which everybody in a totalitarian state may be sure is that the more visible government agencies are, the
less power they carry, and the less is known of the existence of an institution, the more powerful it will ultimately turn out
to be...Real power begins where secrecy begins. (Arendt, p403)
"We now live in a nation where doctors destroy health, lawyers destroy justice, universities
destroy knowledge, governments destroy freedom, the press destroys information, religion
destroys morals, and our banks destroy the economy"
"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can
put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat." -- snoopydawg
the little things you can do are more valuable than the giant things you can't! -
@thanatokephaloides. On Twitter @wink1radio. (-1.9) All about building progressive media.
America is a psyop wearing a cowboy hat
"The gatekeepers must change." Prince
"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West "...isn't the
problem here that the government takes on, arbitrarily and without justification, an
adversarial attitude towards its citizenry?" ~CantStoptheMacedonianSignal
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the clergyman who defied the German Nazi regime and got executed for his
resistance, once observed that "war is not the opposite of peace, 'security' is the opposite
of peace." I might also add it is the opposite of freedom and civilization as well, because
both require trust.
A social media user responding to Schwarzenegger then told him to, "stick to lifting and
making movies Snowflake is a title you do not want."
Schwarzenegger fired back hours later with some "advice" for the commenter.
"I never mind picking up new titles. Mr. Universe, Mr. Olympia, Terminator, Governor If
you want to call me Snowflake, that's fine - it would have been a fantastic Mr. Freeze
line. But let me give you some advice," he wrote.
"If you're going to call someone a snowflake because they believe in a different policy
than you, you might want to look in the mirror. When you see an idea you disagree with, you
can get angry, or you can learn," Schwarzenegger continued. "We can all be better if we
don't simply react. Pause, reflect, learn, and then decide if you still want to call
someone a Snowflake. Good luck with everything."
"If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't
notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his
pockets for you."
Martyanov's book might be good and well-researched. However, you don't need to read it to
know one simple thing: the greatest danger of propaganda is that those who pay for it
actually believe it. Thus, instead of fooling others, you fool yourself. To add insult to
injury, you do it at an enormous cost.
"Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been
repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And
the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists
except an endless present in which the Party is always right."
― George Orwell, 1984
Thanks, here is some additional reading material ..
The Unfortunate Fallout of Campus Postmodernism- The roots of the
current campus madness
"In a 1946 essay in the London Tribune entitled "In Front of Your Nose," George Orwell noted that "we are all capable of
believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, when we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as
to show that we were right. Intellectually, it is possible to carry on this process for an indefinite time: the only check on
it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield."
"... "Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents." Major General Smedley Butler ..."
"... Divine right, infalibility of Pope and Kings over the poor 99% / Divine right and infalibility of corporations and the invisible hand of the market over the 99%. Thank you ..."
"... They devised the scam of privatization to get the money and TOOK IT GLOBAL, getting money from our country and many others that could issue money with almost no constraints (meaning that the constraint is 'what is physically possible', or put another way, real resources are the constraint). ..."
"... But of course they needed plausible LIES to dupe the public, right? And so they pretended that our federal money is finite and 'like a household budget' to dupe us so they could implement their scam. They lie about our national 'debt', for example; it is actually our NATIONAL SAVINGS ACCOUNT. They lie about having to raise taxes in order to have nice things. Every fearmongering thing they tell us is a LIE – about the deficit, about 'can't afford', about 'have to make cuts to some programs', and on and on." ..."
"... I might add that we citizens of the U.S. are more often than not referred to by the media and government officials as consumers. An Orwellian shift that many haven't even noticed, yet these two definitions are so completely different, while the consequence is the denuding of the meaning of what a citizen is and is replaced with the corporate ideal that a citizen is nothing more than a cog, a consumer, and in essence citizenship is irrelevant in a globalized oligarchy. ..."
Divine right, infalibility of Pope and Kings over the poor 99% / Divine right and
infalibility of corporations and the invisible hand of the market over the 99%. Thank
Unfettered Fire , July 4, 2018 at 7:52 am
The latest revolt has been the Revolt of the Elites these past 40 years:
"Basically, the only reason we do not have good things like most other advanced countries
have is because the greedy sociopaths running things for decades wanted our unlimited federal
money for themselves.
Unlimited money? HOW CAN THAT BE? Yes, since the 70s, they understood that the federal
government could issue any amount of money for anything that is physically possible.* And
they wanted that money for themselves instead of using our money for the good of all as
directed by our Constitution (Article 1, Section 8).
They devised the scam of privatization to get the money and TOOK IT GLOBAL, getting money
from our country and many others that could issue money with almost no constraints (meaning
that the constraint is 'what is physically possible', or put another way, real resources are
But of course they needed plausible LIES to dupe the public, right? And so they pretended
that our federal money is finite and 'like a household budget' to dupe us so they could
implement their scam. They lie about our national 'debt', for example; it is actually our
NATIONAL SAVINGS ACCOUNT. They lie about having to raise taxes in order to have nice things.
Every fearmongering thing they tell us is a LIE – about the deficit, about 'can't
afford', about 'have to make cuts to some programs', and on and on."
I might add that we citizens of the U.S. are more often than not referred to by the media
and government officials as consumers. An Orwellian shift that many haven't even noticed, yet
these two definitions are so completely different, while the consequence is the denuding of
the meaning of what a citizen is and is replaced with the corporate ideal that a citizen is
nothing more than a cog, a consumer, and in essence citizenship is irrelevant in a globalized
"If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you." ―
"People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in
circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the
circumstances they want, and if they can't find them, make them." ― George Bernard Shaw ,
"A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent
doing nothing." ― George Bernard Shaw
In this brilliant rant Carlin is talking about
neoliberalism without naming it ;-) "Don't confuse my point of view with cynicism. The real
cynics are the ones who tell you that everything's gonna be all right." ~ George Carlin
"It's called the American Dream, coz you have to be asleep to believe it."
George Carlin - The American Dream But there's a reason. There's a reason. There's a
reason for this, there's a reason education SUCKS, and it's the same reason it will never,
ever, EVER be fixed. It's never going to get any better, don't look for it, be happy with
what you've got. Because the owners, the owners of this country don't want that. I'm talking
about the real owners now, the BIG owners! The Wealthy the REAL owners! The big wealthy
business interests that control things and make all the important decisions.
Forget the politicians. They are irrelevant. The politicians are put there to give you the
idea that you have freedom of choice. You don't. You have no choice! You have OWNERS! They
OWN YOU. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the
corporations. They've long since bought, and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state
houses, the city halls, they got the judges in their back pockets and they own all the big
media companies, so they control just about all of the news and information you get to
They got you by the balls. They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying, lobbying,
to get what they want. Well, we know what they want. They want more for themselves and less
for everybody else, but I'll tell you what they don't want: They don't want a population of
citizens capable of critical thinking. They don't want well informed, well educated people
capable of critical thinking. They're not interested in that. That doesn't help them. Thats
against their interests.
Thats right. They don't want people who are smart enough to sit around a kitchen table and
think about how badly they're getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard 30 fucking
years ago. They don't want that! You know what they want? They want obedient workers.
Obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork.
And just dumb enough to passively accept all these increasingly shitty jobs with the lower
pay, the longer hours, the reduced benefits, the end of overtime and vanishing pension that
disappears the minute you go to collect it, and now they're coming for your Social Security
money. They want your retirement money. They want it back so they can give it to their
criminal friends on Wall Street, and you know something?
They'll get it. They'll get it all from you sooner or later cause they own this fucking
place! It's a big club, and you ain't in it! You, and I, are not in the big club. By the way,
it's the same big club they use to beat you over the head with all day long when they tell
you what to believe. All day long beating you over the head with their media telling you what
to believe, what to think and what to buy. The table has tilted folks. The game is rigged and
nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care! Good honest hard-working people; white collar,
blue collar it doesn't matter what color shirt you have on.
Good honest hard-working people continue, these are people of modest means, continue to
elect these rich cock suckers who don't give a fuck about you .they don't give a fuck about
you they don't give a FUCK about you. They don't care about you at all at all AT ALL.
And nobody seems to notice. Nobody seems to care. Thats what the owners count on. The fact
that Americans will probably remain willfully ignorant of the big red, white and blue dick
thats being jammed up their assholes everyday, because the owners of this country know the
truth. It's called the American Dream,because you have to be asleep to believe it.
Workers in America today are just replacements for slaves but in a more systematic and
legal way. we are treated as herd of animals and made to believe that this is the way we are
supposed to be treated. We are ruled by fear and led to believe that we have no choice but to
comply with the way ruling class designed the system to their advantage. The reason workers
don't make living wage in America is because they need to be treated as less than human so
enormous amount of wealth can be built for a certain class of people on the backs of these
poor workers. They are cleverly labeled as unskilled workers in order to be denied a fare
wage or living wage when manual labor made everything possible. Workers are not aware of
their rights and they are deliberately kept ignorant by intense and ruthless propaganda of
the ruling class. Under capitalism it's getting harder and harder for workers and they are
just being drained by working long hours and being squeezed into little boxes with no chance
to ever find happiness or being able to raise a family. Even after living 20 or 30 years in
America workers can't afford to buy a home or afford a place to be able to be able to live
happily with their family. Only future for an American worker that is left is to be too old
to be able to raise a family or die alone with no money left. American workers are
deliberately left into a poverty trap. What's the benefit of being paid so little in the
first place and then spend all the money on rents to live in a ghetto, pay taxes and start
over from zero every month? This is the reason for so many suicides in America. Cuba and
North Korea have virtually no suicides. We don't even have rights to speak for ourselves.
