Saturday, May 24, 2014

Oh, Wow. Bet you a dollar you've never seen (or heard) this one before...................

The Beach Boys and Annette Funicello.....The Monkey's Uncle

I suspect this happens.............

............with more than just housing policy:

"The dysfunctional and regressive nature of policy in housing reflects the political configuration in Washington. For several decades, policies combined the efforts of social engineers clumsily seeking to expand home ownership with well-heeled interest groups skillfully lobbying for profits. The social engineers put taxpayer subsidies up for grabs, and the interest groups do the grabbing."
-Arnold S. Kling, as excerpted from here

an intimate interdependence..............

     There is an intimate interdependence of intellect and morals.  Given the equality of two intellects, - which will form the most reliable judgments, the good or the bad hearted?  "The heart has it arguments, which the understanding in not acquainted."  For the heart is at once aware of the state of  health or disease, which is the controlling state, that is, of sanity or insanity, prior of course, to all question of the ingenuity of arguments, the amount of facts, or the elegance of rhetoric.  So intimate is this alliance of mind and heart, that talent uniformly sinks with character.  The bias of errors of principle carries away men into perilous courses, as soon as their will does not control their passion or talent.  Hence the extraordinary blunders, and final wrong head, into which men spoiled by ambition usually fall.  Hence the remedy for all blunders, the cure for blindness, the cure of crime, is love.  "As much love, so much mind," said the Latin proverb.  The superiority that has no superior;  the redeemer and instructor of souls, as it is their primal essence, is love.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson, as excerpted from the chapter Worship in The Conduct of Life

Conversion...............................

"Notice problems and turn them into opportunities. And sell some of the latter."
-Nicholas Bate,   #43 on this list

Choices......................................

The philosopher Diogenes was sitting on a curbstone, eating bread and lentils for his supper.  He was seen by the philosopher Aristippus, who lived comfortably by flattering the king.
     Said Aristippus, "If you would learn to be subservient to the king, you would not have to live on lentils."
     Said Diogenes, "Learn to live on lentils, and you will not have to cultivate the king."

-as excerpted from Ernest Kurtz's and Katherine Ketcham's,  The Spirituality of Imperfection:  Storytelling and the Search for Meaning

If you believe the nice people at thinkexist, Aristippus also said,  “The art of life lies in taking pleasures as they pass, and the keenest pleasures are not intellectual, nor are they always moral.”

Fifty years ago.............................

The Beach Boys.....................................Don't Worry Baby

For those who believe that.........................

...........................inflation always destroys the buying power of money, comes this blog post suggesting - not always.

Checking in with....................

..................................Twisted Sifter and the Shirk Report

















Those baby boomers........................

.........contemplating retirement because their stock portfolio has regained its value, and then some, should ask themselves one thing:

"... rather than looking at asset values, look at anticipated cash flow streams.  Have you grown your anticipated cash flow stream?"

Quote excerpted from this The Aleph Blog post by David Merkel

Friday, May 23, 2014

My feets are too slow.................................

Johnny Rivers..........Rockin' Pneumonia and Boogie Woogie Flu

Bad luck..........................

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded - here and there, now and then - are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as "bad luck."


Happy..............................

  Words from the Front

We don't look as young
as we used to
except in dim light
especially in 
the soft warmth of candlelight
when we say
in all sincerity
You're so cute
and
You're my cutie,
Imagine 
two old people
behaving like this.
It's enough 
to make you happy.

-Ron Padgett

Pawn..............................

"Humanity I love you because when you're hard up you pawn your intelligence to buy a drink."
-e.e. cummings

"The citizen is becoming a pawn in a game where nobody knows the rules, where everybody consequently doubts that there are rules at all, and where the vocabulary has been diminished to such an extent that nobody is even sure what the game is all about."

"The isolated pawn casts gloom over the entire chessboard. "
- Aaron Nimzowitsch

"Pawns not only create the sketch for the whole painting, they are also the soil, the foundation, of any position."
- Anatoly Karpov

“When the game is over, the king and the pawn go into the same box”
-Italian proverb

"Don't be a pawn in somebody else's game.  Find the attitude that gives you maximum strength and maximum dignity, no matter what else is going on."
-Anne Rice




longer clip to provide some Mongo context is here.

