Quotes, 2018 Edition, Volume F

Professor Farnesworth (Futurama)
“Well, in those days Mars was a dreary, uninhabitable wasteland, much like Utah. But unlike Utah, Mars was eventually made liveable when the university was founded in 2636.”

Jules Feiffer
“Christ died for our sins. Dare we make his martyrdom meaningless by not committing them?”

Alfredo Fernandez
“Qulia are ineffable.”
“There’s so much left it just feels right”

Bobby Fischer
“Teach people to play new chess, right away. Why do you offer them a black and white television set, when there is a set in color?”
“I don’t know when, but I think we are approaching that [the end of chess] very rapidly. I think we need a change in the rules of chess. For example, I think it would be a good idea to shuffle the first row of the pieces by computer … and this way you will get rid of all the theory. One reason that computers are strong in chess is that they have access to enormous theory […] I think if you can turn off the computer’s book, which I’ve done when I’ve played the computer, they are still rather weak, at least at the opening part of the game, so I think this would be a good improvement, and also just for humans. It is much better, I think, because chess is becoming more and more simply memorization, because the power of memorization is so tremendous in chess now. Theory is so advanced, it used to be theory to maybe 10 or 15 moves, 18 moves; now, theory is going to 30 moves, 40 moves. I think I saw one game in Informator, the Yugoslav chess publication, where they give an N [theoretical novelty] to a new move, and I recall this new move was around move 50. […] I think it is true, we are coming to the end of the history of chess with the present rules, but I don’t say we have to do away with the present rules. I mean, people can still play, but I think it’s time for those who want to start playing on new rules that I think are better.”

Albert Fish
“Going to the electric chair will be the supreme thrill of my life.”

Miguel Fonseca
“[Berkeley is] like windows 95 of idealism”

Anatole France
“The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.”

Benjamin Franklin
“The people heard it, and approved the doctrine, and immediately practiced the contrary.”

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Quotes, 2018 Edition, Volume E

Roger Ebert
“Why do movies about Satan only have Catholics? We never get to see Methodists or Episcopalians put down demons.”

Thomas Edison
“There ain’t no rules around here! We’re trying to accomplish something!”

Havelock Ellis
“The wife who married for money, compared with the prostitute is the true scab. She is paid less, gives much more in return in labor and care, and is absolutely bound to her master. The prostitute never signs away the right over her own person, she retains her freedom and personal rights, nor is she always compelled to submit to a man’s embrace.”

Albert Einstein
“In my relativity theory I set up a clock at every point in space, but in reality, I find it difficult to provide even one clock in my room.”
“As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain; and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.”
“If the facts don’t fit the theory, change the facts.”
“The mere formulation of a problem is far more essential than its solution, which may be merely a matter of mathematical or experimental skills. To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle requires creative imagination and marks real advances in science.”

Epictetus
“On no occasion call yourself a philosopher, and do not speak much among the uninstructed about theorems (philosophical rules, precepts): but do that which follows from them. For example at a banquet do not say how a man ought to eat, but eat as you ought to eat. For remember that in this way Socrates also altogether avoided ostentation: persons used to come to him and ask to be recommended by him to philosophers, and he used to take them to philosophers: so easily did he submit to being overlooked. Accordingly if any conversation should arise among uninstructed persons about any theorem, generally be silent; for there is great danger that you will immediately vomit up what you have not digested. And when a man shall say to you, that you know nothing, and you are not vexed, then be sure that you have begun the work (of philosophy). For even sheep do not vomit up their grass and show to the shepherds how much they have eaten; but when they have internally digested the pasture, they produce externally wool and milk. Do you also show not your theorems to the uninstructed, but show the acts which come from their digestion.” (The Manual)
“I have to die. If it is now, well then I die now; if later, then now I will take my lunch, since the hour for lunch has arrived–and dying I will tend to later.”

Nicole Epps
“You must learn how to cut up your babies.”

