from Almanacus Eurekas

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The second greatest error in reasoning is mistaking evidence for proof. The greatest is mistaking testimony for evidence.


The danger of representative governments is not that bad men might use their position to purposely make themselves better off, but that good men will use it to accidentally make others worse off.


A man with integrity identifies, acknowledges and corrects his errors. A man without it ignores, denies or defends them.


The legitimate power of government is limited by the same bounds which limit the legitimate power of the individual. Government power is derived, and you cannot derive power from a source which does not possess it.


The biggest difference between Democracy and mob rule is that mobs don't elect goons to do their dirty work.


One does not forfeit his right to self defense by simply hiring a bodyguard, employing a security agency or establishing a government. Indeed, those protective acts are expressions of  right, not  replacements for it.


You can make an act illegal, but you cannot make it immoral, unjust or wrong.


There is a great distinction between justice and vengeance. Unfortunately, the criminal 'justice' system routinely tramples all over it. Only the civil courts focus primarily on making the victim whole, the criminal courts focus primarily on punishing offenders.


The fatal flaw in anarchy is that there is no means to enforce it.


To those who believe that a totally rational system of ethics is impossible, I say that an irrational one is inconceivable.


There is scarcely any government imposed burden or loss of civil liberty that small minds won't tolerate, as long as they believe that others who are worse men than themselves will suffer more than they do.


There are far too many people who view the government, not as an agency commissioned to secure individual rights, but as a convenient tool which can be used to force everyone else to be as good as they are.


The government promises many things. You can do a lot when you hold a monopoly on the use of force. That includes granting special privileges to favored groups. But one thing the government has no power to do is to grant rights. The pre-existence of rights (in individuals) is the underlying principle justifying the creation of governments. 


Democracy: The triumph of popularity over principle.


The word democracy does not appear in either the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution.


The greatest advantage of democracy over dictatorship is that each citizen gets to be ruled by a million incompetent or evil idiots instead of just one.


The most reviled of all political doctrines is anarchism, for the same reason that the most reviled of all religious doctrines is atheism.


The continuous proliferation of new legislation inevitably leads to a code which is impossible to enforce. Long before this, enforcement becomes discretionary with the discretion ultimately exercised at the lowest levels. 


Taxation is the forcible transfer of property from one individual to another, by opportunists who set their own fees for providing the service.


In a democratic government, every form of superiority is subverted to numerical superiority.


Social justice embodies the notion that injuries to one can be compensated by reparations to another at the expense of a third. Worse, the reparations may be demanded from parties who had no responsibility for the original injury, and the beneficiaries need not have even existed when the original injuries occurred. Such a concept fails to conform to any reasonable definition of justice, and actually triples the problem. It not only fails to compensate the originally injured parties, but also adds a new class of unjustly deprived victims and a class of unjustly enriched recipients. 


Q: When does a judicial system become a system for promoting vengeance, rather than justice?

A: When its focus is on punishing offenders, rather than compensating victims. By this standard, our current criminal justice system is a total failure, both in principle and practice.


Every law has unintended consequences. In too many cases these consequences create more mischief than the law itself overcomes.


There are rule makers in every society. These individuals are categorically incapable of following the consequences of a proposed regulation to its logical conclusion. Unfortunately, too few laws are ever repealed -- and then only when unintended consequences have become too outrageous to escape notice.


A man who never makes mistakes is a coward. A man who repeats his mistakes is a fool.


Atticus Finch inspired more men to become lawyers than to emulate his example. Similarly, the American State Papers inspired more men to become politicians than to defend their ideals.


There is no constitutional means of escaping the tyranny of the majority. The Legislature is accountable to the voters, the President is accountable to the voters and the Supreme Court is accountable to no one. Unconstitutional laws are passed and upheld with impunity, but violations of the public trust are punished by censure, impeachment, or simply voting the offender out of office. 


There are two things you must never attempt to prove: the unprovable  -- and the obvious.


