Literary Quotes
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 4 months ago
"Now I will tell you the answer to my question. It is this. The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power, pure power. What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from the oligarchies of the past in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just around the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal. We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means; it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now you begin to understand me."

-- George Orwell, 1984 (1949)
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+7722) 4 months ago
“There is nothing left to watch but fire and the night: circle within circle, light within light. Messages arrive in the net where discrete pulses cross. Parametal engines of joy and disaster give them wave and motion. We interpret and defeat their terms by terminus. The night? What of it. It is filled with bestial watchmen, trammeling the extremities and the interstices of the timeless city, portents fallen, constellated deities plummeting in ash and smoke, roaming the apocryphal cities, the cities of speculation and reconstituted disorder, of insemination and incipience, swept round with the dark.”
-- Samuel R. Delany, Dhalgren
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 4 months ago
"Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you're there.

It doesn't matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that's like you after you take your hands away. The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime."

-- Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451 (1953)
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+7722) 4 months ago
"History celebrates the battlefields whereon we meet our death, but scorns to speak of the plowed fields whereby we thrive. It knows the names of the king's bastards, but cannot tell us of the origin of wheat. This is the way of human folly."
--Jean Henri Fabre (1823-1915)
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
"A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude."

-- Aldous Huxley, Brave New World (1932)
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+7722) 3 months ago
“An age is called Dark, not because the light fails to shine, but because people refuse to see it.”
--James Michener
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
"It was possible, no doubt, to imagine a society in which wealth, in the sense of personal possessions and luxuries, should be evenly distributed, while power remained in the hands of a small privileged caste. But in practice such a society could not long remain stable. For if leisure and security were enjoyed by all alike, the great mass of human beings who are normally stupefied by poverty would become literate and would learn to think for themselves; and when once they had done this, they would sooner or later realise that the privileged minority had no function, and they would sweep it away. In the long run, a hierarchical society was only possible on a basis of poverty and ignorance."

-- George Orwell, 1984 (1949)
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Posted by Tucker Bolton (+2777) 3 months ago
I know we're not saints or virgins or lunatics; we know all the lust and lavatory jokes, and most of the dirty people; we can catch buses and count our change and cross the roads and talk real sentences. But our innocence goes awfully deep, and our discreditable secret is that we don't know anything at all, and our horrid inner secret is that we don't care that we don't.

Dylan Thomas
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+7722) 3 months ago
“Every ounce of my cynicism is supported by historical precedent.”
--Glen Cook, Shadow Games
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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
"The liberals can understand everything but people who don't understand them."

— Lenny Bruce--
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
Reply to Oddjob (#370600)
And what literary work is that from?
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Posted by Cory Cutting (+1275) 3 months ago
“These are the times in which a genius would wish to live. It is not in the still calm of life, or the repose of a pacific station, that great characters are formed. The habits of a vigorous mind are formed in contending with difficulties. Great necessities call out great virtues. When a mind is raised, and animated by scenes that engage the heart, then those qualities which would otherwise lay dormant, wake into life and form the character of the hero and the statesman.” ? Abigail Adams

Not literary.... but one of my favorites
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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
Reply to MilesCity.com Webmaster (#370601)
MilesCity.com Webmaster wrote:
And what literary work is that from?


The Essential Lenny Bruce

by John Cohen

Lets split hairs.

[Edited by Oddjob (2/5/2017 5:18:20 AM)]
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Posted by Dwayne Rude (+151) 3 months ago
"Americans, like human beings everywhere, believe many things that are obviously untrue. Their most destructive untruth is that it is very easy for any American to make money. They will not acknowledge how in fact hard money is to come by, and, therefore, those who have no money blame and blame and blame themselves. This inward blame has been a treasure for the rich and powerful, who have had to do less for their poor, publicly and privately, than any other ruling class since, say Napoleonic times. Many novelties have come from America. The most startling of these, a thing without precedent, is a mass of undignified poor. They do not love one another because they do not love themselves."

---Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five---
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
"And whenever any one informs us that he has found a man who knows all the arts, and all things else that anybody knows, and every single thing with a higher degree of accuracy than any other man – whoever tells us this, I think that we can only imagine him to be a simple creature who is likely to have been deceived by some wizard or actor whom he met, and whom he thought all-knowing, because he himself was unable to analyze the nature of knowledge and ignorance and imitation."