Robert Epstein
“We are organisms, not computers. Get over it.” (from “The Empty Brain”)

EWGF (Gamefaqs user)
“Videogames aren’t difficult. Video being “hard” or “difficult” is a popular misnomer often spread by hipsters in an attempt to validate spending time failing at games like Battle Toads and dull/pointless weaboo crap like Mushihimi/Touhou (Touhou is lel compared to Futari-BL btw).
Playing an instrument extremely well is hard. Going to the Olympics in sport is hard. Fist-fighting someone that has more physical prowess than you is hard. Competing in a motorcycle race is hard. Juggling chainsaws is hard. Vidja’ is easy. Requires average dexterity, some time consumption, and has relatively low execution requirements (Force Roman Cancel and Just Frame are harder than anything in any game you’ve mentioned, and they’re still not really high in terms of required skill).
Battle Toads/Mushihime-sama/Dark Souls/G&G/Lost Levels/Touhou are just memory/repetition/time-consumption games… like all games What you are replicating is slightly different in each game… but success in all boils down to the same thing… none of which is actually hard.
If they were really hard you wouldn’t have an expansive lists of allegedly difficult games you’ve beaten. Arguing over which videogame is the most challenging is like arguing over which kid in fat camp can sprint the furthest.”

Quotes, 2018 Edition, Volume D

Salvador Dali
“In order to make use of the slumber with a key you must seat yourself in a bony armchair, preferably of Spanish style, with your head tilted back and resting on the stretched leather back. Your two hands must hang beyond the arms of the chair, to which your own must be soldered in a supineness of complete relaxation… In this posture, you must hold a heavy key which you will keep suspended, delicately pressed between the extremities of the thumb and forefinger of your left hand. Under the key you will previously have placed a plate upside down on the floor. Having made these preparations, you will have merely to let yourself be progressively invaded by a sense of serene afternoon sleep, like the spiritual drop of anisette of your soul rising in the cube of sugar of your body. The moment the key drops from your fingers, you may be sure that the noise of its fall on the upside-down plate will awaken you, and you may be equally sure that this fugitive moment during which you cannot be assured of having really slept is totally sufficient, inasmuch as not a second more is needed for your whole physical and psychic being to be revivified by just the necessary amount of repose.”

Mark Z. Danielewski, House of Leaves
“Who has never killed an hour? Not casually or without thought, but carefully: a premeditated murder of minutes. The violence comes from a combination of giving up, not caring, and a resignation that getting past it is all you can hope to accomplish. So you kill the hour. You do not work, you do not read, you do not daydream. If you sleep it is not because you need to sleep. And when at last it is over, there is no evidence: no weapon, no blood, and no body. The only clue might be the shadows beneath your eyes or a terribly thin line near the corner of your mouth indicating something has been suffered, that in the privacy of your life you have lost something and the loss is too empty to share.”

Deleuze
“There is a molecular speech of madness, or of the drug addict or the delinquent in vivo which is no more valid than the great discourses of a psychiatrist in vitro. There is as much self-assurance on the former’s part as certainty on the latter’s part. It is not the marginals which create the lines; they install themselves on these lines and make them their property, and this is fine when they have that strange modesty of men of the line, the prudence of the experimenter, but it is a disaster when they slip into a black hole from which they no longer utter anything but the micro-fascist speech of their dependency and their giddiness: ‘We are the avant-garde’, ‘We are the marginals'”

Heinz Doofenshmirtz
“Speaking of wishes, you know what I never understood? Genies! They tell you to wish for anything you want and then they add some terrible twist. Like you wish to jump high so he turns you into a frog. Why? Who gains from this? The genie? Where’s the benefit? You should be fighting genies, man, not me. I’m not the problem; genies are the problem.”
“I’m not very… How do the kids say it these days… Handsome.”

Dostoyevsky
“To a commonplace man of limited intellect, for instance, nothing is simpler than to imagine himself an original character, and to revel in that belief without the slightest misgiving. Many of our young women have thought fit to cut their hair short, put on blue spectacles, and call themselves Nihilists. By doing this they have been able to persuade themselves, without further trouble, that they have acquired new convictions of their own.” (The Idiot)
“You are a fool with brains and no heart, and I am a fool with a heart and no brains, and we’re both unhappy and we both suffer.” (The Idiot)

DragonForce
“You will cry for just- one more time to escape from all this madness; another chance to be set free from all this sadness.” (“My Spirit Will Go On”)
“In minds of society, we all live in harmony. Truth is, we all die in vain.” (“Once in a Lifetime”)
“In a lifetime of disaster, it’s a battle to the end.” (“The Warrior Inside”)

Andre Dubus
“Shyness has a strange element of narcissism, a belief that how we look, how we perform, is truly important to other people.”

Trevor Dunn
“I never understood why the metal heads in my school hated the punks.”

Andy Dwyer (Parks and Recreation)
“Anything is a toy if you play with it!”