Corporate media speak for us. No one represents us. Politicians represent rich people. Even
these YouTube comments are censored, regulated, compartmentalized, and blocked from being
viewed by others but the commenter itself unless the comments are favorable toward ruling
class world views. American education system is also very discriminatory and it's more about
business and privilege than a real education where people are on a level playing field.
America is a prison and a plantation. There are no ways to set anyone free and that is how
George Carlin is my favorite comedian but I always found his later work to be full of
vague empty platitudes designed to cater to lazy angry malcontents who just generally have a
bad attitude about pretty much everything (but who think that they're sooo brilliant.)
The GREATEST comedian that ever lived. He had profound insight and described it in
sometimes a profane way. I never cared that he did that because what he said was the TRUTH.
If he were alive today he would be amazed at how prophetic he was. Rest in Peace, George
Carlin and know there are so many who think you were brilliant!
America has always been an elitist, oligarchical state. People talk about the founding
fathers and their enlightened vision for a free, democratic republic conveniently forgetting
or omitting that most of them owned black slaves. The 18th and 19th centuries were all fine
and dandy if you were rich, white land owners but absolutely abysmal if you were a different
colour. Not only was the indigenous population raped and pillaged of its natural resources
during the 19th century but it's arguable that the US Government in collusion with
corporations and banks committed genocide on a grand scale. I'm not someone who hates America
but this happens frequently in world history. Subjugate indigenous populations, exhaust
natural resources and then establish a military hegemony in far flung areas of the globe to
exploit even more. The British Empire from the late 17th to the early 20th century excelled
at this. Countless other empires in history have done exactly the same. It's all too
predictable and doesn't reflect well on humanity.
There are FOUR classes of society, not three. There's the Poor, the Middle, and the Rich
who are used as commodities for the Ruling Class. They are the ones who control the
government and the corporations, not "the rich". The Ruling Class is made up of a dozen or so
families and their bankster cronies. THAT'S IT!
The Ruling Class have funded both sides of
every war in the past 100 years, oversee and control our govt., and are using the fake left
right paradigm to bring in their communistic (through legislation created by the left)
corporatocracy (though the right) that we are seeing come to fruition in America and
throughout the world.
That audience ought to consider themselves lucky to have sat there that night and heard
this live and in the flesh! my God I would have had shivers up my spine! What a brave man,
I'm surprised he wasn't murdered shortly afterward but he knew he was near his end and let it
rip. If he had said this a few decades earlier and in the prime of his career I'd say he most
definitely would've been killed, but today, as he said "Nobody seems to notice, nobody seems
to care" people are passively and willfully ignorant, once they have their bread and circuses
and can go along to get along!..fuck it.
George Carlin cuts through the bullshit of "democracy" and tells the truth. About the 1% of
the planet who now have more wealth than the 99%. Democracy is, and always has been, a farce.
Feudalism is back. When does the revolution start?
Laughter is our way of expressing emotion when we don't know how to react. It's
instinctive within our species. Comedians make their living by saying stuff that's so real
and common place. but making it humorous and light hearted. True comedians take you on a
journey, like a story. There is a point and a theme. George Carlin is the man.
...Stokman described the
struggle between the capitalist
countries for markets and
colonies Before he could
finish, Ivan interrupted indignantly,
"But what has this got
to do with us?".. "Don't
talk like a kid," Knave
sneered at Ivan. "You
know the old saying, 'When
masters fall out their
men get the clout'" (2a).
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.
Frederic Bastiat -- (1801-1850) in Economic Sophisms
"... "The more power a government has the more it can act arbitrarily according to the whims and desires of the elite, and the more it will make war on others and murder its foreign and domestic subjects... Power will achieve its murderous potential. It simply waits for an excuse, an event of some sort, an assassination, a massacre in a neighboring country, an attempted coup, a famine, or a natural disaster, to justify the beginning of murder en masse ." ~R. J. Rummel, Death by Government: A History of Mass Murder and Genocide Since 1900 ..."
"... "Fascism is capitalism plus murder." ~Upton Sinclair ..."
"God has a way of standing before the nations with judgment, and it seems that I can
hear God saying to America, 'You're too arrogant! And if you don't change your ways,
I will rise up and break the backbone of your power, and I'll place it in the hands of
a nation that doesn't even know my name. Be still and know that I'm God.'"
~Martin Luther King,
It's a Dark Day In Our Nation
"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who murder your prophets and stone those sent to save you.
How often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks
under her wings, but you were not willing. Behold, your house is now yours, but is made
desolate." ~Matthew 23:37-39
"The more power a government has the more it can act arbitrarily according to the whims
and desires of the elite, and the more it will make war on others and murder its
foreign and domestic subjects... Power will achieve its murderous potential. It simply
waits for an excuse, an event of some sort, an assassination, a massacre in a
neighboring country, an attempted coup, a famine, or a natural disaster, to justify the
beginning of murder
~R. J. Rummel, Death by Government: A History of Mass Murder and Genocide Since 1900
"Power attracts the corruptible. Suspect any who seek it."
"Fascism is capitalism plus murder."
"The greatest want of the
world is the want of men -- men who will not be bought or sold; men who in their inmost souls
are true and honest; men who do not fear to call sin by its right name; men whose conscience is
as true to duty as the needle to the pole; men who will stand for the right though the heavens
fall." ~Ellen G. White
"I have tired of hearing the argument from my friends about how we could not expect anything
better from various folks given the perverse incentives. I cannot accept that. I know of
several people who have failed to take advantage of their good government jobs when they moved
to the private sector. They have done reasonably well, but they have not enriched themselves at
the expense of everyone else. I know of even more who have prostituted themselves. The
institutions may provide the opportunity, but it is the person who acts on it." ~HBK
"And because of the increase in lawlessness, the love of the many will grow cold; but those
who endure until the end shall be saved; and the good news of the kingdom of heaven will be
proclaimed throughout the world, as a testimony to all the nations; and then shall the end will
come." ~Matthew 24:11-14
"Be not deceived, Wormwood, our cause is never more in jeopardy than when a human, no longer
desiring but still intending to do our Enemy's [God's] will, looks round upon a universe in
which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, and asks why he has been forsaken, and
still obeys." C. S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters
This depressing reality inspired me to review some of my favorite Orwell quotes.
"Political language -- and with variations this is true of all political parties, from
Conservatives to Anarchists -- is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder
respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." -- George Orwell
"At any given moment there is an orthodoxy, a body of ideas which it is assumed all
right-thinking people will accept without question. It is not exactly forbidden to state
this or that or the other, but it is "not done" Anyone who challenges the prevailing
orthodoxy finds himself silenced with surprising effectiveness. A genuinely unfashionable
opinion is almost never given a fair hearing, either in the popular press or in the
highbrow periodicals." --George Orwell
"War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength."
― George Orwell, 1984
Can't resist adding this Mencken quote to honor the SST community.
The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out...
without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to
the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane, intolerable. --
H. L. Mencken
" There is a certain amount of talk that Russia has "betrayed" Syria (or Donbass) or
"backed down" or something. "
That's the emotive way of expressing it, but there's also I believe a legitimate case
to be made that Russia cannot continue to let Israel attack its allies with impunity,
whilst giving the impression of cheerful collaboration with an Israel that intends to
defeat Russian objectives in Syria, and not pay a high price for it.
" Will Europe knuckle under? "
Of course it will. Can one imagine the three stooges Merkel, Macron and May actually
meaningfully standing up to Washington on an issue of real substance? The question
What good is their "blocking statute" going to do? How will exhortations to European
companies not to obey US sanctions and supposed powers to block US court decisions (in
Europe) make companies with substantial assets in the US and wide open to seizure and
even imprisonment not "choose" not to invest in business with Iran?
Maersk, Total, Munich Re and Allianz have all stated their intention to pull out of
At least it makes clear who wears the pants in Europe, and it's Uncle Sam. If the
peoples of Europe are ever going to change that they are going to have to sweep away an
entire political elite and do a lot more than just pass irrelevant gestural statutes.
Ending NATO (that should have been ended in 1991) and stopping pretending to believe in
the Russia bogeyman are among the minimum measures needed.
The Europeans are being asked to go all in with Washingtons resumption of harsh sanctions
against Iran as well as Russia. How much will these hardened Atlanticists sacrifice for
victory over the dread forces of ' nationalism'?
By violating JCPOA, US, has in effect, reprised how USSR treated members of Warsaw
Pact, telling them who would be their friends and wh would be their enemies.
