January 9

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Quotes of the day from previous years:

Shared pain is lessened; shared joy, increased — thus do we refute entropy. ~ Spider Robinson
Each time a person stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, these ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance. ~ Robert F. Kennedy
Life will not perish! It will begin anew with love; it will start out naked and tiny; it will take root in the wilderness, and to it all that we did and built will mean nothing — our towns and factories, our art, our ideas will all mean nothing, and yet life will not perish! Only we have perished. Our houses and machines will be in ruins, our systems will collapse, and the names of our great will fall away like dry leaves. Only you, love, will blossom on this rubbish heap and commit the seed of life to the winds. ~ Karel Čapek (born 9 January 1890)
I think it is possible, and that is the most dramatic element in modern civilization, that a human truth is opposed to another human truth no less human, ideal against ideal, positive worth against worth no less positive, instead of the struggle being as we are so often told, one between noble truth and vile selfish error. ~ Karel Čapek (date of birth)
One's life has value so long as one attributes value to the life of others, by means of love, friendship, indignation and compassion. ~ Simone de Beauvoir
I tore myself away from the safe comfort of certainties through my love for truth — and truth rewarded me. ~ Simone de Beauvoir
I am incapable of conceiving infinity, and yet I do not accept finity. I want this adventure that is the context of my life to go on without end. ~ Simone de Beauvoir
The individual is defined only by his relationship to the world and to other individuals; he exists only by transcending himself, and his freedom can be achieved only through the freedom of others. ~ Simone de Beauvoir
It is for man to establish the reign of liberty in the midst of the world of the given. To gain the supreme victory, it is necessary, for one thing, that by and through their natural differentiation men and women unequivocally affirm their brotherhood. ~ Simone de Beauvoir
Science condemns itself to failure when, yielding to the infatuation of the serious, it aspires to attain being, to contain it, and to possess it; but it finds its truth if it considers itself as a free engagement of thought in the given, aiming, at each discovery, not at fusion with the thing, but at the possibility of new discoveries; what the mind then projects is the concrete accomplishment of its freedom.
~ Simone de Beauvoir ~
Self-knowledge is no guarantee of happiness, but it is on the side of happiness and can supply the courage to fight for it.
~ Simone de Beauvoir ~
That's what I consider true generosity. You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing.
~ Simone de Beauvoir ~
You can't decide how you're going to die. Or when. What you can decide is how you're going to live now.
~ Joan Baez ~
Relativism is not indifference; on the contrary, passionate indifference is necessary in order for you not to hear the voices that oppose your absolute decrees. … Relativism is neither a method of fighting, nor a method of creating, for both of these are uncompromising and at times even ruthless; rather, it is a method of cognition. If one must fight or create, it is necessary that this be preceded by the broadest possible knowledge ... One of the worst muddles of this age is its confusing of the ideas behind combative and cognitive activity. Cognition is not fighting, but once someone knows a lot, he will have much to fight for, so much that he will be called a relativist because of it.
~ Karel Čapek ~
I know that it can be very easy, under the intensive pressures of a campaign, for even well-intentioned people to fall into shady tactics — to rationalize this on the grounds that what is at stake is of such importance to the Nation that the end justifies the means. And both of our great parties have been guilty of such tactics in the past.
In recent years, however, the campaign excesses that have occurred on all sides have provided a sobering demonstration of how far this false doctrine can take us. The lesson is clear: America, in its political campaigns, must not again fall into the trap of letting the end, however great that end is, justify the means.
I urge the leaders of both political parties, I urge citizens, all of you, everywhere, to join in working toward a new set of standards, new rules and procedures to ensure that future elections will be as nearly free of such abuses as they possibly can be made. This is my goal. I ask you to join in making it America's goal.
~ Richard Nixon ~
The fact that we are human beings is infinitely more important than all the peculiarities that distinguish human beings from one another; it is never the given that confers superiorities: "virtue", as the ancients called it, is defined at the level of "that which depends on us". In both sexes is played out the same drama of the flesh and the spirit, of finitude and transcendence; both are gnawed away by time and laid in wait for by death, they have the same essential need for one another; and they can gain from their liberty the same glory. If they were to taste it, they would no longer be tempted to dispute fallacious privileges, and fraternity between them could then come into existence.
~ Simone de Beauvoir ~
Together with the rest of the world, let us resolve to move forward from the beginnings we have made. Let us continue to bring down the walls of hostility which have divided the world for too long, and to build in their place bridges of understanding — so that despite profound differences between systems of government, the people of the world can be friends.
Let us build a structure of peace in the world in which the weak are as safe as the strong — in which each respects the right of the other to live by a different system — in which those who would influence others will do so by the strength of their ideas, and not by the force of their arms.
Let us accept that high responsibility not as a burden, but gladly — gladly because the chance to build such a peace is the noblest endeavor in which a nation can engage; gladly, also, because only if we act greatly in meeting our responsibilities abroad will we remain a great Nation, and only if we remain a great Nation will we act greatly in meeting our challenges at home.
~ Richard Nixon ~
We gather due to a selfish man's injured pride, and the outrage of supporters who he has deliberately misinformed for the past two months and stirred to action this very morning. What happened here today was an insurrection incited by the President of the United States. Those who choose to continue to support his dangerous gambit by objecting to the results of a legitimate democratic election will forever be seen as being complicit in an unprecedented attack against our democracy. … For any who remain insistent on an audit in order to satisfy the many people who believe that the election was stolen, I'd offer this perspective — no Congressional audit is ever going to convince these voters, particularly when the President will continue to say that the election was stolen. The best way we could show respect for the voters who were upset is by telling them the truth.
That's the burden, that's the duty of leadership.
The truth is that President-elect Biden won the election, President Trump lost.
~ Mitt Romney ~
Existentialism does not offer to the reader the consolations of an abstract evasion: existentialism proposes no evasion.
~ Simone de Beauvoir ~
We have the chance today to do more than ever before in our history to make life better in America — to ensure better education, better health, better housing, better transportation, a cleaner environment — to restore respect for law, to make our communities more livable — and to insure the God-given right of every American to full and equal opportunity.
Because the range of our needs is so great — because the reach of our opportunities is so great — let us be bold in our determination to meet those needs in new ways.
~ Richard Nixon ~
We shall support vigorously the principle that no country has the right to impose its will or rule on another by force.
We shall continue, in this era of negotiation, to work for the limitation of nuclear arms, and to reduce the danger of confrontation between the great powers.
We shall do our share in defending peace and freedom in the world. But we shall expect others to do their share.
The time has passed when America will make every other nation's conflict our own, or make every other nation's future our responsibility, or presume to tell the people of other nations how to manage their own affairs.
Just as we respect the right of each nation to determine its own future, we also recognize the responsibility of each nation to secure its own future.
Just as America's role is indispensable in preserving the world's peace, so is each nation's role indispensable in preserving its own peace.
Together with the rest of the world, let us resolve to move forward from the beginnings we have made. Let us continue to bring down the walls of hostility which have divided the world for too long, and to build in their place bridges of understanding — so that despite profound differences between systems of government, the people of the world can be friends.
~ Richard Nixon ~
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The easiest kind of relationship for me is with ten thousand people. The hardest is with one. ~ Joan Baez

