Chamblee54

Seven Brilliant Quotes

Posted in Library of Congress, Quotes by chamblee54 on September 12, 2021











There is a little graphic floating around, Seven Brilliant Quotes. Some find these sayings to be inspirational. PG smells a rat. Here are the seven quotes:

William Shakespeare – Never play with the feelings of others because you may win the game but the risk is that you will surely lose the person for a life time.
Napoleon Bonaparte – The world suffers a lot. Not because of the violence of bad people, but because of the silence of good people.
Albert Einstein – I am thankful to all those who said NO to me. Its because of them I did it myself.
Abraham Lincoln – If friendship is your weakest point then you are the strongest person in the world.
Martin Luther King Jr. – We must learn to live together as brothers or we will perish together as fools.
Mahatma Gandhi – The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
Abdul Kalaam – It is very easy to defeat someone, but it is very hard to win someone.

If nothing else, research into the veracity of these quotes should provide some amusing text to go between the pictures. When you go looking in the land of google, there is no telling what you will find. During this expedition, the first page rule will be in effect. Only results on the first google page will be considered. The NB quote has 1.7 million results, which is too much work.

Lets begin with Willie the shake. Did he really say “Never play with the feelings of others because you may win the game but the risk is that you will surely lose the person for a life time.”? Or, as they say in the Yahoo village, Does anyone know where this Shakespeare quote comes from?

hugeshantz Does anyone know where this Shakespeare quote comes from? I’ve seen this quote all over the internet, always attributed to Shakespeare, but I can’t find a legitimate source of where it comes from (i.e. a specific sonnet, play, speech, etc.): “Never play….” Can anyone help me out here?

Dude the Obscure This is 20th/21st century psychobabble. Shakespeare never wrote anything remotely resembling that. Please never trust any of these idiotic “internet quote sites.” They are all, all, all crap. I can’t believe that any intelligent person could think for a minute that this was written by Shakespeare. Really. Get some critical-thinking skills, child.

The next quote is by Napoleon Bonaparte, not Napoleon Dynamite. “The world suffers a lot. Not because of the violence of bad people, but because of the silence of good people.”

Before we consider the veracity of this quote, lets consider two things. NB did not speak english, so there is likely to be translation confusion. Second, the wars NB started caused widepread suffering. Little of this suffering was caused by the silence of good people.

The sources on page one do little except show the quote, usually with the credit going to NB. No one shows when or where he said it, or in what context. Brainyquotes doea not show it on the NB pages.

Number three is from Albert Einstein.” I am thankful to all those who said NO to me. Its because of them I did it myself.” According to Shelly Winters, Marilyn Monroe did not say no to Dr. Einstein. Google has a doozy of a forum, Misquoting Einstein?.

Jimmy Snyder says the quote has been attributed to Dorothy Parker, Yogi Berra, William Shakespeare, The Bible, Benjamin Franklin, and Groucho Marx. This is a clue that the quote is bogus.

zoobyshoe’s I just found this an another wiki page discussing the quote page: “I am thankful …” This is being attributed to Einstein on the Internet, but it appears to come from Wayne W. Dyer’s book You’ll See It When You Believe It, page 54, according to Google Books. Dyer does not attribute it to Einstein, but mentions Einstein in the same paragraph. “In my office I have two framed posters. One is a picture of Albert Einstein, beneath which are the words “Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.” The other poster is made up solely of words: “I am grateful to all those people who said no. It is because of them I did it myself.” Great thoughts!”

Ryan_m_b’s “Never believe quotes you read on the internet” – Winston Churchill zoobyshoe’s His actual words were: “The internet has nothing to offer, but blood, tears, toil, and misquotes.”

It should not be surprising that Winston Churchill finds his way into this discussion. He has a taste for the spotlight, even 47 years after his demise. He is an example of how truthiness is sometimes all you need. His most famous speech was a radio address during a bad part of World War Two. The speech was read by an actor. England was inspired, and went on to win the war. Why should anyone worry if an actor gave his speech for him?

This is enough fun for one day. There will be a part two soon, and it will probably be full of number two. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress.











Welcome to part two of the Chamblee54 due diligence report on the Seven Brilliant Quotes. In part one, we checked out the first three. At no time was a source for the quote found. All three are suspect, with “misunderstanding” indicated in the Albert Einstein quote. It is amazing how quickly accepted these sayings are by the inspiration hungry public.

Getting back to business, did Abraham Lincoln say “If friendship is your weakest point then you are the strongest person in the world.” There are lots of links to this quote, in a variety of fonts and colors. Some have spectacular photography in the background. However, none of these links has a source for this quote, or any indication of the context.

Wikiquotes has 43,444 words about Abraham Lincoln. PG copied these words, and did a search for the word “friendship”. The quote from the poster was not found. The meme is missing. This wikiquotes test has been very useful for checking out quotes. It is not authoritative, but is a good place to start.

This type of research can be frustrating. Being inspired by beautiful words can give you strength and purpose. It can also make you feel foolish, when the lovely words are revealed to be lies. Being a cynic gets lonely. Children of all ages don’t like to be told that there is no Santa Claus.