Neither Greece, nor Italy, nor Romania have any beef with Iran but US not only is
eviscerating their livelihoods without any care, but also exposes them to be
US also has exposed the vacuity of the political posture of EU for its lack of
substance. Soft power stands revealed as flaccid power i.e. no power to do anything.
It is, of course, Europeans' own fault - they have had decades to build the structures
of independent power (from US) and never did. Preferring to - as Mukhtar of the Bedu
would say - free ride on the coattails of the United States.
Saving JCOPA, I am afraid, will not be remembered as "their finest hour" but rather as
"their farcest hour".
Will Ferkel, Macaroni and Dis-May stand up to The Hegemon? Of course not! They're not
going to choose doing business with Iran over doing business with the US. Iran will
continue its journey into the Russo-Chinese orbit.
"Washington's sanctions on Russia have cost Europe a lot but it still dutifully signs up
The situation is quite nuanced in Germany: The German exports to Russia (143 million citizens) are small, in 2017 it was only 26
billion EUR. In contrast, to Austria (8 million citizens) it was 63 billion EUR.
Obviously, all losses due to sanctions could easily be replaced with exports to other
destinations in the last few years.
The German manufacturer are limited by lack of workforce.
Overall, there is no high pressure to spend political capital for Russia or Iran (3
billion EUR exports in 2017) when it comes to exports. They are markets with potential
that will still be there in a few years.
On the other hand, the German reactions after some US meddeling in respect to Nord
Stream 2 were very blunt and the political equivalent of showing the middle finger.
I seem to recall our earlist encounter, as I recall I may have opted out of further
discussions, since I felt you had purely economic "Scheuklappen". This made you one way
or another the German I never was. Meaning one way or another a welcome co-citizen on
this blog but concerning your "larger stance" a stranger.
In my opinion this is why Brexit, Catalan independence, and the holding together of
the Eurozone are such a big deal to the Borg. If the EU breaks up and each country is
able to develop their own foreign policy, it will be much harder to keep the Europeans in
line. That will not do.
If Putin wants to interfere in other countries democracy (known as "promoting
democracy" when we do it) he should help the five star movement in Italy. If the five
star movement manages to take power and kill the austerity programs like they have
promised - debt to gdp in Italy will go over %130 ... and everyone who has read Reinhart
and Rogoff will know that the Euro is done for.
That's strange to here this from form State Department head who wobble the truth on daily
basis ;-) But the quotes are really good, while the man definitly is not...
He put extremely high standard for a human life: "Absent a life of integrity, no human being can live a life that is complete
and whole," he said. "Living a life of integrity, perhaps we have a chance."
Compare with cynical Oscar Wilde quote "
As for truth, when neocons get to power, filth starts to flower downhill. The lies became "business as usual" and starts to
overpower truth. Much like in the USSR. So, in a way, the truth is the first victim of the neoliberalism. The neoliberal ruling
class succumbs to and supports all perversions. These kind of dirt-bags democracy have no aversion
"... If our leaders seek to conceal the truth, or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts, then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom. ..."
"... "A responsibility of every American citizen to each other is to preserve and protect our freedom by recognizing what truth is and is not, what a fact is and is not and begin by holding ourselves accountable to truthfulness and demand our pursuit of America's future be fact-based -- not based on wishful thinking, not hoped-for outcomes made in shallow promises, but with a clear-eyed view of the facts as they are, and guided by the truth that will set us free to seek solutions to our most daunting challenges." ..."
Tillerson was the country's top diplomat until March, when he was fired by Donald Trump and
replaced by CIA Director Mike Pompeo. NBC News reports that Tillerson called on the graduates
to maintain a "fierce defense of the truth."
"As I reflect upon the state of our American democracy, I observe a growing crisis in ethics
and integrity," Tillerson said in his speech. " If our leaders seek to conceal the truth,
or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts,
then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom. "
He added, "When we as people, a free people, go wobbly on the truth, even on what may seem
the most trivial of matters, we go wobbly on America."
"A responsibility of every American citizen to each other is to preserve and protect our
freedom by recognizing what truth is and is not, what a fact is and is not and begin by holding
ourselves accountable to truthfulness and demand our pursuit of America's future be fact-based
-- not based on wishful thinking, not hoped-for outcomes made in shallow promises, but with a
clear-eyed view of the facts as they are, and guided by the truth that will set us free to seek
solutions to our most daunting challenges."
[May 16, 2018] No good deed goes unpunished --
[May 16, 2018] We live in an age when unnecessary
things are our only necessities. -- Oscar Wilde
[Apr 25, 2018] "Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron."
[Apr 25, 2018] "It ain't what you don't know that kills you. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." ~Mark Twain
[Apr 17, 2018]
"Comrade wolf knows who to eat. He eats without listening to anybody and
it seems he is not ever going to listen." ~ Vladimir Putin about the USA, Address to Federal Senate, May 10, 2006. Quoted (possibly
incorrectly) via comment at
"The Democratic Party is better than the Republican Party in the way that manslaughter is
slightly better than murder: It might seem like a lesser crime, but the victim can't really
tell the difference." -- Michael Harriot
"Everyone is in favor of free speech. Hardly a day passes without its being extolled, but some people's idea of it is that they
are free to say what they like, but if anyone else says anything back, that is an outrage."
- Winston Churchill
"A good speech should be like a woman's skirt: long enough to cover the subject and short enough to create interest."
- Winston Churchill
"Life is fraught with opportunities to keep your mouth shut."
- Winston Churchill
"Men in suits and ties make better bank robbers than men with guns." the paraphrased quote from the Godfather Movie
"If elections actually made a difference, they would not let us do it". ~Mark Twain
From my part, that rule about ducks I only follow it....with ducks....
People are harina de otro costal , there are people who can fool you all the way
during long time, and you will not be able to notice unless you have your natural instincts
from childhood intact, something very difficult in such an opressive and conservative society
as the US is, where almost all your natural instincts get castrated at early ages, especially
in the case of women..
yes, admittedly this surely sounds a bit provocative.
But, how else then trusting our perception could we ever judge on matters? Everyday life?
Should we start to consider that something that walks like a duck, squawks, and has feathers
could be a camel too? Never mind if Bactrian Camel or Dromedary?
" Democracy is not under stress – it's under aggressive attack, as
unconstrained financial greed overrides public accountability ."
I request a lessatorium* on the term 'democracy', because there aren't any democracies.
Rather than redefine the term, why not use a more accurate one, like 'plutocracy', or
-- -- -- -
* It's like a moratorium, you just do less of it.
Intelligence makes us pessimists, and our will makes us optimists.
[Feb 25, 2018] "I only take up causes in which I know I'll find no allies. And often I wait for a cause to become successful before
attacking it." ~ Nietzsche
[Feb 24, 2018] "Hitchens' razor" == "any claim made without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence."
[Feb 24, 2018] "History repeats itself: first as tragedy, second as farce". ~ Karl Marx
[Feb 23, 2018] None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free. ... So disorienting is the multi-pronged,
... ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.
[Feb 22, 2018] "Really, if the lower orders don't set us a good example, what on earth is the use of them? They seem, as a class,
to have absolutely no sense of moral responsibility." ~ Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest
[Feb 22, 2018] "Fear of something is at the root of hate for others, and hate within will eventually destroy the hater.
How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant
of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these." ~ George Washington Carver
[Feb 20, 2018] The cleverest trick used in propaganda against a specific country is to accuse it of what the accuser itself
[Feb 20, 2018] "One cannot observe democracy objectively without being impressed by its curious distrust of itself-it's apparent
ineradicable tendency to abandon its philosophy at the first sign of strain. I need not point to what invariably happens in democratic
states when the national safety is menaced. All the great tribunes of democracy, on such occasions, convert themselves into instant
despots of an almost fabulous ferocity." ~ H.L. Mencken
[Feb 18, 2018] "Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened."
~ Winston S. Churchill
[Feb 17, 2018] "Before I go on with this short history, let me make a general observation -- the test of a first rate intelligence
is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function. One should, for example,
be able to see that things are hopeless and yet be determined to make them otherwise." ~F.Scott Fitzgerald (1936)
[Feb 17, 2018] "The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum
a great variety of morbid symptoms appear." ~Gramsci
My state of mind brings together these two sentiments and surpasses them: I am pessimistic because of intelligence, but a willed
optimist. I think, in every circumstance, of the worst scenario so I can marshal all of my reserves of will and be ready to overcome
the obstacle. I never allow myself illusions, and I have never had disappointments. I am always specially armed with endless patience,
not passive or inert, but patience animated by perseverance. –Antonio Gramsci, letter to his brother Gennaro, December 1929. Translation
Every collapse brings intellectual and moral disorder in its wake. So we must foster people who are sober, have patience, who
do not despair when faced with the worst horrors yet who do not become elated over every stupid misstep. Intelligence makes us pessimists,
and our will makes us optimists.–Antonio Gramsci, first Prison Notebook, 1929-1930. Translation DJG.
