random quotes ... to amuse, inspire, enrage:
  The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them.

tagged: books, reading
  —Mark Twain

postcards from the handbasket

Thursday, April 10th, 2008

Our trip to hell in a handbasket has been mostly passing through environmental markers, with occasional — okay, frequent — forays into the economy and civil rights. Now we’ve got rising bread prices, a scary sign that I have personally never seen in my nearly 40 years of life. So now, farmers want to take […]

Recording industry in England

Sunday, February 24th, 2008

John Naughton had a nice column last week in The Observer (at the guardian) trashing the British Phonographic Industry. Triggered by their spokesperson’s statement that “For years, ISPs have built a business on other people’s music,” Naughton awarded it “Fatuous Statement of the Month” and went on to excoriate their arrogance and the legislation they’re […]

portfolio diversification in your income

Monday, July 24th, 2006

Firefighters who want to live in high-priced cities can work two jobs, said W. Michael Cox, chief economist for the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. “I think it’s great,” he said. “It gives you portfolio diversification in your income.” [NYT 7/23] Words fail me. Actually, polite words fail me.

“scan this book”?

Wednesday, May 17th, 2006

siva linked to “scan this book!”, a NYT magazine article by kevin kelly, with a promise to post comments about it soon. i look forward to them, and in the meantime will post my own (hurried & no-doubt flawed) quick reactions to one point: Authors and publishers (including publishers of music and film) have relied […]

galloway: that explains a lot

Saturday, July 2nd, 2005

In today’s NYT profile of George Galloway, the Scottish MP reprises DeTocqueville for the 21st century Conservative era: “I think America treats politicians like nobility, and that’s certainly not how they are treated here.” A result is that American political arguments are “not properly tested.”

space weapons

Saturday, May 21st, 2005

Re-assuring words from our Glorious Leader’s curiously independent-minded military leaders: “We haven’t reached the point of strafing and bombing from space,” Pete Teets, who stepped down last month as the acting secretary of the Air Force, told a space warfare symposium last year. “Nonetheless, we are thinking about those possibilities.” … The Air Force believes […]

romanian wisdom for our times

Tuesday, November 9th, 2004

As my friend Mort wrote me yesterday, “My Romanian grandfather used to say to me, ‘Remember, Morton, this is such a wonderful country   – it doesn’t even need a president!’” — Michael Moore, Election 2004: 17 Reasons Not to Slit Your Wrists, 2004-11-08, AlterNet


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