Saturday, March 17, 2012

One is a religious fanatic...

One is a religious fanatic railing against secularism, the role of women in the workplace, and the evils of higher education, as he seeks to impose his draconian moral values upon the state. The other is the supreme leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Grand Ayatollah or Grand Old Party?

Friday, March 16, 2012

Truth where you find it...

Skinner's Constant (or Flannagan's Finagling Factor):

        That quantity which, when multiplied by, divided by, added to,

or subtracted from the answer you get, gives you the answer you should

have gotten.

Unabashedly borrowed from Slackware Fortune

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Moral justification of capital?


The idea that the profits of capital are really the rewards of a just society for the foresight and thrift of those who sacrificed the immediate pleasures of spending in order that society might have productive capital, had a certain validity in the early days of capitalism, when productive enterprise was frequently initiated through capital saved out of modest incomes. The idea, as a moral justification of present inequalities of privilege, has become more and more dishonest, since the increased centralization of power and privilege makes it possible for those who make the largest investments in industry to do so without any diminution of even the most luxurious living standards. Since we are living in a world in which there is too much capital for production and too little for consumption, the argument that economic inequality is necessary for the accumulation of capital resources has lost even its economic validity. Yet it is still used by privileged classes to establish a specious connection between virtue or social function and privilege.


Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971)

Moral Man and Immoral Society, 1932


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Tuesday, March 13, 2012


by Sandra Beasley

After you've surrendered to pillows 
and I, that second whiskey, 
on the way to bed I trace my fingers 
over a thermostat we dare not turn up.
You have stolen what we call the green thing
too thick to be a blanket, too soft to be a rug—
turned away, mid-dream. Yet your legs
still reach for my legs, folding them quick 
to your accumulated heat.
                              These days
only a word can earn overtime. 
Economy: once a net, now a handful of holes. 
Economy: what a man moves with 
when, even in sleep, he is trying to save
all there is left to save.

. . .