[Feb 16, 2018] Those who God wishes to destroy, He first makes mad" – Euripides
[Feb 10, 2018] "It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they are being fooled." ~Mark Twain
[Feb 07, 2018] "To allow the market mechanism to be the sole director of the fate of human beings and their natural environment
would result in the demolition of society." ~ Karl Polanyi, 1944
[Feb 06, 2018] "In 1945 or 1950 if you had seriously proposed any of the ideas and policies in today's standard neo-liberal toolkit,
you would have been laughed off the stage or sent off to the insane asylum." ~ Susan George
"Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it." Andre Gide
The Democrats are the party that says government will make you smarter, taller, richer, and remove the crabgrass on your
lawn. The Republicans are the party that says government doesn't work and then they get elected and prove it (P.J. O'Rourke)
But to manipulate men, to propel them toward goals which you – the social reformers – see, but they may not, is to deny
their human essence, to treat them as objects without wills of their own, and therefore to degrade them (Isaiah Berlin)
I believe that sex is one of the most natural, wholesome things that money can buy (Steve Martin)
Nothing so needs reforming like other people's habits (Samuel Clemens)
is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day
the plain folks of the land will reach their hearts desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."-H.L. Mencken
"... The CIA fabricated a story that the Russians in Afghanistan made plastic bombs in the shape of toys, to blow up children. Casey repeated this story, knowing it to be disinformation, as fact to US journalists and politicians. ..."
I am not familiar with that particular quote, but that sounds like the hubris of the CIA. You have to understand, you put a janitor
in charge of the other janitors, and he becomes king shit of the janitors. And so it goes all the way to the point where you put
someone in charge of an agency which no longer answers to the president, the senate, congress, the UN, or any force on Earth, there
is no way you are not going to have anything but a problem. JFK wanted to dissolve them for that reason, 6 months later
If you really want to take the Dr. Bill acid test, go into Google AdWords. That is where they sell key words to the highest bidder
so that their site floats to the top (no it is not 'free information highway,' that's how Google became a multi-billion organization).
Watch the key words that are floating to the top. Then, look at tomorrow morning's headlines in Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc. You will
find that magically the minds of Americans predicted the next day's news.
This of course is not the case. The multi-trillion dollar surveillance of Americans that they told you is to 'protect you from
terrorists,' and so on is not what they are doing. All cell phone calls (the verbal content, referred to as meta-data), emails, text,
are monitored. Since the Patriot Act portion that allowed this to expire, they used the clause 'on American soil,' literally and
monitor everything via the communications satellites. There are also an estimated 20,000 drones OVER (BUT NOT ON) US soil, monitoring
verbal communications that are not electronic. This can be done via unidirectional microphone, or by bouncing a laser off your window.
That includes car window.
The Welcome to FBI.gov web site collects information, but is easier to access at
Mass Shootings . In 2016 there were 384 mass shootings, almost 100
of which were listed as 'terrorist motivated.' So, the multi-trillion dollar surveillance network is not to 'protect you.'
The system is designed to gather information on the 'collective thinking,' like the Borg, of the American public, and then design
tomorrow's news and media, literally overnight, to cattle herd you into a nice neat profile of behavior and commerce.
Again, take the acid test. Look at what you have access to, AdWords, and then watch tomorrow's headlines magically appear. At
first you might think, well that's what people are interested in so that's what's in the news. Then, as you look at the flow of headlines
regarding international campaigns, what the President said yesterday, what the senators and congressmen are doing or being accused
of, it starts to get a bit freaky. Do this for several days, and you will see.
If this doesn't convince you, you fit a nice neat profile of behavior and commerce.
Otherwise, explain the multi-trillion dollar surveillance network's failure to prevent 384 mass shootings last year, of which
about 1 in 4 were 'terrorist motivated,' and I think we already passed that number this year.
You know the system is in place, the NSA admitted it publicly. The reason they say it is there is obviously not true, as per a
hundred terrorist motivated events each year, hundreds of mass shootings, most of which never make it into the 'fake news.'
Every time the President says 'fake news,' your brain says 'conspiracy theory,' and hardens your cognitive belief, your religion,
Keeping you stupid keeps you under control. If this were not the case, disinformation would not be a goal. 1.7k Views ·
View Upvoters ·
It does appear he said something very much along those lines, though I doubt it meant what it appears to mean absent the context.
He made the statement not long after he became the Director of Central Intelligence, during a discussion of the fact that, to his
amazement, about 80 percent of the contents of typical CIA intelligence publications was based on information from open, unclassified
sources, such as newspapers and magazines. Apparently, and reasonably, he judged that about the same proportion of Soviet intelligence
products was probably based on open sources, as well. That meant that CIA disinformation programs directed at the USSR wouldn't work
unless what was being disseminated by US magazines and newspapers on the same subjects comported with what the CIA was trying to
sell the Soviets. Given that the CIA could not possibly control the access to open sources of all US publications, the subjects of
CIA disinformation operations had to be limited to topics not being covered by US public media. To be sure, some items of disinformation
planted by the CIA in foreign publications might subsequently be discovered and republished by US media. I'm guessing the CIA would
not leap to correct those items.
But that is a far cry from concluding that the CIA would (or even could) arrange that "everything the American public believes
The American public has never been the primary target
of any disinformation campaign.
The CIA once had influence in a number of English language publications abroad, some of which stories were reprinted in the US
media. This was known as "blowback", and unintended in most cases.
The CIA fabricated a story that the Russians in Afghanistan made plastic bombs in the shape of toys, to blow up children. Casey
repeated this story, knowing it to be disinformation, as fact to US journalists and politicians.
"The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought
sooner or later is the people versus the banks."
"When a government is dependent upon bankers for money, they and not the leaders of the
government control the situation, since the hand that gives is above the hand that takes.
Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency; their sole
object is gain."
"Let the American people go into their debt-funding schemes and banking systems, and from
that hour their boasted independence will be a mere phantom."
~William Pitt, (referring to the inauguration of the first National Bank in the United States
under Alexander Hamilton).
"The brave man inattentive to his duty, is worth little more to his country, than the
coward who deserts her in the hour of danger."
"There is not a more perilous or immoral habit of mind than the sanctifying of success." ~Lord Acton
The fact that the foolish person is often stubborn must not blind us to the fact that he is
not independent. In conversation with him, one virtually feels that one is dealing not at all
with him as a person, but with slogans, catchwords, and the like that have taken possession of
He is under a spell, blinded, misused, and abused in his very being. Having thus become a
mindless tool, the foolish person will also be capable of any evil and at the same time
incapable of seeing that it is evil. This is where the danger of diabolical misuse lurks, for
it is this that can once and for all destroy human beings."
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers From Prison
"Many commentators automatically assume that low intergenerational mobility rates represent
a social tragedy. I do not understand this reflexive wailing and beating of breasts in response
to the finding of slow mobility rates. The fact that the social competence of children is
highly predictable once we know the status of their parents, grandparents and
great-grandparents is not a threat to the American Way of Life and the ideals of the open
The children of earlier elites will not succeed because they are born with a silver spoon in
their mouth, and an automatic ticket to the Ivy League. They will succeed because they have
inherited the talent, energy, drive, and resilience to overcome the many obstacles they will
face in life."
Greg Clark, The Economist, 13 Feb. 2013
"You have not strengthened the weak or healed the sick or bandaged the injured or brought
back the strays or looked for the lost; rather, you have ruled them with harshness and tyranny.
So they were scattered because there was no shepherd; they were scattered and became prey for
every wild beast of the field." ~Ezekiel 34:2-5
"You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not
know." ~William Wilberforce
"Everything you want is on the other side of fear." – Jack Canfield
"The future ain't what it used to be." – Yogi Berra
"I can resist anything but
temptation." – Oscar Wilde "
You can get much farther with a kind word and a gun than
you can with a kind word alone." – Al Capone
"In acting, sincerity is everything. If
you can fake that, you've got it made." – George Burns
"To see what is in front of
one's nose needs a constant struggle." – George Orwell
Dennis Morrisseau USArmy Officer [Vietnam era] ANTI-WAR
Lieutenant Morrisseau's Rebellion FireCongress.org Second Vermont Republic, VFM POB 177,
W. Pawlet, VT 05775 email@example.com 802 645
[Jan 22, 2018]
When fascism comes to America, it will not be in brown and black shirts. It wll not be with jack-boots. It will be Nike sneakers and
Smiley shirts. Germany lost the Second World War. Fascism won it. Believe me, my friend." - George Carlin.
A comment from
Wapo, Jan 22,
[Jan 22, 2018] "However [political parties] may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things,
to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to
usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion." President
George Washington Farewell Address | Saturday, September 17, 1796
[Jan 21, 2018] "A man convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still."- Benjamin
Literally meaning "who benefits?," cui bono? is a rhetorical Latin legal phrase used to
imply that whoever appears to have the most to gain from a crime is probably the culprit. More
generally, it's used in English to question the meaningfulness or advantages of carrying
Random quotes for Jan 2018
It was, of course, 19th Century German philosopher Hegel who said it best: "Reading the newspaper is the realist's morning prayers."
