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15 years Ago

Ignorance Abides

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“I have never won a debate with an ignorant person.”
Ali ibn Abi Talib

Modern Communication

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“Never write when you can talk. Never talk when you can nod. And never put anything in an email.”
(New York Attorney General) Eliot Spitzer

Going Along to Get Along

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“What [people] are mostly interested in, lad[ies] and gentlemen, is going along to get along. Which only shows up for what it is—monstrous—if you pull back and take the long view.”
Stephen King (Dark Tower, pg. 289)

Freedom

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“Terrorists can attack our freedom, but only Congress can destroy it.”
Anonymous

Control

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“Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”
Voltaire

Freedom

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“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”
Martin Luther King

Absolute Truth

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“It is the purest arrogance to suppose that an instrument so fallible as the human mind can even conceive absolute truth, much less comprehend it.”
Response to an overzealous (aren’t they all?) Jehovah’s Witness

Knowledge

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“It is the mark of an educated mind to rest satisfied with the degree of precision which the nature of the subject admits and not to seek exactness where only an approximation is possible.”
Aristotle

Witchcraft

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“You can kill a flock of sheep with witchcraft, provided you also feed them arsenic.”
Voltaire

Elite Intellectuals

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“[The attitude towards Haiti] is a depressing illustration of how a highly disciplined intellectual class can reframe even the most depraved actions as yet another opportunity for self-adulation.”
Noam Chomsky

War

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“The Falklands thing was a fight between two bald men over a comb.”
Jorge Luis Borges

Comedians

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“A comedian has to be one of the most serious of people, for he must be able to understand implicitly and to mimic his fellow man, and still be able not to hate him.”
Red Skelton

Absurdity

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“As long as people believe in absurdities they will continue to commit atrocities.”
Voltaire

Justice

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“True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.”
Martin Luther King

Empires

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“You don’t run an empire; it runs you.”

Laughter

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“God is a comedian playing to an audience too afraid to laugh.”
Voltaire

Being anti-war

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“Just because you’re against a war, doesn’t necessarily mean you’re for the other side.”
- Lewis Black

Honesty

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“If you always tell the truth, you never have to remember anything.”
- Mark Twain

Mother Nature

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“Nature doesn’t care how smart you are. You can still be wrong.”
− Richard Feynman

Tact

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“Tact is for those who aren’t witty enough to be sarcastic”

- Unknown (quoted by Eric Sandblom)

16 years Ago

Fanaticism

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“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”
Upton Sinclair

Morality

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“Moral indignation is jealousy with a halo”

H. G. Wells

The difference between American and Europeans

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“Americans think 100 years is a long time; Europeans think 100 miles is a long way”

From Data to Music

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No, I’m sorry, but that’s way too much *data* by 87C751 (Plastic):

“Data is not information, information is not knowledge, knowledge is not understanding, understanding is not wisdom.”

- Clifford Stoll & Gary Schubert

Yes, and before someone chides me…

“…Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is the best.”

- Frank Zappa

Barry Goldwater

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“Small men, seeking great wealth or power, have too often and too long turned even the highest levels of public service into mere personal opportunity.”

The Usual Suspects

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“The greatest trick the devil pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist”
Verbal Kint

Kafka

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“There is hope… but not for us.”

Kafka

17 years Ago

Quotes from Truman and Gandhi

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“The only thing new in this world is the history you don’t know.”

- Harry Truman

“I think it would be a good idea.”

- Mahatma Gandhi (when asked what he thought of Western civilization)

Oscar Wilde

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The story is probably apocryphal, but it is said that Wilde was at a dinner party seated next to a young woman. He said, “I’ve recently come into a small bequest of 40,000 pounds which I do not need. I have, alas, never had sex with a woman. If I were to give you the bequest, would you have sex with me?”

She responded, “Yes, Mr. Wilde, I would.”

“Well, will you do it for 2 pounds?”

“Mr. Wilde, what do you take me for?”

“Oh, we know what you are. Now we are simply haggling over the price.”

Kids

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Kids are like a hangover; they’re the punishment you get for having fun.