Eclectic quotations accumulating in Hell's Kitchen, NY, USA.


"I did all you can do with a clarinet. Any more would have been less."
-- Artie Shaw, 1910-2004, as quoted by John S. Wilson in The New York Times.

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"I don't care about expensive things. Cashmere coats, diamond rings. ... Honest to God, all I care about is love."
--Jerry Orbach, 1935-2004, as Billy Flynn in the original Broadway production of Chicago.

Image from Xinhuanet.


"The waters that stole tens of thousands of people from the shorelines of Asia and East Africa on Sunday spewed their bodies back onto beaches on Tuesday, leading officials to double the death toll again to more than 57,000. Meanwhile, scores of international rescue teams arrived hoping to stave off disease and homelessness... With tens of thousands still unaccounted for, especially in remote regions, the toll seemed certain to continue climbing. Indonesia alone already estimates 27,000 dead and Sri Lanka more than 16,000, with 4,000 people missing."
-- David Rohde, The New York Times


"Christmas is here:
Winds whistle shrill,
Icy and chill,
Little care we:
Little we fear Weather without,
Sheltered about The Mahogany-Tree."
-- William Makepeace Thackeray


"'Merry Christmas' — I know those Christian-sounding words ought to feel odd coming from my lips — I'm a third-generation atheist of Jewish ancestry and I'm almost evangelical in my lack of faith. But they feel fine. 'Merry Christmas!'"
-- Blake Gopnik, as quoted by Liz Smith.

Image from EVSC.


"What do you call people who are afraid of Santa Claus? Claustrophobic."
-- Unknown


"Rudolph, with your nose so bright... Won't you guide my sleigh tonight?"
-- Santa Claus

Image from Dishes, Decor, and More.


"Didn't get your bloglet today- is everything ok?"
-- Ernst Ludwig, Architect


"...if civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the
science of human relationship - the ability of all peoples,
of all kinds, to live together and work together in the same
world, at peace."
-- President Franklin D. Roosevelt


"I don't remember not wanting people to look at me when I walked into a room. Even before I knew what an actor was. It's a very classic case of 'It's not enough to have the love of the people that love me . . . I need the entire world to love me.'"
-- Kevin Bacon in the January issue of GQ, and quoted by Liz Smith, today.

Image from Movies-on-DVDs


"When we are ourselves, not just actors but anybody in terms of how you present yourself, how often are you completely authentic? When are you adjusting yourself slightly to the situation that you're in? Do we perform our lives?"
-- Annette Bening


"The chief problem about death, incidentally, is the fear that there may be no afterlife--a depressing thought, particularly for those who have bothered to shave."
-- Woody Allen, The Early Essays


"As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more
and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and
glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."
-- H.L. Mencken


"If a picture wasn't going very well I'd put a puppy dog in it, always a mongrel, you know, never one of the full bred puppies. And then I'd put a bandage on its foot... I liked it when I did it, but now I'm sick of it."
-- Norman Rockwell

Image from T-Gallery.


"Sneezes are bizarre things that arrive unexpectedly, can give one a fright, and tend to spray saliva. Rather like in-laws really."
-- Vimrod
"Bloggers share stuff they have found and they provide me with a lot of links that I would never have discovered myself. They also provide comment, analysis and interpretation that is tainted only by their own prejudices, and not by the deliberate lies and distortions found in the mainstream media. In my opinion these are the two most important functions of weblogs. To share discoveries and to share opinions."
-- Roger Pollack, Eclectica


"There is nothing more dreadful than imagination without taste."
-- Goethe


"On any person who desires such queer prizes, New York will bestow the gift of loneliness and the gift of privacy."
-- E.B. White Here is New York.


"There is no historic preservation district or landmarks commission for hawks' nests. But if there were, the red-tailed hawk's nest at 927 Fifth Avenue, overlooking Central Park at 74th Street, would surely have qualified. Until Tuesday, the nest stood on a 12th-floor cornice with a sublime aerial view of the urban forest in our midst. Since 1993, 23 young hawks have been raised there, sired by a bird called Pale Male. Thousands and thousands of bird-watchers over the years have followed the lives of the hawks in that nest. But this is not an homage to bird-watching - it's an homage to birds.

