Wednesday, October 05, 2022

The Same Way

It’s a perfect set of circumstances to give us the time Yeats foretold, with the best having lost all conviction and the worst full of passionate intensity.  I’m an optimist.  In order to be libertarian, you have to be an optimist.  You have to have a benign view of human nature, to believe that human beings left to their own devices are basically good.  But I’m not so sure about human institutions ....  Most libertarians are worried about government but not worried about business.  I think we need to be worrying about business in exactly the same way we are worrying about government.

-- John Perry Barlow (1947 - 2018), American poet, essayist, and founding member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, "John Perry Barlow 2.0", interview by Brian Doherty in ReasonOnline (August 2004)

Tuesday, October 04, 2022

RIP Loretta Lynn

Sometimes I think some people were disappointed when they met me and found out I wasn't any smarter or happier than they were.  I'm proud and I've got my own ideas, but I ain't no better than nobody else.  I've often wondered why I became so popular, and maybe that's the reason.  I think I reach people because I'm with 'em, not apart from 'em.

-- Loretta Webb Lynn (14 April 1932 - 4 October 2022), iconic country singer, Coal Miner's Daughter (1976) Ch. 19 : Performer

Monday, October 03, 2022

Wars Cannot Be Fought

As a military man who has given half a century of active service I say in all sincerity that the nuclear arms race has no military purpose.  Wars cannot be fought with nuclear weapons.  Their existence only adds to our perils because of the illusions which they have generated.  There are powerful voices around the world who still give credence to the old Roman precept -- if you desire peace prepare for war.  This is absolute nuclear nonsense.

-- Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas George Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma KG, GCB, OM, GCSI, GCIE, GCVO, DSO, PC (1900 - 1979), British admiral and statesman, Speech in Strasbourg (11 May 1979), quoted in The Times (8 March 1980), p. 13

Friday, September 30, 2022

Like A Vampire

I wanted books like a vampire wants blood.

-- Dame Hilary Mary Mantel DBE FRSL (6 July 1952 - 22 September 2022), British writer whose work includes historical fiction, personal memoirs, and short stories, Giving Up the Ghost (2003)

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Success Depends

Success depends on what you choose to ignore.

-- Bola Adesola, Nigerian accountant, Senior Vice-Chairman at Standard Chartered Bank Group, (10 October 2020)

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

A Global Endeavor

We are showing that planetary defense is a global endeavor, and it is very possible to save our planet.

-- Clarence William Nelson II (1942 -), American politician and attorney serving as administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), congratulatory message to NASA teams, after the successful impact of the DART spacecraft into the moonlet Dimorphos of the asteroid Didymos, (26 September 2022)

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Tinier Even Than Science

Still among the myriad microwaves, the
infra-red messages, the gigabytes of ones
and zeroes, we find words, infinitesimally
small, byte-sized now, tinier even than
science lurking in some vague electricity
where, if we listen we can hear the solitary
voice of that poet telling us,

"We are no other than a moving row
Of Magic shadow-shapes that come and go
Round with the Sun-illumined Lantern held
In Midnight by the Master of the show."

"The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on:  nor all your Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it."

"Yesterday This Day's Madness did prepare;
Tomorrow's Silence, Triumph or Despair:
Drink!  for you know not whence you came, nor why:
Drink!  for you know not why you go, nor where."

-- Irma St Paule (1926 - 2007), as "Poet" in the movie Twelve Monkeys (1995), quoting Omar Khayyam's The Rubaiyat (1120), stanzas LXVII, LXXI, and LXXIV

Monday, September 26, 2022

All Houses Are Haunted

You come to this place, mid-life.  You don't know how you got here, but suddenly you're staring fifty in the face.  When you turn and look back down the years, you glimpse the ghosts of other lives you might have led; all houses are haunted.  The wraiths and phantoms creep under your carpets and between the warp and weft of fabric, they lurk in wardrobes and lie flat under drawer-liners.  You think of the children you might have had but didn't.  When the midwife says, "It's a boy," where does the girl go?  When you think you're pregnant, and you're not, what happens to the child that has already formed in your mind?  You keep it filed in a drawer of your consciousness, like a short story that never worked after the opening lines.

-- Dame Hilary Mary Mantel DBE FRSL (6 July 1952 - 22 September 2022), British writer whose work includes historical fiction, personal memoirs, and short stories, Giving Up the Ghost (2003)

Friday, September 23, 2022

Life Is Heaven

The return from your work must be the satisfaction which that work brings you and the world's need of that work.  With this, life is heaven, or as near heaven as you can get.  Without this -- with work which you despise, which bores you, and which the world does not need -- this life is hell.