One step beyond the futility of beating a dead horse, is the attempt to ride one.


BIBLICAL LAW OF PERPETUAL INJUSTICE: If thy neighbor offend thee, vent thy wrath on another.


It's important to keep in mind that you work for your company, not your supervisor. You report to your supervisor.


Always keep your priorities straight. If you've just been shot in the chest, lead poisoning should not be your immediate concern.


It is easier to rid a nation of a tyrant than of tyranny.


Beware when someone asks you to keep your mind open that they are not really asking you to keep your eyes closed.


A government which attempts to 'balance' the rights of individuals with the public interest succeeds only in sacrificing individual rights to appease mobs. The concept has as much nobility as lynching.


In a representative government, the people will never get the quality of representation they expect. Why not? Because they do not vote for quality, they vote for quantity of expected benefit to themselves.


A government which cannot protect the population without violating civil rights is unworthy of representing free people. Its officials are in default of  their sworn responsibilities and, to the extent which they fail to fulfill their legitimate duties, are unfit for office.


Terrorists are taught to believe that killing infidels is virtuous when they are too young to question authority, and armed for the task when it is too late.


A politician, surrounded by cannibals, will find little solace in the prospect of democratic tribal reforms.


There is no problem which can't be oversimplified to the point that a solution is impossible.


When confronted with the failures of government, its officials will invariably plead for more money or more power -- never for more brains.


Ever notice how law enforcement officials respond to an increase in crime by getting 'tough', never by getting 'smart'?


A good scientist or technologist must have a high tolerance for frustration, somewhat less for confusion, very little for error and none at all for dishonesty.


If you are looking for patterns in any collection of random data, you will find them.


In your search for the bright ring of truth, be prepared to settle for the dull thud of plausibility.


There are degrees of certainty. They range from conceivable to possible to plausible to convincing to conclusive.


It takes more than correlation to prove causation, and more than coincidence to prove correlation.


An altruistic and compassionate political agenda wears much better on a politician who is giving away his own money to the less fortunate than on one who is giving away your money.


Democracy: A ship of state which provides everyone with a rudder.


Taking one man's money to benefit another is called robbery if done by a citizen, taxation if done by the government.


The government attempts to solve every problem by creating a new tax or a new class of criminals.


There should be an oath for politicians that corresponds to Hippocrates' "First, do no harm." It would be "First, violate no rights."


If a public official has taken an oath swearing to preserve and uphold the Constitution, he should be considered treasonous if he uses his office to advocate Constitutional amendments or to vote for legislation later ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Attempting to overthrow the government by force is clearly treason, but the act is no better by being an inside job.


Gates' Law: When the performance capabilities of computer hardware doubles, the demands imposed by Microsoft products will triple.


Willingness to pay taxes is not a virtue -- it simply means that one consents to pay if forced to do so. If an individual wants to demonstrate his eagerness to contribute to the less fortunate, he has only to give money to charity or donate to the U.S. Treasury.


There's nothing wrong with the idea that blood is thicker than water, but don't forget that brains are thicker than blood.


Don't be surprised if those who hold some value greater than life itself will readily destroy life to achieve it.


A careful reading of history reveals that the early Pilgrims settled in America not only to escape the religious persecution they suffered from others, but also to impose their own forms of religious persecution on everybody else.


When using metaphors to characterize a setback, remember that 'square one' is not the same as 'ground zero'.


Fundamental Law of Scientific Research: If you need to know something, find it out. If you do not know how to find out, find out how to find out.


Buffet's Rule: I am more than happy to pay higher taxes, as long as you force me to do so. I am certainly not willing to do so voluntariliy.


 

 

Cogitations/Effusions

"I love the sound of bagpipes when I'm mourning."

These entries represent lighter thoughts. They have been removed from the above list and placed here to reflect the less serious content.


I rarely finish anything I start, because I know I'll just regret that I hadn't spent my time doing something else.


