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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 4:28 pm
by iambiguous
Joan of Arc

All battles are first won or lost, in the mind.

Think about that, Kids.

One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. But to sacrifice what you are and to live without belief, that is a fate more terrible than dying.

Like folks like me have a choice.

It is better to be alone with God. His friendship will not fail me, nor His counsel, nor His love. In His strength, I will dare and dare and dare until I die.

More to the point [alone or not] is she with Him now?

I am not afraid; I was born to do this.

On the other hand, I wasn't.

Hope in God. If you have good hope and faith in Him, you shall be delivered from your enemies.

Theoretically for example.

I die for speaking the language of the angels.

Which prompts one to wonder: What language prevails in Heaven?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 6:37 pm
by iambiguous
Philosophy Tweets

“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.” Daniel J. Boorstin

Here, in other words, the Kids Stuff

“The man of knowledge must be able not only to love his enemies but also to hate his friends.” Friedrich Nietzsche

If the man of knowledge even has any.

“In certain matters the only certainty is that nothing is certain.” Pliny the Elder

He wasn't called the Elder for nothing.

“The world is divided into men who have wit and no religion and men who have religion and no wit.” Avicenna

Roughly as it were.

"In the abstract conception of universal wrong, all concrete responsibility vanishes." Theodor Adorno

You know, with or without God.

"To say 'we' and mean 'I' is one of the most recondite insults." Theodor Adorno

Or sometimes, sure, the least recondite.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 10:57 pm
by iambiguous
Mort Sahl

Liberals feel unworthy of their possessions. Conservatives feel they deserve everything they've stolen.

Sound about right?

There's a danger our fiscal bankruptcy might overtake our moral bankruptcy.

Nope, they're are still basically neck and neck.

There were four million people in the American Colonies and we had Jefferson and Franklin. Now we have over 200 million and the two top guys are Clinton and Dole. What can you draw from this? Darwin was wrong.

Of course now it's Trump and Pence.

In the forties, to get a girl you had to be a GI or a jock. In the fifties, to get a girl you had to be Jewish. In the sixties, to get a girl you had to be black. In the seventies, to get a girl you've got to be a girl.

Now it's all dollars and cents. Girls or boys.

Washington couldn't tell a lie, Nixon couldn't tell the truth, and Reagan couldn't tell the difference.

Where's that put Trump then?

You know what I want you to do? I want you to blow out the candle and curse the darkness.


Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 5:13 pm
by iambiguous
Richard Rorty

A talent for speaking differently, rather than for arguing well is the chief instrument of cultural change.

That and the stuff Marx suggested.

The world is out there, but descriptions of the world are not.

Let's just say this: Some descriptions more than others.

All human relations untouched by love take place in the dark.

That is until love reconfigures into hate.

The world does not speak. Only we do. The world can, once we have programmed ourselves with a language, cause us to hold beliefs. But it cannot propose a language for us to speak. Only other human beings can do that.

Much to the dismay of some more than others.

You read the pragmatists and all you know is: not Descartes, not Kant, not Plato. It's like aspirin. You can't use aspirin to give yourself power, you take it to get rid of headaches. In that way, pragmatism is a philosophical therapy. It helps you stop asking the unhelpful questions.

Then the next thing you know you're an ironist.

The most important advance that the West has yet made is to develop a secularist moral tradition.

Not counting the objectivists of course.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 11:10 pm
by iambiguous
Nikola Tesla

I am credited with being one of the hardest workers and perhaps I am, if thought is the equivalent of labour, for I have devoted to it almost all of my waking hours. But if work is interpreted to be a definite performance in a specified time according to a rigid rule, then I may be the worst of idlers.

We should all be so lucky.

The individual is ephemeral, races and nations come and pass away, but man remains.

But only if you count women.

You may live to see man-made horrors beyond your comprehension.

You may even be a part of them.

The gift of mental power comes from God, Divine Being, and if we concentrate our minds on that truth, we become in tune with this great power. My Mother had taught me to seek all truth in the Bible.

Another one bites the dust, he thought.

But instinct is something which transcends knowledge. We have, undoubtedly, certain finer fibers that enable us to perceive truths when logical deduction, or any other willful effort of the brain, is futile.

Finer fibers. Never heard that before. But point taken.