"On Tuesday, workers took down the nest and, apparently, the metal anti-pigeon spikes that had helped hold it in place. So far, no one from 927 Fifth Avenue has spoken up to defend the co-op board's decision to remove the nest. Perhaps residents were annoyed that the hawks didn't do a better job of cleaning up after themselves by using a pooper-scooper or putting their pigeon bones in the trash, the way a human would. Perhaps they simply wearied of the stirring sight of a red-tailed hawk coming down out of the sky to settle on its nest.

"It's always tempting to think that a city like New York has utterly effaced the natural ground on which it was built. Most of the creatures that lived on Manhattan Island several centuries ago would stand no chance of doing so now - not in these new canyons of steel and glass. But the presence of a nesting pair of red-tailed hawks, sequestered on the edge of an apartment building, feels like a memory from a past this city has long since forgotten.

"The hawks have gone out of their way to learn to live with us. The least the wealthy residents of 927 Fifth Avenue could have done was learn to live with the hawks."

Editorial, The New York Times.

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"Hell, I'm an old man, it's early in the morning and I'm gathering my thoughts here."
-- Donald Rumsfield, yesterday, to troops inquiring about safety equipment not made available to them.


"You work for me now. Find me some clouds!"
-- Leonardo DiCaprio, as Howard Hughes, in Martin Scorsese's The Aviator. As quoted by Liz Smith today.


"The stupid neither forgive nor forget; The naive forgive and forget; The wise forgive but do not forget."
-- Thomas Szasz, The Second Sin (1973).

Image from New Therapist.


"You are teacher?"
"I am, yes."
"You do not look sufficient of age for scientific teaching. How many years have you?"
"Enough to know that age and wisdom do not necessarily go hand in hand, Your Majesty."
-- Anna and the King,motion picture, 1999.


”A trap is a trap only for creatures which cannot solve the problem it sets. Mantraps are dangerous only in relation to the limitations on what men can see and value and do. The nature of the trap is a function of the nature of the trapped. To describe either is to imply the other.”
Sir Geoffrey Vickers, Freedom in a Rocking Boat.


"What a lousy earth! How many winners were losers, successes failures, rich men poor men? How many wise guys were stupid? How many happy endings were unhappy endings? How many honest men were liars, brave men cowards, loyal men traitors, how many sainted men were corrupt, how many people in positions of trust had sold their souls to blackguards for petty cash, how many had never had souls? How many straight-and-narrow paths were crooked paths? How many best families were worst families and how many good people were bad people? When you added them all up and then subtracted, you might be left with only the children, and perhaps with an Albert Einstein and an old violinist or sculptor somewhere."
-- Joseph Heller, Catch-22


"Oh come on honey. It's just the news. It's not real."
-- Craig Lucas, Reckless, a woman character to her husband who seems shaken by a television news report.


"In my experience, if enough people are waiting for something, it is bound to arrive sooner or later. Like the train, for example, or the end of the world."
-- Ragnar Tornquist


"All those Greeks were homosexuals. Boy, they must have had some wild parties. I bet they all took a house together in Crete for the summer."
-- Woody Allen, Love and Death.


"I might be a garbageman. I've always liked late at night. There's something appealing about hanging out in the back of the truck, going
through the city streets, all alone."
-- Matthew Broderick, on what he might do if he
weren't an actor. To Michael Agger in New York Magazine, Nov. 8, 2004.

Image from Adorocinema.


"Words are the only things that last forever; they are more durable than the eternal hills".
-- William Hazlitt, (1778-1830), essayist


"I am here to live my life out loud"
-- Emile Zola


"Imagine that you are creating a fabric of human destiny with the object of making men happy in the end, giving them peace and rest at last, but that it was essential and inevitable to torture to death only one tiny creature - that baby beating its breast with its fist, for instance - and to found that edifice on its unavenged tears, would you consent to be the architect on those conditions? Tell me, and tell me the truth?"
-- Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov


"I've got a sneaky admiration for Dan Rather because I'm never sure when he's going to go bonkers on you. He always looks like he's gonna just stop and say, 'All right, motherfuckers, here it comes. We've got the bodies in hangar 18, the government has been lying to you....' And then they're going to drag him off."
-- Steven King, Anchors: Brokaw, Jennings, Rather and the Evening News by Robert Goldberg and Gerald Goldberg. As quoted by Brutally Honest by Berkeley


