Saturday, March 18, 2017

And yet, despite it all........................


..........being alive is a pretty wondrous and fabulous state of being.

Jonathan Clements offers fifteen limiting conditions on us humans.

Gone, but not forgotten...................


Nicolette Larson............................................................Lotta Love

Rules for writing........................


7. You see more sitting still than chasing after.

-Jonathan Franzen, from this list of ten

Old-fashioned..............................

The governing paradigm of the internet is advertising.  Great juggernauts like Facebook and Google make billions of dollars on advertising, and their model -- that the economic purpose of all online activity is to advertise things to each other -- seems to infect everything.  So as far as I can tell most hacking is about advertising.  You spend months hacking into a bank, and you steal ... email addresses?  So you can send millions of people spam emails touting pump-and-dump stock scams?  Because of course if the purpose of the internet is advertising, then the purpose of internet crime should be criminal advertising. 
I tell you what, if I ever hacked into a bank, I would try to take money.  I am old-fashioned like that.
-Matt Levine, as culled from here

Uh-oh................................



This still.................................


................................................................cracks my head up.

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


The Hombres....................................................Let It All Hang Out

The Shirk Report..........................


.....................................................The perfect thing for people with too much time on their hands.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Just in case.............................


.....................................................you've forgotten:  God loves life.



Information versus knowledge...........



Makes perfect sense to me.............


Quantum mechanics - a theory of the behaviour at the atomic level put together in the early 20th century - has a well-earned reputation for weirdness.  That is because the world as humanity sees it is not, in fact, how the world works.  Quantum mechanics replaced wholesale the centuries-old notion of a clockwork, deterministic universe with a reality that deals in probabilities rather than certainties - one were the very act of measurement affects what is measured.  Along with that upheaval came a few truly mind-bending implications, such as the fact that particles are fundamentally neither here nor there but, until pinned down, both here and there at the same time:  they are in a "superposition" of here-there-ness.  The Theory also suggested that particles can be spookily linked:  do something to one and the change is felt instantaneously by the other, even across vast reaches of space.  This "entanglement" confounded even the theory's originators.

-as excerpted from this Quantum leaps essay in The Economist

Gone, but not forgotten............


Leon Russell....................................................A Song For You

Born again paganism..........................



.......................................................................now there is an idea.

St. Patrick...........................




I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.
I arise today
Through the strength of Christ's birth with His baptism,
Through the strength of His crucifixion with His burial,
Through the strength of His resurrection with His ascension,
Through the strength of His descent for the judgment of doom.
I arise today
Through the strength of the love of cherubim,
In the obedience of angels,
In the service of archangels,
In the hope of resurrection to meet with reward,
In the prayers of patriarchs,
In the predictions of prophets,
In the preaching of apostles,
In the faith of confessors,
In the innocence of holy virgins,
In the deeds of righteous men.
I arise today, through
The strength of heaven,
The light of the sun,
The radiance of the moon,
The splendor of fire,
The speed of lightning,
The swiftness of wind,
The depth of the sea,
The stability of the earth,
The firmness of rock.
I arise today, through
God's strength to pilot me,
God's might to uphold me,
God's wisdom to guide me,
God's eye to look before me,
God's ear to hear me,
God's word to speak for me,
God's hand to guard me,
God's shield to protect me,
God's host to save me
From snares of devils,
From temptation of vices,
From everyone who shall wish me ill,
afar and near.
I summon today
All these powers between me and those evils,
Against every cruel and merciless power
that may oppose my body and soul,
Against incantations of false prophets,
Against black laws of pagandom,
Against false laws of heretics,
Against craft of idolatry,
Against spells of witches and smiths and wizards,
Against every knowledge that corrupts man's body and soul;
Christ to shield me today
Against poison, against burning,
Against drowning, against wounding,
So that there may come to me an abundance of reward.
Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.

I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the Threeness,
Through confession of the Oneness
of the Creator of creation.




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


Jefferson Airplane...........................................Somebody To Love

Happy Saint Patrick's Day......................