-- William Edward Burghardt Du Bois (1868 - 1963), American civil rights activist, educator, and author, To His Newborn Great-Grandson, address on his ninetieth birthday (1958)

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Structure Is Everything

In an extreme view, the world can be seen as only connections, nothing else.  We think of a dictionary as the repository of meaning, but it defines words only in terms of other words.  I liked the idea that a piece of information is really defined only by what it's related to, and how it's related.  There really is little else to meaning.  The structure is everything.  There are billions of neurons in our brains, but what are neurons?  Just cells.  The brain has no knowledge until connections are made between neurons.  All that we know, all that we are, comes from the way our neurons are connected.

-- Tim Berners-Lee (born 8 June 1955) is the inventor of the World Wide Web and director of the World Wide Web Consortium, which oversees its continued development, Weaving The Web : The Original Design and Ultimate Destiny of the World Wide Web (1999)

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

We Conclude That He Would Not

Here, we analyze whether Plaintiff would be "substantially injure[d]" by a stay.  Largely for reasons we have already discussed, we conclude that he would not. 

First, as we have explained, Plaintiff does not have a possessory interest in the documents at issue, so he does not suffer a cognizable harm if the United States reviews documents he neither owns nor has a personal interest in. 

Second, we find unpersuasive Plaintiff's insistence that he would be harmed by a criminal investigation. "Bearing the discomfiture and cost of a prosecution for crime even by an innocent person is one of the painful obligations of citizenship." Cobbledick v. United States, 309 U.S. 323, 325 (1940). 

Third, because of the nature of the classified materials at issue here and based on the record, we have no reason to expect that the United States's use of these records imposes the risk of disclosure to the United States of Plaintiff's privileged information. 

-- United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit ruling in Donald J. Trump v United States of America, USCA 11 Case: 22-13005 (21 September 2022), staying a lower court ruling that denied the FBI access to classified documents seized from Mar-a-Lago

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

I Am Patient

I am patient with stupidity but not with those who are proud of it. 

-- Edith Sitwell (1887 - 1964), English poet and critic, The Last Years of a Rebel (1967)

Monday, September 19, 2022

Fleeting Instant

Remember that man lives only in the present, in this fleeting instant; all the rest of his life is either past and gone, or not yet revealed.  Short, therefore, is man's life, and narrow is the corner of the earth wherein he dwells.

-- Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121 - 180), Roman emperor from 161 to 180 and a Stoic philosopher, Meditations (c. AD 121–180), Book III, 10

Friday, September 16, 2022

After Silence

After silence that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.

-- Aldous Leonard Huxley (1894 - 1963), British author, Music at Night and Other Essays (1931), "The Rest is Silence"

Thursday, September 15, 2022

Old Men Delight

Les vieillards aiment à donner de bons préceptes, pour se consoler de n'être plus en état de donner de mauvais exemples.

Old men delight in giving good advice as a consolation for the fact that they can no longer provide bad examples.

-- François VI, duc de La Rochefoucauld, le Prince de Marcillac (15 September 1613 - 17 March 1680), French author of maxims and memoirs,  Reflections; or Sentences and Moral Maxims (1665-1678), Maxim 93

Wednesday, September 14, 2022

New Form Of Capitalism

Hopefully this will influence a new form of capitalism that doesn't end up with a few rich people and a bunch of poor people.  We are going to give away the maximum amount of money to people who are actively working on saving this planet.

-- Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard, 83, in an interview announcing the transfer of the $3 Billion company to the Holdfast Collective, which will donate 100% of future profits to combat climate change, New York Times, 14 September 2022

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

As Few Lies

One tells as few lies as possible only by telling as few lies as possible, and not by having the least possible opportunity to do so.

-- Franz Kafka (1883 - 1924), Bohemian-Jewish novelist, The Zürau Aphorisms (1917 - 1918), p. 58

Monday, September 12, 2022

Providence For Us All

Well, every one for himself, and Providence for us all -- as the elephant said when he danced among the chickens.

-- Charles Reade (1814 - 1884), English novelist and dramatist, A Simpleton (1873)

Friday, September 09, 2022

Sent From My iPad

From: Steve Jobs,
To: Steve Jobs,
Date: Thursday, September 2, 2010 at 11:08PM

I grow little of the food I eat, and of the little I do grow I did not breed or perfect the seeds.

