General Sentiment and the General Election—Some Wisdom for Today after Yesterday


I’m not ready to comment on the results of the 2012 General Election, other than to quote these words from Isaac Watts (1674-1748):

If we had nothing but the reason of men to deal with, and that reason were pure and uncorrupted, it would then be a matter of no great skill or labour to convince another person of common mistakes, or to persuade him to assent to plain and obvious truths; but alas! mankind stand wrapt round in errors, and intrenched in prejudices; and every one of their opinions is supported and guarded by something else beside reason.

—Isaac Watts, The Improvement of the Mind

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Quotations to Live By


“The less routine the more life.” —Amos Bronson Alcott

Jack London, 1900

“I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dryrot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time.” —Jack London

“Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage, against the dying of the light.”
—Dylan Thomas, “Do not go gentle into that good night”

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