The good news is that number five is for real. Martin Luther King gave a speech at Western Michigan University in 1963. There is a probably his standard speech, given many times. The second section of the speech is “Call for action.”

“The world in which we live is geographically one. Now we are challenged to make it one in terms of brotherhood. Now through our ethical and moral commitment, we must make of it a brotherhood. We must all learn to live together as brothers or we will perish together as fools. This is the great challenge of the hour. This is true of individuals. It is true of nations. No individual can live alone. No nation can live alone.”

“I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality. [W]e’re challenged after working in the realm of ideas, to move out into the arena of social action and to work passionately and unrelentingly to make racial justice a reality.”

“[W]e must never substitute a doctrine of Black supremacy for white supremacy. For the doctrine of Black supremacy is as dangerous as white supremacy. God is not interested merely in the freedom of black men and brown men and yellow men but God is interested in the freedom of the whole human race, the creation of a society where all men will live together as brothers.”

PG has written about the problem of quoting Mohandas Gandhi before. Supposedly he said “I love your Christ, but I dislike your Christianity.” PG thinks this is a fabrication.

The quote on the poster is “The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” Wikiquotes has a link to Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi Online. The next stop is page 302 of this section. Mr. Gandhi gave an “Interview to the press” in Karachi, on March 26, 1931. A freedom fighter named Bhagat Singh had been executed by the British three days earlier.

Do you not think it impolitic to forgive a government which has been guilty of a thousand murders?
I do not know a single instance where forgiveness has been found so wanting as to be impolitic.
But no country has ever shown such forgiveness as India is showing to Britain?
That does not affect my reply. What is true of individuals is true of nations. One cannot forgive too much. The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.

The bottom line is from Dr. Abdul Kalam. (The name is misspelled on the poster.) The phrase is “It is very easy to defeat someone, but it is very hard to win someone.” Many viewers have no idea who this person is. Once again, Wikiquotes comes to the rescue. “Dr. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam (born 15 October 1931) Indian scientist and engineer; 11th President of India; generally referred to as Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.” The quotes are from Wings of Fire: An Autobiography of APJ Abdul Kalam.

A search for the word “defeat” did not show results. A search for “win” shows a few, but not the poster child. The phrase on the poster is also credited to John Keats. There is also the story of the student who argues with an atheist professor, and ultimately wins. The student is sometimes said to be Albert Einstein. In this version, Argumnent : What, Who is GOD?, the coda is “This seems to be a true story, and the student was none other than APJ Abdul Kalam, the former President of India “.

The research for part one consisted of entering the quote into a search engine. It was not until the Lincoln investigation that the method of copying wikiquote, and searching for a key word, was discovered. Out of a sense of fairness, the first three quotes will be investigated using this method.

For William Shakespeare, the search word was risk. There were no results. For Napoleon Bonaparte, the search word was violence. There was one result. “There is no such thing as an absolute despotism; it is only relative. A man cannot wholly free himself from obligation to his fellows, and not the one on the poster. For Albert Einstein, the search word was thankful. There were no results.

So, there are seven quotes in the motivational poster. Only two of the seven have a apparent source. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress. This is a repost. This version is edited, out of concern for the attention span of the audience.










Intellectual Bulimia

Posted in Georgia History, GSU photo archive, Quotes, Race by chamblee54 on August 31, 2021

LBCB001-013az

LBCB001-071az

LBCB012-147az

LBCB029-003az

LBCB092-019bz

LBCB092-019bza

LBCB093-064bz

LBCB093-064cz


One of the touted TED talks in the weekly email is Color blind or color brave? It is by Mellody Hobson, a POC in the investment business. It is the standard call to talk more about race. Talk, talk, talk, and talk some more. The word listen is not used.

At the 3:13 mark, Mrs. Hobson makes a remarkable statement. “Now I know there are people out there who will say that the election of Barack Obama meant that it was the end of racial discrimination for all eternity, right?” (Yes, this is a TED talk.) It is possible that someone has said that. There are also people who say the earth is flat.

PG asked Mr. Google about this. The top two results are about the TED talk. The third result is an article in Forbes magazine, Racism In America Is Over. It is written by John McWhorter, one of the “black guys at Bloggingheads.tv.” Dr. McWhorter does say racism is over, sort of. The problems that remain are a lot worse. Too much food for thought, for a population with intellectual bulimia.

There is a quote in the Forbes article that is pure gold.
“When decrying racism opens no door and teaches no skill, it becomes a schoolroom tattletale affair. It is unworthy of all of us: “He’s just a racist” intoned like “nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah!””
There are a lot more results. PG is getting tired of looking. If you want to see for yourself, google “the election of Barack Obama meant that it was the end of racial discrimination for all eternity.” Except for a rogue title editor at Forbes, almost nobody has said that. This is a repost. Pictures today are from “The Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

N03-038_az

N05-030_az

N05-030_bz

N05-030_cz

N05-122_az

N29-139_az

N30-184_az

N31-216_az

The Playboy Interview Bob Dylan

Posted in Library of Congress, Music, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on July 30, 2021


The Notorious 1966 Playboy Interview -Bob Dylan turned up in the youtubeque the other day. The speaker bought a copy of the magazine online … “I’m one of the few people who can say I bought it for the article and be honest.” A quick google search turned up PLAYBOY INTERVIEW: BOB DYLAN February 1966. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress.

