Friday, March 1, 2024

On spinning.......................


 .................................................your wheels:


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


Gene Clark............................No Other (the album)

 

The dopamine...................


.............................................................culture:










    via

A useful channel.....................

 ..................................for questions and answers.

The weaponization..............

 ........................................of "scientific consensus."

via

19 paths..........................

 .....................................................to sureness

Eighty percent.......................

 ...........................................of human wisdom!

The trouble with facts................

 There is a tendency to mistake data for wisdom, just as there has always been a tendency to confuse logic with values, intelligence with insight. Unobstructed access to facts can produce unlimited good only if it is matched by the desire and ability to find out what they mean and where they lead. Facts are terrible things if left sprawling and unattended. They are too easily regarded as evaluated certainties rather than as the rawest of raw materials crying to be processed into the texture of logic. It requires a very unusual mind, Whitehead said, to undertake the analysis of a fact. The computer can provide a correct number, but it may be an irrelevant number until judgment is pronounced.

-Norman Cousins

thanks Michael


Thursday, February 29, 2024

36 more.......................................

 9.   When you’re lacking motivation, remind yourself: discipline now, freedom later. The labor will pass, and the rewards will last.

-Ryan Holiday, from here

AI has been in the news lately..................

  .............................there will be implications.

source

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

 “The empires of the future are the empires of the mind,” said Winston Churchill. And judging by the state of education in America, it seems both of those empires could soon crumble. The dysfunction is evident from top to bottom: from Ivy League outposts down to the secondary schools. Both are producing a generation that is ill-informed, illiterate and innumerate. In other words, a generation increasingly ill-suited to function as productive citizens in a democracy.

-Joel Kotkin

A different definition of discipline......

 In the spiritual life, the word 'discipline' means 'the effort to create some space in which God can act'. Discipline means to prevent everything in your life from being filled up. Discipline means that somewhere you're not occupied, and certainly not preoccupied … to create that space in which something can happen that you hadn't planned or counted on.

-attributed to Henri Nouwen

The key to power...............



 Gratitude is the most potent force in the universe.

-Tony Isola

savor.......................

 We are obsessed with optimization. Professionally, most of us are under considerable pressure to produce. Do more, better. Faster. Regardless of your line of work, you likely have a to-do list. And, if you’re anything like me, it is never-ending. There is always unfinished business. Another opportunity. Something important needing my attention. But our lives should be more than a list of tasks that we just trying to power through. Instead, we need to treat our days for what they are: fleeting gifts to savor.

-Joy Lere, from here

    via

powerless......................

 Older age gives us the knowledge of how powerless we are — not helpless so much but with little control over life’s results. I don’t love this.

-Anne Lamott, from here

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

please...........................

 


the leap of faith.................


 

-Tanmay Vora, Three Buckets of Courage

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

.
Edwin Starr.....................Hell Up in Harlem album

 

haunted by riddles...........

 Contemporary humanity is a child lost in the woods, haunted by riddles at every turn. How did we get here? Where are we headed? Amid the affluence and luxury, given global communication and cheap travel to iconic places, what is the right path as individuals and as a people—and why?

-Martin Gurri, from here

Moon Woman Cuts the Circle    Jackson Pollock     1942ish

 

a desire for a desire..................

      One thing that distinguishes human beings from other animals is that we are evaluative creatures.  We can take a critical stance toward our own activities, and aspire to direct ourselves toward objects and projects that we judge to be more worthy than others that may be more immediately gratifying.  Animals are guided by appetites that are fixed, and so are we, but we can also form a second-order desire, "a desire for a desire," when we entertain some picture of the sort of person we would like to be—a person who is better not because she has more self-control, but because she is moved by worthier desires.

-Matthew B. Crawford, The World Beyond Your Head: On Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction

fun with languages..................

 We have here, in other words, a unique phenomenon in the history of religion: a religion whose sacred texts are written in what to its founder would have been a foreign and largely unintelligible language.

     Had the languages in question been closely related, part of the same linguistic family, this might have been of little consequence.  But first-century Greek and Hebrew were not just different languages. They represented antithetical civilisations, unlike in their most basic understanding of reality.  In terms of the last chapter, Greek philosophy and science—the Greece of Thales and Democritus, Plato and Aristotle—was a predominantly left-brain culture, the Israel of the prophets a right-brain one.

-Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, The Great Partnership: Science, Religion, and the Search for Meaning

Lincoln......................

 Neither party expected for the war the magnitude or the duration which it has already attained.  Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with, or even before, the conflict itself should cease.  Each looked for an easier triumph, and a result less fundamental and astounding.  Both read the same Bible, and pray to the same God; and each invokes his aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God's assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men's faces; but let us judge not, that we be not judged.  The prayers of both could not be answered--that of neither has been answered fully.

The Almighty has his own purposes.  "Woe unto the world because of offenses! for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh."  If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through his appointed time, he now wills to remove, and that he gives to both North and South this terrible war, as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to him?  Fondly do we hope--fervently do we pray--that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn by the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said, "The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether."

