[By Nic Lindh on Tuesday, 25 January 2011]
Cynicism is an unpleasant way of saying the truth.
Fanaticism is a monster that pretends to be the child of religion.
Some mornings it just doesn’t seem worth it to gnaw through the leather straps.
Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.
—Johann Wolfgang von Goethe#
It is the folly of too many, to mistake the echo of a London coffee-house for the voice of a kingdom.
—Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) via The QI Elves on Twitter#
The most perfidious way of harming a cause consists of defending it deliberately with faulty arguments.
Fervor is the weapon of choice for the impotent.
In this day and age, when the increasing complexity of modern life leaves one barely any time for reading …
—Proust (1919) (via James Gleick)#
Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.
You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you.
I like work: it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours.
—Jerome K. Jerome#
Perhaps the most valuable result of all education is the ability to make yourself do the thing you have to do, when it ought to be done, whether you like it or not.
—Thomas Henry Huxley#
Doubt is an uncomfortable condition, but certainty is a ridiculous one.
Just because nobody complains doesn’t mean all parachutes are perfect.
Know what’s weird? Day by day, nothing seems to change. But pretty soon, everything’s different.
Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.
—H. L. Mencken#
Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.
Unhappy the land that is in need of heroes.
It’s so much easier to suggest solutions when you don’t know too much about the problem.
A wet man does not fear rain.
Never retreat. Never explain. Get it done and let them howl.
Patriotism is often an arbitrary veneration of real estate above principles.
—George Jean Nathan#
An opinion should be the result of thought, not a substitute for it.
"Either America will destroy ignorance or ignorance will destroy the United States.
—W.E.B. Du Bois#
The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they’ve found it.
—Sir Terry Pratchett#
It is not necessary to understand things in order to argue about them.
The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread.
It is impossible for a person to begin to learn what he already thinks he knows.
The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism.
—Sir William Osler#
To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle.
Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable.
The big thieves hang the little ones.
Often injustice lies in what you aren’t doing, not only in what you are doing.
Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.
Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.
It is certain, in any case, that ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have.
People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage.
―John Kenneth Galbraith#
Thieves of private property pass their lives in chains; thieves of public property in riches and luxury.
―Cato the Elder#
Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.
― Benjamin Franklin#
The best way out is always through.
― Robert Frost#