Enough LaTeX for basic logic typesetting

I’m currently taking a (meta)logic class. There are assigned problem sets. A lot of people either don’t know how to type logical symbols or else cannot be bothered to fight with Word. I’m a fan of LaTeX. I like it for several reasons, one of them being easy use of logical symbols.

There are a lot of guides to using LaTeX. To my knowledge, none start from nothing and end with just what’s needed for a logic class. So here I fill in that void. My goal is to be comprehensive enough to cover what’s needed to type up assignments for a logic class while not including anything else so someone can be up and running with just this guide in a few minutes.

Setting Up

First, you need something to edit your text and something to compile it to a PDF or whatever other format you like. I personally use Overleaf. It’s a free, online application that lets you type in one column with live updates to what it looks like on the page in the other column. It also has templates, allows collaboration, and has some other nice features that are not important to our purposes here. (Full disclosure: The link is a referral link. If you refer people, you get extra storage space and pro features for free. The default free features and space are fine, though.)

There are other popular options. If you need to compile offline, I suggest TeXmaker. If you go this route, you need to download MiKTeX. If you want to write something very long, you may want to type into a text editor and then copy and paste into Overleaf or TeXmaker. (By “long” I mean over fifty pages, give or take based on things like included pictures.)

Onto the actual typing process. If you’re using Overleaf, go to the “My Projects” page and then create a new project. Choose “blank paper”. Then you’ll have this code:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}
\begin{document}
(Type your content here.)
\end{document}

If you’re not using Overleaf, go ahead and put that code into your document.

There is a bit of tweaking to the basic template to make this better. Before the \begin{document} line, add a line containing just \usepackage{amsmath}. Then add lines with add \title{TITLE} and \author{NAME}. Then after the \begin{document} line, add a line saying \maketitle. If you want it to not be huge, type \small\maketitle\normalsize. (The \small makes it small. The \normalsize makes the stuff after it normal size.) At this point my document looks like this.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}
\title{Phil 125 Homework Set 2}
\author{Nichole Smith}
\begin{document}
\small\maketitle\normalsize
(Type your content here.)
\end{document}

Typing the Document

Everything after this replaces “(Type your content here.)”.

  • Typing letters and numbers works as you would expect. Certain symbols are used by the code so typing them is not straightforward. (The & and squiggle brackets are the most notable here.)
  • Single line breaks are ignored. So if you type some stuff, hit return/enter, and then type some more, it will show up as one paragraph. (This can be useful. I like to type every step of a proof in a new line. Then it compiles into a paragraph.)
  • Double line breaks give you a new paragraph.
  • If you want extra space, use \vspace{1cm} as its own paragraph. You can choose lengths other than 1cm if you want.

Onto the logic specific stuff. Of critical importance is math mode. Whenever you surround text with dollar signs ($) LaTeX treats it as mathematical symbols. So, if you type $x$ it will be italicized like a variable should be. Math mode does not have spaces. So $two words$ will not have a space between them. (If you need a space while in math mode for some reason, “\ ” gives you a space. That is a backslash with a space after it.)

Note all logical symbols have to be typed in math mode. The logical symbols:

  • \land gives you the and symbol
  • \lor gives you the or symbol
  • \lnot gives you the not symbol
  • \rightarrow gives you the material conditional arrow
  • \Rightarrow gives you the logical implication arrow
  • \leftrightarrow gives you the biconditional arrow
  • \Leftrightarrow gives you the logical equivalence arrow (So, capitalizing the arrow tags makes them the bigger arrows)
  • = is the equal sign
  • Parentheses are parentheses
  • \subset gives you the strict subset symbol
  • \subseteq gives you the subset symbol
  • In general, typing \not immediately before another symbol puts a slash through it. E.g. \not\subseteq gives you the not a subset symbol
  • \in gives you the element symbol
  • \times gives you the times sign
  • \neq gives you the not equal sign
  • > and < can be typed directly. To get the or equal to versions, type \geq or \leq
  • \emptyset gives you the empty set symbol
  • \{ and \} give you squiggle brackets
  • \& gives you the & symbol
  • \top and \bot give you the tautology and contradiction symbols.
  • \Alpha and \alpha give you upper and lower case alpha. The other Greek letters are similar.
  • | gives you the Sheffer stroke and \downarrow gives you the Peirce dagger.
  • An underscore gives you subscript. A caret gives you superscript. E.g. p sub 1 is typed $p_1$.
  • \hdots gives you a nice ellipsis. Use \cdots if you want them elevated to the middle of the line.
  • Anything on a line after % will not be compiled. So if you want to make a note to self, you can.

