Friday, July 12, 2024

A Bridge

Look, I view myself as a bridge, not as anything else.  There's an entire generation of leaders you saw stand behind me.  They are the future of this country.

-- Presidential Candidate Joe Biden speaking to Democratic leaders in California, 9 March 2020

Thursday, July 11, 2024

A National Tragedy

Mr. Trump has shown a character unworthy of the responsibilities of the presidency.  He has demonstrated an utter lack of respect for the Constitution, the rule of law and the American people.  Instead of a cogent vision for the country’s future, Mr. Trump is animated by a thirst for political power: to use the levers of government to advance his interests, satisfy his impulses and exact retribution against those who he thinks have wronged him.

He is, quite simply, unfit to lead. ...

It is a national tragedy that the Republicans have failed to have a similar debate about the manifest moral and temperamental unfitness of their standard-bearer, instead setting aside their longstanding values, closing ranks and choosing to overlook what those who worked most closely with the former president have described as his systematic dishonesty, corruption, cruelty and incompetence. ...

When someone fails so many foundational tests, you don’t give him the most important job in the world.

-- The editorial board of the New York Times (11 July 2024)

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

A Curious Thing

The past is a curious thing.  It's with you all the time.  I suppose an hour never passes without your thinking of things that happened ten or twenty years ago, and yet most of the time it's got no reality, it's just a set of facts that you've learned, like a lot of stuff in a history book.  Then some chance sight or sound or smell, especially smell, sets you going, and the past doesn't merely come back to you, you're actually in the past.

-- George Orwell (1903 - 1950), pen name of British novelist, essayist, and journalist Eric Arthur Blair, Coming Up for Air, Part I, Ch. 4 (1939)

Tuesday, July 09, 2024

Analyze

You cannot analyze data you don't collect.

-- Don Appleman, while working for NovaNET a few decades ago, and occasionally since, on the subject of how much data (usually on work done and throughput) should be collected by software

Monday, July 08, 2024

Friday, July 05, 2024

The Crowd

If it has to choose who is to be crucified, the crowd will always save Barabbas.      

-- Jean Cocteau (1889 - 1963), French poet, novelist, painter, and filmmaker, Le Coq et l’Arlequin (1918)

Thursday, July 04, 2024

Harmony And Affection

Let us, then, fellow-citizens, unite with one heart and one mind.  Let us restore to social intercourse that harmony and affection without which liberty and even life itself are but dreary things.

-- Thomas Jefferson (1743 - 1826), third president of the United States (1801-1809), First Inaugural Address (4 March 1801)

Wednesday, July 03, 2024

Unsettled Overnight

What has once been settled by a precedent will not be unsettled overnight, for certainty and uniformity are gains not lightly sacrificed.  Above all is this true when honest men have shaped their conduct on the faith of the pronouncement.

-- Benjamin Cardozo (1870 - 1938), long-time Justice of the Court of Appeals of New York; he was appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States in 1932, The Paradoxes of Legal Science (1928)

Tuesday, July 02, 2024

We Believe, Yet

We believe that all men are created equal.  Yet many are denied equal treatment.  We believe that all men have certain unalienable rights.  Yet many Americans do not enjoy those rights.  We believe that all men are entitled to the blessings of liberty.  Yet millions are being deprived of those blessings -- not because of their own failures, but because of the color of their skin.

-- President Lyndon B. Johnson in a statement made upon signing the Civil Rights Act, 60 years ago today (2 July 1964) h/t The Washington Post

Monday, July 01, 2024

Immune, Immune, Immune

Today’s decision to grant former Presidents criminal immunity reshapes the institution of the Presidency.  It makes a mockery of the principle, foundational to our Constitution and system of Government, that no man is above the law.  Relying on little more than its own misguided wisdom about the need for “bold and unhesitating action” by the President, the Court gives former President Trump all the immunity he asked for and more.  Because our Constitution does not shield a former President from answering for criminal and treasonous acts, I dissent.