The winter of 1966 was a different time. Mr. Dylan released Bringing It All Back Home and Highway 61 Revisited in 1965, with Blonde on Blonde to follow in 1966. He shot a screen test for Andy Warhol, and met Edie Sedgwick. Winter of 1966 saw America one year into the escalation of the War in Vietnam. The times they were a changin’.

The interview is not a linear Q&A. The entertainer takes a question from Nat Hentoff, and then says whatever feels right to say. This video, Bob Dylan San Francisco Press Conference 1965, is more of the same. Maybe the best way to approach this is with a few quotes.

PLAYBOY: In recent years, according to some critics, jazz has lost much of its appeal to the younger generation. Do you agree? DYLAN: I don’t think jazz has ever appealed to the younger generation. Anyway, I don’t really know who this younger generation is. I don’t think they could get into a jazz club anyway. But jazz is hard to follow; I mean you actually have to like jazz to follow it: and my motto is, never follow anything. I don’t know what the motto of the younger generation is, but I would think they’d have to follow their parents. I mean, what would some parent say to his kid if the kid came home with a glass eye, a Charlie Mingus record and a pocketful of feathers? He’d say, “Who are you following?” And the poor kid would have to stand there with water in his shoes, a bow tie on his ear and soot pouring out of his belly button and say, “Jazz, Father, I’ve been following jazz.” And his father would probably say, “Get a broom and clean up all that soot before you go to sleep.” Then the kid’s mother would tell her friends, “Oh yes, our little Donald, he’s part of the younger generation, you know.” … As far as folk and folk-rock are concerned, it doesn’t matter what kind of nasty names people invent for the music. It could be called arsenic music, or perhaps Phaedra music. I don’t think that such a word as folk-rock has anything to do with it. And folk music is a word I can’t use. Folk music is a bunch of fat people. I have to think of all this as traditional music. Traditional music is based on hexagrams. It comes about from legends, Bibles, plagues, and it revolves around vegetables and death. There’s nobody that’s going to kill traditional music. All these songs about roses growing out of people’s brains and lovers who are really geese and swans that turn into angels – they’re not going to die. It’s all those paranoid people who think that someone’s going to come and take away their toilet paper – they’re going to die. …

PLAYBOY: Mistake or not, what made you decide to go the rock-‘n’-roll route? DYLAN: Carelessness. I lost my one true love. I started drinking. The first thing I know, I’m in a card game. Then I’m in a crap game. I wake up in a pool hall. Then this big Mexican lady drags me off the table, takes me to Philadelphia. She leaves me alone in her house, and it burns down. I wind up in Phoenix. I get a job as a Chinaman. I start working in a dime store, and move in with a 13-year-old girl. Then this big Mexican lady from Philadelphia comes in and burns the house down. I go down to Dallas. I get a job as a “before” in a Charles Atlas “before and after” ad. I move in with a delivery boy who can cook fantastic chili and hot dogs. Then this 13-year-old girl from Phoenix comes and burns the house down. The delivery boy – he ain’t so mild: He gives her the knife, and the next thing I know I’m in Omaha. It’s so cold there, by this time I’m robbing my own bicycles and frying my own fish. I stumble onto some luck and get a job as a carburetor out at the hot-rod races every Thursday night. I move in with a high school teacher who also does a little plumbing on the side, who ain’t much to look at, but who’s built a special kind of refrigerator that can turn newspaper into lettuce. Everything’s going good until that delivery boy shows up … he burned the house down, and I hit the road. The first guy that picked me up asked me if I wanted to be a star. What could I say? PLAYBOY: And that’s how you became a rock-‘n’-roll singer? DYLAN: No, that’s how I got tuberculosis. …

PLAYBOY: How do you feel about those who have risked imprisonment by burning their draft cards to signify their opposition to U. S. involvement in Vietnam, and by refusing – as your friend Joan Baez has done – to pay their income taxes as a protest against the Covernment’s expenditures on war and weaponry? Do you think they’re wasting their time? DYLAN: Burning draft cards isn’t going to end any war. It’s not even going to save any lives. If someone can &el more honest with himself by burning his draft card, then that’s great; but if he’s just going to feel more important because he does it, then that’s a drag. I really don’t know too much about Joan Baez and her income-tax problems. The only thing I can tell you about Joan Baez is that she’s not Belle Starr. …

PLAYBOY: Writing about “beard-wearing draft-card burners and pacifist income-tax evaders,” one columnist called such protesters “no less outside society than the junkie, the homosexual or the mass murderer.” What’s your reaction? DYLAN: I don’t believe in those terms. They’re too hysterical. They don’t describe anything. Most people think that homosexual, gay, queer, queen, faggot are all the same words. Everybody thinks that a junkie is a dope freak. As far as I’m concerned, I don’t consider myself outside of anything. I just consider myself not around. …

