Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Quotes of the day

I guarantee you’ve never been in a meeting at work and someone said, “In order to hit our sales numbers this quarter, we’ve got to have discipline like a child.” No politician has ever said, “If I’m elected, I’ll run the country with wisdom like a child.” No coach has ever said, “In order for us to win Saturday’s game, we need to work hard like a child.” It’s difficult to find another context in life where being “like a child” is held up as something to emulate--Jon Acuff

Failure is as important to healthy capitalism as success. The nation’s handful of huge banks, however, are spared the indignity of failure.--ADAM DAVIDSON

Speculation has long existed that U.S. presidents age at twice the normal rate, with many tabloid stories fixating on President Obama's every new wrinkle, gray hair and weight change. But a new study finds just the opposite: Most U.S. presidents live longer than predicted for men of their same age and era.
23 of the 34 U.S. presidents who died from natural causes lived longer, and in many instances significantly longer, than predicted. Their average age at inauguration was 55.1 years. Four presidents who were assassinated were removed from the analysis.--Jennifer Viegas

[Mitt Romney's 42-yr marriage is] a tremendous accomplishment and something in which he can rightly take pride. We applaud him.--Gingrich advisor

The motivations to impose a financial transactions tax are one part Occupy Wall Street and one part Willy Sutton. Some see it as a way of penalize bankers, or at least correcting excesses of “speculators.” Others are attracted to imposing a tax on financial transactions because, as Sutton used to say when asked why he robbed banks, “that’s where the money is.” Let’s hope this idea never makes it into actual public policy. The Robin Hood tax is so deeply flawed that it is unlikely to raise much revenue or fix the financial system.
It would lead to increased consolidation, increased risk taking and increased systemic risk in the financial sector. Robin Hood, you may recall, met his end when he went to his cousin for medical treatment. She doesn’t just bleed him — not an uncommon treatment at the time. She overbleeds him, and Robin Hood dies. So maybe this is a Robin Hood tax after all, something that will kill the thing it promises to fix. --John Carney

While the number of people who commandeered Zuccotti Park was pathetically small—several hundred a night—compared with the weight of media attention lavished upon them, their sense of entitlement to take other people’s property, whether public or private, is unfortunately widespread.--Heather MacDonald

I, hayseed that I am,  had not realized that the New York Times and CBS – not the editors of the American Economic Review, the Journal of Political Economy,  or the Quarterly Journal of Economics — are (or were to [former NY Times editor Bill] Keller’s regret) the true arbiters of what is good or bad economics.--Paul Gregory

If man is not to do more harm than good in his efforts to improve the social order, he will have to learn that in this, as in all other fields where essential complexity of an organized kind prevails, he cannot acquire the full knowledge which would make mastery of the events possible. He will therefore have to use what knowledge he can achieve, not to shape the results as the craftsman shapes his handiwork, but rather to cultivate a growth by providing the appropriate environment, in the manner in which the gardener does this for his plants. There is danger in the exuberant feeling of ever growing power which the advance of the physical sciences has engendered and which tempts man to try, "dizzy with success", to use a characteristic phrase of early communism, to subject not only our natural but also our human environment to the control of a human will. The recognition of the insuperable limits to his knowledge ought indeed to teach the student of society a lesson of humility which should guard him against becoming an accomplice in men's fatal striving to control society - a striving which makes him not only a tyrant over his fellows, but which may well make him the destroyer of a civilization which no brain has designed but which has grown from the free efforts of millions of individuals.--F.A. Hayek
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