"God gave us our relatives; thank God we can choose our friends."
-- Ethel Watts Mumford


"I went through a period when I was a teenager, where I was rebelling against everything, and I think embracing a lot of the exaggerated stereotypes of what it means to be an African-American. But, fortunately, I had some wonderful mentors and teachers who, I think, pulled me out of it. I had the love of my mother to stabilize me. And part of the reason I wrote about that period in my life in the book was to make clear that there are all kinds of young African-American males out there who are as talented as I am, as energetic as I am, but also as confused and they may not have the same margins of error that I did."
-- Senator Barack Obama, as told to CBS News.

Image from DSCC.


"It is my firm belief that it is a mistake to hold firm beliefs."
-- John W. Cooper, James Randi Commentary.


"How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man?
Yes, 'n' how many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes, 'n' how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they're forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind,
The answer is blowin' in the wind."
-- Bob Dylan

Image from Facade.


"When you can play piano, and I can say this unabashedly, as well as I do, you don't like for people not to be able to hear you."
-- Cy Coleman, 1929-2004, Lyricist, Composer, Writer, Arranger, Musical Director, Musician. Obituary in The New York Times.

Image from Dorothy Fields Website.


"The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through, carrying even the mob with him by force of his personality. But when the field is nationwide, and the fight must be waged chiefly at second and third hand, and the force of personality cannot so readily make itself felt, then all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most easily adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum.

"The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

-- H. L. Mencken, Bayard vs. Lionheart, Baltimore Evening Sun, July 26, 1920.


"If you eat less, you live more."
-- David Wolf, Nature's First Law, as available on


"The only time you want to come late is in bed."
--Whoopi Goldberg


"There will be sex after death. We just won't be able to feel it"
-- Lily Tomlin


"What am I going to do next?... I don't know."
-- Colin Powell, Secretary of State

Image from Image Shack.


"You know, we have eight and a half million kids on drugs...It's a human-rights issue: electroshock, prefrontal lobotomies, and drugging, which is mental straitjacketing. And I feel for the parents. It's a betrayal of them, because they are inundated with propaganda about how this is going to help your child and calm him down. It's a catastrophe of epic proportions."
-- Tom Cruise, interview with GQ, on his support of Scientology's sustained assault on the psychiatric profession and the dispensing of diagnoses and drugs like ADD and Ritalin.

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"So when we come to the issue of Israel and Palestine, I think what we are saying is we are going to work flat out to deliver this, but people have to understand, we can't deliver something unless the people whom it affects actually want it to happen."
-- Prime Minister Tony Blair, Great Britain

Image from Wikipedia.


"I was onstage and I felt my energy level dropping, just ebbing away. These were the days when people sat in the orchestra eating chocolate. Now they swig water — are they frightened of dehydration? Running a marathon?... Well, in the old days, they ate chocolates, and I saw a woman with a box of See's. I had to have one! So I snatched the box from this woman, such was my need. I accidentally put two chockies into my mouth... Greed has its reward: I choked onstage... It led to a pretty spectacular regurgitation... A very, very hard truffle shot back into the audience and slightly injured someone... Insurance covered it, of course."
-- Dame Edna, as quoted by the New York Post.

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"Palestine is the cement that holds the Arab world together, or it is the explosive that blows it apart."
-- Yassar Arafat, (1929-2004), in a Time magazine interview, November 1974.


"Shoo, fly, don't bother me,
Shoo, fly, don't bother me,
Shoo, fly, don't bother me,
For I belong to somebody.

"I feel, I feel,
I feel like a morning star,
I feel, I feel,
I feel like a morning star."
-- Unknown


"This is a disorienting time to be an American homo. George W. Bush appears to have won the White House on "values," not security, "values" being code for opposition to gay marriage, abortion, and stem cell research—but mostly gay marriage. Anti-gay-marriage amendments passed in 11 states, and pundits are saying the anti-gay vote got Bush elected. OK, so America hates gays—that I can live with, and it means we should probably get the fuck out while getting the fuck out is good.