AJ Liebling injunction: "I can write better than anybody who can write faster, and I can write faster than anyone who can write
Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we're being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I'm
liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That's what's insane about it. John Lennon
"A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush." ~Latin Proverb
"A good example is the best sermon." English (on advice)
"A penny saved is a penny earned." ~Scottish Proverb
"A stitch in time saves nine." ~unknown
"Advice after mischief is like medicine after death." ~Danish (on advice)
"Advise no one to go to war or marry. " ~Spanish (on advice)
Avoid a cure that is worse than the disease. ~Aesop (c.620-560 BC)
Before you marry keep both eyes open; after marriage keep one eye shut. Jamaican (on
"Better late than never." ~Roman Proverb
"Better three hours too soon than a minute too late." ~ William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
"Choose the hills wisely on which you must do battle." ~unknown
"Do good to thy friend to keep him, to thy enemy to gain him. " ~Ben Franklin
"Don't believe everything you hear. " ~Aesop (c.620-560 BC)
"Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." ~Ben Franklin
"Focus on what's right in your world instead of what's wrong." ~unknown
"Get out of harms way." ~Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616)
"Grin and bear it. " ~unknown
"If you are hiding, don't light a fire." ~Ghanaian (on common sense)
"If you can't bite, better not show your teeth." ~Yiddish (on common sense)
In night there is counsel. Greek (on advice)
Interest on debt grows without rain. ~Yiddish (on indebtedness)
It is better to prevent than to cure. ~Peruvian (on common sense)
It is easy to advise the wise. ~Serbian (on advice)
"Keep an open mind." ~unknown
"Lend your money and lose your friend." William Caxton (1421-1491)
"Live life to the fullest because you may not have it tomorrow." reader's name lost
"Live your own life, for you will die your own death. " ~Latin (on life and living)
Make haste slowly. ~Suetonius (c.69-140)
Marry in haste, repent in leisure. ~unknown
"Neither a borrower nor a lender be. " ~ William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
[Jan 05, 2018] George Orwell in his 1942 essay "Pacifism
and the War"
"If you hamper the war effort of one side you automatically help that of the other. Nor is there any real way of remaining outside
such a war as the present one. In practice, 'he that is not with me is against me'. The idea that you can somehow remain aloof from
and superior to the struggle, while living on food which British sailors have to risk their lives to bring you, is a bourgeois illusion
bred of money and security."
"We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality - judiciously, as you
will - we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's
actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."
"Everybody has talent, it's just a matter of moving around until you've discovered what it
is." Lucas on finding one's way in the world.
"None of the films I've done was designed for a mass audience, except for 'Indiana Jones.'
Nobody in their right mind thought 'American Graffiti' or 'Star Wars' would work." Lucas on
working against the grain, thinking outside the box, and the potential rewards that await those
who succeed at doing so.
"Even in high school I was very interested in history – why people do the things they
do. As a kid I spent a lot of time trying to relate the past to the present." Lucas on his
"'American Graffiti' was unpleasant because of the fact that there was no money, no time,
and I was compromising myself to death." Lucas on his experience creating the first real
success of his career.
"There should be a point to movies. Sure, you're giving people a diversion from the cold
world for a bit, but at the same time, you pass on some facts and rules and maybe a little bit
of wisdom." Lucas on what he hopes to derive from and communicate through the medium of
"You can't do it unless you can imagine it." Lucas on the primary role of the imagination as
an ignition switch to action.
"If the boy and girl walk off into the sunset hand-in-hand in the last scene, it adds 10
million to the box office." Lucas on how the narrative qualities of a film can be dictated by
the market. (For more, see: Top 10 Successful Movie Franchises.)
George Lucas on Work
"It's hard work making movies. It's like being a doctor: you work long hours, very hard
hours, and it's emotional, tense work. If you don't really love it, then it ain't worth it."
Lucas on the need to love your work in order to both stay sane and do the work properly.
"When you are a beginning filmmaker you are desperate to survive. The most important thing
in the end is survival and being able to get to your next picture." Lucas on how larger
ambitions sometimes need to wait.
"Working hard is very important. You're not going to get anywhere without working extremely
hard." Lucas on the paramount importance of hard work.
"You simply have to put one foot in front of the other and keep going. Put blinders on and
plow right ahead." Lucas on ignoring critics and other distractions.
"Whatever has happened in my quest for innovation has been part of my quest for immaculate
reality." Lucas on the aesthetic and even spiritual dimension of his career.
"I realized why directors are such horrible people – in a way – because you want
things to be right, and people will just not listen to you, and there is no time to be nice to
people, no time to be delicate." Lucas on the personality that authority demands of a director.
(For more, see: Why Is The Star Wars Franchise So Valuable?)
George Lucas on Luck and Grit
"Good luck has its storms." Lucas on the way that happy accidents tend to come in
"The secret is not to give up hope. It's very hard not to because if you're really doing
something worthwhile I think you will be pushed to the brink of hopelessness before you come
through the other side." Lucas on the immense difficulty of doing anything of lasting value,
and the absolute necessity of ignoring all doubt in the pursuit of such goals.
"A director makes 100 decisions an hour. Students ask me how you know how to make the right
decision, and I say to them, 'If you don't know how to make the right decision, you're not a
director.'" Lucas on directing films, and by extension, leadership of any enterprise.
"A film is sort of binary – it either works or it doesn't work. It has nothing to do
with how good a job you do. If you bring it up to an adequate level where the audience goes
with the movie, then it works, that is all." Lucas on how the overall effect of something
outstrips the individual parts. (See also: 7 Real-Life Ways To Become A Billionaire.)
[Dec 31, 2017] Trump proved that there are two kinds of Republicans: millionaires and suckers.
[Dec 30, 2017] "Americans are the most misled, misdirected, and therefore the most gullible people on the face of the planet" ~
Alan Hart, author
[Dec 26, 2017] "Above all, avoid falsehood, every kind of falsehood, especially falseness to yourself" (Dostoevsky,The Brothers
"Single acts of tyranny may be ascribed to the accidental opinion of the day, but a series of oppressions, begun at a distinguished
period and pursued unalterably through every change of ministers, too plainly prove a deliberate, systematic plan of reducing [a
people] to slavery" Thomas Jefferson. Rights of British America, 1774 ME 1:193, Papers 1:125
The various psychopaths of the world are powerless if we walk away. Completely decouple, with no overt malice. Our attention
validates the actions of the criminal elite.
Walk away from what? You can vote with your dollar, which is what I sort of think you are getting at. Things like sending our
children to war, invasive GMO crops and pollutants arr things we cannot simply walk away from.
We are in a sticky situation. What is the average citizen to do while their constituates betray their trust daily? At the moment,
sadly there isn't much we can. Standing in a free speech zone and protesting doesn't actually do much. I dont think violence in
the streets of DC will do much. At this point all we can do is keep talking about it and to help inform the misinformed. Stick
to facts, use history (a lot has come out about Vietnam) to open eyes. Frustrating yes, lost no. Dont walk away.
"Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the greatest of the blessings you do possess, and then
thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours."
Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
[Nov 27, 2017] Orwell
[... "In our age, there is no such thing as 'keeping out of politics.' All issues are political issues, and politics itself is
a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia," Orwell wrote. Earlier in the essay he had said, "In our time, political
speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible." ...]
'In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the
"It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy
"I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you."
"Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And
if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you."
"Sometimes people don't want to hear the truth because they don't want their illusions
"In heaven, all the interesting people are missing."
"There are no facts, only interpretations."
"The man of knowledge must be able not only to love his enemies but also to hate his
"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you
try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for
the privilege of owning yourself."
"Man is the cruelest animal."
"Is man merely a mistake of God's? Or God merely a mistake of man?"
As part of National
Privacy week I thought I would share some of my favorite quotes about privacy. Hopefully
they will get you thinking about privacy, if you weren't before, and spark some
10 . Our work to improve privacy continues today. – Mark Zuckerberg CEO of
I don't think I really have to comment on this one, its just amusing.
9 .Law-abiding citizens value privacy. Terrorists require invisibility. The two are not
the same, and they should not be confused. ~ Richard Perle
According to Wikipedia – "Richard Norman Perle is an
American political advisor and lobbyist who worked for the Reagan administration as an
assistant Secretary of Defense and worked on the Defense Policy Board Advisory Committee from
1987 to 2004. He was Chairman of the Board from 2001 to 2003 under the Bush
8. The real danger is the gradual erosion of individual liberties through automation,
integration, and interconnection of many small, separate record-keeping systems, each of
which alone may seem innocuous, even benevolent, and wholly justifiable. -Anon., U. S.
Privacy Study Commission, 1977
If we ignore small gradual erosions to privacy, especially in the name of convenience or
safety, we risk a much larger overall loss that we aren't aware of until its too late.
7. Every CEO of a social network should be required to use the default privacy settings
for all of their accounts on the service . – Anil Dash
6. It is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority. – Ben
Its a great reminder. There is nothing wrong with asking questions and wanting answers,
especially in regard to privacy.
