Friday, February 27, 2015

Every so often, this HAS to be played.............

The Marshall Tucker Band.......................Running Like The Wind

Not trying to rush things, mind you.....

.........................just thought a few pictures from last Spring might help carry you over Winter's finish line::







Oblique...............................................


Unanswerable......................................


















photo via         cartoon via

Ball's in your court.............................


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

Gary Lewis & The Playboys.............................Count Me In

Chewdiasm............................................


































There's a very passionate pro-chewing movement on the Internet called Chewdiasm. They say that we should be chewing 50 to 100 times per mouthful, which is insane. I tried that. It takes like a day and a half to eat a sandwich. But their basic idea is right. If you chew, you'll eat slower and you will get more nutrients.

He makes a good point..........................

My point in all this is to simply recognize that behind every seemingly irrational (market) act is a human being. A little humility goes a long way. We all know less than we thinkWe are all broken in some way with a limited time on this EarthLife is messy for everyone. So bloggers (and Tweeters) out there cut everyone a little slack and focus on what you can do to make things a little better rather than a little worse.
-Tadas Viskanta, as excerpted from here
(parentheses mine)

Unfortunately, it is easy to do.......................

For the time being, Bashar Assad is probably less concerned about reconquering the whole of his country than about avoiding the fate of Qaddafi or Saddam Hussein. In that context, ISIS is useful to him: it’s in his interest, in the words of Lenin, to heighten the contradictions
-as excerpted from this American Interest post.

Striving.......................................................

















via

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Stunning...........................................

Lady Gaga..................................................The Sound of Music



thanks pat

Some killjoy didn't like our sharing wondrous talent.  Try going here.

A measure of competency.......................?

"Corporations, like all human institutions, are great engines for making mistakes. The only reason they seem so competent is that companies who make too many mistakes go out of business, and we don't have them around for comparison." 
-Megan McArdle, as excerpted from this post

The 1870's were a much simpler time..............

Here's another tale I missed while securing my history degree:

Trist, a hard bargainer, refused to pay the contingency fee he had agreed. The case went to the Supreme Court, which dismissed Child’s claim. A contract to lobby government, it said, was contrary to public policy and hence, like an agreement to sell sex, unenforceable in the courts. Paid lobbying, said Mr Justice Swayne, was “pernicious in its character”. But this was only the beginning of his denunciation. “If any of the great corporations of the country were to hire adventurers to procure the passage of a general law with a view to the promotion of their private interests,” he thundered, right-minded men “would instinctively denounce the employer and employed as steeped in corruption and the employment as infamous”.

The above passage is courtesy of John Kay, who notes the difference between then and now.

For the curious, more on Trist v Child may be found here.

Ouch..............................................

"Higher-ed folks pushing college nowadays sound more and more like real estate people saying that there’s never been a better time to buy a house."
-Glenn Reynolds, as excerpted from here

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

The Kingsmen............................................Jolly Green Giant

Especially to inquisitive students...............

"If you really want to learn something, teach it."
-Stephen Applegate

Here's a novel idea...................................

....................................................................reward finishing!

Home is where the heart is......................

.............Never overlook the importance of your own space.

On the home stretch................................


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What can I say......................................

Barry White....................Can't Get Enough Of Your Love Babe

What I did yesterday..................................


An excellent mixture................................

50.  Frugality is good if accompanied by liberality.  Frugality avoids unnecessary expenses;  liberality gives to others that are in need.  Frugality without liberality produces covetousness;   liberality without frugality produces reckless waste.  Both together make an excellent mixture.  Wherever this mixture exists, happiness is found.
-William Penn,   Some Fruits of Solitude in Reflections and Maxims

Every once in a while.......................

.......we just need to reflect on what an amazing species we are...


Real joy.................................................

" ... real joy in life comes when you get in the act of forgetfulness about yourself."
-Blanchard and Shaevitz,  Refire! Don't Retire:  Make the Rest of Your Life the Best of Your Life

thanks John E.

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

The Beatles..................................................Every Little Thing

Been watching my mind here of late............

The gray in your hair doesn't make you old,
Nor the crow's feet under your eyes, I'm told.
But when your mind makes a contract your body can't fill,
You're over the hill, brother, over the hill.
-Mary E. Mitchell, as excerpted from here

Here's to that little rebel in all of us..................


Finding the silver lining........................

      When I would lecture before the stroke, there would always be one or two people in the audience who had been dragged to hear me speak by a spouse or a friend.   It was easy to pick them out of the crowd;  they'd be sitting with their arms folded and their faces wearing a long-suffering look.  I'd work hard to help them open their hearts.  Now my wheelchair opened their hearts.  And because of the wheelchair, I was always assured of having a seat wherever I went.
-Ram Dass,   Polishing The Mirror

Insatiable.......................................


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Normally I don't feel sorry for the deer.......


Searching everywhere...............................

Joan Osborne..................What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted

And you thought you were mentally tough....

The History Blog offers a rather severe example:
















Back story (or at least what they think happened) is here.

Self-imposed............................