  • 2 Zarbon 06:34, 13 December 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 14:44, 6 January 2009 (UTC)

Any nation that decides the only way to achieve peace is through peaceful means is a nation that will soon be a piece of another nation. ~ Richard Nixon

  • 4 Zarbon 06:34, 13 December 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 ♌︎Kalki··☳☶ 13:51, 7 January 2012 (UTC)2 Kalki 14:44, 6 January 2009 (UTC) I can provisionally agree with this to some extent in most the most casually specific or practical contexts, but can perceive others in which it is disputable or definitely untrue — and I would assert that ultimately it's repudiation is true : any person or groups which believe a permanently just and lasting peace can be attained by anything OTHER than peaceful and respectful means, honorable by ALL parties involved, is extremely deluded. I wish to "make it perfectly clear" that I am certainly NOT a pacifist in the conventional sense — when anyone I am capable of defending is unjustly attacked I am often quite naturally, automatically and extremely inclined to do what I can to damage, devastate, demolish, and eradicate the destructive capacities of the attackers any way I can, and usually with very little if any qualm or reluctance; but I am also certainly NOT inclined to attack others not clearly engaged in intolerably unjust hostilities, NOR to wreak needless and usually quite detrimental vengeance on anyone defeated — I am inclined to forgive but not forget the stupidity of others, and pardon them, to the extent practically possible within the limitations of prudence. I know my stances on these matters can seem paradoxical to the weak minded and shallow perceptions of those who embrace MANY conventional and popular forms of timidity when attacked by the strong, or who lust for vengeance or the depraved will to simply punish others they consider enemies or proper victims when they are at the advantage, and thus seize upon such rationalizations as Nixon here provides as an excuse to act arrogantly, callously or even viciously against the proper rights of others — but I consider such behavior a failure to exercise one's truly rational and human capacities, and so remain in the merely brutal levels of perceptions and responses. Such attitudes are what the wisest ever fight — every way that they can, and it sometimes requires harshness that can easily be mistaken for brutality by those of shallow perception — and so it goes.... ~ ♌︎Kalki··☳☶ 13:51, 7 January 2012 (UTC) + tweaks
  • 2 InvisibleSun 22:20, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

Just as we respect the right of each nation to determine its own future, we also recognize the responsibility of each nation to secure its own future. ~ Richard Nixon

  • 3 Zarbon 06:34, 13 December 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 14:44, 6 January 2009 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 22:20, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

All oppression creates a state of war. ~ Simone de Beauvoir

It is not in vain that man nullifies being. Thanks to him, being is disclosed and he desires this disclosure. There is an original type of attachment to being which is not the relationship “wanting to be” but rather “wanting to disclose being.” Now, here there is not failure, but rather success. ~ Simone de Beauvoir

One is not born a genius, one becomes a genius; and the feminine situation has up to the present rendered this becoming practically impossible. ~ Simone de Beauvoir

There is only one good. And that is to act according to the dictates of one's conscience. ~ Simone de Beauvoir

Any man who has known real loves, real revolts, real desires, and real will knows quite well that he has no need of any outside guarantee to be sure of his goals; their certitude comes from his own drive. There is a very old saying which goes: “Do what you must, come what may.” That amounts to saying in a different way that the result is not external to the good will which fulfills itself in aiming at it. If it came to be that each man did what he must, existence would be saved in each one without there being any need of dreaming of a paradise where all would be reconciled in death. ~ Simone de Beauvoir

In a civilized nation no man can excuse his crime against the person or property of another by claiming that he, too, has been a victim of injustice. To tolerate that is to invite anarchy.
~ Richard Nixon ~

The only perfection which modern civilisation achieves is mechanical; machines are magnificent and immaculate but the life which serves them or is served by them isn't magnificent or shiny or more perfect or more comely.
~ Karel Čapek ~

A guilty party is being sought. Such action is a favorite means of consolation in the face of calamity.
~ Karel Čapek ~

I have seen greatness and power, wealth, prosperity and incomparable development. I was never sad that we are a small and unfinished part of the world. To be small, unsettled and uncompleted is a good and courageous mission.
~ Karel Čapek ~

A man is not finished when he's defeated. He's finished when he quits.
~ Richard Nixon ~