PLAYBOY: Paranoia is said to be one of the mental states sometimes induced by such hallucinogenic drugs as peyote and LSD. Considering the risks involved, do you think that experimentation with such drugs should be part of the growing up experience for a young person? DYLAN: I wouldn’t advise anybody to use drugs – certainly not the hard drugs; drugs are medicine. But opium and hash and pot – now, those things aren’t drugs; they just bend your mind a little. I think everybody’s mind should be bent once in a while. Not by LSD, though. LSD is medicine – a different kind of medicine. It makes you aware of the universe, so to speak; you realize how foolish objects are. But LSD is not for groovy people; it’s for mad, hateful people who want revenge. It’s for people who usually have heart attacks. They ought to use it at the Geneva Convention. …

PLAYBOY: Did you ever have the standard boyhood dream of growing up to be President? DYLAN: No. When I was a boy, Harry Truman was President; who’d want to be Harry Truman?

Never Doubt

Posted in Library of Congress, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on July 24, 2021


“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” This chestnut appeared in an email, promoting an event. PG heard a podcast last year, about another Margaret Mead story. Readers of this blog know where this is going.

@anthroreviewed “Did Margaret Mead really say that thing about broken femurs and civilization that is (once again) making the rounds online? Also, are healed femurs a marker of civilization? No. And no. As explore in the second half of this episode… “ A blog post, That Margaret Mead quote, goes into more detail about both stories.

“It’s interesting the quotes that are attributed to Margaret Mead – another is “Never doubt that a small group of people can change the world – indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” … Both are things she could have said, given her personality, but neither is fully attributed – the first instance of the story above is in Dr. Ira Byock’s 2012 book on palliative care, and the above quote only attributed to her, four years after her death, by the author of a fairly hippie-ish book on paths to world peace.”

“This quote (about the femur) has been going around Facebook since mid-March, probably encouraged by this Twitter thread, this FB post, and this article in Forbes, none of which are by archaeologists/anthropologists.”

When the bs detector started dinging, results are just a few clicks away. Highlight the suspicious quote. Right click, choose “Search Google for …,” and wait 0.51 seconds. When one of the results is a story at Quote Investigator®, you have a winner.

When people get caught peddling bogus quotes, they often say that even if the attribution is false, the words are true. What about the featured quote today? It sounds good, and is great for promoting attendance at an event. But is it the truth?

Look at the 9/11 attacks. They did change the world. While it is true that nineteen men pulled off the caper, they had a lot of help. Somebody financed the operation. Other people built the airliners, and the airports where they took off. Somebody dug an oil well, pumped the crude oil, shipped the crude oil to a refinery, and produced the explosive jet fuel that propelled the attacks. In fact, it was the profits from pumping that oil that financed the attacks. “A small group of thoughtful, committed citizens” flew a plane, that someone else built, into the World Trade Center. They were not “the only thing that ever has.” Pictures today are from The Library of Congress.

The Covid Debt

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Politics, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on May 27, 2021


“Blessed are the young, for they shall inherit the national debt.” Herbert Hoover said this, at the Nebraska Republican Conference, January 16,1936. In 1936, the national debt was $33.7 billion. This was during the depression, when the government was trying to revive the economy. When Mr. Hoover was President, in 1932, the debt was $19.4 billion.

The national debt today is $28.2 trillion. This is 855 times the debt in 1932. The government likes to spend more money than it has.

2020 was a big year for the national debt. When covid hit, the economy shut down. The government went on a spending spree. The resulting budget deficit (the amount added onto the national debt) for fiscal year 2020 is estimated to be $3.7 trillion. The fiscal year is October 1 through September.

$3.7 trillion is larger than the total national debt in 1991, $3.666 trillion. $3.7 trillion works out to $71.1 billion per week, $10.1 billion per day, $422.3 million per hour. This does not include government spending covered by tax revenue.

“A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking real money.” This gem is credited to the late Everett Dirkson, Republican Senator from Illinois. In 1965, the photogenic Senator was losing sleep over raising the national debt to $328 billion.

A billion is a difficult number to comprehend. A billion seconds ago, it was 1989. A billion minutes ago, the Roman empire flourished. (There are 24 hours/1440 minutes in a day. There are 525,600 minutes in a non-leap year.) Pictures today are from The Library of Congress. These men were soldiers in the War Between the States. In 1865, the national debt was $2.6 billion.

Always Take Sides

Posted in Commodity Wisdom, Library of Congress, Quotes by chamblee54 on May 14, 2021


“… always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.” This meme, illustrated by the gnomic face of Elie Wiesel, turns up on facebook a lot. (Elie Wiesel is pronounced like Elly Mae Clampett) Some find it inspiring. Others think it is simplistic and manipulative.

There are two questions. Did Mr. Wiesel say that? What was the context? The quote appears in the acceptance speech for the 1986 Nobel Peace Prize. The next sentence is “Sometimes we must interfere.” We immediately go from the absolute always, to the conditional sometimes. That is progress, even if it does not fit on a bumper sticker.