Looking beyond the fate of this particular prosecution, the long-term consequences of today’s decision are stark. The Court effectively creates a law-free zone around the President, upsetting the status quo that has existed since the Founding. This new official-acts immunity now “lies about like a loaded weapon” for any President that wishes to place his own interests, his own political survival, or his own financial gain, above the interests of the Nation. The President of the United States is the most powerful person in the country, and possibly the world. When he uses his official powers in any way, under the majority’s reasoning, he now will be insulated from criminal prosecution. Orders the Navy’s Seal Team 6 to assassinate a political rival? Immune. Organizes a military coup to hold onto power? Immune. Takes a bribe in exchange for a pardon? Immune. Immune, immune, immune. Let the President violate the law, let him exploit the trappings of his office for personal gain, let him use his official power for evil ends. Because if he knew that he may one day face liability for breaking the law, he might not be as bold and fearless as we would like him to be. That is the majority’s message today. Even if these nightmare scenarios never play out, and I pray they never do, the damage has been done. The relationship between the President and the people he serves has shifted irrevocably. In every use of official power, the President is now a king above the law.

Never in the history of our Republic has a President had reason to believe that he would be immune from criminal prosecution if he used the trappings of his office to violate the criminal law. Moving forward, however, all former Presidents will be cloaked in such immunity. If the occupant of that office misuses official power for personal gain, the criminal law that the rest of us must abide will not provide a backstop. 

With fear for our democracy, I dissent.

-- Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor, joined by Justice Kagan and Justice Jackson, dissenting in Donald J Trump v United States, in which the majority held that former presidents are immune from prosecution for most acts taken while in office

Friday, June 28, 2024

Those Were The Days

For 40 years, Chevron U. S. A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., (1984), has served as a cornerstone of administrative law, allocating responsibility for statutory construction between courts and agencies.  Under Chevron, a court uses all its normal interpretive tools to determine whether Congress has spoken to an issue.  If the court finds Congress has done so, that is the end of the matter; the agency’s views make no difference.  But if the court finds, at the end of its interpretive work, that Congress has left an ambiguity or gap, then a choice must be made.  Who should give content to a statute when Congress’s instructions have run out?  Should it be a court?  Or should it be the agency Congress has charged with administering the statute?  The answer Chevron gives is that it should usually be the agency, within the bounds of reasonableness.  That rule has formed the backdrop against which Congress, courts, and agencies -- as well as regulated parties and the public -- all have operated for decades.  It has been applied in thousands of judicial decisions.  It has become part of the warp and woof of modern government, supporting regulatory efforts of all kinds -- to name a few, keeping air and water clean, food and drugs safe, and financial markets honest.

"Judges are not experts in the field, and are not part of either political branch of the Government." --  Chevron U. S. A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc. (1984)

Those were the days, when we knew what we are not.  When we knew that as between courts and agencies, Congress would usually think agencies the better choice to resolve the ambiguities and fill the gaps in regulatory statutes.  Because agencies are “experts in the field.”  And because they are part of a political branch, with a claim to making interstitial policy.  And because Congress has charged them, not us, with administering the statutes containing the open questions.  At its core, Chevron is about respecting that allocation of responsibility -- the conferral of primary authority over regulatory matters to agencies, not courts. 

Once again, with respect, I dissent.

-- Supreme Court Associate Justice Elena Kagan, joined by Justice Sotomayor and Justice Jackson, dissenting in Loper Bright Enterprises v Raimondo, in which the Supreme Court overturned a 40-year precedent (28 June 2024)

Thursday, June 27, 2024

We Refuse To Declare

We have granted certiorari and heard argument.  We have had ample opportunity to consider the issues.  The parties were well represented on both sides, and dozens of amici have weighed in.  What is more, the necessary legal reasoning is straightforward, and the answer to the question presented is -- or at least should be -- quite clear: Idaho law prohibits what federal law requires, so to that extent, under the Supremacy Clause, Idaho's law is pre-empted.  There is simply no good reason not to resolve this conflict now.

Despite the clarity of the legal issue and the dire need for an answer from this Court, today six Justices refuse to recognize the rights that EMTALA protects.  The majority opts, instead, to dismiss these cases.  But storm clouds loom ahead.  Three Justices suggest, at least in this context, that States have free rein to nullify federal law.  And three more decline to disagree with those dissenters on the merits.  The latter group offers only murmurs that "petitioners have raised a difficult and consequential argument" about Congress's authority under the Spending Clause.  So, as of today, the Court has not adopted Idaho's farfetched theories -- but it has not rejected them either.

So, to be clear: Today's decision is not a victory for pregnant patients in Idaho.  It is delay.  While this Court dawdles and the country waits, pregnant people experiencing emergency medical conditions remain in a precarious position, as their doctors are kept in the dark about what the law requires.  This Court had a chance to bring clarity and certainty to this tragic situation, and we have squandered it.  And for as long as we refuse to declare what the law requires, pregnant patients in Idaho, Texas, and elsewhere will be paying the price.  Because we owe them -- and the Nation -- an answer to the straightforward pre-emption question presented in these cases, I respectfully dissent.