      Getting caught up in memories of the past or worrying about the future is a form of self-imposed suffering.  Either retirement or youth can be seen as moving on, a time for something different, something new.  Start fresh.  It's a new moment.  Aging is not a culmination.  Youth isn't preparation for later.  This isn't the end of the line or the beginning.  Now isn't a time to look back or plan ahead.  It is a time just to be present.  The present is timeless.  Being in the moment, just being here with what is, is ageless, eternal.
-Ram Dass, Polishing The Mirror:  How To Live From Your Spiritual Heart

Freedom of Speech..............................

Friend Bilbo offers his thoughts on the subject.  A few wee excerpts:

"I have always thought that freedom of speech should have as few limits as possible, because it makes it easier to recognize and argue against stupidity. Nowadays, though, freedom of speech often comes accompanied by its undesirable cousin, Ironclad Certainty ..."

"I've often observed that Freedom of Speech is not always accompanied by Freedom of Smart. But if you don't listen with an open and respectful mind, you can't very well evaluate what's smart and what isn't."



Let's dance.........................................
















"When you dance, your purpose is not to get to a certain place on the floor. It's to enjoy each step along the way."
-Wayne Dyer

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

Righteous Brothers...................................Just Once In My Life

On failure and success.................................


"Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit."
-Napoleon Hill

"Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly."
-Robert F. Kennedy

"You build on failure.  You use it as a stepping stone.  Close the door on the past.  You don't try to forget the mistakes, but you don't dwell on it.  You don't let it use any of your energy, or any of your time, or any of your space."
-Johnny Cash

"My great concern is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with your failure."
-Abraham Lincoln

"The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing."
-Henry Ford

"Winners are not afraid of losing.  But losers are.  Failure is part of the process of success.  People who avoid failure also avoid success."
-Robert Kiyosaki

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm."
-Winston Churchill

"I failed my way to success."
-Thomas Edison

“People think that the opposite of success is failure, but it's not. Failure is part of the process of success.” 
-Randy Gage


"Failure is not a single, cataclysmic event. You don't fail overnight. Instead, failure is a few errors in judgement, repeated every day."
“Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day.”

-Jim Rohn

Easily............................................


What, no bacon..........................................?






















via

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

      Don't take your melodrama so seriously.  Let's remember who we really are -- that is, souls, not egos.  The ego is who you think you are.  Who you think you are will die with the body because it's part of this incarnation.  But your soul, which has these qualities of deep wisdom and love and peace and joy, is just here, watching it all go by.
-Ram Dass,  Polishing The Mirror:  How To Live From Your Spiritual Heart

Monday, February 23, 2015

Winter, spring, summer, or fall....................

Carole King and James Taylor..................You've Got A Friend




full concert here

Re-thinking the whole college thing......

As Andrew Kelly succinctly put it in a recent paper for the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, “on average ≠ always.” He cites a study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York that found that the lowest-paid quartile of college graduates earns little more than average high-school graduates do; that’s been so since the 1970s. Which helps to explain all of those college-educated Starbucks baristas. 
-Michael Petrilli, as excerpted from this essay

All I know is that some of the most successful human beings of my acquaintance, including my long time business partner, do not have college degrees.  

About "meaningless credentialism"...................

" All real learning is, ultimately, self-education."     
-as excerpted from this Maggie's Farm post

We're just not accustomed to dealing with.........

............such serious-minded folk.  The Atlantic does us a favor by providing some needed context for the phenomenon known as ISIS.

There is a temptation to rehearse this observation—that jihadists are modern secular people, with modern political concerns, wearing medieval religious disguise—and make it fit the Islamic State. In fact, much of what the group does looks nonsensical except in light of a sincere, carefully considered commitment to returning civilization to a seventh-century legal environment, and ultimately to bringing about the apocalypse.

Full essay is here.  Take the time.

via

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

The Beach Boys...................................................Barbara Ann

Ok...................that means that.......................

One of the glories of a college education...................................

Didn't read any of this in my History textbooks...

.......................or, maybe I just wasn't paying attention that week.  Anyway, here is another way of looking at John D. Rockefeller, Standard Oil, anti-trust, and history.

thanks craig

On why we text while we drive.............

......................................................Louis C.K. explains it all.

Lighten up......................................











Original, more readable, version is here.

I hate it when they do that.......................

So, I am on-line reading this very interesting essay on Scott Walker and his lack of a college degree at the National Review, when out of the corner of my eye I spot this Amazon advertisement:






































Faithful readers will note that in the past week or so I have posted excerpts from  Infidel Kings and Holy Warriors and from Bergson's Creative Evolution.   Am I the only one who thinks this whole cyber knowing thing is getting a bit creepy?

Sunday, February 22, 2015

I feel fine.............................................

James Tayor..........................Something In The Way She Moves

Verse..............................................

3.  ‘Why have we fasted and You do not see?
Why have we humbled ourselves and You do not notice?’
Behold, on the day of your fast you find your desire,
And drive hard all your workers.


4. Behold, you fast for contention and strife and to strike with a wicked fist.
You do not fast like you do today to make your voice heard on high.