“Elie Wiesel was born in Sighet, Romania, in 1928. … In May 1944, Wiesel was deported to the Auschwitz concentration camp along with his parents and his sisters. Wiesel and his father were slave laborers at Auschwitz. His father died in January 1945 during a forced march to another camp, Buchenwald, and his mother and younger sister were murdered as well. After the war, Wiesel moved to France, where he worked as a journalist.”

The Israel-Palestine problem was just as vexing in 1986 as today. Here is what Mr. Wiesel said in his speech. “More people are oppressed than free. And then, too, there are the Palestinians to whose plight I am sensitive but whose methods I deplore. Violence and terrorism are not the answer. Something must be done about their suffering, and soon. I trust Israel, for I have faith in the Jewish people. Let Israel be given a chance, let hatred and danger be removed from her horizons, and there will be peace in and around the Holy Land.”

Who is the oppressor in the Middle East, and who is the victim? Many sides can make a case for their cause. Who is the better at persuasion? Who is better at playing the shady game of influence, and money. Often, more noise encourages the tormentor. The answer to age old conflicts is seldom found in bumper stickers, or facebook memes.

“… to whose plight I am sensitive but whose methods I deplore.” “Always take sides” means that you pick one side in a conflict, and use the tools of rhetoric to promote that cause. It can be tough to tell the good guys from the bad guys. Human suffering is human suffering. Simplistic rhetoric is *never* the answer.

In 1986, the Iran-Iraq war was raging. Hundreds of thousands of men died. Many said the war was allowed to go on intentionally. Allegedly, if Iran and Iraq were not fighting each other, they would be fighting Israel. The United States was allied with Iraq, while making arms deals with Iran. Israeli dealers participated in the United States-Iran arms trading. The profits from those deals went to supply terrorists in Central America. “Sometimes we must interfere.”

Pictures today are from The Library of Congress. This is a repost.

Truth About Opinions

Posted in Library of Congress, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on May 11, 2021






Chamblee54 is normally a profanity free blog. However, for this piece, certain cuss words are essential to the free flow of information. In other words IF YOU DON’T LIKE CUSS WORDS, YOU DO NOT NEED TO READ THE TEXT.

Once, when his blog was active, a radio whiner referred to a study, that said that one third of all people were not qualified to have opinions. This was said before a commercial break, without saying why this percentage should be without opinions. Possible reasons would be lack of education, inability to think critically, or a disturbing tendency to disagree with the person doing the study.

Opinion is derived from “1250-1300; Middle English < Old French < Latin opīniōn- (stem of opīniō), derivative of opīnārī to opine.” In other words, the verb for sharing these thoughts is the namesake of the idea. The anagram of opinion is onion pi. The Power Thesaurus has 1,326 synonyms for opinion. Many are notoriously anal, like assumption. Or the sister of suppository, supposition.

“Opinions are like assholes, everybody’s got theirs .” The truth is, opinions have more in common with the waste that comes out of the anal sphincter, than the port of exit. Feces (thesis) is the product of food fed into the digestive system. Opinions are the result of information (and misinformation) fed into the thought system. Doodoo is influenced by the digestive system, like opinions are influenced by the attitudes, and thought patterns, of the individual. They all stink.

“Four Jews, Five opinions” is another crowd pleaser, like “You are entitled to your opinion.” The latter is usually said when you disagree with what you have just heard. When a Court of Law issues a ruling, it is called an opinion. Sometimes, a justice will write a dissenting opinion. When getting a provider to pay for a procedure, you often need to get a second opinion.

Opinions are frequently more valued by the giver than by the receiver . Some opinions are best kept to the owner. You should be wary of someone who feels that his shit does not stink, because he will usually feel the same about his opinions. You don’t have to have an opinion about everything. Many things are beyond or control, or do not interest you. Also, you should be wary of those who try to “fire up” your opinions. Often these people do not have the best of motives.

Opinions are seldom humble, no matter what the owner of the opinion might say. In fact, the act of holding an opinion is often self aggrandizing, and contrary to humility. Opinions are seen as a way of asserting ones individuality. Many people have lives of quiet desperation, full of struggle and turmoil. There are many situations where what the individual thinks is simply useless to the powers that be. In times like this, having opinions can restore a sense of self worth to the individual. I am somebody. I have my opinion. This does not mean that anyone is listening.

This is a repost with pictures from The Library of Congress. U.S.S. Brooklyn, after supper Edward H. Hart was the photographer, working for Detroit Publishing Co. The picture was taken between 1896 and 1899. The pictures are more reliable than the text.




Winston Churchill Said What

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Quotes, War by chamblee54 on May 8, 2021


Another ghastly meme has surfaced on facebook. It has a large fuchsia quote mark for illustration. There is a quote from a famous man. The left side has a quote mark. The right side has a question mark, but no quote mark. The margins are much larger on the top, and left side, than on the right side, and the bottom. That this visual atrocity supports funding for the arts is a cruel irony.