-- Supreme Court Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, concurring in part and dissenting in part, in Moyle v United States, in which the Supreme Court made extra effort to claim this case, then sent it back to lower courts without deciding on the merits (27 June 2024)

Wednesday, June 26, 2024

They Know Everything

We've educated children to think that spontaneity is inappropriate.  Children are willing to expose themselves to experiences.  We aren't.  Grownups always say they protect their children, but they're really protecting themselves.  Besides, you can't protect children.  They know everything.

-- Maurice Bernard Sendak (1928 - 2012), American writer and illustrator of children's literature, as quoted in "The Paternal Pride of Maurice Sendak" by Bernard Holland, in The New York Times (8 November 1987)

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Safer And Faster

Survival machines which can simulate the future are one jump ahead of survival machines who can only learn on the basis of overt trial and error.  The trouble with overt trial is that it takes time and energy.  The trouble with overt error is that it is often fatal.  Simulation is both safer and faster.

-- Richard Dawkins (26 March 1941 -), British evolutionary biologist and author, known for his advocacy of atheism, The Selfish Gene (1976, 1989)

Monday, June 24, 2024

Assange

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS 

Case No CR - 24 * 00014

Plaintiff, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. vs. JULIAN PAUL ASSANGE, Defendant.

Count One: Title 18. U.S.C. § 793(g), Conspiracy To Obtain and Disclose National Defense Information

THE DEFENDANT AND CO-CONSPIRATOR

The defendant, JULIAN PAUL ASSANGE (“ASSANGE"). was not a United States citizen, did not possess a U.S. security clearance, and did not have authorization to possess, access, or control documents, writings, or notes relating to the national defense of the United States, including United States government classified information.

Chelsea Manning ("Manning”) was a United States Army intelligence analyst who held a TOP SECRET U.S. security clearance who was deployed to forward Operating Base Hammer in Iraq.

-- Opening paragraphs of the charge to which Julian Assange of WikiLeaks will plead guilty in order to resolve his 14-year legal battle with the United States (24 June 2024)

Friday, June 21, 2024

Shadows Of Virtues

Manners are the shadows of virtues; the momentary display of those qualities which our fellow creatures love, and respect.

-- Sydney Smith (1771 - 1845), English clergyman, critic, philosopher, and wit, Sermon XII, Sermons (1809)

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Absorbed

Knowledge must be so absorbed into the mind that it ceases to exist in a separate, objective way.

-- Carl von Clausewitz (1780 - 1831), Prussian general and influential military theorist, On War (1832) Book 2

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Establishment Clause

Section 2122. Ten Commandments; displays

A.(1) Each public school governing authority and the governing authority of each nonpublic school that receives state funds shall display the Ten Commandments in each building it uses and classroom in each school under its jurisdiction.  The nature of the display shall be determined by each governing authority with a minimum requirement that the Ten Commandments shall be displayed on a poster or framed document that is at least eleven inches by fourteen inches.  The text of the Ten Commandments shall be the central focus of the poster or framed document and shall be printed in a large, easily readable font.

(2) The text shall read as follows:

"The Ten Commandments
I AM the LORD thy God.
Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven images." etc.

-- Louisiana House Bill No. 71, signed into law by Republican Governor Jeff Landry (19 June 2024) h/t CNN

Tuesday, June 18, 2024

RIP Willie Mays

Gee, I've been asked hundreds of questions about that catch in the first game of the World Series.  The one that Vic Wertz hit for Cleveland.  Was it my best catch?  How did I play it?  Honestly, I don't rate 'em -- I just try to catch 'em.  When he hit the ball, I just started toward the place it was heading.  And I got there.

-- Willie Mays (6 May 1931 - 18 June 2024), Major League Baseball player for 22 seasons, starting his career with the Giants in New York, remaining with the team during their relocation to San Francisco, and then ending his career with the New York Mets, In "Willie 'Just Knows' His Job" by Mays, in The Daily Mail (25 March 1955) p. 16

Monday, June 17, 2024

The Next Minute

What a man can be the next minute bears no relation to what he is or what he was the minute before.

-- Walker Percy (1916 - 1990), American Southern author whose interests included philosophy and semiotics, The Last Gentleman (1966)

Friday, June 14, 2024

The Arrow And The Song

I shot an arrow into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For, so swiftly it flew, the sight
Could not follow it in its flight.