It's quiz time again............................

Mark Perry wants to talk about "financial literacy."  Five question quiz is here.  Couldn't find the official answer sheet, but here is mine:  a, c, False, b, True.  Feel free to correct me.

Fifty years ago..............................

Johnny Rivers...................................................Maybelline

Always nearer......................

The lesson which life repeats and constantly enforces is “look under foot.” You are always nearer the divine and the true sources of your power than you think. The lure of the distant and the difficult is deceptive. The great opportunity is where you are. Do not despise your own place and hour. Every place is under the stars, every place is the centre of the world.
-John Burroughs

via David Kanigan's wondrous tumblr

Hmmm..........................................


Remember......................................

"Remember that fear, uncertainty and doubt are simply a chemical by-product of making distinct progress on your goals and shedding baggage."
-Nicholas Bate,  #18 on this list

Thursday, May 22, 2014

"So famous and popular that no one likes it"

Erroll Garner.........................................................Misty



"He was dead before he was old. He was alive the whole time, though. How many men can claim that?"
-Greg Sullivan, as excerpted from this blog post

Some really great news...........................

"The kid stays in the picture."   Way to go, Jeff!

Interesting stage presence..............

Marianne Faithfull....................................As Tears Go By



An early Jagger/Richards tune

Constancy.................................................


It gets so confusing..............................

Obstinacy in a bad cause is but constancy in a good.
-Thomas Browne

A little bit more.........................

.........................from Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682):

There is no man alone, because every man is a Microcosm, and carries the whole world about him.

I could never divide myself from any man upon the difference of an opinion, or be angry with his judgement for not agreeing with me in that, from which perhaps within a few days I should dissent myself.

We all labour against our own cure, for death is the cure of all diseases.

They that endeavour to abolish vice destroy also virtue, for contraries, though they destroy one another, are yet the life of one another.

I can cure the gout or stone in some, sooner than Divinity, Pride, or Avarice in others.

Be charitable before Wealth makes thee covetous.

That some have never dreamed is as improbable as that some have never laughed.

Pursue Virtue virtuously.

The created World is but a small Parenthesis in Eternity.

Just compensation..............................

If you are not learning while earning, you are cheating yourself of the better portion of your just compensation. 
-Napoleon Hill

Fifty years ago...........................

Duke Ellington and friends........On The Sunny Side of The Street



The Italian lesson starts at 4:10.

Important questions........................

1.  Who wrote most of the Rolling Stones songs?

2,  What is the plural of faux pas?

3.  Are concrete and cement the same thing?

4.  Is the plural of radius radii or radiuses?

5.  Suffering from coulrophobia, you are afraid of what?

6.  What word becomes shorter by adding two letters?

7.  How many square are on a chessboard?

8.  How many spices make up allspice?

9.  How many of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World remain?

10. Without looking:  on the standard keyboard what number
       shares the same key as the asterisk?

you may find the answers below

Contradictions............................

     Americans in general get nervous about the gathering of so much corporate power, particularly when it is amassed by large companies based in distant cities whose success could change the character of their own communities.  Walmart faced this skepticism;  so did Sears, Woolworth's, and the other retail giants of each age, all the way back to the A & P grocery chain, which battled a ruinous antitrust lawsuit during the 1940's.  Americans flock to large retailers for their convenience and low prices.  But at a certain point, these companies get so big that a contradiction in the public's collective psyche reveals itself.  We want things cheap, but we don't really want anyone undercutting the mom-and-pop store down the street or the locally owned bookstore, whose business has been under assault for decades, first by the rise of chain bookstores like Barnes & Noble and now by Amazon.
-Brad Stone,  The Everything Store:  Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

Always a good idea..........now more than ever


Spoiler alert........................