Most persons are so absorbed in the contemplation of the outside world that they are wholly oblivious to what is passing on within themselves.

Not that literally millions of them have much choice.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 1:48 am
by iambiguous
Philosophy Tweets

"People know what they want because they know what other people want." Theodor Adorno

And how grim is that?

"People have so manipulated the concept of freedom that it finally boils down to the right of the stronger and richer to take from the weaker and poorer whatever they still have." Theodor Adorno

It starts with a C.

"The power of the culture industry's ideology is such that conformity has replaced consciousness." Theodor Adorno

It starts with a C.

"Collective fear stimulates herd instinct, and tends to produce ferocity toward those who are not regarded as members of the herd." Bertrand Russell

Cue Trump and the wall. That and racism.

"The prison begins well before its doors. It begins as soon as you leave your house -- and even before." Michel Foucault

If not [for some] all the way back to the day they were born.

"When it is a question of money, everybody is of the same religion." Voltaire

So, what do you that still true today?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 6:13 pm
by iambiguous
Harlan Coben

Genius is a curse. That's how I look at it. Some think that the brilliant comprehend the universe in a way the rest of us can't. They see the world how it truly is—and that reality is so horrible the lose their minds. Clarity leads to insanity.

Well, he thought, that explains it then: I'm a genius.

Amazing what we can self-rationalize when we really want something.

Either that or not amazing at all.

I don’t regret the things I’ve done. I regret the things I didn’t do when I had the chance.

In other words, don't we all.

That’s the problem with falling in love. It makes you start talking like a bad country song.

Like there actually are good country songs, he snickered.

For a short time, I hated them. But when you think about it, what good does that do? It takes so much to hold on to hate—you lose your grip on what's important, you know?

Of course sometimes it's still worth it.

It was one lesson he never forgot. You don't sit back when you or a loved one is being assaulted. And you don't act like the government with their "proportional responses" and all that nonsense. If someone hurts you, mercy and pity must be put aside. You eliminate the enemy. You scorch the earth.

Anyone here not learned this yet?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:26 pm
by iambiguous
Jim Holt

Gödel’s taste ran in another direction: his favorite movie was Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and when his wife put a pink flamingo in their front yard, he pronounced it furchtbar herzig—“awfully charming.”

I know: what to make of this?

She goes on to recount how she once found the philosopher Richard Rorty standing in a bit of a daze in Davidson’s food market. He told me in hushed tones that he’d just seen Gödel in the frozen food aisle.

I know: what to make of this?

Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils.

Let's be the exceptions.

Suppose there were nothing. Then there would be no laws; for laws, after all, are something. If there were no laws, then everything would be permitted. If everything were permitted, then nothing would be forbidden. So if there were nothing, nothing would be forbidden. Thus nothing is self-forbidding. Therefore, there must be something. QED.

QED my ass.

Bertrand Russell recounts in his autobiography that as an unhappy adolescent he frequently contemplated suicide. But he did not go through with it, he tells us, “because I wished to know more of mathematics.”

Of course with us it was philosophy.

If Einstein had upended our everyday notions about the physical world with his theory of relativity, the younger man, Kurt Gödel, had had a similarly subversive effect on our understanding of the abstract world of mathematics.

And that explains what exactly?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 1:50 am
by iambiguous
Elena Epaneshnik

Sometimes, what stands between two people is the absence of a wall.

In virtual reality of course we don't need walls.

You are only as smart as the number of people whom you've successfully convinced that you are an idiot.

Clearly, she's go that back asswards.

Sometimes, 'beauty will save the world' sounds like a horrible threat.

Still, better beauty than philosophy.

I miss the times when proper Russian was mainly French.

Probably before we were born.

If you're going to read a book on how to live a happier life, I suggest that you skip over all the chapters and move directly to your trash can.

That make anyone happier here?

I am not idle, I'm just passive-progressive.

Is one worse than the other?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:09 am
by Pedro I Rengel
Something, something, whatever.


Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:15 am
by Pedro I Rengel

The two most vital philosophical questions of the Russian intelligentsia:

1. Where does money go;

2. Where does dust come from.

Nice catch, iam.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:59 pm
by iambiguous
Bob Dylan

All I can do is be me, whoever that is.

Of course he's just paraphrasing me.