Thursday, March 16, 2017

My favorite optimist...............


...................................................takes a peek at "trade agreements."

Wow, Puzzling. Does that mean the EU has never succeeded in signing a trade agreement with any of its major trading partners? It does. Never, and not in sight of doing so. One hates to think where they would be without their “skilled negotiators”

It's important............................




       via

Gone, but not forgotten...............


Dave Van Ronk.....................................He Was A Friend Of Mine

A pretty good start.............


Three Guides -

No Blame. 
Be Kind. 
Love Everything. 



- Terrance Keenan, St. Nadie in Winter: Zen Encounters with Loneliness

via

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


Buffalo Springfield.........................................For What It's Worth

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Savoring............................




Unravel........................


“Man is a mystery.  It needs to be unravelled, and if you spend your whole life unravelling it, don't say that you've wasted time.  I am studying that mystery because I want to be a human being.” 


-Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Gone, but not forgotten..................


Lionel Hampton.......................................................Hamp's Boogie

Can we all say Amen...................................?



None of us is infallible. Whether you are a person of the left, the right, or the center, there are reasonable people of goodwill who do not share your fundamental convictions. This does not mean that all opinions are equally valid or that all speakers are equally worth listening to. It certainly does not mean that there is no truth to be discovered. Nor does it mean that you are necessarily wrong. But they are not necessarily wrong either. So someone who has not fallen into the idolatry of worshiping his or her own opinions and loving them above truth itself will want to listen to people who see things differently in order to learn what considerations—evidence, reasons, arguments—led them to a place different from where one happens, at least for now, to find oneself.


-Cornel West and Robert P. George, as excerpted from this call for "Truth Seeking...."


via

The Amazon Doctrine.................


..............wreaks havoc across a wide swath of the retail world.  Mark Perry is on the story - here.  Doctrine here:

Above all else, align with customers.

Win when they win.

Win only when they win.


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


Every Mother's Son........................Come On Down To My Boat

Spengler offers........................


...........................a geo-political history lesson on the mess that is the Middle East.   It's complicated, but understanding the complications, or at least recognizing them, is a useful exercise.

"Why is Iran willing to shed so much blood and divert so much money away from urgent domestic needs? The fanatical character of the Iranian regime and the fragility of a society with 40% youth unemployment explain part of it. But a deeper motivation for Iran’s profligacy and militancy lies in Iran’s dependence on China and Russia."

As they say, whether he be right or wrong, read the whole thing.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Soon, very soon.......................


























via

Not playing fair..................


Scott Adams brings "climate models" into question by linking them to "economic models."

How accurate have economic models been in the past? For anything?

Full, persuasive, post here


An oft-forgotten slice of history............



full visual tour of the Sistine Chapel here


Gone, but not forgotten..................


Isaac Hayes................................................................Walk On By

On human nature.........................


Eugene Delacroix    Liberty Leading The People    oil on canvas   1830

"They say that each generation inherits from those that have gone before; if this were so there would be no limit to man's improvements or to his power of reaching perfection. But he is very far from receiving intact that storehouse of knowledge which the centuries have piled up before him; he may perfect some inventions, but in others, he lags behind the originators, and a great many inventions have been lost entirely. What he gains on the one hand, he loses on the other."


a bare mind.....................................


“the most powerful prayer, one almost omnipotent to gain all things, and the noblest work of all is that which proceeds from a bare mind. The more bare it is, the more powerful, worthy, useful, praiseworthy and perfect is the prayer and the work. A bare mind can do all things. What is a bare mind? A bare mind is one which is worried by nothing and is tied to nothing which has not bound its best part to any mode, does not seek its own in anything, that is fully immersed in God’s dearest will and goes out of its own.” 