Answers to the above posted trivia question are here:

1.  Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

2.  Faux pas

3.  No.  Cement added to sand, gravel and water makes concrete

4.  Yes

5.  Clowns

6.  Short

7.  64

8.  One

9.  One,  The Great Pyramid of Khofu at Giza

10.  8

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Pour a drink, put your feet up, enjoy.............

Duke Ellington and friends..................Caravan/I Got It Bad



The music stops around 6:50.  Italian lesson follows.

And the moon's riding high...............

Mark Knopfler.........................................Brothers In Arms

Feeling their pain......................................

After five gruelling years,  many of Europe's citizens must wish they could dispatch the entire political class to hellfire and torment.  As it happens, the ballot for elections to the European Parliament from May 22nd to May 25th does not include that option, so a record number will probably not bother to turn out.
-As excerpted from this essay in The Economist

A good recipe..............................















thanks jess

Examples........................................

"On some level, things don't get better or worse, they just get.  That I don't know what this means is an example."
-Ron Padgett

Still not average.............................

A study published Monday by the National Institutes of Health found that the typical American now requires...........  Full story here.  Now, if they were talking about getting out of bed ...

Fifty years ago................................

Malcolm X after his return from Mecca




Wiki here.  Longer video interviews here and here

Soften...................................


The Key to Science.............................

Knowing when you are wrong is important.  Here Professor Feynman tells his students how to know when you are wrong.

Closing and opening..............................

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands


-e. e. cummings

Never.............................






























thanks Todd

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Staying calm.....................................

Bruce Springsteen......................................................Fire

Tell me....................................................

Willie Nelson.......................................Always On My Mind



#11 on this list.

Checking in....................................

 ..................................................with John Cox:










Funny, I don't remember it happening this way...


















via Ka-Ching!

On resentment.....................................

Do read Piketty's Garden of Envy, Theodore Dalrymple's review of a book he hasn't yet read.  An excerpt here:

"As to the tax on capital, Piketty is right to say that it must be global, for otherwise there would be capital flight or very severe local restrictions on capital movement, neither of which would be economically productive or conducive to equality. A global tax on capital, however, would require a global authority to raise, collect, and enforce it, a kind of giant European Union in fact. I am glad I shall not live to see it, but I doubt that anyone else will live to see it either, born or unborn, if only because the governors in the world government would need a tax haven in which to put their own money." 

via KPC

From the Archives.........................


































From the Archives

DIY.......................................

"It takes half your life before you discover life is a do-it-yourself project."
-Napoleon Hill

Fifty years ago.........................

Lux Soap TV commercial.............................Yeow

Father was probably not a charter member of the "self esteem movement"......................

A pupil from whom nothing is ever demanded which he cannot do, never does all he can.
     One of the evils most liable to attend on any sort of early proficiency, and which often fatally blights it promise, my father anxiously guarded against.   This was self-conceit.  He kept me with extreme vigilance, out of the way of hearing myself praised, or being let to make self-flattering comparisons between myself and others.  From his own intercourse with me I could derive none but a very humble opinion of myself, and the standard of comparison he always held up to me, was not what other people did, but what a man could and ought to do.  He completely succeeded in preserving me from the sort of influences he so much dreaded.  I was not at all aware that my attainments were anything unusual at my age.  If I accidentally had my attention drawn to the fact that some other boy knew less than myself - which happened less often that might be imagined - I concluded, not that I knew much, but that he, for some reason or another, knew little, or that his knowledge was of a different kind from mine.
-John Stuart Mill,   as excerpted from The Autobiography of John Stuart Mill

Checking in with Aesop........................

                            The Shepherd and the Sea

A shepherd, keeping watch over his sheep near the shore, saw the Sea very calm and smooth, and longed to make a voyage with a view to commerce.  He sold all his flock, invested it in a cargo of dates, and set sail.  But a very great tempest came on, and the ship being in danger of sinking, he threw all his merchandise overboard, and barely escaped with his life in the empty ship.  Not long afterwards when someone passed by and observed the unruffled calm of the Sea, he interrupted him and said, "It is again in want of dates, and therefore looks quiet."