Art is the perpetual motion of illusion. The highest purpose of art is to inspire. What else can you do? What else can you do for any one but inspire them?

And, if the highest purpose of philosophy is to inspire, well, that's what we do here, right?

Sometimes you just have to bite your upper lip and put sunglasses on.

Or, sometimes, it's other things.

The purpose of art is to stop time.

Does time know that?

I fought with my twin, the enemy within.

Not only that but it rhymes.

There is nothing so stable as change.

It just doesn't seem so at the time.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 10:17 pm
by iambiguous
Werner Twertzog

Why can't I be happy?
Because happiness does not exist.
Why can't I be loved?
Because love does not exist.
What can I do?
Wait awhile, you'll die eventually.

Let's call folks like this the optimists.

God, if he exists, speaks to us in tweets of zero characters.

That's true. I've been counting them.

I am bored with cinema. Does anyone need a 70-something warrior-poet?

Nope. But keep them coming.

Dear Americans: Your vote does not count; it never did, unless you can use a semicolon, which you can't. And, even then, probably not.

Like that will stop them from re-electing Trump.

The more you already have lost, the more prepared you are for what is coming.

Let's just say that I've lost more than you. But, sure, only if that's true.

Generation X: your whole lives have prepared you for leadership in a crumbling civilization, while being ignored in favor of cynical opportunists.

Does that thing actually exist?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 11:05 pm
by iambiguous
Nick Cave

There's an element to songwriting that I can't explain, that comes from somewhere else. I can't explain that dividing line between nothing and something that happens within a song, where you have absolutely nothing, and then suddenly you have something. It's like the origin of the universe.

Let's pin down that dividing line here.

Death looms large I guess because it should. It's the one thing that we as human beings from birth have a right to. It's the only thing we've really got, and I don't mean to sound bleak about this, but it's a unifying factor amongst us all.

Things don't get more natural than that.

I've spent my life butting my head against other people's lack of imagination.

Things don't get more natural than that.

You don't meet a lot of people that you really like. I don't anyway.

Best to just stop meeting them, he thought.

There are methods to creating a mayhem that sounds different from your usual mayhem.

Of course that's good thing, right?

My biggest fear is losing memory because memory is what we are. Your very soul and your very reason to be alive is tied up in memory.

"I" all tangled up [or deconstructed] in that brain thing.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 4:29 pm
by iambiguous
Iggy Pop

Sex may be a little more factual than love. You know whether it's good or bad. You know whether you liked it or not. You're not going to change your mind about it ten years later.

Sounds reasonable to me.

Onstage I've been hit by a grapefruit, beercans, eggs, spit, money, cigarette butts, Mandies, Quaaludes, joints, bras, panties, and a fist.


I'm not a singer, a walking instrument like Aretha Franklin. When you get an Iggy Pop record, you don't get "Iggy Sings."

Sounds like he is though.
But point taken.

I became Iggy because I had a sadistic boss at a record store. I'd been in a band called the Iguanas. And when this boss wanted to embarrass and demean me, he'd say, 'Iggy, get me a coffee, light.'

And it might actually be true.

How am I going to listen to that horrible noise I make without a gram of coke and a couple of double Jack Daniels?

You won't hear me complaining.

My parents wanted to light my artistic candle. But over time, the definition of 'the arts' began to stretch. And as I got older, they suddenly realized, Oh, my God, we're the parents of Iggy Pop.

Imagine then the parents of Tiny Tim. Or, sure, maybe, yours.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:03 pm
by iambiguous
Frans de Waal

The enemy of science is not religion. The true enemy is the substitution of thought, reflection, and curiosity with dogma.

Just not your own, right, Mr. Objectivist?

If we look straight and deep into a chimpanzee's eyes, an intelligent self-assured personality looks back at us. If they are animals, what must we be?

Uh, animals too?

Friedrich Nietzsche, who famously gave us the ‘God is dead’ phrase was interested in the sources of morality. He warned that the emergence of something (whether an organ, a legal institution, or a religious ritual) is never to be confused with its acquired purpose: ‘Anything in existence, having somehow come about, is continually interpreted anew, requisitioned anew, transformed and redirected to a new purpose.’

The first ironist. Or, perhaps, the first famous one?

Perhaps it's just me, but I am wary of any persons whose belief system is the only thing standing between them and repulsive behavior.