5. If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing
it in the first place. – Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google
Oh really? I do all sorts of things I don't want anyone to know about, nothing crazy or
illegal, but personal and private. I don't want those things broadcast. Thanks.
4. You already have zero privacy. Get over it. – Scott G. McNealy CEO of Sun
This was said in 1999, yes, really.
3. No matter how many times a privileged straight white male technology executive
pronounces the death of privacy, Privacy Is Not Dead. People of all ages care deeply about
privacy. And they care just as much about privacy online as they do offline . Making Sense of Privacy
and Publicity "
Privacy doesn't mean the same to everyone and the end of it will affect people of different
social and economic classes differently.
This is fascinating to me. The process of being watched changes how we behave both offline
and online. Just as you question the reality of reality tv so should you consider the validity
of statements and actions carried out in a public forum where the participant knows there is an
This is hands down my favorite privacy quote. There is a huge difference between something
happening in public and it being publicized. If you're not keeping up with what danah boyd says about privacy you should be. She has
a firm understanding of the nuances of online privacy and she explains them clearly so anyone
It was either Mark Twain or Samuel Clemens who said "In the beginning of a change
the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid
join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot."
Below is a listing of the quotes you see displayed on all Antiwar.com pages. .
History teaches us that men and nations behave wisely once they have exhausted all other alternatives.
~Abba Eban About the quote: Israeli diplomat (1915-2002)
Probably, no nation is rich enough to pay for both war and civilization. We must make our choice;
we cannot have both. ~Abraham Flexner
Force is all-conquering, but its victories are short-lived. ~Abraham Lincoln
I destroy my enemies when I make them my friends. ~Abraham Lincoln
America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter, and lose our freedoms, it
will be because we destroyed ourselves. ~Abraham Lincoln
We must recognize the chief characteristic of the modern era -- a permanent state of what
I call violent peace. ~Admiral James D. Watkins
Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it. ~Adolph
In war, truth is the first casualty. ~Aeschylus
Any excuse will serve a tyrant. ~Aesop
One is left with the horrible feeling now that war settles nothing; that to win a war is as
disastrous as to lose one. ~Agatha Christie
The great armies, accumulated to provide security and preserve the peace, carried the
nations to war by their own weight. ~A. J. P. Taylor
No matter what political reasons are given for war, the underlying reason is always economic.
~A. J. P. Taylor
Wars based on principle are far more destructive... the attacker will not destroy that which
he is after. ~Alan Watts About the quote: from the book "The Way of Zen"
We used to wonder where war lived, what it was that made it so vile. And now we realize that
we know where it lives...inside ourselves. ~Albert Camus
When a war breaks out, people say: "It's too stupid, it can't last long." But though a war
may be "too stupid," that doesn't prevent its lasting. ~Albert Camus
The welfare of the people in particular has always been the alibi of tyrants. ~Albert Camus
Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding. ~Albert Einstein
It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder. ~Albert
The release of atomic energy has not created a new problem. It has merely made more urgent
the necessity of solving an existing one. ~Albert Einstein
Force always attracts men of low morality. ~Albert Einstein
Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding. ~Albert Einstein
The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who
look on and do nothing. ~Albert Einstein
It is unfortunately none too well understood that, just as the State has no money of its own,
so it has no power of its own. ~Albert J. Nock
What is absurd and monstrous about war is that men who have no personal quarrel should be
trained to murder one another in cold blood. ~Aldous Huxley
Even if we are spared destruction by war, our lives will have to change if we want to save
life from self-destruction. ~Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
The next war ... may well bury Western civilization forever. ~Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Violence can only be concealed by a lie, and the lie can only be maintained by violence. ~Aleksandr
The demands of internal growth are incomparably more important to us...than the need for any
external expansion of our power. ~Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Even if we are spared destruction by war, our lives will have to change if we want to save
life from self-destruction. ~Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
War paralyzes your courage and deadens the spirit of true manhood. ~Alexander Berkman
Those who stand for nothing fall for anything. ~Alexander Hamilton
O peace! how many wars were waged in thy name. ~Alexander Pope
All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war
is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it. ~Alexis de Tocqueville
Our modern states are preparing for war without even knowing the future enemy. ~Alfred Adler
War is organized murder and torture against our brothers. ~Alfred Adler
Our modern states are preparing for war without even knowing the future enemy. ~Alfred Adler
War is not the continuation of politics with different means, it is the greatest mass-crime
perpetrated on the community of man. ~Alfred Adler
At least we're getting the kind of experience we need for the next war. ~Allen Dulles
The slightest acquaintance with history shows that powerful republics are the most warlike
and unscrupulous of nations. ~Ambrose Bierce
Since the end of the World War II, the United States has fought three "small" wars...we lost
all three of them and for the same reason--hubris. ~Andrew Greely About the quote: Andrew
Greely is a columnist at the Chicago Sun-Times. You can read his articles at
Today the real test of power is not capacity to make war but capacity to prevent it. ~Anne
A great war leaves a country with three armies: an army of cripples, an army of mourners,
and an army of thieves. ~Anonymous (German) About the quote: (quote from 'The Anti-War
Quote Book,' edited Eric Groves, Sr., pub. Quirk Books, 2008)
Brute force is not our salvation, especially as directed by State central planning and done
with little regard for the innocents... ~Anthony Gregory About the quote: Anthony Gregory
is a writer and musician from Berkeley, CA. You can read his articles at
www.lewrockwell.comAbout the quote: Anthony Gregory
is a writer and musician from Berkeley, CA. You can read his articles at www.lewrockwell.com
War is not an adventure. It is a disease. It is like typhus. ~Antoine De Saint-Exupery
Make wars unprofitable and you make them impossible. ~A. Philip Randolph About the quote:
Randolph (1889-1979) was an African American civil rights leader. (quote from 'The Anti-War Quote
Book,' edited Eric Groves, Sr., pub. Quirk Books, 2008)
Because I do it with one small ship, I am called a terrorist. You do it with a whole fleet
and are called an emperor. ~A pirate, from St. Augustine's "City of God"
Old men declare war because they have failed to solve complex political and economic problems.
~Arthur Hoppe About the quote: Hoppe (1925-2000) was an American writer. (quote from 'The
Anti-War Quote Book,' edited Eric Groves, Sr., pub. Quirk Books, 2008)
All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed.
Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. ~Arthur Schopenhauer
Why should we hear about body bags, and deaths...I mean, it's not relevant. So why should
I waste my beautiful mind on something like that? ~Barbara Bush About the quote: Mrs. Bush
spoke these words on ABC's "Good Morning America," March 18, 2003.
No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around
hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots. ~Barbara Ehrenreich
War is the unfolding of miscalculations. ~Barbara Tuchman
You've got to forget about this civilian. Whenever you drop bombs, you're going to hit civilians.
The world cannot continue to wage war like physical giants and to seek peace like intellectual
pygmies. ~Basil O'Connor
War is never a solution; it is an aggravation. ~Benjamin Disraeli
There never was a good war or a bad peace. ~Benjamin Franklin
All wars are follies, very expensive and very mischievous ones. ~Benjamin Franklin
When will mankind be convinced and agree to settle their difficulties by arbitration? ~Benjamin
I hope....that mankind will at length, as they call themselves responsible creatures, have
the reason and sense enough to settle their differences without cutting throats... ~Benjamin Franklin
Those who give up essential liberties for temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
We Americans have no commission from God to police the world. ~Benjamin Harrison About
the quote: from an 1888 address to Congress
The Atomic Age is here to stay-- but are we? ~Bennett Cerf
Let us not deceive ourselves; we must elect world peace or world destruction. ~Bernard M.
War does not determine who is right, only who is left. ~Bertrand Russell
Can anything be more ridiculous than that a man has a right to kill me because he lives on
the other side of the water, and because his ruler has quarrel with mine, although I have none
with him? ~Blaise Pascal
The terrorist is the one with the small bomb. ~Brendan Behan
After each war there is a little less democracy left to save. ~Brooks Atkinson About the
quote: Atkinson was an American journalist who lived from 1864-1984. (quote from 'The Anti-War
Quote Book,' edited Eric Groves, Sr., pub. Quirk Books, 2008)
Blind faith in your leaders or in anything will get you killed. ~Bruce Springsteen About
the quote: This was part of Springsteen's introduction to his 1985 version of Edwin Starr's
song 'War.' In this war – as in others – I am less interested in honoring the dead than in
preventing the dead. ~Butler Shaffer
No nation ever had an army large enough to guarantee it against attack in time of peace, or
ensure it of victory in time of war. ~Calvin Coolidge
The political object is the goal, war is the means of reaching it, and the means can never
be considered in isolation from their purposes. ~Carl P. G. von Clausewitz
War is not an independent phenomenon, but the continuation of politics by different means.
