Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Quotes of the day

Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.--George Orwell

Apparently counting daisies while soldiers are pushing them up is deemed politically awkward.--Jules Crittenden

To have gone out in the early days and talked to people in such candid and stark terms about the advantages of free markets must have been difficult. I can just hear Rose [Friedman] encouraging Milton. Others might have said: "Do you have to stick your neck out so much, Milton? Can't you be more mainstream? What about our family?" And perhaps it was difficult with a young family. To us this is the inspiration from Rose that we will never forget. She was gregarious, strong, and loving.--John Taylor

Math skills are more the result of drill, whereas you have to learn how to love to read and much of that happens within the family, not at school. Math is therefore easier to "teach by central planning," so to speak.--Tyler Cowen

Macroeconomists do not have enough data to verify hypotheses. Climate science has even less data. Therefore, climate science is even less reliable.--Arnold Kling

I just read [Andrew Revkin's] blog and article about the CRU attack. I do entirely understand that in your role as a reporter you can’t editorialize and pass judgment about what happens in the world, but you do edge into value judgments in some of your blog pieces and so I found the general lack of indignation in your piece rather disconcerting. After all, this is a criminal act of vandalism and of harassment of a group of scientists that are only going about their business doing science.--Raymond Pierrehumbert

It is more in disappointment than anger that I am writing to you now. I am addressing this to you rather than your journalist-coauthor because one has become all too accustomed to tendentious screeds from media personalities (think Glenn Beck) with a reckless disregard for the truth.--Raymond Pierrehumbert, to Steve Levitt

... in the context of the political battle over climate change, Pierrehumbert is making the wrong point. Who cares? The only meaningful response to this crisis is to get out in front, explain the context of each and every e-mail, and address forthrightly whatever improprieties may or may not exist. ... My own faith in climate science hasn't been shaken by this episode, but I'm pretty dumfounded at behavior that hands what Pierrehumbert calls the "inactivists" -- many of whom are working as fronts for the energy industry -- a big stick to clobber me with. Please don't hide behind invasion of privacy. It's only going to get hotter from here on out.--Andrew Leonard

Some have noted, and I agree that it’s a misnomer to call this “ClimateGate.” In addition to the fact that simply adding “Gate” to a scandal is so late twentieth century, calling it a “Gate” would imply that it’s something that the media will go into a frenzy over, because it’s a scandal about something politically incorrect (e.g., Nixon). No, a better name for it (again, not original with me — I think it showed up in comments at one of the PJM pieces) is “Climaquiddick.” In other words, expect the media to try to whitewash and minimize it.--Rand Simberg

The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.--H. L. Mencken

I'm the George W. Bush of love: I may not have anything to show for myself now, but history will prove me a hero.--John Mayer

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