Not quite sure how to react to that though.

Being both more systematically brutal than chimps and more empathetic than bonobos, we are by far the most bipolar ape. Our societies are never completely peaceful, never completely competitive, never ruled by sheer selfishness, and never perfectly moral.

Let's just live with it.

We would much rather blame nature for what we don’t like in ourselves than credit it for what we do like.

We? We being who exactly?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:59 am
by iambiguous

Age is just a number. A number that increases by one every year until you die.

Clearly, God is a fucking genius.

If Hell existed it would be inhabited exclusively by those who thought others were going there.

Next up: If Heaven existed.

If anyone ever tells you I talked to them, tell them you talked to Me, and I told you to tell them I wasn't talking to them, and shut up.

Try this and get back to us.

The idea that you evolved from apes is disgusting.
Isn't it nicer to believe you all descended from one couple and their incestuous children?

Uh, let's not go there, right?

Male nipples are unnecessary. As are males.

So, why do men have nipples?

If you think the picture of the black hole is cool, wait till next week, when you get to photograph it from the inside.

Stretched out like spaghetti we're told.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 5:19 pm
by iambiguous
Courtney Love

If you treat a girl like a dog, she is going to piss on you.

Of course if you treat some men like a dog, they might blow you away.

Don't be bitter and mean 'couse you don’t fit in, it’s a GIFT. Look at you. you’ve got your individuality, you don’t have the herd instinct, you can read Neitzsche and understand it. Only dumb people are happy.

Let's call this Courtney at her finest.

On Sofia Coppola's 16th birthday, way back in 1987, I stole a lip gloss from her Sistine Chapel of a bedroom. Years later, I left a Chanel lip gloss in the reception of the Mercer Hotel for her. You know why? I believe that you've got to fix your karma.

You might be imagining a more profound example of this.

Kurt had a lot of German in him. Some Irish. But no Jew. I think that if he had had a little Jew he would have fucking stuck it out.

I guess we'll never know.

He was so gorgeous...Kurt. I don't know how I got lucky that way.

I guess we'll never know.

I like all the angels around because they protect me and my daughter. I mean, her Dad's an angel.

Let's imagine that it's true.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 11:05 pm
by iambiguous
Barbara Kingsolver

Does a man become a revolutionary out of the belief he's entitled to joy rather than submission?

Let's ask the revolutionaries here.
And then the Kids.

I suppose it is in our nature, she said finally. When men fear the loss of what they know, they will follow any tyrant who promises to restore the old order.

Not easy to Trump that, is it?

High fashion has the shelf life of potato salad.

Note, the USDA recommends that if the potato salad was held in excess of 41°F for over two hours, then discard. A couple of things to consider. Did the salad get made up and then refrigerated right away and you just have some leftover? If this is the case then it should easily last 3-4 days.

Why is it that only girls stand on the sides of their feet? As if they're afraid to plant themselves?

Is this actually true?

Sympathizing over the behavior of men is the baking soda of women's friendships, it seems, the thing that makes them bubble and rise.

Not unlike men sympathizing over the behavior of women. Well, if you double it.

You know reviewers, they are the wind in their own sails.

Little puffs now and then.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:07 am
by iambiguous

Artificial intelligence isn't a threat to humanity. Natural stupidity is.

Wow, maybe He does exist!

Next time no assholes.

That means you, Kids.

It’s a well-known fact that the world is full of stupid people, but what may surprise you is you are one of them.

Well, He is omniscient.

The biggest misconception about Me is that I give a shit.

Actually, the biggest misconception [by far] is that He exists.

You should not vaccinate your children unless you are absolutely sure you want them to live.

That won't change their minds, of course.

I never would have made you this smart if I knew you were going to be this stupid.

What's the bastard's point here?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 4:32 pm
by iambiguous
Jackson Pollock

It is only when I lose contact with the painting that the result is a mess. Otherwise there is pure harmony, an easy give and take, and the painting comes out well.

Some of us will never understand this. I know that I don't.

I don't use the accident - 'cause I deny the accident.

Well, good for him.

I don't paint nature. I am nature.

Of course we're all nature.

