Thursday, March 31, 2016

Never VII

"Putting your time in at the office; dutifully spawning your two point five; smiling politely at your retirement party; then chewing on your bedsheet and choking on your canned peaches at the nursing home. It was better never to have been born--never to have wanted anything, never to have hoped for anything."
--Donna Tartt, "The Goldfinch"

Wednesday, March 30, 2016


"Society is composed of men, and every man is a FREE agent. Since man is free, he can choose; since he can choose, he can err; since he can err, he can suffer. I go further: He must err and he must suffer; for his starting point is ignorance, and in his ignorance he sees before him an infinite number of unknown roads, all of which save one lead to error."
--Frederic Bastiat
(1801-1850) French economist, statesman, and author. He did most of his writing during the years just before -- and immediately following -- the French Revolution of February 1848
Source: Harmonies, XXX

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Governed II

"To be GOVERNED is to be kept in sight, inspected, spied upon, directed, law-driven, numbered, enrolled, indoctrinated, preached at, controlled, estimated, valued, censured, commanded, by creatures who have neither the right, nor the wisdom, nor the virtue to do so. . . To be GOVERNED is to be at every operation, at every transaction, noted, registered, enrolled, taxed, stamped, measured, numbered, assessed, licensed, authorized, admonished, forbidden, reformed, corrected, punished. It is, under pretext of public utility, and in the name of the general interest, to be placed under contribution, trained, ransomed, exploited, monopolized, extorted, squeezed, mystified, robbed; then, at the slightest resistance, the first word of complaint, to be repressed, fined, despised, harassed, tracked, abused, clubbed, disarmed, choked, imprisoned, judged, condemned, shot, deported, sacrificed, sold, betrayed; and to crown all, mocked, ridiculed,  outraged, dishonored. That is government; that is its justice; that is its morality."
--Pierre-Joseph Proudhon
(1809-1865) French mutualist political philosopher
Source: The General Idea of the Revolution in the 19th Century, 1851

Monday, March 28, 2016

Exercise III

"Congress will ever exercise their powers
to levy as much money as the people can pay.
They will not be restrained from direct taxes
by the consideration that necessity does not require them."
--Melancton Smith
(1744-1798) opponent of Alexander Hamilton during New York's ratifying convention

Sunday, March 27, 2016


"As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate, action: you liberate a city by destroying it. Words are to confuse, so that at election time people will solemnly vote against their own interests."
--Gore Vidal,
"The Decline and Fall of the American Empire" (1992)

Saturday, March 26, 2016


"I did not wish to take a cabin passage, but rather to go before the mast and on the deck of the world, for there I could best see the moonlight amid the mountains. I do not wish to go below now."
--Henry David Thoreau

Friday, March 25, 2016


"Must then a Christ perish in torment in every age to save those that have no imagination?"
--George Bernard Shaw,
"Saint Joan : A Chronicle Play In Six Scenes And An Epilogue" (1923)

Thursday, March 24, 2016


"He inherited some good instincts from his Quaker forebears but by diligent hard work, he overcame them."
--James Reston on Richard Nixon,
as quoted in an article by Joe Sharkey in The New York Times (Mardh 12, 2000)

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Flies III

"As the end of the century approaches, all our culture is like the culture of flies at the beginning of winter. Having lost their agility, dreamy and demented, they turn slowly about the window in the first icy mists of morning. They give themselves a last wash and brush-up, their oscillated eyes roll, and they fall down the curtains."
--Jean Baudrillard 

Tuesday, March 22, 2016


"After the game, the king and the pawn go back in the same box."
--Italian Proverb

Monday, March 21, 2016


Hillary Clinton announced today announced today the end of her 68-year marriage, and that she is getting a Divorce.

"It was always a marriage of convenience.  Truth and I were never on the same page.  It is time that we both move on and make it official".


Sunday, March 20, 2016


"Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago."
--Warren Buffett

Saturday, March 19, 2016


"The aim of education should be to convert the mind into living fountain, and not a reservoir."
--John L. Mason

Friday, March 18, 2016


"A mob is coming here in six months to hang the other ninety-five of you damned scoundrels, and I'm undecided whether to stick here with you or go out and lead them."
--Huey Long, Senate floor speech

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Serve III

"Last time I was down South I walked into this restaurant, and this white waitress came up to me and said: 'We don't serve colored people here.' "I said: 'that's all right, I don't eat colored people. Bring me a whole fried chicken."
--Dick Gregory

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


"Civics was a class that used to be required before you could graduate from high school. You were taught what was in the U.S. Constitution. And after all the student rebellions in the Sixties, civics was banished from the student curriculum and was replaced by something called social studies. Here we live in a country that has a fabulous constitution and all these guarantees, a contract between the citizens and the government--nobody knows what’s in it...And so, if you don’t know what your rights are, how can you stand up for them? And furthermore, if you don’t know what’s in the document, how can you care if someone is shredding it?"