-- Plato, The Republic (~380 BCE)
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+7722) 3 months ago
“Drunkenness is his best virtue; for he will be swine drunk, and in his sleep he does little harm, save to his bedclothes about him.”
--William Shakespeare, “All's Well That Ends Well”.
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Posted by Bridgier (+7401) 3 months ago
If we're going to lower the literary bar for oddy, I'm sure we can count screenplays...

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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
Reply to Bridgier (#370638)
Bridgier wrote:
If we're going to lower the literary bar for oddy, I'm sure we can count screenplays...


How does that "lower the literary bar" Bridgier?

Lenny Bruce, the low-life heroin addict, probably did more and sacrificed more for free speech by accident, than any of the "literary giants" quoted here ever did on purpose.
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Posted by atomicg (+891) 3 months ago
"I have of late, (but wherefore I know not) lost all my mirth, forgone all custom of exercises; and indeed, it goes so heavily with my disposition; that this goodly frame the earth, seems to me a sterile promontory; this most excellent canopy the air, look you, this brave o'er hanging firmament, this majestical roof, fretted with golden fire: why, it appeareth no other thing to me, than a foul and pestilent congregation of vapours. What piece of work is a man! How noble in reason, how infinite in faculty! In form and moving how express and admirable! In action how like an Angel! in apprehension how like a god! The beauty of the world! The paragon of animals! And yet to me, what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights not me; no, nor Woman neither; though by your smiling you seem to say so."

Hamlet to Rosencrantz & Guildenstern
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Posted by Dwayne Rude (+151) 3 months ago
"All of the advantages of Christianity and alcohol; none of their defects."
- Aldous Huxley, Brave New World
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+8774) 3 months ago
I wasn’t sure if I was going to survive all of the balls we had to attend, which reminded me of the mixers I’d gone to as a teen-ager in Slovenia, filled with snoring retired men in uniforms, older women in gowns they’d stitched from tractor covers, and a few young girls like me, hoping for better lives. I remember daydreaming through my Modelling Theory course at university, wondering if there really were soaring skyscrapers in America, with branches of Starbucks in the lobbies. I would marvel at the photographs of Republican wives that I saw in magazines, with their handsome bowl haircuts, sturdy forearms, and handbags brimming with those miniature airplane bottles of gin.

- Paul Rudnick. "Melania's Diary 1/21/2017".
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
Okay, this has been bugging me for a while. Specifically:

Oddjob wrote:
Lenny Bruce, the low-life heroin addict, probably did more and sacrificed more for free speech by accident, than any of the "literary giants" quoted here ever did on purpose.

There's something to be said for Lenny Bruce, however I have to wonder if Oddjob's affection has anything more to do than him being someone that loved spouting the "N-word".

The part that bothers me most though, is this:

Oddjob wrote:
probably did more and sacrificed more for free speech by accident, than any of the "literary giants" quoted here ever did on purpose

Ahhh, hummmmm. (Clearing my throat.)

Oddjob, you do know who Plato was - don't you? Here, let me quote Wikipedia:

Wikipedia wrote:
Plato (428/427 or 424/423 – 348/347 BCE) was a philosopher in Classical Greece and the founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. He is widely considered the most pivotal figure in the development of philosophy, especially the Western tradition. Unlike nearly all of his philosophical contemporaries, Plato's entire work is believed to have survived intact for over 2,400 years.

Along with his teacher, Socrates, and his most famous student, Aristotle, Plato laid the very foundations of Western philosophy and science. Alfred North Whitehead once noted: "the safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato." In addition to being a foundational figure for Western science, philosophy, and mathematics, Plato has also often been cited as one of the founders of Western religion and spirituality. Friedrich Nietzsche, amongst other scholars, called Christianity, "Platonism for the people." Plato's influence on Christian thought is often thought to be mediated by his major influence on Saint Augustine of Hippo, one of the most important philosophers and theologians in the history of Christianity.

Plato was the innovator of the written dialogue and dialectic forms in philosophy, which originate with him. Plato appears to have been the founder of Western political philosophy, with his Republic, and Laws among other dialogues, providing some of the earliest extant treatments of political questions from a philosophical perspective. Plato's own most decisive philosophical influences are usually thought to have been Socrates, Parmenides, Heraclitus and Pythagoras, although few of his predecessors' works remain extant and much of what we know about these figures today derives from Plato himself.