I breathed a song into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For who has sight so keen and strong
That it can follow the flight of song?

Long, long afterward, in an oak
I found the arrow, still unbroke;
And the song, from beginning to end,
I found again in the heart of a friend.

-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 - 1882), American poet, "The Arrow and the Song" (1845)

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Any Eyes

We may try to see things as objectively as we please.  None the less, we can never see them with any eyes except our own.

-- Benjamin Nathan Cardozo (1870 - 1938), long-time Justice of the Court of Appeals of New York, appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States in 1932, The Nature of the Judicial Process (1921) Pages 12-13

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

A Series Of Judgements

Life is made up of a series of judgments on insufficient data, and if we waited to run down all our doubts, it would flow past us.

-- Learned Hand (1872 - 1961), American judge and judicial philosopher, "On Receiving an Honorary Degree" (1939)

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Not More Zealous

Men are not more zealous for truth than they often are for error, and a sufficient application of legal or even of social penalties will generally succeed in stopping the propagation of either.

-- John Stuart Mill (1806 - 1873), English political philosopher and economist who was an advocate of utilitarianism, On Liberty (1859) Chapter II, Of The Liberty Of Thought And Discussion

Monday, June 10, 2024

So Many Truths

Out of patriotism -- which can be respected as long as it remains in the domain of sentiment and art on exactly the same footing as the sense of family and local pride, all equally sacred -- out of patriotism they make a Utopian and impracticable idea, unbalancing the world, a sort of cancer which drains all the living force, spreads everywhere and crushes life, a contagious cancer which culminates either in the crash of war or in the exhaustion and suffocation of armed peace.

They pervert the most admirable of moral principles.  How many are the crimes of which they have made virtues merely by dowering them with the word "national"?  They distort even truth itself.  For the truth which is eternally the same they substitute each their national truth.  So many nations, so many truths; and thus they falsify and twist the truth.

-- Henri Barbusse (1873 - 1935), French novelist and journalist, Under Fire (1916) Ch. 24 - The Dawn

Friday, June 07, 2024

RIP Bill Anders

That photograph, shared globally and always in the public domain, has since served to educate and inspire: The Earth we saw rising over the battered grey lunar surface was small and delicate, a magnificent spot of color in the vast blackness of space.  Once-distant places appeared inseparably close.  Borders that once rendered division vanished.  All of humanity appeared joined together on this glorious-but-fragile sphere.

-- William Alison Anders (17 October 1933 - 7 June 2024), former American astronaut, who flew as Lunar Module Pilot for the Apollo 8 mission (although no lunar module was carried by the mission), the first mission where humans traveled beyond Low Earth orbit, "50 Years After 'Earthrise,' a Christmas Eve Message from Its Photographer" Space.com (24 December 2018)

Thursday, June 06, 2024

Go And Remember

We know the dark forces that these heroes fought against 80 years ago.  They never fade.  Aggression and greed, the desire to dominate and control, to change borders by force -- these are perennial.  And the struggle between a dictatorship and freedom is unending. 

To surrender to bullies, to bow down to dictators is simply unthinkable.  Were we to do that, it means we'd be forgetting what happened here on these hallowed beaches. 

Make no mistake:  We will not bow down.  We will not forget. 

Let me end with this.  History tells us freedom is not free.  If you want to know the price of freedom, come here to Normandy.  Come to Normandy and look.  Go to the other cemeteries in Europe where our fallen heroes rest.  Go back home to Arlington Cemetery. 

Tomorrow, I will pay respects at Pointe du Hoc.  Go there as well and remember: The price of unchecked tyranny is the blood of the young and the brave. 

In their generation, in their hour of trial, the Allied forces of D-Day did their duty.  

-- Remarks by President Biden Commemorating the 80th Anniversary of D-Day, Collevile-sur-Mer, France (6 June 2024)

Wednesday, June 05, 2024

Wrong Direction

You know what the biggest problem with pushing all-things-AI is?  Wrong direction.

I want AI to do my laundry and dishes so that I can do art and writing, not for AI to do my art and writing so that I can do my laundry and dishes.

-- Author and videogame enthusiast Joanna Maciejewska, posting on Twitter as @AuthorJMac (29 March 2024)

Tuesday, June 04, 2024

Do Not Follow

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise.  Seek what they sought.