Welcome to adulthood................should you decide to participate..............

Stephen L. Carter offers a "shout me down "commencement address - here.   The history major in me thinks this behavior of stifling unwanted opinions is not so new.  Brief excerpt here:
Ladies and gentlemen, you are graduating into a world of enormous complexity and conflict. There are corners of the globe where violence and war and abject oppression still dominate. Capitalism is concentrating wealth in fewer hands but, in the developing world, lifting tens of millions out of poverty. Traditional societies are caught in an increasingly desperate struggle between the perils of fundamentalism on the one side and the perils of modernism on the other.
Given your generation’s penchant for shutting down speakers with whom you disagree, I am assuming that you have no intention of playing any serious adult role in mediating those conflicts. And that’s fine. We should leave the task of mediation to those unsophisticated enough to be sensitive to the concerns of both sides.

Voting with your feet........................

"It is pointless to get your knickers in a twist if a certain person fails to react the way you want. It is best to avoid people and situations that you know drive you crazy. Remember to vote with your feet. If a situation is untenable or unchangeable, walk away."
-Stuart Wilde

Monday, May 19, 2014

Steady rollin'..........................

Alison Krauss and Robert Plant........................Black Dog

 

283,000,000 views..............................?

As usual, I'm late to the party. Ryan Tedder, songwriter extraordinaire, fronts for One Republic.  This is what a hot streak looks like.  Hotter than Lennon-McCartney?

 

thanks craig

Paradox......................

"Truth standing on her head to attract attention."
-Gilbert Keith Chesterton

Speaking of paradox..........................



























Anticipation......................

"Finance is a black box covered by a veil.  Not only are the inner workings hidden, but the inputs are also obscured, by bad economic data, conflicting news reports, or outright deception.  What coefficient of correction should I apply to a broker's self-serving stock tip?  And then there is the most confounding factor of all, anticipation.   A stock price rises not because of good news from the company, but because the brightening outlook for the stock means investors anticipate it will rise further, and so they buy.  Anticipation is a feature unique to economics.  It is psychology, individual and mass - even harder to fathom than the paradoxes of quantum mechanics.  Anticipation is the stuff of dreams and vapors."
-Benoit Mandelbrot and Richard L. Hudson,  The (Mis)Behavior of Markets:  A Fractal View of Financial Turbulence

Speaking of anticipation...............

On doors and understanding..................

"The ancients said that the word 'understanding' was the door to all mysteries as well as the door to all misfortune.  If you realize that you don't understand, you eliminate false understanding.  This is the door to all mysteries.  If you cling to understanding while trying to discover what you don't understand, you increase the obstacles to understanding.  This is the door to all misfortune."
-Han-shan Te-Ch'ing

Fifty years ago.................................

Dennis Spicer and some dated British ventriloquist humor.........

 

Opening paragraphs.............................

On the morning of January 27, 2009, my first full day as secretary of the Treasury, I met with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office.  The worst financial crisis since the Great Depression was still raging, and he wanted to put out the fire for good.  The banking system was broken.  The broader economy was contracting at a Depression-level rate.  Consumer confidence had sunk to an all-time low, and millions of Americans were in danger of losing their jobs, savings, even their homes.  The President looked calm and reasonable comfortable after a week in the White House, despite all the bad news he was getting.
     I was about to give him some more.
-Timothy F. Geithner,  Stress Test:  Reflections on Financial Crises

Agreement..................................






















"Age may have one side, but assuredly Youth has the other. There is nothing more certain than that both are right, except perhaps that both are wrong. Let them agree to differ; for who knows but what agreeing to differ may not be a form of agreement rather than a form of difference?"
-Robert Louis Stevenson, as excerpted from Crabbed Age and Youth

cartoon via

Truth.......................

"...personal finance really isn’t about math; it’s about discipline."
-Megan McArdle, as excerpted from here

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Reasons why I like living in Newark and Licking County..................