I think this covers it. Most of them are pretty straightforward. If you do need more, this webpage has a nifty list. Or, detexify lets you just draw what you want, and it gives you the code. At this point you’re ready to type stuff.

I will provide an example now. Say problem 2 asks you to symbolize “neither both p and q, nor q only if p” with the and, material conditional, and nor operators. Then you type:

2. The sentence “neither both $p$ and $q$, nor $q$ only if $p$” symbolized with the and, material conditional, and nor operators is $(p\land q)\downarrow(q\rightarrow p)$.

Truth Tables

LaTeX can also handle tables very nicely. If you’re lazy, there are online tools to make tables. They have quite a few options. You’re probably fine using that.

I prefer more control for my truth tables. Again, you’re fine without. But in case anyone is interested, I’ll explain. Maybe you’ll want to be able to edit the code the generator spits out. (I often use a generator to start and then tweak as needed.) First, here’s the code for the truth table for p_1 or not p_1:

\begin{tabular}{c|cccc}
$p_1$ & $p_1$ & $\lor$ & $\lnot$ & $p_1$ \\
\hline
T & & \textcolor{red}{T} & F & \\
F & & \textcolor{red}{T} & T & \\
\end{tabular}

How do you construct this thing? First set up the tabular environment:

\begin{tabular}{}
\end{tabular}

The second set of squiggle brackets after \begin let you set up the columns. Each c gives a center aligned column. If you want left or right aligned columned, use l or r instead of c. Yes, you can mix the three. The | gives a vertical line going down the entire table. Note for truth tables you want a column for every single symbol. That way nothing is under the variables and you can have a straight line of Ts and Fs under the connectives. So, for p_1 or not p_1 we want a column for p_1, a bar, then columns for each of p_1, or, not, and p_1. That’s four more. So, we have:

\begin{tabular}{c|cccc}
\end{tabular}

We have the table set up. Now to fill it in. The first line of the table has the atomic sentences on the left and then the sentence in question on the right. Type the content of each column, separated by &. Then end the line with \\. So, to have the first line of the truth table:

\begin{tabular}{c|cccc}
$p_1$ & $p_1$ & $\lor$ & $\lnot$ & $p_1$ \\
\end{tabular}

To have the horizontal line, type \hline on its own line. Then more on to the next row, doing the same thing you did for the first row. Note that if you want nothing in a certain spot, just leave the space between the two &s empty. So, for the second row, you want a T under the first p_1 (The one on the left side of the table), then nothing under the first one on the right, then a T under the and sign, an F under the not sign, and then nothing under the last p_1. The third line is similar.  Now we have:

\begin{tabular}{c|cccc}
$p_1$ & $p_1$ & $\lor$ & $\lnot$ & $p_1$ \\
\hline
T & & T & F & \\
F & & T & T & \\
\end{tabular}

This is a fine truth table. But, maybe you want to bold the truth values for the main connective. To make T bold, type \textbf{T}. You can replace “T” with other text, of course. If you’re using Overleaf, highlighting the text and pressing Ctrl+B will put the tag in automatically.

This brings us to the complete table as quoted in the beginning of this section.

The comment section is open. Questions and suggestions are welcome.

(Edit notes: As Soren pointed out, I originally put the wrong symbol for commenting. I also realized the amsmath package is not needed, so I removed that. Since these are usually printed in black and white anyway, I got rid of color in favor of boldface type. This has the added benefit of avoiding the need for packages entirely. In the third edit I added the \leq and \geq tags as well as \hdots because I realized they’re needed for indexing variables. \hdots requires the amsmath package, so I added that line back in. Using bold instead of color still seems to be better.)

Quotes, 2018 Edition, Volume C

Nadia C.
“The truth is, your politics are boring to them because they really are irrelevant. They know that your antiquated styles of protest—your marches, hand held signs, and gatherings—are now powerless to effect real change because they have become such a predictable part of the status quo. They know that your post-Marxist jargon is off-putting because it really is a language of mere academic dispute, not a weapon capable of undermining systems of control. They know that your infighting, your splinter groups and endless quarrels over ephemeral theories can never effect any real change in the world they experience from day to day. They know that no matter who is in office, what laws are on the books, what “ism”s the intellectuals march under, the content of their lives will remain the same. They—we—know that our boredom is proof that these “politics” are not the key to any real transformation of life. For our lives are boring enough already!” (Your Politics Are Boring As Fuck)
“For we ourselves, happiness in our own lives and the lives of our fellows, must be our cause!”