Perhaps instead of the arts, the government funding should go for fact checking. The quote is generally considered to be bogus. For the record, here is the quote. “When Winston Churchill was asked to cut arts funding in favour of the war effort, he simply replied, “then what are we fighting for?” The quote is not in the Churchill archive, which is either fifteen million documents, or fifteen million words. The authorities use the figures interchangeably.

The Telegraph has an article debunking the meme. It has a splendid sentence: “But that anecdote does not so easily play into the screeching rhetoric of today’s 140-character political ding-dongs.” There are also some lovely quotes from Mr. Churchill.

pink quote marks01 In 1937, Mr. Churchill spoke before the Peel Commission It was discussing “partitioning British mandated Palestine into Arab and Jewish states.” At the time, Mr. Churchill was a minor figure in British politics, disgraced by his blundering in the Great War. The quote: “I do not agree that the dog in a manger has the final right to the manger even though he may have lain there for a very long time. I do not admit that right. I do not admit for instance, that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America or the black people of Australia. I do not admit that a wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher-grade race, a more worldly wise race to put it that way, has come in and taken their place.”

Winston Churchill is quite the quote magnet. This is somehow fitting for a man whose most famous speech was read, on the radio, by an actor. There is a page on the internet devoted to times when he was falsely accused of saying something inspiring.

One of these stories is notable. “The only traditions of the Royal Navy are rum, sodomy and the lash… Churchill’s assistant, Anthony Montague-Browne said that although Churchill had not uttered these words, he wished he had.” This is a repost, with pictures from The Library of Congress.

Marilyn Truther

Posted in Book Reports, Library of Congress, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on May 2, 2021


Marilyn Monroe was photographed reading Ulysses, the famously difficult book by James Joyce. 63 years later, a man posted the picture on twitter, while promoting a study course on Ulysses. If Marilyn read it, then you can too! PG said something uncooperative, and a brief twitter fight broke out. Since the Ulysses dude, and his tweeting buddy, did not give permission, they will not be quoted here. One exception, the titular “Marilyn Truther,” was coined by the study course promoter.

@chamblee54 It was a joke, at one time, to give models a book to pose with. It was considered funny to give them a difficult book like “Ulysses” ~ Who needs to show a citation? I may be wrong. I asked Mr. Google, and found this. ~ According to photographer, she did not read it from start to finish. A more accurate answer is that she read parts of it Story by photographer should not be taken as unchallenged truth, but it is all we have I should have researched this before i spoke. Did you? ~ I had read that about other models. I also read numerous quotes, attributed to Marilyn, that proved to be phony. Photography is a medium open to manipulation, and creation of fantasy. Just because you see a picture, that does not mean it happened. ~ Eve Arnold… a woman … took that picture. How do we know Marilyn told the truth? Maybe Marilyn was just trying to make a good impression on the lady. Would Marilyn have said the same thing if the photographer was a man?

PG disputed that Marilyn Monroe had read Ulysses, and will never know for sure either way. He was not the first person to wonder about this. “Richard Brown, a Professor of Modern Literature at the University of Leeds with a special interest in James Joyce, was intrigued by Eve Arnold’s photos of Marilyn. Curious to know if Marilyn was indeed reading Joyce’s novel or if she was merely posing for the photo, Brown wrote Arnold a letter, which she replied on 20 July 1993. Unfortunately, I don’t have Arnold’s complete letter to show you … In any case, the excerpt from Arnold’s letter is interesting as she was telling Brown exactly what he wanted to know”:

“We worked on a beach on Long Island. She was visiting Norman Rosten the poet…. I asked her what she was reading when I went to pick her up (I was trying to get an idea of how she spent her time). She said she kept Ulysses in her car and had been reading it for a long time. She said she loved the sound of it and would read it aloud to herself to try to make sense of it — but she found it hard going. She couldn’t read it consecutively. When we stopped at a local playground to photograph she got out the book and started to read while I loaded the film. So, of course, I photographed her. It was always a collaborative effort of photographer and subject where she was concerned — but almost more her input.” “Quoted in Richard Brown, “Marilyn Monroe Reading Ulysses: Goddess or Postcultural Cyborg?”, in R. B. Kershner (Ed), Joyce and Popular Culture, p. 174.”

“Monroe is reading the 1934 Random House edition, with the dust jacket removed. This is the edition that was famously set from a pirate version containing numerous errors. This defect notwithstanding, the dust-jacket artwork and typographic design by Ernst Reichl constitute one of the great works in the history of book design.”

What does this say about a screen icon who died in 1962? Maybe she was smarter than your typical dumb blonde. Maybe not. Marilyn had an instinct for the camera, and looking good on the screen brought joy to millions of fans. Is this post mortem resurrection, as an intellectual philosopher, merely another fantasy concocted by well meaning fans? Pictures never lie, and there is a picture of Marilyn, reading Ulysses, with a serious look on her pretty face. Of course it is real! A fantasy involving Norma Jean Baker Marilyn Monroe? How absurd! As long as the merchandise is paid for, and the instagrammers inspired, should we even care?