-- Matsuo Bashō (1644 - 1694), major Japanese poet, primarily known for his achievements in haiku, and his poetic diaries, from "Words by a Brushwood Gate" 

Monday, June 03, 2024

Mumpsimus

‘Mumpsimus’, 16th century: one who insists that they are right (or wronged) when all evidence points to the contrary.

-- Susie Dent, who posts a "Word of the Day" on Twitter, posting as @susie_dent (30 May 2024)

Friday, May 31, 2024

Laws

[A] government of laws, and not of men.

-- John Adams (1735 - 1826), American lawyer, author, statesman, diplomat, and second president of the United States, Novanglus Essays (1774-1775), Essay #7

Thursday, May 30, 2024

That Was Quick

We should all be thankful for the careful attention that this jury paid to the evidence and the law, and their time and commitment over these past several weeks.

Twelve everyday New Yorkers, and of course our alternates, heard testimony from 22 witnesses, including former and current employees of the defendant, media executives, book publishers, custodians of records and others.  They reviewed call logs, text messages and emails.  They heard recordings.  They saw checks and invoices, bank statements and calendar appointments.

Their deliberations led them to a unanimous conclusion beyond a reasonable doubt.

While this defendant may be unlike any other in American history, we arrived at this trial -- and ultimately today at this verdict -- in the same manner as every other case that comes through the courtroom doors: by following the facts and the law, and doing so without fear or favor.

-- Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, at a news conference following former president Trump's conviction on 34 felony charges, 30 May 2024

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Post-Summation Instructions

Members of the jury, I will now instruct you on the law. I will first review the general principles of law that apply to this case and all criminal cases. 

You have heard me explain some of those principles at the beginning of the trial. I am sure you can appreciate the benefits of repeating those instructions at this stage of the proceedings. 

Next, I will define the crimes charged in this case, explain the law that applies to those definitions, and spell out the elements of each charged crime. 

Finally, I will outline the process of jury deliberations. 

These instructions will take at least an hour, and you will not receive copies of them. You may however, request that I read them back to you in whole or in part as many times as you wish, and I will be happy to do so.

-- Judge Juan Merchan, Final Jury Instructions and Charges in the case of People v. Donald J Trump, presented to the jury 29 May 2024

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Trees

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

-- Joyce Kilmer (1886 - 1918), American journalist and poet, "Trees" (1913)

Monday, May 27, 2024

Memorial Day

The bugle echoes shrill and sweet,
But not of war it sings to-day.
The road is rhythmic with the feet
⁠Of men-at-arms who come to pray.

The roses blossom white and red
⁠On tombs where weary soldiers lie;
Flags wave above the honored dead
⁠And martial music cleaves the sky.

Above their wreath-strewn graves we kneel,
⁠They kept the faith and fought the fight.
Through flying lead and crimson steel
⁠They plunged for Freedom and the Righteousness.

May we, their grateful children, learn
⁠Their strength, who lie beneath this sod,
Who went through fire and death to earn
⁠At last the accolade of God.

In shining rank on rank arrayed
They march, the legions of the Lord;
He is their Captain unafraid,
The Prince of Peace -- Who brought a sword.

-- Joyce Kilmer (1886 - 1918), American journalist and poet, "Memorial Day""; this poem was later published in The Army and Navy Hymnal (1920)

Friday, May 24, 2024

Not Useless

My life was not useless; I gave important truths to the world, and it was only for want of understanding that they were disregarded.  I have been ahead of my time.

-- Robert Owen (1771 - 1858), Welsh socialist and social reformer, considered to be the father of the cooperative movement, deathbed statement (November 1858), in response to a church minister who asked if he regretted wasting his life on fruitless projects; as quoted in Harold Hill : A People's History (2004)

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Every Minute

Every minute you are angry, you lose 60 seconds of happiness.

-- Junius, "Office Cat", The Daily Freeman [Kingston, NY] (30 December 1936) p. 6

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

The Recipe

The recipe for perpetual ignorance is: be satisfied with your opinions and content with your knowledge.

-- Elbert Hubbard (1856 - 1915), American writer, publisher, and political philosopher, Philistine: A Periodical of Protest (1902)

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Explain It

Hell, if I could explain it to the average person, it wouldn't have been worth the Nobel prize.

-- Richard Feynman (1918 - 1988), American physicist, statement (c. 1965), quoted in "An irreverent best-seller by Nobel laureate Richard Feynman gives nerds a good name", People Magazine (22 July 1985)

Monday, May 20, 2024

Equal Value

Today I am filing applications for warrants of arrest before Pre-Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal Court in the Situation in the State of Palestine.