Albert Camus
“I had only to wish that there be a large crowd of spectators the day of my execution and that they greet me with cries of hate.” (The Stranger)
“The struggle itself towards the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart.”
“It occurred to me that all I had to do was turn around and that would be the end of it.” (The Stranger)
“Here lives a free man. No one serves him.”

Stewart Candlish
“He liked guns and disliked cats, indulging his preferences economically by using the former to shoot the latter in the college grounds at night.”

Al Capone
“You can get more with a kind word and a gun than you can with a kind word alone.”

George Carlin
“You can’t fight City Hall, but you can goddamn sure blow it up.”
“These people were given everything. Everything was handed to them. And they took it all: sex, drugs, and rock and roll, and they stayed loaded for 20 years and had a free ride. But now they’re staring down the barrel of middle-age burnout, and they don’t like it.
So they’ve turned self-righteous. They want to make things harder on younger people. They tell ’em, abstain from sex, say no to drugs; as for the rock and roll, they sold that for television commercials a long time ago…so they could buy pasta machines and stairmasters and soybean futures!
They’re cold, bloodless people. It’s in their slogans, it’s in their rhetoric: “No pain, no gain.” “Just do it.” “Life is short, play hard.” “Shit happens, Deal with it.” “Get a life.” These people went from ‘do your own thing’ to ‘just say No’. They went from ‘love is all you need’ to ‘whoever winds up with the most toys wins’. And they went from cocaine to Rogaine.
And you know something, they’re still counting grams, only now it’s fat grams. And the worst of it is, the rest of us have to watch these commercials on TV for Levi’s loose-fitting jeans and fat-ass Docker pants, because these degenerate yuppie Boomer cocksuckers couldn’t keep their hands off the croissants and the Haagen-Dazs, and their big fat asses have spread all over and they have to wear fat-ass Docker pants. Fuck these Boomers, fuck these yuppies…and fuck everybody, now that I think of it.””

Kevin Carson
“There’s an old saying about the definition of a liberal, as opposed to a radical: a liberal is someone who thinks the system is broken and needs to be fixed, whereas a radical understands it’s working the way it’s supposed to.”

E.H. Chapin
“At the bottom of a good deal of bravery… lurks a miserable cowardice. Men will face powder and steel because they cannot face public opinion.”

Noam Chomsky
“The more you can increase fear of drugs and crime, welfare mothers, immigrants and aliens, the more you control all the people.”
“Any dictator would admire the uniformity and obedience of the U.S. media.”

Winston Churchill
“If Hitler invaded Hell, I would make at least a favourable reference to the devil in the House of Commons.”

Bill Clinton
“Politics gives guys so much power that they tend to behave badly around women. And I hope I never get into that.”

Cicero
“In virtute sunt multi ascensus.”

Kurt Cobain
“I was looking for something a lot heavier, yet melodic at the same time. Something different from heavy metal, a different attitude.”

Combichrist
“I think I might have killed the world.
But anyway, I think I’m better off alone.” (“Today I Woke Up to a Rain of Blood”)

Confucius
“He who conquers himself is the mightiest warrior.”

William R Craft
“Illinois: Pronounced “Shi-Cah-Go””

CrimethInc
“Those whose consciences can be bought are everyone’s potential enemies, not allies.”

Lisa Cuddy (House)
“Unhappy people do reckless things.”

Quotes, 2018 Edition, Volume B

Richard Bach
“You’ve sacrificed your entire life to be who you are today. Was it worth it?”

Sebastian Bach
“I am the man who put the hair in hair metal.”
“Metal is still the biggest music now in America.”

Mikhall Bakunin
“Does it follow that I reject all authority? Perish the thought. In the matter of boots, I defer to the authority of the boot-maker.”

Gracie Bailey
“You should burn down McDonalds.”
“My cat pisses me off. He’s too fat.”

Roland Barthes
“Thus literature (it would be better, henceforth, to say writing), by refusing to assign to the text (and to the world as text) a “secret:’ that is, an ultimate meaning, liberates an activity which we might call counter-theological, properly revolutionary, for to refuse to arrest meaning is finally to refuse God and his hypostases, reason, science, the law.”