~Carl P. G. von Clausewitz
Politics is the womb in which war develops. ~Carl P. G. von Clausewitz
The tyranny of a prince in an oligarchy is not so dangerous to public welfare as the apathy
of a citizen in a democracy. ~Charles de Secondat, baron de Montesquieu About the quote:
from "The Spirit of Laws" (1748)
The voice of protest...is never more needed than when the clamor of fife and drum...is bidding
all men...obey in silence the tyrannous word of command. ~Charles Eliot Norton
If a war be undertaken...before the resources of peace have been tried and proved vain to
secure it, that war has no defense, it is a national crime. ~Charles Eliot Norton
War should be made a crime, and those who instigate it should be punished as criminals. ~Charles
The deterioration of every government begins with the decay of the principles on which it
was founded. ~Charles-Louis De Secondat About the quote: From "The Spirit of Laws," 1748
[War] is a positive, precise and specific evil, of gigantic proportions ...making within the
sphere of its influence all true grandeur impossible. ~Charles Sumner About the quote:
From his 1845 speech "The True Grandeur of Nations."
Almost all war making states borrow extensively, raise taxes, and seize the means of combat-
including men--from reluctant citizens... ~Charles Tilly
Name me an emperor who was ever struck by a cannonball. ~Charles V of France
The truth is that neither British nor American imperialism was or is idealistic. It has always
been driven by economic or strategic interests. ~Charley Reese
War, n: A time-tested political tactic guaranteed to raise a president's popularity rating
by at least 30 points. It is especially useful during election years and economic downturns. ~Chaz
The failure to dissect the cause of war leaves us open for the next installment. ~Chris Hedges
After victory, you have more enemies. ~Cicero
True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else. ~Clarence Darrow
Hell hath no fury like a non-combatant. ~C.L. Montague About the quote: Quote from
"Among the Dead Cities," by A.C. Grayling (Walker & Co., 2006).
Chauvinism is a proud and bellicose form of patriotism...which equates the national honor
with military victory. ~Colonel James A. Donovan, Marine Corps
The dangerous patriot...is a defender of militarism and its ideals of war and glory. ~Colonel
James A. Donovan, Marine Corps
War is never economically beneficial except for those in position to profit from war expenditures.
~Congressman Ron Paul
Setting a good example is a far better way to spread ideals than through force of arms. ~Congressman
As a rule of thumb, if the government wants you to know it, it probably isn't true. ~Craig
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised "for the good of its victims" may be the most oppressive.
~C. S. Lewis
Do not waste time bothering whether you "love" your neighbor; act as if you did. ~C.S. Lewis
You cannot win a War on Terrorism. It's like having a war on jealousy. ~David Cross
We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought,
by the military-industrial complex. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower
Preventive war was an invention of Hitler. Frankly, I would not even listen to anyone seriously
that came and talked about such a thing. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower About the quote: from 1953
There is no glory in battle worth the blood it costs. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower
"Rules of engagement" are a set of guidelines for murder. ~Dr. Teresa Whitehurst
We will bankrupt ourselves in the vain search for absolute security. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower
Tyrants seldom want pretexts. ~Edmund Burke
A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government. ~Edward Abbey
Our "neoconservatives" are neither new nor conservative, but old as Babylon and evil as Hell.
~Edward Abbey About the quote: A naturalist and author, Abbey lived from 1927-1989.
The tragedy of modern war is that the young men die fighting each other--instead of their
real enemies back home in the capitals. ~Edward Abbey About the quote: A naturalist and
author, Abbey lived from 1927-1989.
Violence is an admission that one's ideas and goals cannot prevail on their own merits. ~Edward
M. Kennedy About the quote: Kennedy (b. 1932) is a U.S. Senator (D, MA). (from 'The Anti-War
Quote Book,' Quirk Books, Ed. by Eric Groves Sr.)
We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul
of America dies with it. ~Edward R. Murrow
History is littered with wars which everybody knew would never happen. ~Enoch Powell
The first casualty of war is not truth, but perspective. Once that's gone, truth, like compassion,
reason, and all the other virtues, wanders around like a wounded orphan. ~Ente Grillenhaft
We must get away from the idea that America is to be the leader of the world in everything.
~Francis John McConnell
The State acquires power... and because of its insatiable lust for power it is incapable of
giving up any of it. The State never abdicates. ~Frank Chodorov
The pertinent question: if Americans did not want these wars should they have been compelled
to fight them? ~Frank Chodorov
It is not that power corrupts but that power is a magnet to the corruptible. ~Frank Herbert
All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. ~Frank
War is a racket. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the
profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives. ~General Smedley Butler
War is just a racket...I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else. ~General
Our enemies are innovative and resourceful...They never stop thinking about new ways to harm
our country and our people, and neither do we. ~George W. Bush About the quote: From remarks
by the president at the signing of The Defense Appropriations Act for 2005 (8/5/04)
What experience and history teach is this-that people and governments never have learned anything
from history, or acted on principles deduced from it. ~Georg W. Hegel
The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders...tell them they are being
attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.
The means of defense against foreign danger historically have become the instruments of tyranny
at home. ~James Madison
Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war. ~John Adams
Whether or not patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel, national security can be the
last refuge of the tyrant. ~Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe About the quote: from 1/14/05
The arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and assistance to foreign
hands should be curtailed, lest Rome fall. ~Marcus Tullius Cicero
What is morally wrong can never be advantageous, even when it enables you to make some gain
that you believe to be to your advantage. ~Marcus Tullius Cicero
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed,
it is the only thing that ever has. ~Margaret Mead
The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same.
It takes more courage to get out of a war than it does to get into one. ~Mark Couturier
Look at you in war...There has never been a just one, never an honorable one, on the part
of the instigator of the war. ~Mark Twain About the quote: from "The Mysterious Stranger,"
Man is the only animal that is cruel. It kills just for the sake of it. ~Mark Twain
Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.
Why, the Government is merely...a temporary servant...Its function is to obey orders, not
originate them. ~Mark Twain
Each man must for himself alone decide what is right and what is wrong, which course is patriotic
and which isn't. ~Mark Twain
The statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is being attacked,
and every man will be glad of these conscience-soothing falsities ~Mark Twain
I am an anti-imperialist. I am opposed to having the eagle put its talons on any other land.
~Mark Twain About the quote: From an interview, 9/15/1900
Be loyal to your country always, and to the government only when it deserves it. ~Mark Twain
Let not your zeal to share your principles entice you beyond your borders. ~Marquis de Sade
Social order at the expense of liberty is hardly a bargain. ~Marquis de Sade
Is it not a strange blindness on our part to teach publicly the techniques of warfare and
to reward with medals those who prove to be the most adroit killers? ~Marquis de Sade
What is more immoral than war? ~Marquis de Sade
There are many terrorist states in the world, but the United States is unusual in that it
is officially committed to international terrorism. ~Noam Chomsky About the quote: from
his book "Necessary Illusions" (p. 270)
Everybody's worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there's a really easy way: stop participating
in it. ~Noam Chomsky
Terrorism is the war of the poor, and war is the terrorism of the rich. ~Sir Peter Ustinov
There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare. ~Sun Tzu
The worst crimes were dared by a few, willed by more and tolerated by all. ~Tacitus
To plunder, to slaughter, to steal, these things they misname empire; and where they make
a desert, they call it peace. ~Tacitus
The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the major media. ~William
Colby, former CIA director About the quote: as quoted by Dave McGowan in his book "Derailing
If you want war, nourish a doctrine. Doctrines are the most frightful tyrants to which men
ever are subject... ~William Graham Sumner
The greatest crime since World War II has been US foreign policy. ~William Ramsey Clark
About the quote: William Ramsey Clark was US Attorney General under Lyndon B. Johnson
The statesman who yields to war fever...is no longer the master of policy but the slave of
unforeseeable and uncontrollable events. ~Winston Churchill
When you are winning a war almost everything that happens can be claimed to be right and wise.
Wars teach us not to love our enemies, but to hate our allies. ~W. L. George
To fight, you must be brutal and ruthless, and the spirit of ruthless brutality will enter
into the very fibre of national life... ~Woodrow Wilson
"... "It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them". ..."
"... "There are only two important days in the life of any person, the day that your are born and then day you find out why." ..."
One part of a programmer's job is solving today's problem. Another, and perhaps more important,
part of the job is to prepare for solving tomorrow's problems.
I just can't over-emphasize how true this is, and how important.
There's a lovely quote by Mark Twain in "The adventures of Tom Sawyer" about the difference between
working and playing:
Tom said to himself that it was not such a hollow world, after all. He had discovered a great
law of human action, without knowing it --namely, that in order to make a man or a boy covet a
thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to attain. If he had been a great and
wise philosopher, like the writer of this book, he would now have comprehended that Work consists
of whatever a body is OBLIGED to do, and that Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged
Taken from the "Big Bang" book by Simon Singh:
I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect
has intended us to forgo their use -- Galileo Galilei
From Joel On Software, in one simple sentence, usability is:
Something is usable if it behaves exactly as expected.
This plays well with Perl's mottos of "element of least surprise" and "DWIM - Do What I Mean".
From Bruce Eckel's blog:
Programming is not about racing to throw together a solution. It's about changeable
So true... as anyone who has experience working with people for whom programming is "racing
to throw together a solution" knows. Unfortunately, these are the majority of programmers. They
pour mountains of code into their editors, spend immense amounts of time debugging it, and feel
this is the way it should be.
