There is no state more contrary to the dignity of wisdom than perpetual and unlimited dependance, in which the understanding lies useless, and every motion is received from external impulse. Reason is the great distinction of human nature, the faculty by which we approach the same degree of association with celestial intelligences; but as the excellence of every power appears only in its operations, not to have reason, and to have it unemployed is nearly the same.
All U.S. taxpayers would enjoy the same immunity from IRS penalties and interest as House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY) and Obama Administration Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, if a bill introduced today by Congressman John Carter (R-TX) becomes law.
Carter, a former longtime Texas judge, today introduced the Rangel Rule Act of 2009, HR 735, which would prohibit the Internal Revenue Service from charging penalties and interest on back taxes against U.S. citizens. Under the proposed law, any taxpayer who wrote “Rangel Rule” on their return when paying back taxes would be immune from penalties and interest.
And why not? Why shouldn't we be able to follow the example of our esteemed public servants?
No, Sir, if literature be in its spring in France, it is a second spring; it is after a winter. We are now before the French in literature; but we had it long after them. In England, any man who wears a sword and a powdered wig is ashamed to be illiterate. I believe it is not so in France. Yet there is, probably, a great deal of learning in France, because they have such a number of religious establishments; so many men who have nothing else to do but study. I do not know this; but I take it upon the common principles of chance. Where there are many shooters, some will hit.
Samuel Johnson James Boswell: Life of Samuel Johnson
Sleep, therefore, as the chief of all earthly blessings, is justly appropriated to industry and temperance; the refreshing rest, and the peaceful night, are the portion only o him who lies down weary with honest labour, and free from the fumes of indigested luxury; it is the just doom of laziness and gluttony, to be inactive without ease, and drowsy without tranquillity.
Good sense alone is a sedate and quiescent quality, which manages its possessions well, but does not increase them; it collects few materials for its own operations, and preserves safety, but never gains supremacy.
When I lived in England, I pretty much took weirdness for granted when it came to place names. There were some wondrous, tongue twisting and befuddling names out there. Slough. Great Snoring. Little Snoring. Towns named after obscure saints. Houghton St. Giles?
In the scale of embarrassing place names, Crapstone ranks
pretty high. But Britain is full of them. Some are mostly amusing, like Ugley,
Essex; East Breast, in western Scotland; North Piddle, in Worcestershire; and
Spanker Lane, in Derbyshire.
Others evoke images that may conflict with residents’
efforts to appear dignified when, for example, applying for jobs.
These include Crotch Crescent, Oxford; Titty Ho,
Northamptonshire; Wetwang, East Yorkshire; Slutshole Lane, Norfolk; and Thong,
Kent. And, in a country that delights in lavatory humor, particularly if the
word “bottom” is involved, there is Pratts Bottom, in Kent, doubly cursed
because “prat” is slang for buffoon.
As for Penistone, a thriving South Yorkshire town, just stop
that sophomoric snickering.
“It’s pronounced ‘PENNIS-tun,’ ” Fiona Moran, manager of the
Old Vicarage Hotel in Penistone, said over the telephone, rather sharply. When
forced to spell her address for outsiders, she uses misdirection, separating
the tricky section into two blameless parts: “p-e-n” — pause — “i-s-t-o-n-e.”
This is one of those things you think of when you're having a bad day. As bad as it gets, at least you don't live in Titty Ho.
Religion informs us that misery and sin were produced together. The depravation of human will was followed by a disorder of the harmony of nature; and by that Providence which often places antidotes in the neighborhood of poisons, vice was checked by misery, lest it should swell to universal and unlimited dominion.
If one were to have gone into deep sleep in late October
during the Dark Ages, and woken up in late January in the AB (after Bush) era
of Hope and Change and an end to all evil, would the world seem different? No,
it looks pretty much the same. Same old Predator strikes on terrorists in
Pakistan. Same old DC and NY grandees caught fudging on taxes and giving
complex explanations of hiring less than legal nannies and maids, same old
Guantanamo open with the same old pledges to, "Close it now! Or at least
soon!" Same old Chris Dodd and Charlie Rangel planning to outlast the
fading media scrutiny of their ethical lapses. Same old Joe Biden caught on
camera in more embarrassing gaffes. And same old media trying to explain why
the world has forever changed.