Mario Batali
“The way the bankers have kind of toppled the way money is distributed, and taken most of it into their own hands, is as good as Stalin or Hitler.”

Chris Baty
“A deadline is, simply put, optimism in its most ass-kicking form.”

Simone de Beauvoir
“Well I just don’t give a damn … I’m sorry to disappoint all the feminists, but you can say that it’s too bad so many of them live only in theory instead of in real life.”

Belial (xkcd forum)
“As always, if you think people with “made up disabilities” have it so incredibly easy in our society, I urge you to make up a disability and get on that comfy, comfy train.
The fact that you are not doing so indicates that you know, on some level, that you are actually full of shit.”

Tony Benn
“The Marxist analysis has got nothing to do with what happened in Stalin’s Russia: it’s like blaming Jesus Christ for the Inquisition in Spain.”

George Berkeley
“if you can but conceive it possible for one extended movable substance, or in general, for any one idea or anything like an idea, to exist otherwise than in a mind perceiving it, I shall readily give up the cause…I shall grant you its existence, though you cannot either give me any reason why you believe it exists, or assign any use to it when it is supposed to exist.”

Dani Bunten Berry
“No one ever said on their deathbed, “Gee, I wish I had spent more time alone
with my computer.”

Bible
“No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (Matthew 6:24)
“A false balance is an abomination to the Lord.” (Proverbs 11:1)
“I have seen something else under the sun: The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all.” (Ecclesiastes 9:11)
“Those who rejoice at the misfortune of others shall be punished.” (Proverbs 17:5)
“14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! 20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless?” (James 2:14-20)

William Blake
“You never know what is enough unless you know what is more than enough.” (Proverbs of Hell)
“We are led to believe a lie
when we see with, not through, the eye.”

Harold Bloom
“Pragmatically, the “expansion of the Canon” has meant the destruction of the Canon, since what is being taught includes by no means the best writers who happen to be women, African, Hispanic, or Asian, but rather the writers who offer little but the resentment they have developed as part of their sense of identity. There is no strangeness and no originality in such resentment; even if there were, they would not suffice to create heirs of the Yahwist and Homer, Dante and Shakespeare, Cervantes and Joyce.”
“A poem cannot be read as a poem, because it is primarily a social document or, rarely yet possibly, an attempt to overcome philosophy.”
“What’s happening is part of a phenomenon I wrote about a couple of years ago when I was asked to comment on Rowling. I went to the Yale University bookstore and bought and read a copy of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” I suffered a great deal in the process. The writing was dreadful; the book was terrible. As I read, I noticed that every time a character went for a walk, the author wrote instead that the character “stretched his legs.” I began marking on the back of an envelope every time that phrase was repeated. I stopped only after I had marked the envelope several dozen times. I was incredulous. Rowling’s mind is so governed by cliches and dead metaphors that she has no other style of writing.
But when I wrote that in a newspaper, I was denounced. I was told that children would now read only J.K. Rowling, and I was asked whether that wasn’t, after all, better than reading nothing at all? If Rowling was what it took to make them pick up a book, wasn’t that a good thing?
It is not. “Harry Potter” will not lead our children on to Kipling’s “Just So Stories” or his “Jungle Book.” It will not lead them to Thurber’s “Thirteen Clocks” or Kenneth Grahame’s “Wind in the Willows” or Lewis Carroll’s “Alice.”
Later I read a lavish, loving review of Harry Potter by the same Stephen King. He wrote something to the effect of, “If these kids are reading Harry Potter at 11 or 12, then when they get older they will go on to read Stephen King.” And he was quite right. He was not being ironic. When you read “Harry Potter” you are, in fact, trained to read Stephen King.
Our society and our literature and our culture are being dumbed down, and the causes are very complex. I’m 73 years old. In a lifetime of teaching English, I’ve seen the study of literature debased. There’s very little authentic study of the humanities remaining. My research assistant came to me two years ago saying she’d been in a seminar in which the teacher spent two hours saying that Walt Whitman was a racist. This isn’t even good nonsense. It’s insufferable.”

