Don’t these people, these grown adults, realize that their words come with a body count?
Category Archives: Quoted
You are offering a room full of vintage first-edition hardbacks to a group of people who read books on their phones.
Italics in original.
You’ll find all the laws in the US related to privacy and surveillance there. Not that anyone seems to follow any laws that get in their way these days. Or if they find they need a law to make conduct lawful, they just write a new law or reinterpret an old one and keep on going. That’s not the rule of law as I understood the term.
Bold and redfacing added by me.
Jurgis could see all the truth now — could see himself, through the whole long course of events, the victim of ravenous vultures that had torn into his vitals and devoured him; of fiends that had racked and tortured him, mocking him, meantime, jeering in his face. Ah, God, the horror of it, the monstrous, hideous, demoniacal wickedness of it! He and his family, helpless women and children, struggling to live, ignorant and defenceless and forlorn as they were — and the enemies that had been lurking for them, crouching upon their trail and thirsting for their blood! That first lying circular, that smooth-tongued slippery agent! That trap of the extra payments, the interest, and all the other charges that they had not the means to pay, and would never have attempted to pay! And then all the tricks of the packers, their masters, the tyrants who ruled them, —the shutdowns and the scarcity of work, the irregular hours and the cruel speeding-up, the lowering of wages, the raising of prices! The mercilessness of nature about them, of heat and cold, rain and snow; the mercilessness of the city, of the country in which they lived, of its laws and customs that they did not understand! All of these things had worked together for the company that had marked them for its prey and was waiting for its chance. And now, with this last hideous injustice, its time had come, and it had turned them out bag and baggage, and taken their house and sold it again! And they could do nothing, they were tied hand and foot — the law was against them, the whole machinery of society was at their oppressors’ command! If Jurgis so much as raised a hand against them, back he would go into that wild-beast pen from which he had just escaped!
– The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair
Available free at Google Books (download as PDF under the gear icon).
“Everyone” isn’t an audience. “Everyone” is a byproduct of an incredibly successful thing that was made for a far more specific bunch of people. Don’t ever make something for “Everyone” make it for someone. And make that person love it.
The most overused word today is “passion.”
The last season of MasterChef had contestants saying cooking was their “passion” in every interview. How could so many people have that “passion” yet be so bad at doing it?
It’s because they confuse “passion” with “something I really like to do.”
This, from Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, illustrates what passion really is:
One accident that happened to me was that I taught myself, with no books, how to design computers in high school. I loved doing it and designed computers all the time, from descriptions of them in manuals by the companies that made them. I designed the same computers over and over and made a game out of trying to use fewer and fewer parts, coming up with tricks to accomplish my task that could never be in a book. They were ’tricks‘ in my own head. I felt that some of these tricks would be used by probably no other computer designer in the world. In my game world, on paper, where I could never afford to build my designs, I felt I was one of the best in the world.
How many of those MasterChef contestants could cook without affording the food?
That is passion.
You’re a rotating group of widgets that might make the publisher some money.
That’s the truth.
And she also explains why the print bastards haven’t yet died — and nearly convinces me.
Last night I started dipping into a book I got from Google Books, Hidden treasures, or, Why some succeed while others fail (here is a link at the Internet Archive, which is best for those outside of the U.S.).
The book’s value is questionable. It presents biographies of people who gained prominence — mostly by amassing fortunes — at its time.
After reading one brief bio, I looked up the person at Wikipedia and discovered what was not mentioned in the book: The guy came to his fortune through a history of swindling!
I don’t think that’s the lesson the writer intended to present.