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy describes Plato as "...one of the most dazzling writers in the Western literary tradition and one of the most penetrating, wide-ranging, and influential authors in the history of philosophy. ... He was not the first thinker or writer to whom the word “philosopher” should be applied. But he was so self-conscious about how philosophy should be conceived, and what its scope and ambitions properly are, and he so transformed the intellectual currents with which he grappled, that the subject of philosophy, as it is often conceived—a rigorous and systematic examination of ethical, political, metaphysical, and epistemological issues, armed with a distinctive method—can be called his invention. Few other authors in the history of Western philosophy approximate him in depth and range: perhaps only Aristotle (who studied with him), Aquinas and Kant would be generally agreed to be of the same rank."

...

Read More: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plato

Cough. Cough. OK, Oddjob - now how exactly did Lenny Bruce, the vulgar comedian famous for using the "N-word", somehow accomplish more than Plato???

I fully expect you to pull a Kellyanne Conway, or not respond at all, but I'm still kind of curious as to how you justify your latest demented statement.
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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
Two things Larry. You really don't deserve reponse if you are so intellectually vacuous that your argument is "you have to be a racist". I expect that poop from Bridgier.

Second, if you don't get where Bruce was coming from all by yourself, I can't help you.

Nothing against Plato, but who would be have been without Aristotle?
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
Reply to Oddjob (#370785)
Oddjob wrote:
Two things Larry. You really don't deserve reponse if you are so intellectually vacuous that your argument is "you have to be a racist". I expect that poop from Bridgier.

Second, if you don't get where Bruce was coming from all by yourself, I can't help you.

Nothing against Plato, but who would be have been without Aristotle?

A. I didn't accuse you of being a racist. I pointed out that I found it curious that your contribution to this thread was a quote from a comedian famous for his vulgarity and use of the N-word.



B. Aristotle was a student of Plato. So your question makes no sense.

In any case, you reply: (1) I don't deserve a response, (2) you're not going to answer me anyway, and (3) then answer my question with a question. Good job, Kellyanne.
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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
Yeah. I always misinterpret the implications.

Right.

If you would bother to source something besides Wikipedia you might get better information than the PC view of Bruce 50 years after the fact. Here's a thought. Read his book.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
Reply to Oddjob (#370799)
Oddjob wrote:
Yeah. I always misinterpret the implications.

Right.

If you would bother to source something besides Wikipedia you might get better information than the PC view of Bruce 50 years after the fact. Here's a thought. Read his book.

A. I do source from other than Wikipedia.

B. Exactly what is wrong with Wikipedia? The facts there are attributed.

C. I do have a copy of the book. I got one after you brought it up. I've read part of it. I haven't read all of it. I don't know that I'll finish it. The first chapter is titled "Blacks". The very first page literally uses the "N-word" 10 times and the second page 21 times more.

D. You still didn't answer my question.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
Reply to Oddjob (#370799)
To refresh your memory, you stated:

"Lenny Bruce, the low-life heroin addict, probably did more and sacrificed more for free speech by accident, than any of the "literary giants" quoted here ever did on purpose.

And I replied:

"How exactly did Lenny Bruce, the vulgar comedian famous for using the "N-word", somehow accomplish more than Plato???"

It's a simple question.
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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
Reply to MilesCity.com Webmaster (#370805)
MilesCity.com Webmaster wrote:


A. I do source from other than Wikipedia.

B. Exactly what is wrong with Wikipedia? The facts there are attributed.

C. I do have a copy of the book. I got one after you brought it up. I've read part of it. I haven't read all of it. I don't know that I'll finish it. The first chapter is titled "Blacks". The very first page literally uses the "N-word" 10 times and the second page 21 times more.

D. You still didn't answer my question.


A) Good for you.

B) Much of it is attributed to unreliable sources. There is a whole lot wrong with Wikipedia. You know how many people here who have had their ass ripped for sourcing Wikipedia. If they get it, you get it.

C) Unbelievable. You are the first one in 12 years who has actually admitted they were motivated to dig into source material for anything I have ever brought up.

I am in awe. Finish the book.