Bond's Modification of Newton's 1st Law

A body at rest tends to remain at rest. A body in motion is probably looking for a place to rest.


My application for membership in Mensa was rejected. They said I was overqualified.


Getting older has its downside, but things are certainly worse when you stop.


Am I the only one who finds the phrase "turned up missing" to be ungrammatical? Someone is only "missing" if he hasn't turned up at all.


Shouldn't the spicy version of V-8 juice be called V-9?


Mixing medications can be dangerous. Never take a strong laxative and a sleeping pill at the same time.


He is so vain, that when he is making love to a beautiful woman, he fantasizes he is masturbating.


Wanting more than you have is not greed. But wanting more than there is -- that's greed!


It takes a village to raise an idiot.


The greatest mystery of all is the existence of matter. The second greatest is the phenomena of consciousness. The third is how something as ugly as a lobster can taste so damn good.


There is a fifth force, and it is a force of attraction. It's long range effects are observed in the attraction of tornadoes to trailer parks. Over the short range we observe it in the attraction of spinach to tooth enamel.


Of all the 'p'-baked ideas, where 'p' = 1/2, yours takes the 'q', where 'q' = cake.


Don't bother trying to understand, analyze or refute Zeno's paradoxes. The fact is, he never formulated or articulated any paradoxes. Why not? Because before he could have completed the presentation of a paradox, he would have had to complete the first 1/2 of the the presentation. But before he could have completed the first 1/2, he would have had to complete 1/2 of that. Continuing in this manner, he would have had to undertake an infinite number of steps to complete his presentation. Hence, he could never have done so. (Readers will be forgiven for any failure to read the above in its entirety!)


A jazz musician spends the first part of his career mastering ii-V-I chord progressions, and the rest trying to escape their tyranny.


Bond's wager law: If there's a 50/50 chance you're right, there's a 60/40 chance you're wrong.


Hangover: A painful condition caused by the presence of too much blood in the alcohol stream.


Proposed Country/Western song title:     "I'll Never Get Over You Until You Get Under Me."


If you think you've run out of things to be thankful for, you can always be glad that your taste buds are at the front end of your digestive tract.


Enditol: the perfect name for a suicide pill.

Aqua Vulva: the perfect name for a blue douche.


Definitions -- from the Ghetto Gourmet:


From the Ghetto Guide To Girl's Names

First, I want to anticipate and forestall any suggestion that the following parody is in any way racist. Rather, it pertains to the financially disadvantaged, who have a penchant for fabricating bizarre names for their female offspring.


Eat tires for that Goodrich flavor!


Why is it that two consecutive episodes of a TV program are said to be 'back to back', when in fact they are 'back to front'?


Patron to Waiter: Waiter, this steak is tough. 

Waiter to Patron: Yeah. Last time we ordered a side of beef, we got the outside!


Really long shot: Throwing down a handful of quarters and having them all land on edge.


Excerpt from a Steve Allen skit:

Patron to Waiter: FUNEM?

Waiter to Patron: S,IFM.

Patron: FUNEX?

Waiter: S,IFX.

Patron: OK, LFMNX.


Lesbian life must be a jungle. It's eat or be eaten -- preferably both.


Fonda's Amazing Recovery

Jane Fonda was taping one her exercise videos when she noticed unusual fatigue and shortness of breath. Her personal physician  recommended a cardiac specialist, who immediately ordered a chest x-ray. Later, in his office, he explained that the x-ray showed  her heart had become smaller than normal.

As she nervously awaited his recommendations for therapy, he reached into his desk and handed her a bottle of Absinthe, with the instruction that she drink an ounce a day for the next 10 days and then return for a follow-up. She did as he advised and noticed a considerable improvement.  When she returned for a check up, he told her that the therapy had worked and that she could discontinue the treatment.

"But Doctor," she asked, "How did this fix my heart problem?"

He smiled and said, "Absinthe makes the heart grow, Fonda."