"But does America hate gays? David Sedaris is a national phenomenon. That ol' carpet muncher Ellen DeGeneres has a hit TV talk show. A pole smoker writes the most widely syndicated sex advice column in the country. Lupe Valdez, a lesbian, was elected sheriff in Dallas County, Texas, last Tuesday. And George W. Bush gave his acceptance speech standing onstage next to Dick Cheney's carpet-munching daughter and her bull-dyke girlfriend. (Let's pause here to imagine the pit in hell these two lesbos will roast in.) This shit just doesn't compute, America. Can we get some consistency here? Should we stay or should we go? I've got this cool new house—do I put it back on the market or what?

"... Provided we don't all leave, here's how we get through a second Bush term: For at least the next four years, American lefties, artists, and queers should not consider this land our land. It is not a land of opportunity that spreads from sea to shining sea. No, we live on a chain of islands, an archipelago, not a continent. Sane people live on our islands—New York, San Francisco, Denver, Seattle, Portland, Madison, Austin, Boston, and on and on, basically all the cities, in red states and blue, that voted for Kerry—and we may not be the majority right now, and it may feel like sea levels are rising, but hey, we own all the best real estate. We've got the cities, the Northeast, the Midwest, and the West Coast. And what have they got? The Wal-Marts, the West Virginias, the Alabamas, the McMansions, and the mega-churches. Fuck 'em. Let 'em have that crap. We'll fight the fuckers in two years during the midterm elections and take back Congress. And we'll take 'em on again in four years and take back the White House. In the meantime, enjoy island life."

-- Dan Savage, Savage Love.

Image from Swarthmore.


"I had a terrible, rotten childhood... My father made away with himself when I was eleven. I had no guidance, and Mom was six feet tall, bucktoothed and very tough. I was mean and rebellious and had a terrible, bitter temper. I got a job as an auto mechanic, and I would have stayed in that narrow kind of life if I hadn't discovered art. Music changed me completely."
-- Howard Keel, 1919-2004

Image from Zap2it.


"Let me put it to you this way: I earned capital in the campaign, political capital, and now I intend to spend it."
-- President George W. Bush


"I want to thank John Kerry for running a strong campaign, and for laying out his hope and vision for America. My thanks and my thoughts go out to John and Teresa, and to John and Elizabeth Edwards, and both of their families.

"I campaigned across the country on behalf of John Kerry and I am disappointed by the results of this election. But I am determined to work harder than ever in the Senate for the causes important to our future, like improving access to health care, strengthening the economy, protecting civil rights and fighting for wiser security policies that will truly keep us safe at home and abroad.

"I congratulate President Bush on his victory and I am pleased to hear his commitment to uniting America. I also urge him to take this moment to reach out to our allies and unite the world through a leadership built on respect."

-- Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, in an e-mail to her supporters, this week.


“I'm going to talk about something no other Democrat can talk about but heck, I'm not running for anything. Let’s be frank about it. Out in the country, they are wearing us out with guns and gay marriage.”
-- President Bill Clinton, speaking at a pre-election rally in Little Rock, Washington Post, Nov. 1, 2004, as quoted by the New York Blade.

Image from the New York Blade.


"Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy ride."
-- Bette Davis, as Margo Channing, in All About Eve.

Image from Daily Celebrations.


"We have one country, one conscience and one future that binds us. When we come together and work together there is no limit to the greatness of America."
-- President George W. Bush, in his Victory Speech, today.
"I spoke to President Bush and I offered him and Laura our congratulations on their victory... We talked about the division in our country and the need, desperate need, for unity... Today, I hope we can begin the healing."
-- Senator John Kerry

Image from CNN.

"Hillary in 2008!"
-- Mr. Hell's Kitchen, Postcards from Hell's Kitchen

Image from BurtAndKurt


"The future of this republic is in the hands of the American voter."
-- Dwight D. Eisenhower

Image from Campaign Buttons Etc.


"The margin is narrow, but the responsibility is clear".
-- John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Image from Amherst.


"Hark! Hark to the wind! 'Tis the night, they say,
When all souls come back from the far away-
The dead, forgotten this many a day!"
-- Virna Sheard, from QuoteGarden.

Image from Castle-Vianden.