Modern art to me is nothing more than the expression of contemporary aims of the age we’re living in. All cultures have had means and techniques of expressing their immediate aims – the Chinese, the Renaissance, all cultures. The thing that interests me is that today painters do not have to go to a subject matter outside of themselves. Most modern painters work from a different source, they work from within.

What does this explain? Something between everything and nothing at all.

The pictures I contemplate painting would constitute a halfway state and attempt to point out the direction of the future - without arriving there completely.

What future do we point to here?

The painter locks himself out of his own studio. And then has to break in like a thief.

How dumb is that? At least the part that's not brilliant.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:09 pm
by iambiguous
Jan Mieszkowski

Philosophy 101: I know nothing
Philosophy 201: I know nothing
Philosophy 301: I know nothing
Philosophy 401: I no nothing

Philosophy 501: I know and/or no more than you

On Sunday we mourn
Schopenhauer: the death of reason
Nietzsche: the death of God
Beckett: the death of death
Camus: the high price of cigarettes

Not to mention the other six days for many. If only 52 weeks a year.

Know yourself!
Kant: “Know”?
Fichte: “Self”?
Hegel: “Your”?
Nietzsche: “!”?

Come on, really, who care what Fichte thinks.

Assistant professor: Teach like everyone's watching
Associate professor: Teach like no one's watching
Full professor: Teach like no one -- including you -- is even there

Let's make that apllicable here.

Idealism: I am what I think
Materialism: I think what I am
Psychoanalysis: You aren’t what you think
Existentialism: You can only think what you aren’t, weren’t, and never will be

Though clearly not in that order.

English Lit: You're meeting your archenemy on the bridge
French Lit: You're dueling with your archenemy on the bridge
Russian Lit: You're realizing that your archenemy on the bridge is you

American Lit: ... =Reference

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2019 11:03 pm
by iambiguous
Martin Gardner

All mathematicians share a sense of amazement over the infinite depth and the mysterious beauty and usefulness of mathematics.

I know I would if I were one.

If God creates a world of particles and waves, dancing in obedience to mathematical and physical laws, who are we to say that he cannot make use of those laws to cover the surface of a small planet with living creatures?

Well, who are we to believe in Him?

Biographical history, as taught in our public schools, is still largely a history of boneheads; ridiculous kings and queens, paranoid political leaders, compulsive voyagers, ignorant general the flotsam and jetsam of historical currents. The men who radically altered history, the great scientists and mathematicians, are seldom mentioned, if at all.

Cue, among others, Marx and Engels. And, on the other side, Adam Smith.

The last level of metaphor in the Alice books is this: that life, viewed rationally and without illusion, appears to be a nonsense tale told by an idiot mathematician.

Your job: To make sense of this.

The universe is almost like a huge magic trick and scientists are trying to figure out how it does what it does.

There must be at least a half dozen folks here who will swear that they can tell them.

Mathematics is not only real, but it is the only reality.

Next up: the mathematics of fucking.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 4:23 pm
by iambiguous
Greg Iles

God is all powerful.
God is good.
Evil exists.
You can reconcile any two of those statements, but not all three.

Unless of course God works in mysterious ways.

Let me tell you a secret, Caitlin. We’re still in the cave. It’s just bigger, and we wear nicer clothes.

Let's call them the civilized caves.

You can't build happiness on someone else's pain.

You can if you don't know [or want to know] about it.

Emotions are by nature amorphous. When confined to words, our longings and passions, our rebellions and humiliations often seem melodramatic, trivial, or even pathetic.

I know: in one ear and out the other.

Mothers are fonder than fathers of their children, because they’re more certain they are their own.

That is one way to look at it.

The mills of the gods grind slowly....but they grind to dust.

Of course now there's only one of them.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:07 pm
by iambiguous
Taylor Jenkins Reid

No matter how strong you are, no matter how smart you are or tough you can be, the world will find a way to break you. And when it does, the only thing you can do is hold on.

If only all the way to the grave.

Heartbreak is a loss. Divorce is a piece of paper.

Unless of course it's both.

Just because you can live without someone doesn’t mean you want to.

Unless of course you do.

Make them pay you what they would pay a white man.

Right, as though you always can.

I think you have to have faith in people before they earn it. Otherwise it's not faith, right?

Needless to say: some people more than others.

Be wary of men with something to prove.

More to the point [here]: Beware of the Kids with nothing to prove.