As for your question, I don't remember reading where Plato did any jail time for doing what Plato did. Lenny Bruce did lots of jail time so this guy could do this in public and not get thrown in jail.



Maybe now you get it..
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+8169) 3 months ago
Reply to Oddjob (#370810)
It is pointless to debate you. It appears that you come here to poke with a stick, mostly tossing out unintelligent arguments to deflect later.

From what you've stated, I take it you consider that Lenny Bruce accomplished more than Plato -- because "he did jail time for doing what he did" (not an exact quote - but the general gist of it).

I don't even know how to respond to that. Plato had an instrumental role in the founding of our entire civilization. Socrates, his instructor, who was even more important than Plato, received a death sentence. Here, let me quote Wikipedia for you again:

Wikipedia wrote:
The trial of Socrates (399 BCE) was held to determine the philosopher’s guilt of two charges: asebeia (impiety) against the pantheon of Athens, and corruption of the youth of the city-state; the accusers cited two impious acts by Socrates: “failing to acknowledge the gods that the city acknowledges” and “introducing new deities”.

The death sentence of Socrates was the legal consequence of asking politico-philosophic questions of his students, from which resulted the two accusations of moral corruption and of impiety. At trial, the majority of the dikasts (male-citizen jurors chosen by lot) voted to convict him of the two charges; then, consistent with common legal practice, voted to determine his punishment, and agreed to a sentence of death to be executed by Socrates’s drinking a poisonous beverage of hemlock.

Primary-source accounts of the trial and execution of Socrates are the Apology of Socrates by Plato and the Apology of Socrates to the Jury by Xenophon of Athens, who had been his student; contemporary interpretations include The Trial of Socrates (1988) by the journalist I. F. Stone, and Why Socrates Died: Dispelling the Myths (2009) by the Classics scholar Robin Waterfield.

https://en.wikipedia.org/...f_Socrates

Also, others who were students of Plato were later sentenced to death.

Lenny Bruce pushed the boundaries of free speech. Great. He deserves credit for that. You added George Carlin. Sure. Also great. Why not also add Larry Flynt? Perhaps I should be reading Hustler to also see how he pushed the limits?

In any case, there is absolutely no correlation between the accomplishments of someone like Plato, or Socrates, or Aristotle, or anyone of that like - compared to Lenny Bruce, George Carlin, or Larry Flynt.

Each has had their role in the past, but the two are not comparable in stature, and in case you forgot - the topic of this thread was "Literary Quotes" - not "Quotes of people who pushed free speech to its limits". And even if that were the topic of this thread, I think the dudes that actually risked their lives, and sometimes lost them in the process, while founding civilization would win.

Good day.
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Posted by Oddjob (+105) 3 months ago
I wouldn't get on my case too much about deflecting. The biggest example of that here is you insinuating I'm a racist and then saying you didn't say that.

I guess the only other thing I care to say at this point is that these days I hear a lot more young people talking dirty than I ever hear quoting Plato, so I'd have to take exception to your argument for who's more relevant.
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Posted by Shu (+1214) 3 months ago
I will attempt - probably in vain - to get this thread back on-track with two of my favorite literary quotes:

"Words are like leaves and where they most abound, Much fruit of sense beneath is rarely found."
Alexander Pope, from Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

“Fairness does not govern life and death. If it did, no good person would ever die young.”
Mitch Albom - The Five people you meet in Heaven.

For what it's worth.

[Edited by Shu (2/17/2017 9:35:08 AM)]
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Posted by Gunnar Emilsson (+8774) 3 months ago
“Tomorrow, they will say, ‘Donald Trump rants and raves at the press.’ I’m not ranting and raving. I’m just telling you. You know, you’re dishonest people. But I’m not ranting and raving. I love this. I’m having a good time doing it. But tomorrow, the headlines are going to be, ‘Donald Trump rants and raves.’ I’m not ranting and raving.”

- POTUS, February 16, 2017.
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Posted by Bridgier (+7401) 3 months ago
What would Lenny Bruce think of Milo Yiannopoulos?

Discuss.
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+7722) 3 months ago
“Much has been lost, and there is much yet to lose.”
--Tim Powers, “The Drawing of the Dark”
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Posted by heimer (+89) 2 months ago
"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."
-attributed to Albert Einstein; or Alexander Dumas; or anonymous
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