I do not make any of my own clothing.

I speak a language I did not invent or refine.

I did not discover the mathematics I use.

I am protected by freedoms and laws I did not conceive of or legislate, and do not enforce or adjudicate.

I am moved by music I did not create myself.

When I needed medical attention, I was helpless to help myself survive.

I did not invent the transistor, the microprocessor, object oriented programming, or most of the technology I work with.

I love and admire my species, living and dead, and am totally dependent on them for my life and well being.

Sent from my iPad

-- Steve Jobs, in an email to himself (2 September 2010), from the Steve Jobs Archive, which was just announced by Laurene Powell Jobs as "a repository of historical materials relating to Steve, some of which have never before been made public"

Thursday, September 08, 2022

The Queen Is Dead

The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon.

The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.

Thursday, 8th September 2022

-- Pronouncement placed today on the gate of Buckingham Palace, announcing the passing of Queen Elizabeth II (21 April 1926 - 8 September 2022), Britain's longest-serving (70 years, 214 days) monarch, and the ascendance to the throne of King Charles III

Wednesday, September 07, 2022

Upside Down

There is something intrinsically upside down and counter-intuitive in the relationship between money and happiness.

-- David John Orrell (born 1962 in Edmonton), Canadian mathematician and author living in Oxford, England, The Other Side Of The Coin (2008), Chapter 2, Odd Versus Even, p. 70

Tuesday, September 06, 2022

Amendment 14, Section 3

No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any state, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any state legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any state, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.  But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.

-- Section 3 of Amendment 14 to the US Constitution, as cited in State of New Mexico v Couy Griffin, wherein Judge Francis J. Mathew ruled, "Mr. Griffin Became Constitutionally Disqualified from Any Federal or State Office, Including His Current Office, Effective January 6, 2021." (6 September 2022)

Monday, September 05, 2022


Back in 2001, I was in my 8th year of working for NovaNET, the descendant of CERL PLATO.  Each year the company hosted a national gathering of its customers and employees in Phoenix.  As a long-time Cardinals baseball fan, I noted that the Cardinals would play the Arizona Diamondbacks, in Phoenix, during the conference.  I bought a ticket for the Diamondbacks home opener, Friday April 6th 2001.  

At the game that night, the Cardinals fielded a much-heralded rookie right fielder (later first baseman) by the name of Albert Pujols, who, at 21 years old, was playing in what I think was just his third MLB game.  In the 4th inning, facing Armando Reynoso on a count of 1 ball and 2 strikes, Albert Pujols hit his first career home run, a 2-run shot that tied the game.

Fast forward to this weekend, and my daughter (who was 2 when that first home run was hit) treated me to a Labor Day Sunday game at Busch Stadium, as the Cardinals faced their arch-rival Cubs.  The game started more than an hour late due to rain, and it drizzled off and on, but it was well worth it.  Albert Pujols didn't start the game, but in the bottom of the 8th inning of a scoreless game, he emerged from the dugout to hit a pinch-hit, 2-run home run, and the Cardinals went on to win 2-0.  It was Pujols' 695th career home run as he aims for 700 before retiring at the end of this season.  There's a lifetime between those 2 home runs.

This post made possible by my daughter.  Thanks, kid!

Friday, September 02, 2022

That I May Learn

I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.

-- Vincent Willem van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Dutch Post-Impressionist painter, in a letter to Anthon van Rappard (18 August 1885)

Thursday, September 01, 2022

What To Do Next

Wisdom is knowing what to do next. Virtue is doing it.

-- David Starr Jordan, Ph.D., LL.D. (1851 - 1931), leading ichthyologist (the study of fish), educator, and peace activist; he was president of Indiana University (Bloomington) and Stanford University. "Ideals of Stanford", quoted in The Land of Sunshine: A Southern California Magazine, Vol. 9, No. 1. (Los Angeles, June 1898), p. 11

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

What They Want To Do

Have I ever remarked on how completely ridiculous it is to ask high school students to decide what they want to do with the rest of their lives and give them nearly no support in doing so?  Support like, say, spending a day apiece watching twenty different jobs and then another week at their top three choices, with salary charts and projections and probabilities of graduating that subject given their test scores?  The more so considering this is a central allocation question for the entire economy?

-- Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (1979 -), American writer, blogger, and advocate for the Singularity and Friendly Artificial Intelligence, on Memetic Hazards in Videogames (September 2010)

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

All That I Could

My life’s work has been accomplished.  I did all that I could.

-- Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev (2 March 1931 - 30 August 2022), General Secretary of the Communist Party and leader of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991, 1990 recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, The Observer [London] (15 December 1991)

Monday, August 29, 2022


With Artemis missions, NASA will land the first woman and first person of color on the Moon, using innovative technologies to explore more of the lunar surface than ever before.  We will collaborate with commercial and international partners and establish the first long-term presence on the Moon.  Then, we will use what we learn on and around the Moon to take the next giant leap: sending the first astronauts to Mars.

We're going back to the Moon for scientific discovery, economic benefits, and inspiration for a new generation of explorers: the Artemis Generation.  While maintaining American leadership in exploration, we will build a global alliance and explore deep space for the benefit of all.

We will build an Artemis Base Camp on the surface and the Gateway in lunar orbit.  These elements will allow our robots and astronauts to explore more and conduct more science than ever before.

All that we build, all that we study, all that we do, prepares us to go.

-- NASA, on their home page for the Artemis project, retrieved 29 August 2022

Friday, August 26, 2022

It Hereby Files

The United States gives notice that, in compliance with the Court's August 25, 2022 Order To Unseal, Docket Entry ("D.E.") 94, it hereby files the redacted version of the search warrant affidavit, submitted in support of the search warrant signed and approved by the Court on August 5, 2022.  The redactions were previously submitted for the Court's review and approved by the Court's August 25, 2022 Order (DE89-1; DE94).

-- US Attorney writing for the Department of Justice in a court filing related to the FBI search of Former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort, 26 August 2022

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Zero Emissions

By 2035 all new passenger cars, trucks and SUVs sold in California will be zero emissions.  The proposed Advanced Clean Cars II proposal would take the state's already growing zero-emission vehicle market and robust motor vehicle emission control rules and augment them to meet more aggressive tailpipe emissions standards and ramp up to 100% zero-emission vehicles.  The proposal was presented to the Board on June 9, 2022 with a second hearing planned for August 25, 2022 when the Board will vote on the item.

-- Website of the California Air Resources Board (CARB), which today voted to adopt the proposed standard described above, 25 August 2022

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Moral Mischief

It is impossible to calculate the moral mischief, if I may so express it, that mental lying has produced in society.  When a man has so far corrupted and prostituted the chastity of his mind, as to subscribe his professional belief to things he does not believe, he has prepared himself for the commission of every other crime.

-- Thomas Paine (1737 -  1809), British-American political writer, theorist, and activist who had a great influence on the thoughts and ideas which led to the American Revolution and the United States Declaration of Independence, The Age of Reason, Part I (1793)

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Insofar As I Discover It

It seems to be my destiny to discourse on truth, insofar as I discover it, in such a way that all possible authority is simultaneously demolished.  Since I am incompetent and extremely undependable in men's eyes, I speak the truth and thereby place them in the contradiction from which they can be extricated only by appropriating the truth themselves.  A man's personality is matured only when he appropriates the truth, whether it is spoken by Balaam's ass or a sniggering wag or an apostle or an angel.

-- Søren Aabye Kierkegaard (1813 - 1855), Danish Christian philosopher and theologian, considered to be a founder of Existentialist thought and Absurdist traditions, Journals IV A 87 (1843)

Monday, August 22, 2022

In One Form

1. The human mind is so constructed that it must see every perception in a time-relation -- in an order -- and every perception of an object in a space-relation -- as outside or beside our perceiving selves.

2. These necessary time-relations are reducible to Number, and they are studied in the theory of number, arithmetic and algebra.

3. These necessary space-relations are reducible to Position and Form, and they are studied in geometry.

Mathematics, therefore, studies an aspect of all knowing, and reveals to us the universe as it presents itself, in one form, to mind.  To apprehend this and to be conversant with the higher developments of mathematical reasoning, are to have at hand the means of vitalizing all teaching of elementary mathematics.

-- Nicholas Murray Butler (1862 - 1947), American philosopher, diplomat, and educator, Editor's Introduction, The Teaching of Elementary Mathematics (1906) by David Eugene Smith

Friday, August 19, 2022

Fundamental Cause

The fundamental cause of the trouble is that in the modern world the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.  Even those of the intelligent who believe that they have a nostrum are too individualistic to combine with other intelligent men from whom they differ on minor points.

-- Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970), British philosopher and mathematician, 1950 Nobel Laureate in Literature, in his essay "The Triumph of Stupidity" (1933), lamenting the rise of the Nazi movement in Germany, h/t Quote Investigator

Thursday, August 18, 2022

Passionate Intensity

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

-- William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), Irish symbolist poet and dramatist, 1923 Nobel laureate in Literature, The Second Coming (1919)

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

History Repeats

History repeats itself.  That's one of the things wrong with history.

-- Clarence Darrow (1857 - 1938), American lawyer, most famous for defending John T. Scopes in the so-called "Monkey" Trial (1925), opposing William Jennings Bryan, as quoted in Peter's Quotations: Ideas For Our Time (1977) edited by Laurence J. Peter, p. 248

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

The Path Was Clear

Two years ago, I won this primary with 73% of the vote.  I could easily have done the same again.  The path was clear.  But it would have required that I go along with President Trump's lie about the 2020 election.  It would have required that I enable his ongoing efforts to unravel our democratic system and attack the foundations of our republic -- that was a path I could not and would not take.

No House seat, no office in this land, is more important than the principles that we are all sworn to protect.  And I well understood the potential political consequences of abiding by my duty.

Our republic relies upon the goodwill of all candidates for office to accept honorably the outcome of elections.  Tonight, Harriet Hageman has received the most votes in this primary.  She won.  I called her to concede the race.  This primary election is over.  But now, the real work begins.

-- Representative Liz Cheney (R-WY) in her concession speech after losing her primary for reelection, 16 August 2022

Monday, August 15, 2022

Not Invariably Governed

The actions of human beings are not invariably governed by the laws of pure reason.

-- William Wilkie Collins (1824 - 1889), English novelist, playwright and writer of short stories, he was a pioneer in the writing of detective fiction, The Law and the Lady (1875), Vol. I, p. v

Friday, August 12, 2022

Search Warrant

In the Matter of the Search of the Premises Located at 1100 S. Ocean Blvd., Palm Beach, FL 33480, as further described in Attachment A

Property to be seized 

All physical documents and records constituting evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, or other items illegally possessed in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 793, 2071, or 1519, including the following: 

a. Any physical documents with classification markings, along with any containers/boxes (including any other contents) in which such documents are located, as well as any other containers/boxes that are collectively stored or found together with the aforementioned documents and containers/boxes; 

b. Information, including communications in any form, regarding the retrieval, storage, or transmission of national defense information or classified material; 

c. Any government and/or Presidential Records created between January 20, 2017, and January 20, 2021; or 

d. Any evidence of the knowing alteration, destruction, or concealment of any government and/or Presidential Records, or of any documents with classification markings

-- Excerpts from the search warrant issued against Former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort, 5 August 2022

Thursday, August 11, 2022

One Way Rather Than Another

Language is not a handmaiden to perception; it is perception; it gives shape to what would otherwise be inert and dead.  The shaping power of language cannot be avoided.  We cannot choose to distance ourselves from it.  We can only choose to employ it in one way rather than another.

-- Stanley Eugene Fish (1938 -), American literary theorist and legal scholar, and Dean Emeritus of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago, How To Write A Sentence And How To Read One (2011), Chapter 4, What Is A Good Sentence?, p. 42

Wednesday, August 10, 2022


Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking.  I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or my grandchild's time -- when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.  The dumbing down of America is most evident in the slow decay of substantive content in the enormously influential media, the 30-second sounds bites (now down to 10 seconds or less), lowest common denominator programming, credulous presentation on pseudoscience and superstition, but especially a kind of celebration of ignorance.

-- Carl Edward Sagan (1934 - 1996), American astronomer and author, The Demon-Haunted World : Science as a Candle in the Dark (1995), Ch. 2 : Science and Hope, p. 25, h/t @TonyT2Thomas

Tuesday, August 09, 2022

Right Is Right

Self-reverence, self-knowledge, self-control,
These three alone lead life to sovereign power.
Yet not for power (power of herself
Would come uncall'd for) but to live by law,
Acting the law we live by without fear;
And, because right is right, to follow right
Were wisdom in the scorn of consequence.

-- Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson (1809 - 1892), Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom during much of Queen Victoria's reign, after William Wordsworth, "Oenone", st. 14

Monday, August 08, 2022

Some Were Wrong

By taking this action, I hope that I will have hastened the start of that process of healing which is so desperately needed in America.