How precious it is to work with people who understand that programming is really "about changeable
Think about it, it has both optimistic and pessimistic meanings, I think.
"In the end, everything always works out. And if it didn't work out yet, it means it's not the
end yet" -- anon
"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans" - John Lennon
Those who know that they are profound strive for clarity. Those who would like to seem profound
to the crowd strive for obscurity. --Friedrich Nietzsche
Minneapolis was the only city in the world that was under Trotskyist leadership, where, as
one reporter put it a few years ago, being a Trotskyist was a career advancement
My father had graduated from the University of Minnesota business school with an MBA in 1929
and hoped to become a millionaire in Latin American mining. But then the stock market crash and
depression occurred, and he discovered that capitalism wasn't fair. He read widely, and joined
Jim Cannon's Socialist Workers Party, the Trotskyist party.
I knew most of his fellow felons growing up as a little boy. I remember visiting him in
jail, and everyone singing the Internationale and other songs to fan the flames of
After 1945 he followed Max Shachtman's Independent Socialist League , and Max
became a mentor of mine. Other members of the Minneapolis 17 who moved to Chicago was the
group's lawyer, Al Goldman, who spent much of his life trying to track down who killed his two
German colleagues Emma Goldman and Karl Liebknecht. Al Russell also often visited from New
York. Dad's former cellmates helped me acclimatize when I moved to New York in 1960. So here,
as in statist Russia, prisons were indeed the University of the Revolution.
My father said that his year in jail was the happiest year of his life. (He wasn't much of a
"people person.") He was assigned to the library, where he collected the proverbs in this
collection. After we moved to Chicago, he stenciled many proverbs on each wall of our house,
from the living room down to the bathrooms.
He also compiled a dictionary of everything that Lenin and Trotsky had said about virtually
every political subject. As a teenager, my friend Gavin MacFadyen and I used to sit down in the
basement (where the banned books and pamphlets were kept in the 1950s) and pore over the index
cards with these maxims. This was a great help in our Social Science classes at the University
of Chicago's Laboratory School. (Gavin was expelled for being a bit too attentive to what we
learned.) Unfortunately, this collection somehow got lost in Dad's move down to Florida when he
retired from his position as editor of Dental Abstracts . He had edited Traffic World,
but the FBI came around to his boss and asked why they had hired a Marxist. His boss was about
to accuse others of Communism, so Dad was fired. But the American Dental Association, which
hired him as an editor, said that they didn't care about his politics, and he worked happily
there for perhaps 20 years. (He died at the age of 95 in 2003.)
Informally, Dad also edited the pacifist Liberation magazine, whose mailing address was our
house on Dorchester in Hyde-Park Kenwood (about a block or so from where Obama's house now is.)
Along with Sidney Lens, he became an advocate of Rev. A. J. Muste.
"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act"
"In a time/state of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act" is a statement
often attributed to author George Orwell (1903-1950). The saying doesn't appear in his novel Nineteen
Eighty-Four (1948), his essay "Politics and the English Language" (1946), or any other of Orwell's
writings. The saying has been cited in print since at least 1984 (when it was attributed to George
A similar saying was used by author and presidential candidate Ron Paul in 2008-"Truth is treason
in the empire of lies."
"... "Representative institutions no longer represent voters. Instead, they have been short-circuited, steadily corrupted by an institutionalized system of bribery that renders them responsive to powerful interest groups whose constituencies are the major corporations and wealthiest Americans. The courts, in turn, when they are not increasingly handmaidens of corporate power, are consistently deferential to the claims of national security..." Sheldon Wolin, Inverted Totalitarianism ..."
"The dictatorship, and the whole process of its coming into being, was above all diverting. It provided
an excuse not to think for people who did not want to think anyway. I do not speak of your 'little
men,' your baker and so on; I speak of my colleagues and myself, learned men, mind you. Most of us
did not want to think about fundamental things and never had. There was no need to. Milton
Mayer, They Thought They Were Free: The Germans 1933-1945
"Representative institutions no longer represent voters. Instead, they have been short-circuited,
steadily corrupted by an institutionalized system of bribery that renders them responsive to powerful
interest groups whose constituencies are the major corporations and wealthiest Americans. The courts,
in turn, when they are not increasingly handmaidens of corporate power, are consistently deferential
to the claims of national security..." Sheldon Wolin, Inverted Totalitarianism
"It seems that under the overwhelming impact of rising power, humans are deprived of their inner
independence and, more or less consciously, give up establishing an autonomous position toward the
The fact that the foolish person is often stubborn must not blind us to the fact that he is not independent.
In conversation with him, one virtually feels that one is dealing not at all with him as a person,
but with slogans, catchwords, and the like that have taken possession of him.
He is under a spell, blinded, misused, and abused in his very being. Having thus become a mindless
tool, the foolish person will also be capable of any evil and at the same time incapable of seeing
that it is evil. This is where the danger of diabolical misuse lurks, for it is this that can once
and for all destroy human beings."
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers From Prison
"He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man."
[May 24, 2017] "Massive military budgets erode the economic foundation on which true national security is dependent." – Dwight Eisenhower
"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.
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."
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.
"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.
Book II, 2.40-
Ἀμαθία μὲν θράσος, λογισμὸς δὲ ὄκνον φέρει
Ignorance produces rashness, reflection timidity
Book II, 40.3
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
Book II, 2.40-
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: [ˈwai ˈwiktiːs])
is Latin for "woe to the vanquished", or "woe to the
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
Rome, 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
gold and the Romans agreed to his terms.
According to Plutarch's life of
Livy'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 Polybius,
Diodorus Siculus and a later passage from Livy contradict
[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."
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
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 Mailer
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
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
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
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)
the best-intentioned of great men need a few scoundrels around them; there are some things you cannot ask an honest man to do.
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.
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.
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. (Niccolò
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. Gombrich)
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.
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 stupider. (Plato)
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. (George Orwell)
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 Maher)
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. (Seneca)
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"
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
[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,
"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 Kenneth Galbraith
[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. ..."
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.
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 Shaw
[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.
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.
'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
"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,
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
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
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
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 parties.
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
"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 Sinatra (1915-1998),
"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
Physicist Albert Einstein (1879-1955).
HL Mencken's quip that "Marriage is a wonderful institution, but who would want to live in an institution?"
"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
"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
"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.
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 together.
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
[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.
[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 Jobs
"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." ~ Machiavelli
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."]
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.
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.
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 a lawyer.
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
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:
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.
You can almost hear the rim-shot after everything Dick or Smith say here.
Cade proceeds to go more and more over the top, and begins
to describe his absurd ideal world:
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!
Appreciated and encouraged, he continues on in this vein:
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.
And here is where Dick speaks the famous line.
The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
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.
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?
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.
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
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?
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.
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
EARL OF KENT.
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?
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.
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,
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?
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.
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. -OGDEN NASH
"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
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.... --
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
... ... ...
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
"And finally, in our progress towards a resumption of work, we require two safeguards against a return of the evils of the old
order. There must be a strict supervision of all banking and credits and investments. There must be an end to speculation with other
people's money." Franklin Delano Roosevelt, First Inaugural Address, 4 March 1933
"All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides
with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome."
George Orwell, 'December Letter,' Partisan Review, Winter 1945
"The terrible, cold, cruel part is Wall Street. Rivers of gold flow there from all over the earth, and death comes with it. There,
as nowhere else, you feel a total absence of the spirit: herds of men who cannot count past three, herds more who cannot get past
six, scorn for pure science and demoniacal respect for the present. And the terrible thing is that the crowd that fills the Street
believes that the world will always be the same, and that it is their duty to keep that huge machine running, day and night, forever."
-- Federico Garcia Lorca
"It would take a while before the postmodern Narcissus perceived the ruins of society behind the emptiness of his mirror." --
"The sense of responsibility in the financial community for the community as a whole is not small. It is nearly nil."
-- John Kenneth Galbraith, The Great Crash of 1929
[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 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
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) - William Gibson
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 footprint.
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
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 Worlds.
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.
"The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off."― Gloria Steinem
"A rich 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.
"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
― 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!"
"...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 language."
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:
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."
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
and Economics," which appeared in the March 1978 issue of The Atlantic and which I recently rediscovered. Here are
"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
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 language."
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)
"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.
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. ]
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
Second Best said...
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.
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.
RC AKA Darryl, Ron -> Second Best...
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.
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."
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
"Give me control of a nations money supply & I care not who makes its laws"
"An imbalance 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
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 howling.
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 me.
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
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 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
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"
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 Fan, 1893
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 Bernard Shaw
The Bible tells us to love our neighbors, and also to love our enemies; probably because they are generally the same people.
We can destroy ourselves by cynicism and disillusion, just as effectively as by bombs. ~Kenneth Clark
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
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 Thackeray
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 H. Fischer
[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,
"these 'zombie' ideas, as Krugman calls them, require some sort of massive public education effort..."
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
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."
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,
A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on. – Carl Sandburg, 1878-1967, American Poet/Historian/Pulitzer Prïze Wïnner
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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