Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Make a note of it.

Happy Ascension Day

Jeff Cooper:

Have you noticed that adulation is not dependant upon the adulated? People need to worship heroes regardless of whether they can find heroes or not. Just place anybody up on a pedestal where he can be seen and you will find thousands of people who will scream and yell and beg for his autograph. Thus we have "mass movements."

Unmutual! Unmutual!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Not just any roller rink, nor even just any disco roller rink. A HUGE disco roller rink.

Some people, some silly, unimportant, flyover-country kind of people, don't understand why they need people from Hollywood like Cameron Diaz and Tim Robbins to tell them what to think. "Why should I figure them fellers in Hollywood is so much smarter than we are, anyhow?" they ask. Well, here's why. Here's why, when our betters out there in the land of the silver screen have something to say to us, we just might want to shut our drooling yaps, open up our empty little minds, and listen:

The Greek muses incarnate themselves on Earth to inspire men to achieve. One of them, incarnated as a girl named Kira1, encounters an artist named Sonny Malone. With the help of Danny McGuire, a man Kira had inspired forty years earlier, Sonny builds a huge disco roller rink.

When you can come up with a story like that, maybe you'll be qualified to run this country. Until then, shut up and pay your taxes, OK, Gomer?


1 Played by Olivia Newton-John

Friday, January 09, 2009

"The Black Legend"

Huh: To what degree is our perception of the Spanish mentality a product of Protestant propaganda during the Reformation and in succeeding centuries? Probably not less than zero, and quite likely not more than some value greater than zero. In round numbers.

I recall reading recently, somewhere, that the Spanish Inquisition, while it really was pretty darn bad, was less maximally horrible than people seem to assume. Or so this source claimed, whoeverthehell it was. Hm. So, OK, for whatever that's worth.


Huffman has a programming funny. Which reminds me of a good one about Pascal that I thought of, only a decade or so after Pascal had become too irrelevant to bother making fun of:

Programming languages are tools programmers use to make computers do arbitrary things. Pascal is a tool Nick Werth used to make programmers do arbitrary things.


Maybe you had to be there.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

OK, I figured it out

The purpose of our endless rising tide of petty laws and regulations is to prevent the individual from doing any harm, and so make life better for everybody except the individual. Since there's only one of him, that's a pretty good deal for, statistically speaking, everybody. Except the rest of us, obviously.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Church and State

Jeff Cooper says,

We may not wish to be taught how to think by clergymen, but to me it seems much worse to be taught how to think by politicians.


...and annoyed.

Jeff Cooper quotes E.V. Howe, via somebody named Bill O'Connor:

"The government is mainly an expensive organization to regulate evil doers, and tax those who behave. Government does little for fairly respectable people, except annoy them."

That's actually wrong. The government doesn't regulate evildoers; it merely tries to. That is to say, it annoys them.

All government really does to anybody is annoy them. And invoice the fairly respectable ones for the service.