May 8

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Quotes of the day from previous years:

There are very few human beings who receive the truth, complete and staggering, by instant illumination. Most of them acquire it fragment by fragment, on a small scale, by successive developments, cellularly, like a laborious mosaic. ~ Anaïs Nin
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers. ~ Thomas Pynchon (born 8 May 1937)
While in the physical sciences the investigator will be able to measure what, on the basis of a prima facie theory, he thinks important, in the social sciences often that is treated as important which happens to be accessible to measurement. This is sometimes carried to the point where it is demanded that our theories must be formulated in such terms that they refer only to measurable magnitudes. ~ Friedrich Hayek (born 8 May 1899)

And, oh! what beautiful years were these
When our hearts clung each to each;
When life was filled and our senses thrilled
In the first faint dawn of speech.

Thus life by life and love by love
We passed through the cycles strange,
And breath by breath and death by death
We followed the chain of change.

~ Langdon Smith ~
(In honor of our reaching a myriad of articles at Wikiquote, a selection from the official "10,000th article".)

Freedom granted only when it is known beforehand that its effects will be beneficial is not freedom. ~ Friedrich Hayek (born 8 May 1899)
I want to break out — to leave this cycle of infection and death. I want to be taken in love: so taken that you and I, and death, and life, will be gathered inseparable, into the radiance of what we would become... ~ Thomas Pynchon
It is possible for a dictator to govern in a liberal way. And it is also possible for a democracy to govern with a total lack of liberalism. Personally I prefer a liberal dictator to democratic government lacking liberalism. ~ Friedrich Hayek
Is there a greater tragedy imaginable than that, in our endeavour consciously to shape our future in accordance with high ideals, we should in fact unwittingly produce the very opposite of what we have been striving for? ~ Friedrich Hayek
He had decided long ago that no Situation had any objective reality: it only existed in the minds of those who happened to be in on it at any specific moment. … The only consolation he drew from the present chaos was that his theory managed to explain it. ~ Thomas Pynchon
If man is not to do more harm than good in his efforts to improve the social order, he will have to learn that in this, as in all other fields where essential complexity of an organized kind prevails, he cannot acquire the full knowledge which would make mastery of the events possible. He will therefore have to use what knowledge he can achieve, not to shape the results as the craftsman shapes his handiwork, but rather to cultivate a growth by providing the appropriate environment, in the manner in which the gardener does this for his plants.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
The growth of the human mind is part of the growth of civilization; it is the state of civilization at any given moment that determines the scope and possibilities of human ends and values. The mind can never foresee its own advance.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
Liberty not only means that the individual has both the opportunity and the burden of choice; it also means that he must bear the consequences of his actions. … Liberty and responsibility are inseparable.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
I am sure that if the mothers of various nations could meet, there would be no more wars.
~ E. M. Forster ~
The recognition of the insuperable limits to his knowledge ought indeed to teach the student of society a lesson of humility which should guard him against becoming an accomplice in men's fatal striving to control society — a striving which makes him not only a tyrant over his fellows, but which may well make him the destroyer of a civilization which no brain has designed but which has grown from the free efforts of millions of individuals.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
Conservatism, though a necessary element in any stable society, is not a social program; in its paternalistic, nationalistic and power adoring tendencies it is often closer to socialism than true liberalism; and with its traditionalistic, anti-intellectual, and often mystical propensities it will never, except in short periods of disillusionment, appeal to the young and all those others who believe that some changes are desirable if this world is to become a better place.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
As is true with respect to other great evils, the measures by which war might be made altogether impossible for the future may well be worse than even war itself.
~ Friedrich Hayek ~
Why should things be easy to understand?
~ Thomas Pynchon ~
The knife cuts through the apple like a knife cutting an apple. Everything is where it is, no clearer than usual, but certainly more present. So much has to be left behind now, so quickly.
~ Thomas Pynchon ~
There is really no way of considering a book independently of one's special sensations in reading it on a particular occasion. In this as in everything else one must allow a certain relativity. In a sense, one can never read the book that the author originally wrote, and one can never read the same book twice.
~ Edmund Wilson ~
It used to be said, that in places like this, nature eventually failed to support man, the truth is exactly the reverse, here man failed to support nature. Ten thousand years ago man regarded the natural world as divine, but as he domesticated animals and plants so nature lost some of its mystery and appeared to be little more than a larder that could be raided with impunity.
~ David Attenborough ~
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Feast day of Julian of Norwich in Anglican and Lutheran traditions.

DOB: David Attenborough · Friedrich Hayek · Thomas Pynchon · Harry S. Truman · Edmund Wilson

The more the state 'plans' the more difficult planning becomes for the individual. ~ Friedrich Hayek (born May 8)

  • 3 because the more the state controls one's fate, the less one is able to control one's own fate. Zarbon 04:50, 29 April 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 04:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 17:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

Whenever you have an efficient government you have a dictatorship. ~ Harry S. Truman (born May 8, 1884)

  • 3 InvisibleSun 04:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 because you can have a both separately as well. Zarbon 05:32, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 17:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

The only thing new in the world is the history you don't know. ~ Harry S. Truman

  • 3 InvisibleSun 04:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 because that's not the only new thing. Sorry, don't agree with this. Zarbon 05:32, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 17:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

At a time when it's possible for thirty people to stand on the top of Everest in one day, Antarctica still remains a remote, lonely and desolate continent. A place where it's possible to see the splendours and immensities of the natural world at its most dramatic and, what's more, witness them almost exactly as they were, long, long before human beings ever arrived on the surface of this planet. Long may it remain so. ~ David Attenborough (born May 8, 1926)

  • 3 InvisibleSun 04:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 because this seems like a personal rant rather than a quote... Zarbon 05:32, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 17:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

There was no difference between the behavior of a god and the operations of pure chance. ~ Thomas Pynchon

  • 3 InvisibleSun 04:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 because sometimes the two are intertwined. Zarbon 05:32, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 17:21, 7 May 2008 (UTC)

The people can never understand why the President does not use his powers to make them behave. Well all the president is, is a glorified public relations man who spends his time flattering, kissing, and kicking people to get them to do what they are supposed to do anyway. ~ Harry S. Truman

Capitalism without competition isn’t capitalism; it’s exploitation. ~ Joe Biden