"I'll never get tired of livin'. But, I think it's a great waste of time to sit around in morbid fear of a fate we all have to share. I think the most important thing is you have to keep your head in the game. And to think about what you you're doin at the moment."
-- President Bill Clinton, on ABC's Prime Time Live, October 2004, after his quadruple bypass surgery.

Image from CNN.


"If George Bush is going to have his friends out there blaming the troops, then he needs to back up his claims with evidence. Mr. President, show America the order that you issued for our troops to secure these dangerous explosives. Our men and women in uniform did their jobs. It's our commander-in-chief, George Bush, who didn't do his."
-- Senator John Edwards, yesterday.

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"When the Bay of Pigs went sour, John Kennedy had the courage to look America in the eye and say, `I take responsibility, it's my fault'...John Kennedy knew how to take responsibility for the mistakes he made and Mr. President, it's long since time for you to start taking responsibility for the mistakes you made."
-- Senator John Kerry


"It is apparent to most of us in broadcasting that your father got you your job."
-- Howard Stern, to Federal Communications Commission Chairman Michael Powell, son of Colin Powell, United States Secretary of State, today.

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"We need a fresh start in America. We need a fresh start in Iraq. We need a president who will look the American people in the eye always, and tell you the truth and trust you with the truth."
-- Senator John Kerry

Image from CNN.


"From time to time, I have been called the comeback kid. In eight days, John Kerry is going to make America the comeback country."
-- President Bill Clinton, today.

Image from The Guardian.


"They beat our asses, that's it."
--Alex Rodriguez, the Yankees' third baseman, after the Yankees lost four straight games to the Red Sox.


"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went."
-- Will Rogers


"I'm voting for John Kerry because I'm a Christian. I know that my second cousin, George Bush, claims that he is the anointed leader of the American people and that God told him to run for office. I believe he may even believe that. I don't... My Christian faith is not looking for a new Messiah named George Bush. I am, however, looking for a leader. I believe that leader's name is John Kerry."

-- Jeanny House, Cousin to President George W. Bush, on


"It's wonderful to be famous as long as you remain unknown."
-- Degas

Image from Hiroshima Museum.


"Jack, please, I'm only an elected official here, I can't make decisions by myself!"
-- Mayor, The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Image from Gorey Details.


"If you do not think about the future, you cannot have one."
-- John Galsworthy


"If celebrities didn't want people pawing through their garbage and saying they're gay, they shouldn't have tried to express themselves creatively."
-- Homer Simpson

Image from Yelloworld.


"We look back on the past four years with hearts nearly breaking, both for the lives unnecessarily lost and for the opportunities so casually wasted. Time and again, history invited George W. Bush to play a heroic role, and time and again he chose the wrong course. We believe that with John Kerry as president, the nation will do better.

"Voting for president is a leap of faith. A candidate can explain his positions in minute detail and wind up governing with a hostile Congress that refuses to let him deliver. A disaster can upend the best-laid plans. All citizens can do is mix guesswork and hope, examining what the candidates have done in the past, their apparent priorities and their general character. It's on those three grounds that we enthusiastically endorse John Kerry for president."

-- Editorial, John Kerry for President, The New York Times.


"The best spin for the Democrats is that they're using Mary Cheney to paint their opponents as hypocrites: Republicans feign acceptance of all people, trot their own daughters out to demonstrate their fairness, then propose that the Constitution be amended to deny equal rights to same-sex couples. They want to have it both ways."
-- William B. Rubenstein, Op-ed contributer, Play It Straight, The New York Times, today.


"Kerry expressed the human side of an issue that Bush has worked so hard to politicize to his advantage at the cost of families."
-- Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, as quoted in Cheney Criticizes Kerry for Mentioning Daughter,by David Stout, in The New York Times.

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"Six months after he said Osama Bin Laden must be caught dead or alive, this President was asked, 'Where is Osama bin Laden?' He said, 'I don't know. I don't really think about him very much. I'm not that concerned.' We need a President who stays deadly focused on the real war on terror."
-- Senator John Kerry, at last night's debate.

"Gosh, I just don't think I ever said I'm not worried about Osama Bin Laden."
"That's kind of one of those - exaggerations."
-- President George Bush, at last night's debate.

