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.

Friday, May 03, 2024

Deception

All warfare is based on deception.  Hence, when we are able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must appear inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.

-- Sun Tzu (c. 6th century BC), Chinese general, military strategist, and philosopher, The Art of War, Chapter 1, Detail Assessment and Planning

Thursday, May 02, 2024

Contagion

Ninety-nine per cent of the people in the world are fools and the rest of us are in great danger of contagion.

-- Thornton Niven Wilder (1897 - 1975), Pulitzer prize winning American author and playwright, The Matchmaker (1954), later adapted into the musical Hello, Dolly