Brandon Billard
“He’s [Milo Yianopolous] like the human incarnation of “I’m not homophobic I have a gay friend””

Soren Bjornstad
“Yeah, I’m pretty sure if you *steal* the entire contents of someone’s house, you’re at least going to pay the retail value…”
“Vim is basically about completely throwing out the entire standard control scheme and replacing it with a 104-button gamepad”
“…what have you been doing to the poor computer/drive? I’ve literally never had to use -o force”

Bob Black
“Anti-anarchists may well conclude that if there is to be hierarchy and coercion, let it be out in the open, clearly labelled as such. Unlike these pundits (the right-wing “libertarians,” the minarchists, for instance) I stubbornly persist in my opposition to the state. But not because, as anarchists so often thoughtlessly declaim, the state is not “necessary.” Ordinary people dismiss this anarchist assertion as ludicrous, and so they should. Obviously, in an industrialized class society like ours, the state is necessary. The point is that the state has created the conditions in which it is indeed necessary, by stripping individuals and face-to-face voluntary associations of their powers. More fundamentally, the state’s underpinnings (work, moralism, industrial technology, hierarchic organizations) are not necessary but rather antithetical to the satisfactions of real needs and desires. Unfortunately, most brands of anarchism endorse all these premises yet balk at their logical conclusion: the state.”
“Child of privilege Lorraine Schein is used to having her way — and having it both ways. To criticize feminism is sexist and unchivalrous. To ignore it is to deny woman her voice, as usual. As for the women — most of them — who reject feminism, they’re just “displaying the short memory for history of most women” — the dumb cunts! They don’t appreciate what the feminists have done for them!”
“In calling me hysterical she is, in effect, calling me a cunt.”

Blanshard
“Democracy, whether within a nation or between nations, calls for more than counting heads. It requires pocketing small egotisms in the attempt to find a common good and an objective better and worse.”

/u/bmhadoken
“A rock is free.”

Murray Bookchin
“As a result of this transfer, a theoretical corpus which was liberating a century ago is turned into a straitjacket today. We are asked to focus on the working class as the “agent” of revolutionary change at a time when capitalism visibly antagonizes and produces revolutionaries among virtually all strata of society, particularly the young. We are asked to guide our tactical methods by the vision of a “chronic economic crisis” despite the fact that no such crisis has been in the offing for thirty years,4 We are asked to accept a “proletarian dictatorship”–a long “transitional period” whose function is not merely the suppression of counter-revolutionaries but above all the development of a technology of abundance–at a time when a technology of abundance is at hand. We are asked to orient our “strategies” and “tactics” around poverty and material immiseration at a time when revolutionary sentiment is being generated by the banality of life under conditions of material abundance. We are asked to establish political parties, centralized organizations, “revolutionary” hierarchies and elites, and a new state at a time when political institutions as such are decaying and when centralizing, elitism and the state are being brought into question on a scale that has never occurred before in the history of hierarchical society.” (Listen, Marxists!)
“The unions in capitalist society constitute themselves into a counter-“monopoly” to the industrial monopolies and are incorporated into the neomercantile statified econnomy as an estate. Within this estate there are lesser or greater conflicts, but taken as a whole the unions strengthen the system and serve to perpetuate it.”

Zapp Branigan (Futurama)
“I am the man with no name. Zapp Branigan at your service.”
“If we hit that bullseye, the rest of the dominoes should fall like a house of cards. Checkmate.”
“When I’m in command, son, every mission is a suicide mission.”
“In a game of chess you can never let the opponent see your pieces.”
“It’ll be like shooting fish in a barrel. Now I’m going to hide in this barrel like the wily fish.”
“On my command, all pilots will fly their ships directly in to the enemy’s death beam, clogging it with wreckage.”