"I don't know where he is. You know, I just don't spend that much time on him. ... I truly am not that concerned about him."
-- President George W. Bush, at a 2002 White House press conference.


"When the clutter of crazy parents is removed, kids excel."
--Michael DeSisto, founder of the DeSisto School.


"Which one's Cheney?"
-- Jack Edwards, four-year-old son of Senator John Edwards, as exclaimed to his father immediately following the Vice Presidential Debates last week, and quoted on Face the Nation on Sunday.

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"I refuse to allow a disability to determine how I live my life. I don't mean to be reckless, but setting a goal that seems a bit daunting actually is very helpful toward recovery."
Christopher Reeve, 1952-2004, as quoted in The New York Times obituary.

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"When a questioner named Linda asked the president to give three bum decisions he had made in office, Mr. Bush took a pass. Lincoln could admit mistakes. J.F.K. could admit mistakes. But W. thinks admitting mistakes is for powder puffs. Of his decision to invade Iraq, he said: "Sometimes in this world you make unpopular decisions because you think they're right." Or you stick to them even after you know they're wrong."
-- Maureen Dowd, The New York Times, today.

Image from Amherst College.


"Dear Friends,

By the time you read this, I will have reported to a minimum-security prison in Alderson, West Virginia, to begin serving my five-month sentence.

As I announced in September, although my lawyers remain very confident in the strength of my appeal and will continue to pursue it on my behalf, I have decided to serve my sentence now because I want to put this nightmare behind me as quickly as possible for the good of my family and my company.

While I am away, my updates here will be less frequent, if not altogether impossible. But please know this change is only an unfortunate reflection of my current circumstances, and in no way diminishes my commitment to my life’s work or to the friends, colleagues, customers and supporters who make it possible.

I am overwhelmed that this website has received more than 40 million hits since its creation, and even more so that almost 200,000 supporters have taken the time to write and share their thoughts. As always, I extend my deepest appreciation for the continuing encouragement I have received throughout this ordeal from so many wonderful people.

With your good wishes in my heart, I am looking forward to being back at work in March, and to many brighter days ahead.

Martha Stewart"

-- Martha Stewart, on her website yesterday.


"President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney have an unparalleled ability to insulate themselves from inconvenient facts. They lead a party that controls all three branches of government, and face news media that in some cases are partisan supporters, and in other cases are reluctant to state plainly that officials aren't telling the truth. They also still enjoy the residue of the faith placed in them after 9/11.

"This has allowed them to engage in what Orwell called 'reality control.' In the world according to the Bush administration, our leaders are infallible, and their policies always succeed. If the facts don't fit that assumption, they just deny the facts.

"As a political strategy, reality control has worked very well. But as a strategy for governing, it has led to predictable disaster. When leaders live in an invented reality, they do a bad job of dealing with real reality.

"... The point is that in the real world, as opposed to the political world, ignorance isn't strength. A leader who has the political power to pretend that he's infallible, and uses that power to avoid ever admitting mistakes, eventually makes mistakes so large that they can't be covered up. And that's what's happening to Mr. Bush."

-- Paul Krugman, The New York Times, today.


"The Democrat was more effective, and more on point, in challenging Mr Cheney on rationales for the Iraq war that have proven false...

Mr Cheney parried by attacking, with justification, inconsistencies in the Kerry-Edwards position on Iraq shaped more by politics than conviction... He was right to chide the Kerry-Edwards team for appearing insufficiently appreciative of the allies and Iraqis who have fought alongside US troops...

Debates are partly about momentum, and if Democratic nominee John F Kerry was on the upswing after last week's debate, nothing that happened last night is likely to stop that. If they are also partly about highlighting differences, this debate would have to be judged a success: In style and substance, the vice presidential candidates were about as distinct as two contenders could be."

Editorial, Washington Post, yesterday.


"I get no respect. I bought a cemetery plot. The guy said, 'There goes the neighborhood.'"
-- Rodney Dangerfield, 1921-2004, as the joke of the day on, on the day of his death, yesterday.

Image from Jim Britt Photography.


"I don't have the same view of the world as Dick Cheney and that's a good thing, that's not a bad thing."
-- Senator John Edwards, to a Cleveland area audience of supporters, prior to the Vice Presidential Debate, as quoted by Reuters.