-Meister Eckhard, as taken from here

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


Tommy James and the Shondells...........I Think We're Alone Now

Monday, March 13, 2017

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


    Bosch didn't mind the wait.  The view was spectacular.  He didn't bother with the waiting room couch.  Instead he stood with his face a foot from the glass and took in the view that ranged from the rooftops of downtown to the Pacific Ocean.  He was fifty-nine floors up in the U. S. Bank Tower, and Creighton was making him wait because it was something he always did, going all the way back to his days at Parker Center, where the waiting room only has a low-angle view of the back of City Hall.  Creighton had moved a mere five blocks west since his days with the Los Angeles Police Department but he certainly had risen far beyond that to the lofty heights of the city's financial gods.

-Michael Connelly,  The Wrong Side Of Goodbye:  A Bosch Novel


If it were me.....................


..............................I'd just buy more income-producing real estate.

Investing When No One Really Knows What to Do

-Ben Carlson, as blogged here

Gone, but not forgotten......................


The one and only Bob Ross........................The Joy of Painting
















via


33 signs................................


.......................................you should head directly to the "financial emergency room."  A few samples:
 
1. You save on eating out by attending free financial seminars.

10.  You’re confident you are well-diversified, because you have five different brokerage accounts.

20.  If others are selling, why would you buy? You weren’t born yesterday.

25.  You know your house has been a fabulous investment, because it’s worth so much more than your down payment.


The more things change.................


A thousand horrid Prodigies foretold it.
A feeble government, eluded Laws,
A factious Populace, luxurious Nobles,
And all the maladies of stinking states.


-Samuel Johnson, Irene. A Tragedy,  1749

Dr. Samuel Johnson  by Sir Joshua Reynolds  oil   c. 1756


Ransacking......................


The greatest natural genius cannot subsist on its own stock: he who resolves never to ransack any mind but his own, will be soon reduced, from mere barrenness, to the poorest of all imitations; he will be obliged to imitate himself, and to repeat what he has before often repeated.

-Joshua Reynolds

Sir Joshua Reynolds    Self Portrait    oil   c. 1780


A great improvement indeed...........!



Music is an innocent luxury, unnecessary, indeed, to our existence, but a great improvement and gratification of the sense of hearing. ...  As Music may be defined as the art of pleasing by the succession and combination of agreeable sounds, every hearer has a right to give way to his feelings, and be pleased or dissatisfied without knowledge, experience. or the fiat of critics; but then he has certainly no right to insist on others being pleased or dissatisfied in the same degree. I can very readily forgive the man who admires a different Music from that which pleased me, provided he does not extend his hatred or contempt of my favourite Music to myself, and imagine that on the exclusive admiration of any one style of Music, and a close adherence to it, all wisdom, taste, and virtue depend.
-Dr. Charles Burney, as borrowed from here


Charles Burney    1781  oil   by Joshua Reynolds

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


Frankie Valli....................................Can't Take My Eyes Off You

This is becoming more true...........


“I love everything that is old; old friends, old times, old manners, old books, old wines.” 

-Oliver Goldsmith

Oliver Goldsmith  by Joshua Reynolds   oil   c. 1770


Sunday, March 12, 2017

Us unfathomable humans...............


Humans have a distinctive nature, which is not purely subjective but governed by certain general laws;  indeed, they are social animals heavily driven by instinct and emotion.  The testimony of ordinary people is often of greater value that that of experts.  Human passions are guided by empathy and imagination.  Human well-being is grounded in a social order whose values are given by divine providence.  Human reason is limited in scope, and insufficient as a basis of public morality. ... People cannot reason themselves into a good society, for a good society is rooted not merely in reason but in sentiments and the emotions...

-Jesse Norman,  Edmund Burke:  The First Conservative

Gone, but not forgotten........................


Gerry Rafferty................................................Right Down The Line

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


Judge not, that ye be not judged.
For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
-The Holy Bible,  Matthew 7: 1-5

Among the liberal elite..............


...........................................................McSweeney's takes a stab.

The always interesting..................


............................David Warren chimes in on the state of our world:

As Stalin used to say, “Nuclear weapons are only a problem for people with bad nerves.”

As they say, read the whole thing.

Happy Daylight Savings......................



There have been times............


...........in my life, when this would have been extremely useful.

thanks

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


Vikki Carr...............................................................It Must Be Him