The cult of Marilyn has shown up on chamblee54 before. “Someone told me that Marilyn Monroe once remarked that she enjoyed reading poetry “because it saves time.” I like this quotation so much that I’ve never dared to confirm it; I’d feel disenchanted to learn it was bogus.” This search for authenticity led to a forum called Data Lounge… “… get your fix of gay gossip, news and pointless bitchery.” The “Marilyn: Smart or Stupid” debate rages through 200 comments, reaching a peak at comment 196. “Yes MM said every one of those quotes by herself! … But I’m worried for her, cause She’s my main spirit guide and Saviour and she recently commanded me to share this message! …

In 2014, a facebook notice appeared. It was promoting a blog post by known idiot Matt Walsh. “If you can’t accept me at my worst, then you don’t deserve me at my best.”… “the original quote is from Marilyn Monroe. It’s even more vapid and nauseating when taken in its full context: “I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.” Out of all the profundities ever uttered, what does it say about our society that THIS is the quote we’ve decided to take to heart?” It is generally accepted that Marilyn did not say that. The top debunker is now a malware distributor, and not available for viewing. Somehow, that seems appropriate.

Pictures today are from the Library of Congress. “Listening to speeches at mass meeting of Works Progress Administration (WPA) workers protesting congressional cut of relief appropriations. San Francisco, California.” Photographer: Dorothea Lange February 1939. This is a repost

I’m Here To Help

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Politics, Quotes by chamblee54 on May 1, 2021


Two popular quotes have surprising back stories. One is by President Ronald W. Reagan: “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” The other is from Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.: “The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic.”

@HayesBrown “the funny thing about this quote: Reagan said it during a press conference where he was calling for more federal funding to help out struggling farmers” @HayesBrown “Reagan giving that quote was literally him going “okay, yeah, i’m for smaller govt, but until we get my ideas passed, we are gonna spend SO MUCH MONEY helping out farmers” and now it gets trotted out… to argue against federal aid, period”

“Some sectors of our farm economy are hurting … Our ultimate goal, of course, is economic independence for agriculture and, through steps like the tax-reform bill, we seek to return farming to real farmers. But until we make that transition, the government must act compassionately and responsibly. … In order to see farmers through these tough times, our administration has committed record amounts of assistance, spending more in this year alone than any previous administration spent during its entire tenure. … The message in all this is very simple: America’s farmers should know that our commitment to helping them is unshakable. As long as I’m in Washington, their concerns are going to be heard and acted upon.”

The rest of the prepared statement features a fun quote. “One other brief point: tomorrow, the Senate will cast a crucial vote. The question is that of assistance to the freedom fighters, who are trying to bring democracy to Nicaragua where a communist regime, a client state of the Soviet Union, has taken over. The question before the Senate is: Will it vote for democracy in Central America and the security of our own borders, or will it vote to passively sit by while the Soviets make permanent their military beachhead on the mainland of North America?”

The press conference took place August 12, 1986, in Chicago IL. On November 3, 1986, “the Lebanese magazine Ash-Shiraa … reported that the United States had been secretly selling arms to Iran … in a bid to secure the release of seven American hostages being held by pro-Iranian groups in Lebanon.” On November 25, 1986, “Attorney General Edwin Meese revealed that, on White House orders, the proceeds of secret arms sales to Iran were illegally diverted to fund the Contras — Nicaraguan rebels waging a guerrilla war to overthrow that country’s elected leftist regime.” The resulting Iran-Contra scandal dominated the Reagan administration for the next few months.

@ggreenwald The pro-censorship cliché “can’t yell fire in a crowded theater” comes from a now-discredited 1919 SupCt case upholding Woodrow Wilson prosecution of socialists under *The Espionage Act* for the “crime” of opposing a US role WW1. Why would you want to attach yourself to that? @ggreenwald The set of cases from which that cliché emerged is one of the most shameful in US Supreme Court history, designed to criminalize dissent. For that reason, it’s embarrassing but revealing when censors invoke it because that’s their real mentality.

SCHENCK v. UNITED STATES was the case. “During World War I, socialists Charles Schenck and Elizabeth Baer distributed leaflets declaring that the draft violated the Thirteenth Amendment prohibition against involuntary servitude. The leaflets urged the public to disobey the draft, but advised only peaceful action. Schenck was charged with conspiracy to violate the Espionage Act of 1917 by attempting to cause insubordination in the military and to obstruct recruitment. Schenck and Baer were convicted of violating this law and appealed …

The Court held that the Espionage Act did not violate the First Amendment and was an appropriate exercise of Congress’ wartime authority. Writing for a unanimous Court, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes concluded that courts owed greater deference to the government during wartime, even when constitutional rights were at stake. … Holmes reasoned that the widespread dissemination of the leaflets was sufficiently likely to disrupt the conscription process. Famously, he compared the leaflets to falsely shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theatre, which is not permitted under the First Amendment.”