5.  Is it a fast like this which I choose, a day for a man to humble himself?

Is it for bowing one’s head like a reed
And for spreading out sackcloth and ashes as a bed?
Will you call this a fast, even an acceptable day to the Lord?

6.  Is this not the fast which I choose:

To loosen the bonds of wickedness,
To undo the bands of the yoke,
And to let the oppressed go free
And break every yoke?

7.  Is it not to divide your bread with the hungry

And bring the homeless poor into the house;
When you see the naked, to cover him;
And not to hide yourself from your own flesh?

8.  Then your light will break out like the dawn,

And your recovery will speedily spring forth;
And your righteousness will go before you;
The glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.

9.  Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;

You will cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.’
If you remove the yoke from your midst,
The pointing of the finger and speaking wickedness,
10 
10. And if you give yourself to the hungry

And satisfy the desire of the afflicted,
Then your light will rise in darkness
And your gloom will become like midday.
11 
11. And the Lord will continually guide you,

And satisfy your desire in scorched places,
And give strength to your bones;
And you will be like a watered garden,
And like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.


Isaiah 58:3-11
The Holy Bible
New American Standard Version

Thinking about money.......................

...............with some uncommon sense.  Excerpted from here:

Write the following quotes on index cards and stick them above where you work:
“The key to eternal happiness is low overhead and no debt.”
—Lynda Barry
“If you don’t take money, they can’t tell you what to do, kid.”
—Bill Cunningham
* * *
The next time someone tells you to “do what you love no matter what,” ask to see their tax return.
Anybody who tells people to “do what you love no matter what” should also have to teach a money management course.
Low overhead + “do what you love” = a good life.
“I deserve nice things” + “do what you love” = a time bomb.

And now a few words from William Penn........

237.   Do good with what you have, or it will do you no good.

238.  Seek not to be rich, but happy.  The one lies in bank accounts and portfolios, the other in content;  which wealth can never give.

239.  We are apt to call things by wrong names.  We call prosperity, happiness;  and adversity, misery;  though adversity is the school of wisdom, and often the way to eternal happiness.

-William Penn,  Some Fruits of Solitude in Reflections and Maxims

Lent, revisited........................................


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

Herman's Hermits.........................................Wonderful World

And they are often unrelated..................

"Price is what you pay; value is what you get."
-Warren Buffet

Artisans............................................

... with regard to the moments of our life, of which we are the artisans.  Each of them is a kind of creation.  And just as the talent of the painter is formed or deformed - in any case, is modified - under the very influence of the works he produces, so each of our states, at the moment of its issue, modifies our personality, being indeed the new form that we are just assuming.  It is then right to say that what we do depends on what we are; but it is necessary to add also that we are, to a certain extent, what we do, and that we are creating ourselves continually.  This creation of self by self is the more complete, the more one reasons on what one does.  For reason does not proceed in such matters as in geometry, where impersonal premises are given once for all, and an impersonal conclusion must perforce be drawn.  Here, on the contrary, the same reasons may dictate to different persons, or to the same person at different moments, acts profoundly different, although equally reasonable.  The truth is that they are not quite the same reasons, since they are not those of the same person, nor of the same moment.  That is why we cannot deal with them in the abstract, from outside, as in geometry, nor solve for another the problems by which he is faced in life.  Each must solve them from within, on his own account.

-Henri Bergson, Creative Evolution

Faith............................................



Don't they read the papers........................?

And yet a funny thing has happened during the bust. Oil production in America has been rising, as this chart of monthly oil production from the Energy Information Administration shows. In November, the U.S. produced 9.02 million barrels of oil per day, up 14.5 percent from November 2013. The last time the U.S. pumped more than 9 million barrels of oil per day for two straight months was in 1986. This week, in its short-term energy outlook, the Energy Information Administration noted that the boom is continuing. Production in January 2015 rose to 9.2 million barrels per day. And even with WTI crude settling at a forecasted price of about $55 per barrel for the year, production for all of 2015 should come in at 9.3 million barrels per day—up 7.8 percent from 8.63 million barrels per day in 2014.

You'll just love the reason behind this unexpected behavior:

What we’re seeing, I’d argue, is an example of yet another type of American business exceptionalism. Compared with many of their peers in other countries, U.S. firms have often—not always, but often—demonstrated a superior capacity to adapt rapidly to changing circumstances. We saw it after the dot-com bust, as new tech industries arose amid the wreckage. And we saw it in 2009 and 2010, when companies large and small acted swiftly, often brutally, to ensure their survival, return to profitability, and help the economy come back (ahem) better, stronger, and faster.  Look hard enough, and you can see it in the oil patch, too. In recent decades, the oil industry—especially in the U.S.—has evolved from a brute-force industry into a nimbler high-tech manufacturing one. Fracking—a new drilling technology developed primarily in the U.S.—propelled the shale revolution. And technology-based companies don’t respond to falling market prices by cutting production or shutting down. Rather, they innovate and experiment to bring down the cost of production and operations, push suppliers for lower prices, and hold down costs. If the market won’t keep the market price above the break-even price, you can stop producing—or you can try to lower the break-even price.

Full essay is here.