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"I've been blessed with a remarkable career, and I have so many favorite roles, but I've resigned myself to the fact that 'Psycho' will be in the headlines of my obituary."
-- Janet Leigh, 1927-2004, to in a 2001 interview.

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"We have substantially abandoned the war against terrorism. There was an unprecedented outpouring of support after 9/11, and we have wasted away all that support. We are the most unpopular country in the world. Even friends have turned away."
-- President Jimmy Carter, as quoted by Virus Head.

Image from Japan Today.


"I've worked out of no's. No to exquisite light, no to apparent compositions, no to the seduction of poses or narratives. And those no's force me to a yes. I have white background. I have the person I am interested in and the thing that happens between us."
Richard Avedon, photographer, 1923-2004.

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"What pleased me about the debate last night was that we had an opportunity finally to be able to stand up in front of Americans as two people -- no 30-second advertisements, no distortions -- and talk about the truth to the American people... I do have a better plan to defend America. I will fight and hunt down and kill the terrorists wherever they are and I'm going to provide America with the ability to do it."
-- Senator John Kerry

Image from AP


"I dont lie, because I'm not scared of anybody; the only time people lie is when they're scared; Therefore, I dont lie."
-- John Gotti


"Let’s start with 'Heinz.' By retaining her dead husband’s name ­there is no genteel way to put this­ she is publicly, subliminally cuckolding Kerry with the power of another man, ­a dead Republican man, at that. Add to that the fact that her first husband was (as she is herself now) vastly more wealthy than her second husband. Throw into all of this her penchant for black, a color that no woman wears in the heartland, and you have a recipe for just what Kerry is struggling with now: charges of elitism, unstable family relationships, and an unmanned candidate.

"Hillary Rodham Clinton merely insisted on using 'Rodham' as part of her married name; Heinz Kerry is insisting on the primacy of another man. She could, though, have spoken about what she admires in her husband; she could have spoken about her own work in terms of service, family, and community. All those are ways of being oneself while still showing deference to women voters who are not wealthy and multilingual. I am a feminist, but I still believe that a candidate’s spouse, male or female, needs to understand something that Republicans get now but Democrats still don’t: It is not about them. If you are a president’s wife ­or husband ­your life and imagery do not belong just to you. For the duration, you belong to us, and you need to reflect and respect our own aspirations and dreams."
-- Naomi Wolf, Female Trouble, New York Magazine.

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"After the debacle in Florida four years ago, former president Gerald Ford and I were asked to lead a blue-ribbon commission to recommend changes in the American electoral process. After months of concerted effort by a dedicated and bipartisan group of experts, we presented unanimous recommendations to the president and Congress. The government responded with the Help America Vote Act of October 2002. Unfortunately, however, many of the act's key provisions have not been implemented because of inadequate funding or political disputes.

"The disturbing fact is that a repetition of the problems of 2000 now seems likely, even as many other nations are conducting elections that are internationally certified to be transparent, honest and fair

"The Carter Center has monitored more than 50 elections, all of them held under contentious, troubled or dangerous conditions. When I describe these activities, either in the United States or in foreign forums, the almost inevitable questions are: 'Why don't you observe the election in Florida?' and 'How do you explain the serious problems with elections there?'

"The answer to the first question is that we can monitor only about five elections each year, and meeting crucial needs in other nations is our top priority. (Our most recent ones were in Venezuela and Indonesia, and the next will be in Mozambique.) A partial answer to the other question is that some basic international requirements for a fair election are missing in Florida.

"The most significant of these requirements are:

• A nonpartisan electoral commission or a trusted and nonpartisan official who will be responsible for organizing and conducting the electoral process before, during and after the actual voting takes place. Although rarely perfect in their objectivity, such top administrators are at least subject to public scrutiny and responsible for the integrity of their decisions. Florida voting officials have proved to be highly partisan, brazenly violating a basic need for an unbiased and universally trusted authority to manage all elements of the electoral process.