-Abraham Lincoln, from his second Inaugural Address 1865

thanks Michael

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

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


Gordon Lightfoot.....................Sundown (the album)

 

luxury beliefs..................

 White privilege is the luxury belief that took me the longest to understand, because I grew up around a lot of poor white people. Affluent white college graduates seem to be the most enthusiastic about the idea of white privilege, yet they are the least likely to incur any costs for promoting that belief. Rather, they raise their social standing by talking about their privilege. When policies are implemented to combat white privilege, it won’t be Yale graduates who are harmed. Poor white people will bear the brunt.

-Rob Henderson, from here

in relationship................................

       That means that the original basis of Abrahamic monotheism remains, whatever the state of science.  For religious knowledge as understood by the Hebrew Bible is not to be construed on the model of philosophy and science, both left-brain activities.  God is to be found in relationship, and in the meanings we construct when, out of our experience of the presence of God in our lives, we create bonds of loyalty and mutual responsibility known as covenants.  People have sought in the religious life the kind of certainty that belongs to philosophy and science.  But it is not to be found.  Between God and man there is moral loyalty, not scientific certainty.

-Rabbi Jonathan Sacks,  The Great Partnership: Science, Religion, and the Search for Meaning

A mind is a terrible thing to waste...........

      In Finnish schools, a popular mantra is "We can't afford to waste a brain."  This ethos makes their educational culture distinct.  They know that the key to nurturing hidden potential is not to invest in students who show early signs of high ability.  It's to invest in every student regardless of apparent ability.

-Adam Grant, Hidden Potential: The Science of Achieving Greater Things

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

      Because of the high wartime inflation—the cost of imports was six times higher than usual—Henry found it difficult to fill the civilian jobs at the arsenals despite offering exorbitant wages of $30 a month along with a suit of clothes and another suit every year along with the normal army rations.  He wrote Washington that he would add an allotment of half a pint of rum per day to sweeten the deal.  

-Mark Puls,  Henry Knox: Visionary General of the American Revolution

Life its ownself......................

 

George Bellows      Cliff Dwellers     1913      Oil on canvas













I am always very amused with people who talk about lack of subjects for painting.  The great difficulty is that you cannot stop to sort them out enough.  Wherever you go, they are waiting for you.  The men of the docks, the children at the river edge, polo crowds, prize fights, summer evenings and romance, village folk, young people, old people, the beautiful, the ugly.

-George Bellows

Monday, February 26, 2024

Witness.................

 









 The universe is an event, not a place.
 Don't seek to own.
 Witness.


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


Joe Walsh..........................So What - the album

 

If only...............................

 We are crossing a perilous landscape. The surface seems frozen solid, but tremendous energies churn below. An angry public’s distrust of, and discontent toward, our system of government feels like a movement seeking a label. Unforeseen events can trigger a shift from repudiation to positive action. Americans, historically sensible, may recover from their temporary derangement and demand an accounting of the politicians and bureaucratic despots who have violated their ancestral rights. The will to freedom, I believe, can overcome the will to power.

-Martin Gurri, from this essay

Compare this...................

In its early Buffett years, Berkshire had a big task ahead: turning a tiny stash into a large and useful company. And it solved that problem by avoiding bureaucracy and relying much on one thoughtful leader for a long, long time as he kept improving and brought in more people like himself. 

Compare this to a typical big-corporation system with much bureaucracy at headquarters and a long succession of CEOs who come in at about age 59, pause little thereafter for quiet thought, and are soon forced out by a fixed retirement age.

-Charlie Munger, as culled from here

Might be why he lives in Omaha..........

 Wall Street’s love affair with this hocus-pocus intensified as the 1960s rolled by. The Street’s denizens are always ready to suspend disbelief when dubious maneuvers are used to manufacture rising per-share earnings, particularly if these acrobatics produce mergers that generate huge fees for investment bankers. Auditors willingly sprinkled their holy water on the conglomerates’ accounting and sometimes even made suggestions as to how to further juice the numbers. For many, gushers of easy money washed away ethical sensitivities.

-Warren Buffett, from this recent letter

Some new quotes.......................

 ...................................from Warren Buffett:

. . . it is madness to risk losing what you need in pursuing what you simply desire.

Cash, though, is to a business as oxygen is to an individual: never thought about when it is present, the only thing in mind when it is absent.

Periodically, financial markets will become divorced from reality – you can count on that.

Our suggestion: Whatever their line, never forget that 2+2 will always equal 4. And when someone tells you how old-fashioned that math is --- zip up your wallet, take a vacation and come back in a few years to buy stocks at cheap prices.

My successor will need one other particular strength: the ability to fight off the ABCs of business decay, which are arrogance, bureaucracy and complacency. When these corporate cancers metastasize, even the strongest of companies can falter.

Where does he find this stuff...................?

 ...................take a scroll through Rob Firchau's blog to find more wondrous music you have never heard before than you ever thought possible.