Correct spelling is important. A cologne labeled "Bare Essence" will probably sell better than one labeled "Bear Essence".


Feeling lucky? Consider Jackass Roulette, a variation of Russian Roulette in which five chambers of a revolver are loaded and one is empty.


Unusual Word Usage

To expand your verbal skills, try using words in unexpected ways. Consider the following examples.

    eyesore:       I just got back from the gym and, boy, am eyesore!

    moron:        My pancakes needed syrup, so I put moron.

    wiener:      When your baby girl gets to big for a bottle, you have to wiener.

    gruesome:  When I watered the grass, it gruesome.   

    aftermath:  Aftermath you learn algebra.

    cantaloupe: If your ladder's too short, you cantaloupe.

    asterisk:     When you've gambled away all your possessions, you have only your asterisk

    quota:         It's a quota 'til three.

    condom:     A swindler promised to double their money, but he condom.

    tuna:           My cousin can tuna piano.

    cantilever:   My girlfriend's ex is stalking her. Why cantilever alone? 

    gladiator:    When a friend had an affair with a neighbor, he was gladiator.  

    picador:       Contestants on "Let/s Make a Deal" are asked to picador.


Famous Characters with Middle Name: "the"


A 200 lb person should have twice the energy of a 100 lb person, assuming  E=mc2.


If you sell a man a fish, he will eat for a day. But if you teach him how to fish, he'll beat your prices and drive you out of business.


Macho Party Games


I have a tendency to overdo my bad habits. But I try not to overdo them too much.


Homophones

It's easy to find two English words which sound the same but are not spelled the same.

Examples: see, sea; sell,cell; pain, pane.

There are also instances of three words which sound the same but not spelled the same.

Examples: sent, cent, scent; pare, pair, pear; to, too, two.

However, there are very few instances of four words which sound the same but not spelled the same.

Example: right, write, rite, wright.

Can you find others?


Epistemol a D,

Epistemol an E,

Epistemol an F, and then,

Epistemology.

Make sense? Oh, well...


When an advertisement says I'll only be limited by my own imagination, I know I'm dead in the water.


Easy to Spell, Hard to Pronounce

One of the strangest words in the English language is only 5 letters long, but no one can cite a definitive pronunciation.

The word is banal which is variously said to rhyme with canal, anal or tunnel. Check your favorite reference for the proper pronunciation of this word to confirm it.


If a woman makes love to her husband in a coal mine, can she be charged with having sex with a miner?


Didja' hear about the guy who was arrested for having sex with a goat? Yeah, now he's on the lam.


I was interested in industrial investments and bought shares in a brass mine. A friend told me this was a scam, because brass is an alloy and doesn't come from a mine. Fortunately, I was able to dump my shares on an unsuspecting sucker and used the money to buy shares in a bronze mine.

There was even some money left over which I used to diversify my investments. I was told there was a high demand for pack animals, so I bought a pair of mules which were certified to be the best breeding stock available.


Scottish Sheepherder's Version of Rolling Stones Hit

"Hey, McCloud! Get offa my ewe."volume23, number 6.


I know the universe is expanding, so why is the mean free path between idiots getting smaller?


They say that if you drink a lot, you shouldn't drink alone. But is the world really better off with two drunks instead of just one?


When I first was hired as a manager my style was to kick butts and take names. Unfortunately, all I got was dirty shoes and writers cramp.


There seems to be some good in anything. If it weren't for motherf*****s, most of us would be only children and the human race would eventually die out.


Maybe it's just me, but I'm sick of the politician's mantra to "make a difference". Bank robbers make a difference. Mass murderers make a big difference. Aren't there any politician's who are willing to promise to 'improve' things, or are they all satisfied to just make a difference?


Headline:

"Demand Mushrooms for online access to IEEE data.", IEEE 'the Institute',June 1999,


Hindu yogi's 911 call: "Help! I levitated and I can't get down!."