• Uniformity in voting procedures, so that all citizens, regardless of their social or financial status, have equal assurance that their votes are cast in the same way and will be tabulated with equal accuracy. Modern technology is already in use that makes electronic voting possible, with accurate and almost immediate tabulation and with paper ballot printouts so all voters can have confidence in the integrity of the process. There is no reason these proven techniques, used overseas and in some U.S. states, could not be used in Florida.

"It was obvious that in 2000 these basic standards were not met in Florida, and there are disturbing signs that once again, as we prepare for a presidential election, some of the state's leading officials hold strong political biases that prevent necessary reforms.

"Four years ago, the top election official, Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris, was also the co-chair of the Bush-Cheney state campaign committee. The same strong bias has become evident in her successor, Glenda Hood, who was a highly partisan elector for George W. Bush in 2000. Several thousand ballots of African Americans were thrown out on technicalities in 2000, and a fumbling attempt has been made recently to disqualify 22,000 African Americans (likely Democrats), but only 61 Hispanics (likely Republicans), as alleged felons.

"The top election official has also played a leading role in qualifying Ralph Nader as a candidate, knowing that two-thirds of his votes in the previous election came at the expense of Al Gore. She ordered Nader's name be included on absentee ballots even before the state Supreme Court ruled on the controversial issue.

"Florida's governor, Jeb Bush, naturally a strong supporter of his brother, has taken no steps to correct these departures from principles of fair and equal treatment or to prevent them in the future.

"It is unconscionable to perpetuate fraudulent or biased electoral practices in any nation. It is especially objectionable among us Americans, who have prided ourselves on setting a global example for pure democracy. With reforms unlikely at this late stage of the election, perhaps the only recourse will be to focus maximum public scrutiny on the suspicious process in Florida."

-- President Jimmy Carter, Still Seeking a Fair Florida Vote, Washington Post, yesterday.

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"Gay people run for members of Congress. Gay people served beside me in Vietnam... Gay people have served in the military for years. For years, they've served in the military. I know this...

This is what's important: I want an America in which people are loved and respected and not an America which has outcasts and discrimination and different layers of being an American or a human being. People are who they are, and America's greatness is that we honor that and can respect it.

I think, you know, and I've said this before, I think marriage raises a different issue in the minds of a lot of people because of its deep religious foundations and institutional structure as the oldest institution in the world.

It is the oldest institution in the world ­ older than country, older than our form of government, older than most forms of government. And people view it differently.

What's important to me is not the terminology or the status; what's important to me are the rights. The rights. That you shouldn't be discriminated against in your right to visit a partner in the hospital. You shouldn't be discriminated against in your right to leave property to somebody, if that's what you want. You shouldn't be discriminated against if you have a civil union relationship that affords you the same rights.

Now I think that's a huge step. There's never been a candidate for president who has stood up and said I think we should fight for those things. And you've got to progress. Even that, I take huge hits for.

And you know, I stood up on the floor of the Senate and voted against DOMA because I thought it was gay bashing on the floor of the United States Senate. I was one of 14 votes. The only person running for reelection who did that.

So I'm not going to take a second seat to anybody in my willingness to fight for what I think is right. But I do think you have to take things step by step, in a reasonable way, so you can achieve some progress and not go backwards."

-- Senator John Kerry, as quoted in the New York Blade.

Image from First Coast News.


"We would be much safer today if President Bush had kept his focus on al-Qaida, rather than diverting crucial resources from the war on terror in Afghanistan to a war of choice in Iraq... This war has been a grotesque mistake that has diminished our reputation in the world and has not made America safer."
-- Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, (D-California) Democratic Leader in the U.S. House of Representatives, in a radio address yesterday.

Image from House Democrats.


"I'm trying to find the correct name for it... this utter absolute, asinine, idiotic stupidity of men marrying men... I've never seen a man in my life I wanted to marry. And I'm gonna be blunt and plain, if one ever looks at me like that I'm going to kill him and tell God he died."
-- Jimmy Swaggart

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"Mr. Bush claims that Mr. Kerry's plan to secure and rebuild Iraq is 'exactly what we're currently doing.' No, it isn't. It's only what Mr. Bush is currently saying. And we have 18 months of his administration's deeds to contrast with his words."
-- Paul Krugman, in an op-ed piece titled Let's Get Real, The New York Times.

Image from the Harvard Book Store.