Creed Bratton (The Office)
“Sometimes when I’m sick, or feeling blue, I drink vinegar. I like all kinds: balsamic, vodka, orange juice, leaves.”
“Prediction: the space program will be renamed the Outer Space Program by 2060.”
“The worst part about Raisin Bran is the bran. Hands down.”
“Where’s Thousand Island? I’ve got some vacation time saved up and it sounds like a delicious place to visit.”
“Root beer floats. It does. I’ve tested it.”
“Screw parasailing, man. Make the handicapped sail like the rest of us.”
“I’m really bad at remembering birthdays. I think mine’s in June, but who knows?”
“I’d play the lottery if they let me pick the balls.”
“Here’s the thing about handcuffs: there’s only one key for all of them. It’s not like the Tampa cops have their own special key and the Saskatchewan Mounties have a different one. They’re all the same. So the one true goal in any criminal’s life is to get a copy of the handcuff key. I’ve got thirty. If you want to buy one, you know where to find me.”
“I’m a big fan of snacks. Meals are great, too, but who has time to sit down and eat a whole ham these days? That’s why I get most of my chow from the Vending Machines. Fills me up and it doesn’t empty my wallet. I don’t get why it’s just food in there, though. Why can’t they throw a pair of briefs in the machine for a buck? Sometimes mine break down and I don’t have next month’s pair with me, so vending machine skivvies would be the perfect replacement.”
“Most people think you’ve got to eat meat to fill up at buffets. No way, suckers. It’s all about the sauces. Think about it: your body is mostly made up of fluid. Blood, water, guts. It’s all liquid. So does it make sense to shove a whole bunch of solids down your gullet? Think again. You want to stock up on the sauces because they’ll keep you full the longest. Go for a big old glass of Alfredo sauce and you won’t eat for weeks. Chinese buffets are great for this, too. Kung pao might be spicy, but you drink enough of it and you won’t even be able to think about eating.”
“It drives me crazy when buffets only offer one type of Jell-O.”
“Spoons are one thing, but spooning is a whole other story. I hate spooning. Unless we’re huddling for warmth, I don’t want to sleep anywhere near someone. I need my space. If you get too close to me when I’m sleeping, get ready for some bruises because I’m a wild child at night. Tossing, turning, choking, gouging – trust me, you’re better off as far away from me as possible.”

Alton Brown
“Organization is not a burden. Organization will set you free.”

Vincent Bugliosi
“Up until his arrest in Mendocino Country on July 28, 1967, Charlie had always used his real name, Charles Milles Manson. On that occasion, however, and thereafter, he called himself Charles Willis Manson. Had Manson ever said anything about his name? I asked. Crockett and Poston [fellow resident of Death Valley and former Manson family member, respectively] both told me that they had heard Manson say, very slowly, that his name was “Charles’ Will Is Man’s Son”, meaning that his will was that of the Son of Man.” (Helter Skelter)

E.A. Burtt
“even the attempt to escape metaphysics is no sooner put in the form of a proposition than it is seen to involve highly significant metaphysical postulates. For this reason there is an exceedingly subtle and insidious danger in positivism. If you cannot avoid metaphysics, what kind of metaphysics are you likely to cherish when you sturdily suppose yourself to be free from the abomination? Of course it goes without saying that in this case your metaphysics will be held uncritically because it is unconscious; moreover, it will be passed on to others far more readily than your other notions inasmuch as it will be propagated by insinuation rather than by direct argument. . . . Now the history of mind reveals pretty clearly that the thinker who decries metaphysics . . . if he be a man engaged in any important inquiry, he must have a method, and he will be under a strong and constant temptation to make a metaphysics out of his method, that is, to suppose the universe ultimately of such a sort that his method must be appropriate and successful. . . . But inasmuch as the positivist mind has failed to school itself in careful metaphysical thinking, its ventures at such points will be apt to appear pitiful, inadequate, or even fantastic.” (The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Physical Science)

/u/FreakinGeese
“Third of all, I don’t think you get what the word “atheist” means. I have one head. There are 7 billion heads I don’t have. That does not mean I have no heads. There is a big difference between 1 head and 0 heads.”

George W. Bush
“I have opinions of my own –strong opinions– but I don’t always agree with them.”

Geezer Butler
“If you are a pop band, don’t say you’re a metal band. Poison and Warrant were about as metal as the Backstreet Boys.”

Occupy Democrats, being dishonest makes everything you say suspect

Popular Facebook page Occupy Democrats posts a video slamming the Trump tax scam. It begins with some stores closing. Second and third on the list are Sears and K-Mart. The problem is those two have been on the decline for years. The stores were closing either way. The new command of the businesses has been pretty transparent in his plan to gut them. To blame Trump or the tax law for this is just dishonest. Or stupid. Regardless, it places suspicion on everything else they say.

Were the other stores already going to close? Maybe. That the changes in taxes destroyed them seems a bit suspicious unless they were already dangerously near destruction. Perhaps they were. I’m not about to take that page’s word for it, though. I’m at least already to the left of them, so it doesn’t matter. The people somehow to the right of them may also know the well-known fact that Kmart and Sears are dying on their own. Their distrust will grow stronger. Worse, they may take OD’s dishonesty as a bad sign for anyone to the left of them.

The policies put forth by the GOP are awful enough in reality. Making things up is just stupid.