There were a couple of other cases. If you have a lot of free time, you can read about it here. Included is one charming quote: “Famed socialist Eugene V. Debs was sentenced to ten years in prison for a speech that Holmes summarized at length (are there any short socialist speeches?) in support of the basis for Debs’ conviction.”

Pictures, of soldiers in the War Between the States, are from The Library of Congress. On April 2, 2021, Radiolab presented What Up Holmes, about free speech opinions written by Justice Holmes. The show did not mention “falsely shouting fire in a theatre.”

Thomas Jefferson Said What?

Posted in History, Library of Congress, Politics, Quotes by chamblee54 on April 17, 2021

“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.” Desmond Tutu. Some lines sound good, but don’t hold up to a bit of thinking. Desmond Tutu may very well have said it. (or maybe one of his rivals said it, and Mr. Tutu copied it.) The quote has been attributed to Thomas Jefferson, Edmund Burke, Patrick Henry, and probably others. Almost no one has a source, for the quote, from the dead white guys.
A post called MISQUOTING THE FOUNDERS did not mince words.
“The only problem … is that Thomas Jefferson never said that, never wrote that, and quite possibly never thought it. … Right now if I Google “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent” the entire first page of results wrongly attribute it to Thomas Jefferson. The quote and its many variants have been attributed in the past to Thomas Paine and Edmund Burke, but no record exists of the quote in any of their writings or contemporary accounts.”
On November 13, 1787, Mr. Jefferson wrote a letter to William Smith. The letter is full of zesty quotes.
“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants. It is it’s natural manure.”
A few lines above that, Mr. Jefferson said
“God forbid we should ever be 20 years without such a rebellion.” Twenty years after he wrote this, Mr. Jefferson was President. He probably did not want to deal with a revolution when he was President.
Getting back to the quote about tyranny, Martin Porter wrote an entertaining essay, A study of a Web quotation. He gives credit, or blame, to Edmund Burke. First, a list of different versions is presented. This is a clue that something is awry. The conclusion:
“There is no original. The quote is bogus, and Burke never said it. It is a pseudo-quote, and corresponds to real quotes in the same way that urban legends about … alligators in the sewers correspond to true news stories.”
Mr. Porter wrote a follow up essay, Four Principles of Quotation. These principles are:
Principle 1 (for readers) Whenever you see a quotation given with an author but no source assume that it is probably bogus. Principle 2 (for readers) Whenever you see a quotation given with a full source assume that it is probably being misused, unless you find good evidence that the quoter has read it in the source. Principle 3 (for quoters) Whenever you make a quotation, give the exact source. Principle 4 (for quoters) Only quote from works that you have read.
If these principles were to be used, then there would be a lot less hotheaded talking on the intercom. Pictures for this feature are from The Library of Congress. These pictures are Union soldiers, from the War Between the States. When war is discussed, all inspiring quotes are in doubt.
This is a repost. It is written like James Joyce. In the past year, doing due diligence on alleged quotes has become a hobby. Many people don’t care who said it, if they agree with the thoughts expressed. The prevailing thought is that an idea becomes more true with a famous name at the end. If the famous person is deceased, and cannot defend his/her reputation, that is not a problem. People do not like being told that Santa Claus does not exist.

How Twitter Causes Brain Damage

Posted in Library of Congress, Politics, Quotes, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on April 13, 2021

8b31479xa

8b29553xa

8b31479x

8b31479xb

8b31619x

8b36523x

8b38322x

8c34391x


The story starts when Sleepy Joe announces yet another attempt to become POTUS. The announcement focused on the tiki torch rave in Virginia, rather than climate change, financial foolishness, police brutality, endless war, or Donald Trump’s latest hair color. The Foxnews fuddy duddies went on email jihad, focusing on what President tiny hands did, or did not say, after the tiki torches were put out. Meanwhile, the national debt went up by a $8,000,000,000.00.

At the bottom of one of the existential emails was a tag line: “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to put its pants on.” – Winston Churchill. The last time PG heard that chestnut, truth was putting her shoes on. This sounds like a job for google.

Before you can say trending topic, quote investigator has the answer. “In conclusion, there exists a family of expressions contrasting the dissemination of lies and truths, and these adages have been evolving for more than 300 years. … At this time, there is no substantive support for assigning the saying to Mark Twain or Winston Churchill.”

Google is not through creating mischief. NFL’s Colin Kaepernick incorrectly credits Winston Churchill for quote about lies It seems as though knee pad model Colin Kaepernick felt the need to quote Mr. Churchill. This is deep. A tweet, about a false quote, about spreading a lie. Pictures for this deplorable dispatch today are from The Library of Congress. Nobody forced you to read this.

This is a repost from 2019. Eleven months later, covid turned the world on its ear. Sleepy Joe was elected POTUS, despite the worst efforts of President Trump. The economy went into a covid depression, with the national debt increasing by a few trillion dollars. Colin Kaepernick became obsolete. The custom of telling lies is as popular as ever. Winston Churchill is still dead.

8c34392x

8d26858x

8d26862x

8d26863x

8d26864x

8d27497x

8d27911x

8d27912x

8d27926x