--Frank Zappa

Tuesday, March 15, 2016


"I'm afraid there are guns between me and the White House."
--Robert F. Kennedy, 1968

Monday, March 14, 2016

Necessary II

"When you start with a necessary evil, and then over time the necessity passes away, what's left?"
--Matthew Scully,
Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy

Sunday, March 13, 2016


I said to God,"What are they doing?"
God said, "Making pitfalls into which their fellows may sink."
I said to God, "Why do they do it?"
God said, "Because each thinks that when his brother falls he will rise."

--Olive Schreiner

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Dangerous IV

"A truth spoken before its time is dangerous."
--Greek Proverb

Friday, March 11, 2016


"Killing is the ultimate refutation of our own humanity."
--Kevin Sites, "Things They Cannot Say"

Thursday, March 10, 2016


"Sometimes, when leading families or merchants organized a government for their city, they not only provided for some power sharing through voting but took pains to reduce the probability that the government's chief executive could assume autocratic power. For a time in Genoa, for example, the chief administrator of the government had to be an outsider -- and thus someone with no membership in any of the powerful families in the city. Moreover, he was constrained to a fixed term of office, forced to leave the city after the end of his term, and forbidden from marrying into any of the local families. In Venice, after a doge who attempted to make himself autocrat was beheaded for his offense, subsequent doges were followed in official processions by a sword-bearing symbolic executioner as a reminder of the punishment intended for any leader who attempted to assume dictatorial power."
--Mancur Olson
Source: Power and Prosperity. Outgrowing Communist and Capitalist Dictatorships (New York: Basic Books, 2000), p. 39

Wednesday, March 09, 2016


"When you grow up you tend to get told that the world is the way it is and your life is just to live your life inside the world. Try not to bash into the walls too much. Try to have a nice family, have fun, save a little money.

That's a very limited life. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use."

--Steve Jobs
Interview, "Steve Jobs: Visionary Entrepreneur" by Santa Clara Valley Historical Association (1994)

Tuesday, March 08, 2016


"Prohibition is an awful flop.
  We like it.
It can't stop what it's meant to stop.
  We like it.
It's left a trail of graft and slime,
It don't prohibit worth a dime,
It's filled our land with vice and crime.
Nevertheless, we're for it."
--Franklin P. Adams

Monday, March 07, 2016

System III

"A system cannot fail those it was never built to protect."
--Vann R. Newkirk

And no, the quote is not from W.E.B. DuBois

Sunday, March 06, 2016


"God and Country are an unbeatable team; they break all records for oppression and bloodshed."
--Luis Bunuel

Saturday, March 05, 2016


"Skepticism has never founded empires, established principles, or changed the world's heart. The great doers in history have always been people of faith."
--Edwin Hubbel Chapin 

Friday, March 04, 2016


"Art has a double face, of expression and illusion, just like science has a double face: the reality of error and the phantom of truth."
--Rene Daumal 

Thursday, March 03, 2016


"I'm afraid we were misled. All the critics, myself included, were misled very early. I see that now. We spent too much time and effort microanalyzing the details of the assassination when all the time it was obvious, it was blatantly obvious that it was a conspiracy. Don't you think that the men who killed Kennedy had the means to do it in the most sophisticated and subtle way? They chose not to. Instead, they picked the shooting gallery that was Dealey Plaza and did it in the most barbarous and openly arrogant manner. The cover story was transparent and designed not to hold, to fall apart at the slightest scrutiny. The forces that killed Kennedy wanted the message clear: 'We are in control and no one - not the President, nor Congress, nor any elected official - no one can do anything about it.' It was a message to the people that their Government was powerless."
--Vincent Salandria

Wednesday, March 02, 2016


"You have got to be careful quoting Ronald Reagan, because when you quote him accurately it is called mudslinging."
--Walter (Fritz) Mondale

Tuesday, March 01, 2016


"Vote against anything introduced with a 're' in it, especially reforms, reorganizations, and recodifications. This usually means going back to something that failed once and is likely to do so again."
--Eugene McCarthy