I regret deeply any injuries that may have been done in the course of the events that led to this decision. I would say only that if some of my judgments were wrong, and some were wrong, they were made in what I believed at the time to be the best interest of the Nation.

To those who have stood with me during these past difficult months, to my family, my friends, to many others who joined in supporting my cause because they believed it was right, I will be eternally grateful for your support.

And to those who have not felt able to give me your support, let me say I leave with no bitterness toward those who have opposed me, because all of us, in the final analysis, have been concerned with the good of the country, however our judgments might differ.

So, let us all now join together in affirming that common commitment and in helping our new President succeed for the benefit of all Americans.

-- Richard Milhous Nixon (1913 - 1994), 37th president of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1974, Resignation speech, 8 August 1974

Friday, August 05, 2022


The time which we have at our disposal every day is elastic; the passions that we feel expand it, those that we inspire contract it; and habit fills up what remains.

-- Valentin Louis Georges Eugène Marcel Proust (1871 - 1922), French novelist, essayist, and critic,  Remembrance of Things Past (1913-1927), Vol II: Within a Budding Grove (1919), Ch. I: "Madame Swann at Home"

Thursday, August 04, 2022

No Matter Whether We Know

Good deeds remain good, no matter whether we know how the world was made or not.  Vile deeds are vile, no matter whether we know or do not know what, after death, will be the fate of the doer.  We know, at least, what his fate is now, namely, to be wedded to the vileness. 

-- Felix Adler (1851 - 1933), Jewish professor of political and social ethics, rationalist, and religious leader who founded the Ethical Culture movement, Life and Destiny (1913) Section 9 : Ethical Outlook

Wednesday, August 03, 2022


Experience isn't interesting until it begins to repeat itself -- in fact, till it does that, it hardly is experience.

-- Elizabeth Bowen (1899 - 1973), Anglo-Irish novelist and short story writer, The Death of the Heart (1939)

Tuesday, August 02, 2022

The Professional Is Involved

If you're really looking for a reason why I feel I've played enough, I'll tell you this.  There are professionals and there are mercenaries in sports.  The difference between them is that the professional is involved.  I was never a mercenary.  If I continued to play, I'd become a mercenary because I'm not involved anymore.

I have a year to go on my contract with the Celtics.  It's one of the most lucrative in sports, and I was very happy with it.  A couple of my friends think I should at least stick out that year because of the money.  Believe me, I wouldn't mind having all that money.  But I'm not going to play basketball for money.  I've been paid to play, of course, but I played for a lot of other reasons, too.

-- William Felton Russell (12 February 1934 – 31 July 2022), former U.S. basketball player of the Boston Celtics, remembered for his central role in the Celtics dynasty that won eleven NBA championships in thirteen seasons, "I'm Not Involved Anymore", Sports Illustrated (4 August 1969)

Monday, August 01, 2022

RIP Nichelle Nichols

Star Trek represented, and still does represent, the future we can have, a future that is beyond the petty squabbles we are dealing with here on Earth, now as much as ever, and are able to devote ourselves to the betterment of all human kind by doing what we do so well: explore.  This kind of a future isn't impossible -- and we need to all rethink our priorities to really bring that vision to life.

-- Nichelle Nichols (28 December 1932 - 30 July 2022) American actress, singer, and voice artist, best known for her portrayal of Nyota Uhura in Star Trek and its film sequels.  Nichols' portrayal of Uhura was groundbreaking for African American actresses on American television, as quoted in "Uhura Fest: 'Star Trek' legend Nichelle Nichols talks Wizard World Philly and transcending race" by Jerome Maida, The Philadelphia Enquirer (29 May 2017)

Friday, July 29, 2022


For it was my master who taught me not only how very little I knew but also that any wisdom to which I might ever aspire could consist only in realizing more fully the infinity of my ignorance.

-- Sir Karl Raimund Popper (28 July 1902 - 17 September 1994), Austrian-British philosopher, academic, and social commentator, Unended Quest, An Intellectual Autobiography (1974) p. 2

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Human Nature

Where is human nature so weak as in a book store?

-- Henry Ward Beecher (1813 - 1887), American Congregationalist clergyman, social reformer, and speaker, known for his support of the abolition of slavery, his emphasis on God's love, and his 1875 adultery trial, "Subtleties of Book Buyers," Star Papers (1855)