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Archive for November, 2014

Chance is the pseudonym God uses when he doesn’t want to sign his own name.
   —  Anatole France
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On This Day In:
2013 The Real Reason
From The Book
2012 When Young
2011 14 Ways To A Better Judgement

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Franklin’s Epitaph

The Body of B. Franklin,
Printer;
like the Cover of an old Book,
Its Contents torn out,
And stript of its Lettering and Gilding,
Lies here,
Food for Worms.
But the Work shall not be wholly lost;
For it will,
as he believ’d,
appear once more,
In a new & more perfect Edition,
Corrected and amended By the Author.
   —  Written by Benjamin Franklin
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On This Day In:
2013 Too Few
2012 Three Characters
2011 Universal Payment
2010 Privatizing the TSA? (An old – and long – post, but still relevant!!)

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In reality there is nothing but atoms and space.
   —  Democritus
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On This Day In:
2013 No Plan, No Map
2012 Singing About Love
2011 The Awesome Power Of Truth

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“There ought not to be anything in the whole universe that man can’t poke his nose into – that’s the way we’re built and I assume that there’s some reason for it.”
 “Maybe there aren’t any reasons.”
“Yes, maybe it’s just one colossal big joke, with no point to it.”  Lazarus stood up and stretched and scratched his ribs.  “But I can tell you this, Andy, whatever the answers are, here’s one monkey that’s going to keep on climbing, and looking around him to see what he can see, as long as the tree holds out.”
   —  Robert A. Heinlein
From his novel: “The Past Through Tomorrow
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On This Day In:
2013 For And Against
2012 De Mortuis Nil Nisi Bonum
2011 Similar And Different
2010 Reminiscing
Differences

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Faith in our collective power to resolve intractable problems is a gift that should inspire us all this Thanksgiving.  I give thanks for the activists and “troublemakers” across the glove who speak up for better government and the rule of law; for those who defend dignity and rights while honoring the rights of others; for our armed forces and diplomats; and for all who rebel against the counsels of complacency and defeatism and who welcome the opportunity to achieve what others say cannot be done.
  —  John Kerry
I’m thankful for the people willing to be crazy in their time —  not for themselves or for their time, but for a future they know must be.  …  These people sacrifice something in the present for something important in the future.  They have, as Vaclav Havel puts it, not optimism but hope.  The certainty that their cause makes sense.  That it is just.  And that someone, sometime, has finally got to stand up for it.
  —  Lawrence Lessig
[Both quotes are from the “Briefing / Voices” section of Time Magazine, December 1 — 8, 2014, “The Genius Issue”  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2013 For And Against
2012 De Mortuis Nil Nisi Bonum
2011 Similar And Different
2010 Reminiscing
Differences

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“But you do believe in God?”
“I told you so, didn’t I?  Not that you had any business asking me.”
“Then you must believe in other things?”
“Of course I do!  I believe that a man has an obligation to be merciful to the weak…  patient with the stupid…  generous to the poor.  I think he is obliged to lay down his life for his brothers, should it be required of him.  But I don’t propose to prove any of those things; they are beyond proof.  And I don’t demand that you believe as I do.”
  —  Robert A. Heinlein
From his novel: “The Past Through Tomorrow
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On This Day In:
2013 Poor Students Of History
2012 Between Two Worlds
2011 Common Humanity
2010 The Last Two Olympians

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It is my intention to make the circuit of knowledge, noticing what parts lie waste and uncultivated, and abandoned by the industry of man; with a view to engage, by a faithful mapping out of the deserted tracts, the energies of public and private persons in their improvement.
   —  Francis Bacon
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On This Day In:
2013 The Sweet Path
2012 Living Free And Abolition
Morning Wood
2011 I Resemble That Remark

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To the man with an ear for verbal delicacies  —  the man who searches painfully for the perfect word and puts the way of saying a thing above the thing said  —  there is the constant joy of sudden discovery, of happy accident.
  —  Henry Louis Mencken
From “A Book of Prefaces
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On This Day In:
2013 Powerful Substitute
2012 Heroes Restored
2011 As You Should

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Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.  Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested; that is, some books are to be read only in parts; others to be read, but not curiously; and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention.  Some books also may be read by deputy, and extracts made of them by others; but that would be only in the less important arguments, and the meaner sort of books, else distilled books are like common distilled waters, flashy things.  Reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man.  And therefore, if a man write little, he had need have a great memory; if he confer little, he had need have a present wit: and if he read little, he had need have much cunning, to seem to know, that he doth not.
  —   Francis Bacon
From “On Studies
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On This Day In:
2013 Off Defending The Universe
Taking Precautions
2012 Never, Never, Never
2011 Testing 1, 2, 3

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He was forever reaching out and upward, attempting what seemed impossible to other men, relying solely on himself to get there, usually doing it.
  —  a description of James Middleton Cox
As quoted in “The New Outlook, vol. 126, Sept – Dec 1920
[This isn’t from an obituary, but it certainly is a sentence most ambitious young folks would like said describing themselves on their passing…   This quote was copied into my journal some 40-odd years ago.  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2013 Just In Case
2012 Isn’t This Just Pleasant?
2011 No Void In Sight

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When you get this letter, it will have been just a little over a year… since I started to learn the profession of killing my brothers…  And in this year of contact with the world my respect for man has dwindled instead of increasing.  For even among the best and the best are I take it those who devote them selves to the service of Mars, there is not the self sacrificing love of fame or self denying selfishness which I feel and which I had expected in others but rather a languid lassitude careless indifference or hazy uncertainty not becoming in my estimation a soldier or a man.  But let this be: the fewer of a species there are the greater is its individual worth.  And if my nature prove incapable of the task I have set myself or if the opportunity never comes I can at least die happy in my own vanity knowing that I stood alone and that alone I fell.
  —  [then] Cadet George S. Patton, Jr.
From “The Patton Papers
Written by Martin Blumenson
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On This Day In:
2013 Filled With Words
2012 Lectio Auget Existentiae Meae
2011 Lied Lately?
2010 Born To Work At Faux News
Lost Again (Uh, Make That Still)
Qui Genus Humanum Ingenio Superavit
They’re Back… (Part 1)

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Fame never yet found a man who waited to be found.
  —  General George S. Patton, Jr.
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On This Day In:
2013 Traditional Human Sacrifice
2012 A Division Of Men
2011 Miles, Legends and Superwoman
Got Tragedy?
2010 My Company For A Prince!!
On The Shoulders Of Titans

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The important things of life will not perish.  The greatest things will endure – faith, hope, and love, and the moral nature in man.
   —  Claude M. Fuess
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On This Day In:
2013 Tell Me More…
2012 Passing…
2011 Fake It ‘Til You Make It

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 Conversation enriches the understanding,
 But solitude is the school of the genius.
  —  Kahlil Gibran
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On This Day In:
2013 Daring Errors
2012 Are You Comfortable?
I Just Have To
In Flux
2011 True New
2010 A Job Well Started Is A Job Half Done
I See With My One Good Eye

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George Patton, you have seen what the enthusiasm of men can mean for things done.  As God lives you must of your self merit and obtain such applause by you own efforts and remember that though at times of quiet this may not seem worth much yet at the last it is the only thing and to obtain it life and happiness are small sacrifices.  You have done your damdest and failed now you must do your damdest and win.  Remember that is what you live for Oh you must!  you have got to do some thing!  never stop until you have gained the top or a grave.
   —  George S. Patton, Jr. (General)
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On This Day In:
2013 Determining Our Degree Of Freedom
2012 Journalism And Fantasy
Known Knowns
Jerk, n.
2011 Love Questions

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