Let us today be clear on one core issue: if we do not demonstrate our willingness to apply the law equally, if it is seen as being applied selectively, we will be creating the conditions for its collapse.  In doing so, we will be loosening the remaining bonds that hold us together, the stabilising connections between all communities and individuals, the safety net to which all victims look in times of suffering.  This is the true risk we face in this moment.

Now, more than ever, we must collectively demonstrate that international humanitarian law, the foundational baseline for human conduct during conflict, applies to all individuals and applies equally across the situations addressed by my Office and the Court.  This is how we will prove, tangibly, that the lives of all human beings have equal value.

-- Statement of ICC Prosecutor Karim A.A. Khan KC: Applications for arrest warrants in the situation in the State of Palestine, 20 May 2024

Friday, May 17, 2024

DOW 40,000

The stock market rally saw the Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Nasdaq hit record highs during the past week, with many stocks breaking out or flashing other buy signals.  Stocks paused late in the week, but the Dow Jones closed Friday above 40,000 for the first time.

-- Ed Carson, Stock Market Today, "Down Jones Closes Above 40,000 With Stock Market At Highs" (17 May 2024)

Thursday, May 16, 2024

The Whole Circle

Grief and disappointment give rise to anger, anger to envy, envy to malice, and malice to grief again, till the whole circle be completed.

-- David Hume (1711 - 1776), Scottish philosopher, historian, economist, and essayist, A Treatise of Human Nature (1739-40) Book 2: Of the Passions, Part 1, Section 4

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Poetry Heals

Poetry heals the wounds inflicted by reason.

-- Baron Georg Philipp Friedrich von Hardenberg (1772 - 1801), author, philosopher and poet of early German Romanticism most commonly known by the pseudonym Novalis, as quoted in Quote, Unquote‎ (1989) by Jonathan Williams, p. 136

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

The Greatest Blessing

Upon the whole, a contented mind is the greatest blessing a man can enjoy in this world.

-- Joseph Addison (1672 - 1719), English politician and writer, The Spectator No. 574 (30 July 1714)

Monday, May 13, 2024

Positioned Correctly

He was appalled at the ease with which the truth so easily turned into something that was almost a lie, just by being positioned correctly.

-- Terence David John "Terry" Pratchett, OBE (1948 - 2015), English humorist, satirist, and author of fantasy novels, Discworld, The Truth (2000) pg 117

Friday, May 10, 2024

I Seek The Truth

If someone is able to show me that what I think or do is not right, I will happily change, for I seek the truth, by which no one ever was truly harmed.  Harmed is the person who continues in his self-deception and ignorance.

-- Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121 - 180), Roman emperor from 161 to 180, and Stoic philosopher, Meditations (c. AD 121-180) Book VI, 21

Thursday, May 09, 2024

A Line

Art is a line around your thoughts. 

-- Gustav Klimt (1862 - 1918), Austrian symbolist painter, as quoted by Dani Cavallaro in "Gustav Klimt - A Critical Reappraisal" (2018) (h/t Roberto Sabas)

Wednesday, May 08, 2024

Landmines

Our memories are full of landmines.  Do not time travel.  If you do time travel, be careful where you stop.

-- Don Appleman (2024), regarding the things one should not contemplate when trying to fall asleep at night

Tuesday, May 07, 2024

Facts Nonetheless

These facts are relative facts, but facts nonetheless.

-- Nick Zangwill (1957 -), British philosopher, Fashion Philosophy For Everyone (2011), edited by Jessica Wolfendale and Jeanette Kennett, Chapter 2 "Fashion, Illusion, And Alienation" pg 31 (h/t Roberto Sabas)

Monday, May 06, 2024

Souvenir Memories

This Sunday I watched the St Louis Cardinals lose a baseball game to the Chicago White Sox 5-1 in St Louis.  I was accompanied by my good friend Mark Trott and by my youngest daughter, Alyssa, who sprang for the tickets as a gift for my 65th birthday that day.  The weather was pretty great.

We had bleacher seats in fair territory, 10 rows back in deep right center field.  My daughter brought her glove, and there were a few chances at souvenirs as a couple of balls in play came our way.  About halfway through the game Cardinals center fielder Dylan Carlson threw a ball into the stands that my daughter came away with, and I now have that ball as a souvenir.


Good times.