Reason #44: The Newark-Granville Symphony Orchestra

This evening my Sweetie and I went to the fabulous Midland Theatre to take in the final performance of the 2013-14 season of our local orchestra.  It is a great group of talented musicians ably conducted by Timothy Weiss.  They were in fine form.  The highlight of the evening was the piano playing of Granville's own Gavin George.  Gavin, now eleven years old, played Mendelssohn's Piano Concerto No. 1.  A standing ovation spontaneously erupted when he finished.  Amazing talent.  The video below, from 2012, is Gavin playing with the Newark-Granville Symphony.  If you want to hear him play Mendelssohn, go here.

 

Context matters................................

Andre Rieu, et. al.....................................I Will Follow Him

 

Little Peggy March with the original version from 1963

Verse 56.............................

Those who know do not talk.
Those who talk do not know.

Block all the passages!
Close your mouth,
cordon off your senses,
blunt your sharpness,
untie your knots,
soften your glare,
settle your dust.
This is the primal union or the secret embrace.

One who knows this secret
is not moved by attachment or aversion,
swayed by profit or loss,
nor touched by honor or disgrace.
He is far beyond the cares of men
yet comes to hold the dearest place in their hearts.

This, therefore is the highest state of man.

Lao-Tzu,  Tao Te Ching, as channeled by Wayne Dyer in Change Your Thoughts - Change Your Life:  Living the Wisdom of the Tao

Fragrance of a rose.......................

The disciples were absorbed in a discussion of Lao-tzu's dictum:

     Those who know do not say:
     those who say do not know.

When the Master entered, they asked him what the words meant:

Said the Master,  "Which of you knows the fragrance of a rose?"

All of them knew.

Then he said, "Put it into words."

All of them were silent.

-Ernest Kurtz and Katherine Ketcham, as excerpted from  The Spirituality of Imperfection:  Storytelling and the Search for Meaning

thanks Doug

the great hollow..........................

Anger at humans, my own kind -
I remember how it carried me,
joyous in self's self-exaltation,
through a narrow opening as at birth
into the great hollow of the dark itself
where the unappeasable, in unending
revenge for revenge, tread each
alone the circle of no 
beginning or end.  And that is Hell.

-Wendell Berry,  Sabbaths   2010  X

Foundational Truth.................


















courtesy of

Reasons why I like living in Newark and Licking County.................

Reason #70:   Herb Gregg (et. al.)

















There are a variety of gardens around the Licking County Courthouse.  It is a little known fact, but flourishing gardens take time, energy, sweat, and a bit of planning.  For the past three+  years, this particular garden area (pictured above)  has fallen under the tender loving care of the Newark Kiwanis Club, mostly in the form of Herb Gregg.  Since he has been ministering to it, it has been a thing of beauty.  The spirit of volunteerism is alive and well in Newark and Licking County.  That is a thing of beauty too.

Here is what his garden looked like a summer ago:























thanks Herb!

Fifty years ago............................

David Frost interviews Paul McCartney........................

Current assumptions............................

As the "genomic era" progresses,  some current assumptions about biology, evolution, and us human beings may be found faulty.  To wit:

"Human evolution did not cease thousands of years ago; it has been “recent, copious and regional”, in the words of Nicholas Wade, a veteran New York Times science writer and the author of A Troublesome Inheritancean eloquent but disturbing book on genes, race and human history, which was published last week.'

Not to worry, says our favorite optimist in this post.  Excerpt here:

"There is a big reason that racial differences in mental capacity will not matter a jot, however many we find. Human achievement is not, despite what professors like to think, the work of brilliant individuals. It is a collective phenomenon. Every technology, every idea, every institution is a combination of many people’s contributions. There is no single human being on the planet, as Leonard Read famously pointed out, who knows how to make a pencil, let alone the internet, the economy or the government."

beauty.................................


















via

The deluge............................

Kurt is moving Cultural Offering over to the Tumblr platform.  It's your chance to re-visit some of the greatest posts from a truly great blog.

All the time in the world...............

















Meanwhile, on the campus of OSU-N,  he hasn't made a move since our visit last summer.